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For the supporters of these players, defend their HHOF worth

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Old
10-12-2008, 01:07 PM
  #1
Big Phil
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For the supporters of these players, defend their HHOF worth

Okay just an idea I came up with. I'm going to throw out a few names. Many if not most of us will agree that these guys do not belong in the Hall of Fame. But there have always been supporters of these guys from these boards. Some are in the Hall already and some arent but have gotten support. There isnt the Vachon's or the Middleton's in this group but more or less players who for the majority of the time dont get a lot of love for the HHOF. Pretend you are a lawyer and you have to make a case for these people, but dont bother posting if you dont believe they should be in.

Already in:

Clark Gillies
Dick Duff

Not in but retired:

Phil Housley (Bundy, I know you'll be hitting this one)
Pierre Turgeon
Dino Ciccarelli
John Vanbiesbrouck
Pete Mahovlich
Rick Martin
Dave Andreychuk
Dave Taylor
John Leclair


So in pick as many as you want, permitting you feel they deserve the HHOF. But explain what your case would be. Remember, dont defend them if you dont truly believe it

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10-12-2008, 01:15 PM
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tony d
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Dino Ciccarelli:

The guy scored 608 goals in his career which spanned 19 seasons. To go along with those 608 goals he scored 1200 points. He also had 7 seasons of more than 40 goals, how he is not in the Hall of Fame is something that I question.

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10-12-2008, 02:41 PM
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There should be one for Joe Mullen, consistently scoring 30 goals in a very high era and winning cups with Mario is not enough to be in the HOF. He had one elite season, 1989, that's it. He's overrated.

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10-12-2008, 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by ushvinder View Post
There should be one for Joe Mullen, consistently scoring 30 goals in a very high era and winning cups with Mario is not enough to be in the HOF. He had one elite season, 1989, that's it. He's overrated.
Fair enough, but he's in there already and he is a lot less controversial than Gillies or Duff. But your kind of doing the opposite of where I plan on this thread going. You are making a case AGAINST a player. I am looking for a case FOR a player to be a worthy HHOFer.

BTW - Mullen had 7 seasons where he had 40+ goals. Once was 51. He won three Cups and has a first team all-star. Plus 502 career goals. He deserves it.

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10-12-2008, 02:54 PM
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Fair enough, but he's in there already and he is a lot less controversial than Gillies or Duff. But your kind of doing the opposite of where I plan on this thread going. You are making a case AGAINST a player. I am looking for a case FOR a player to be a worthy HHOFer.

BTW - Mullen had 7 seasons where he had 40+ goals. Once was 51. He won three Cups and has a first team all-star. Plus 502 career goals. He deserves it.
Thats irrelevant if he was scoring 40+ goals, how many times was he considered an elite player, thats right once. Playing in a high scoring era makes his 502 goals seem so impressive, its the era that inflates his totals.

Pavel Bure easily has a better case for the HOF and hes not in yet. It's called the HOF, not the hall of who won stanley cups.

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10-12-2008, 03:05 PM
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Originally Posted by ushvinder View Post
Thats irrelevant if he was scoring 40+ goals, how many times was he considered an elite player, thats right once. Playing in a high scoring era makes his 502 goals seem so impressive, its the era that inflates his totals.

Pavel Bure easily has a better case for the HOF and hes not in yet. It's called the HOF, not the hall of who won stanley cups.
Yeah but Mullen has as many 40+ goal seasons as Bill Barber and one extra Cup to boot. He was integral in at least two of them. In '89 he had 16 goals for the Flames! I'd call him their best forward for sure. In '91 he had 17 points for the Pens. He isnt among the greatest Hall of Famers, but he's certainly a Hall of Famer. He contributed a lot to the Cup wins and that goes a long ways.

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10-12-2008, 03:12 PM
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Yeah but Mullen has as many 40+ goal seasons as Bill Barber and one extra Cup to boot. He was integral in at least two of them. In '89 he had 16 goals for the Flames! I'd call him their best forward for sure. In '91 he had 17 points for the Pens. He isnt among the greatest Hall of Famers, but he's certainly a Hall of Famer. He contributed a lot to the Cup wins and that goes a long ways.
There are alot of guys in the HHOF that need a good case to prove that they really belong.

Bill Barber
Steve Shutt
Clark Gillies
Dick Duff
Gerry Cheevers

The only case you can really make for them is that they won stanley cups and were consistently above average. That's all you can really say, thier success was based on being at the right place at the right time.

Lanny Mcdonald is usually considered a weak pick. He at least proved that he could be very good for 7-8 years and not rely on ATGs to achieve success. Lanny Mcdonald is an example of a guy thats in the HOF because he won a cup and was a very good player in his own right.

Rogie Vachon is a better goaltender than Gerry Cheevers hands down. What did cheevers prove, that he could win games as long as he's on the best team in the league. He wasn't even good enough to get a full-time job in the nhl during the O-6 era.

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10-12-2008, 06:18 PM
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Originally Posted by ushvinder View Post
There are alot of guys in the HHOF that need a good case to prove that they really belong.

Bill Barber
Steve Shutt
Clark Gillies
Dick Duff
Gerry Cheevers

The only case you can really make for them is that they won stanley cups and were consistently above average. That's all you can really say, thier success was based on being at the right place at the right time.

Lanny Mcdonald is usually considered a weak pick. He at least proved that he could be very good for 7-8 years and not rely on ATGs to achieve success. Lanny Mcdonald is an example of a guy thats in the HOF because he won a cup and was a very good player in his own right.

Rogie Vachon is a better goaltender than Gerry Cheevers hands down. What did cheevers prove, that he could win games as long as he's on the best team in the league. He wasn't even good enough to get a full-time job in the nhl during the O-6 era.
First off, let me state that I believe that Rogie Vachon should be in the Hall of Fame.

Here's an article I wrote about that issue last year.
http://www.habsworld.net/article.php?id=1511

To say that he was a better goalie hands down than Cheevers is a little bit debateable however. One of the main reasons that Cheevers resides in the Hall of Fame is that he was considered one of the greatest clutch goalies of his day.

Ironically, Cheevers may be one of the more underated goalies of the seventies. After all, how many people realize that he holds the record for the longest unbeaten stretch by a single goaltender at 33 games. Furthermore his playoff record is nothing to sneeze at, with a win/loss of 53 to 34, one of the best ratios in league history.

Cheevers was on Cup winners in 1970 and 1972, and led the Bruins to the finals in 1977 and 1978. People will say he played on a great team, but so did Grant Fuhr and I don't see his name on the list. And let's be serious Grant Fuhr was no Gerry Cheevers. In accessing his value to the Bruins ask yourself, how well did the Bruins do without him ??

In 1973 fielding a team very similar to the Cup champions of a year before they were eliminated in the first round by the Rangers. In 1974 they came up short in the finals because Bernie Parent, was simply the best player on both teams. In 1975 against Chicago they lost in a three game series in which they actually scored 15 goals. One could argue that Cheevers may have made a little difference all three years.

If one puts forth the argument that a player was good simply because of the team he was on, you have to ask yourself this, did the team thrive without him? If they didn't you might want to rethink how important he was to the team.

Meanwhile, Cheevers played in 7 of the 8 games for Team WHA in the 1974 Summit Series against the Russians. Needless to say that WHA team was overmatched, but as anybody who watched that series can tell you Cheevers was magnificent. In his autobiography published years later, his Soviet counterpart Vladislav Tretiak, pronounced Cheevers, not Dryden, not Esposito, and not Vachon, as the greatest NHL goalie he had ever faced.

People will bring up that he couldn't crack the Leafs. In 1965, Punch Imlach, a coach who always favoured veterans, chose to leave him unprotected, and protected Johnny Bower and Terry Sawchuk. I think that this decision says more about Leafs management at the time then it does Cheevers.

Looking back on it I think Cheevers and the Bruins were the perfect match of goaltender and team. Simply put he liked to have fun, and was one of the guys who didn't take himself too seriously. Contrast that with Jacques Plante whose arrival in Boston in the spring of 1973 was nothing short of a disaster.

Now there is a tendency on the part of many of us to look at the statistics and assign almighty value to what they say. I don't think you can do that with Cheevers. Unlike many goalies, he was content to let in five goals, if his team scored six. He even admitted to not giving his all if the Bruins had a big lead, because he thought the game was in the bag. He didn't care about an inflated goals against, all he cared about was winning. And you can call Gerry Cheevers a lots of things, one of them is winner.

So where does Cheevers rank? Amongst his NHL peers in the seventies I put him behind Dryden & Parent, maybe equal with Esposito, and just ahead of Giacomin and Vachon.

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10-12-2008, 06:50 PM
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First off, let me state that I believe that Rogie Vachon should be in the Hall of Fame.

Here's an article I wrote about that issue last year.
http://www.habsworld.net/article.php?id=1511

To say that he was a better goalie hands down than Cheevers is a little bit debateable however. One of the main reasons that Cheevers resides in the Hall of Fame is that he was considered one of the greatest clutch goalies of his day.

Ironically, Cheevers may be one of the more underated goalies of the seventies. After all, how many people realize that he holds the record for the longest unbeaten stretch by a single goaltender at 33 games. Furthermore his playoff record is nothing to sneeze at, with a win/loss of 53 to 34, one of the best ratios in league history.

Cheevers was on Cup winners in 1970 and 1972, and led the Bruins to the finals in 1977 and 1978. People will say he played on a great team, but so did Grant Fuhr and I don't see his name on the list. And let's be serious Grant Fuhr was no Gerry Cheevers. In accessing his value to the Bruins ask yourself, how well did the Bruins do without him ??

In 1973 fielding a team very similar to the Cup champions of a year before they were eliminated in the first round by the Rangers. In 1974 they came up short in the finals because Bernie Parent, was simply the best player on both teams. In 1975 against Chicago they lost in a three game series in which they actually scored 15 goals. One could argue that Cheevers may have made a little difference all three years.

If one puts forth the argument that a player was good simply because of the team he was on, you have to ask yourself this, did the team thrive without him? If they didn't you might want to rethink how important he was to the team.

Meanwhile, Cheevers played in 7 of the 8 games for Team WHA in the 1974 Summit Series against the Russians. Needless to say that WHA team was overmatched, but as anybody who watched that series can tell you Cheevers was magnificent. In his autobiography published years later, his Soviet counterpart Vladislav Tretiak, pronounced Cheevers, not Dryden, not Esposito, and not Vachon, as the greatest NHL goalie he had ever faced.

People will bring up that he couldn't crack the Leafs. In 1965, Punch Imlach, a coach who always favoured veterans, chose to leave him unprotected, and protected Johnny Bower and Terry Sawchuk. I think that this decision says more about Leafs management at the time then it does Cheevers.

Looking back on it I think Cheevers and the Bruins were the perfect match of goaltender and team. Simply put he liked to have fun, and was one of the guys who didn't take himself too seriously. Contrast that with Jacques Plante whose arrival in Boston in the spring of 1973 was nothing short of a disaster.

Now there is a tendency on the part of many of us to look at the statistics and assign almighty value to what they say. I don't think you can do that with Cheevers. Unlike many goalies, he was content to let in five goals, if his team scored six. He even admitted to not giving his all if the Bruins had a big lead, because he thought the game was in the bag. He didn't care about an inflated goals against, all he cared about was winning. And you can call Gerry Cheevers a lots of things, one of them is winner.

So where does Cheevers rank? Amongst his NHL peers in the seventies I put him behind Dryden & Parent, maybe equal with Esposito, and just ahead of Giacomin and Vachon.
In Boston Cheevers was known as The Money Goalie. And it wasn't because he was great with the game on the line, rather as you stated, letting a big lead slip away. Some said to get under the betting line. Interseting your choice of words, the game in the bag. That's what they used to call it in gambling circles back then. Shortly after Cheevers jumped to the WHA, there was a late night talk show on WBZ radio in Boston that had sports gambling as their topic for the night. They had on some guy that claimed he was a bookie turned informant for the cops. Without mentioning names, we claimed to know there was a guy that used to play goal for the Bruins that was 'hot". Anyone that was listening knew who he meant. Nothing was ever formally alledged. Gamblers aren't really known for their objectivity. This is just hearsay, as I remember it. But Cheevers definitely left himself open to speculation based on his lackluster play when ahead, his preoccupation with the horses and his jumping ship to the WHA for the money.

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10-12-2008, 09:08 PM
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Here's my case for Phil Housley:

He was a consistent point-producer from day one. From hs rookie year in Buffalo up until his trade from Calgary in 1996, he consistently ranked among the top-5/top-10 in scoring by a defenseman.

He had a great shot from the point, could score lots of goals (20-goals consistently)

Very unselfish player (In his 97-point year, he sacrificed goals to help Selanne score all those goals. He only had 19 goals, but 78 assists!)

It wasn't his fault he had a bad plus-minus. Everyone talk abotu his -27 in the 97-point season- Essensa was getting scored on, not Housley!

Some people treat Housley was such disdain, you'd think he was a reincarnation of Patrik Stefan and Alexander Daigle!

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10-13-2008, 01:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Al Bundy View Post
Here's my case for Phil Housley:

He was a consistent point-producer from day one. From hs rookie year in Buffalo up until his trade from Calgary in 1996, he consistently ranked among the top-5/top-10 in scoring by a defenseman.

He had a great shot from the point, could score lots of goals (20-goals consistently)

Very unselfish player (In his 97-point year, he sacrificed goals to help Selanne score all those goals. He only had 19 goals, but 78 assists!)

It wasn't his fault he had a bad plus-minus. Everyone talk abotu his -27 in the 97-point season- Essensa was getting scored on, not Housley!

Some people treat Housley was such disdain, you'd think he was a reincarnation of Patrik Stefan and Alexander Daigle!
Housley was absolutely horrendous defensively. I never look simply at +/-. I am talking first hand account of watching him play. He was a complete sieve.

Having watched his career from start to finish, and paid close attention to him because Defense is my favorite position and always had been, nothing anyone can say could possibly convince me he was anything higher than a 2/10 defensively because it would be a bold faced lie.

His 92-93 year had less to do with him being unselfish and scoring less goals because he passed more while attacking, and everything to do with his breakout passes being converted to goals by Selanne(Who was ridiculously fast before he buggered up his knee).
He scored 97 points, which is no small feat for a defenseman, but he also played a quarter of that year as a center for the jets(Something that was common in his days in Buffalo). Its a respectable year, but trying to sugar coat it by saying "he was being unselfish" is just untrue.

He was also very soft. A forgivable sin if you make up for it with your stickwork like Lidstrom types, But Housley did not do any such thing.

His scoring does not make up for the gaping holes in his defensive play, his reduced effectiveness in the playoffs or his soft play.

Borderliner HOF guy, but NOT a hall of famer IMO. If he ever gets in, it will be well after Mark Howe and JC Tremblay

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10-13-2008, 01:12 AM
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Fair enough, but he's in there already and he is a lot less controversial than Gillies or Duff. But your kind of doing the opposite of where I plan on this thread going. You are making a case AGAINST a player. I am looking for a case FOR a player to be a worthy HHOFer.

BTW - Mullen had 7 seasons where he had 40+ goals. Once was 51. He won three Cups and has a first team all-star. Plus 502 career goals. He deserves it.
Ushvinder's primary method of giving props to players he likes is demeaning other players. Always has been.

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10-13-2008, 01:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Al Bundy View Post
Here's my case for Phil Housley:

He was a consistent point-producer from day one. From hs rookie year in Buffalo up until his trade from Calgary in 1996, he consistently ranked among the top-5/top-10 in scoring by a defenseman.

He had a great shot from the point, could score lots of goals (20-goals consistently)

Very unselfish player (In his 97-point year, he sacrificed goals to help Selanne score all those goals. He only had 19 goals, but 78 assists!)

It wasn't his fault he had a bad plus-minus. Everyone talk abotu his -27 in the 97-point season- Essensa was getting scored on, not Housley!

Some people treat Housley was such disdain, you'd think he was a reincarnation of Patrik Stefan and Alexander Daigle!
The counter-argument :

- he was below-average defensively for a top-4 defender. Small, soft, and just not very good in his own zone. Converted to forward for large portions of his early career with Buffalo. 7 times in his career was a minus player for a .500 or better team.

- he spent 21 seasons in the NHL, and was never at any point a regular on the PK for any of the teams he played for. Damning fact for an 'elite' defender.

- he has one of the worst playoff records of all time. Made it past the first round twice in 21 seasons. As a rookie, and then as a bit player late in his career for Washington. Brutal. Never had a 10-point playoffs.

- his award portfolio isn't close to HHOF calibre. One post-season All-Star nod (2nd team, 1992). Never won a major award, never seriously contended for a Norris. When you compare him to a guy like Doug Wilson, he isn't really close.

- if you're going to make the HHOF as a one-dimensional offensive player, you'd better be ridiculously dominant. But he only led NHL defenders in scoring once. Had a whole bunch of 'good' 60-70 point seasons, but never strung together 4-5 years at his 1991-93 level where he was scoring 80-100 points and dominating offesively. Most years, he just didn't score enough to be any more than a 'good' player when you factor in his defensive problems.

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10-13-2008, 02:27 AM
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I'm not saying Housley was a god, but he's not as bad as you make him sound.

I guess Thornton_19 DOES see him as Stefan/Daigle rolled into one.

I always liked the guy- he was like you best friend down the street who could zing a pass to you.

He was like the everyman D-Man- not that guy with the huge mansion (Bourque) who EVERYONE worshipped.

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10-13-2008, 02:28 AM
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7 times in his career was a minus player for a .500 or better team.
It's not his fault the goalies couldn't defend shots!

Lidstrom would have been a minus 60 on those Jets teams!


Last edited by Al Bundy*: 10-13-2008 at 02:34 AM.
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10-13-2008, 03:26 AM
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It's not his fault the goalies couldn't defend shots!

Lidstrom would have been a minus 60 on those Jets teams!
What?

These weren't bad teams. These were good teams, where the goalies seemed to stop pucks just fine when Housley wasn't on the ice. Essensa was a Vezina finalist in 1992, and Housley was still a minus player!

Teppo Numminen played on those Jets teams and was a + player, so I don't think Lidstrom would have been a -60.

Throughout his career, you see the same pattern - brilliant on the PP, an average player 5-on-5. Never trusted to penalty kill by his coaches. On the ice for a disproportionate number of 5-on-5 goals.

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10-13-2008, 01:08 PM
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I'm not saying Housley was a god, but he's not as bad as you make him sound.

I guess Thornton_19 DOES see him as Stefan/Daigle rolled into one.

I always liked the guy- he was like you best friend down the street who could zing a pass to you.

He was like the everyman D-Man- not that guy with the huge mansion (Bourque) who EVERYONE worshipped.
Here is the thing. If during your tenure in the NHL I can name 6+ Defensemen who were without a shadow of a doubt better than you almost every single year, and then several more who were close or better arguably, how do you justify hall of fame entry?

He was never the best. Never even close to the best. His best achievement ever was being 4th best, and that was a standout year for him. Even in his standout year, he was one dimensional

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10-13-2008, 02:26 PM
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Here is the thing. If during your tenure in the NHL I can name 6+ Defensemen who were without a shadow of a doubt better than you almost every single year, and then several more who were close or better arguably, how do you justify hall of fame entry?

He was never the best. Never even close to the best. His best achievement ever was being 4th best, and that was a standout year for him. Even in his standout year, he was one dimensional
I have never been a Housley HHOF supporter but even in his '92 season where he was the best in his career he might only be best associated with having the most power play points in the league that year. When Team USA named their team to the World Cup in '96 Housley wasnt even playing most of the time, he was a healthy scratch. This is a guy who led his team in points in '95-96 as well

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