Snubbed; a look at three potential future Hall of Famers

 

A ‘Russian Rocket’, a ‘Sudden’ Swede, a Burnaby Joe, and the John Stockton of hockey make up the 2012 class of Hockey Hall of Fame inductees.

Pavel Bure, Mats Sundin, Joe Sakic, and Adam Oates, were all elected into the Hall Tuesday.

They are all more than deserving entries. But, which now eligible names did not make The hall's first ballot cut? And will they ever see Hall of Fame glory? Three notable eligible players make the list.

Jeremy Roenick

Patrick Roy may not be able to hear him with his, "two Stanley Cup rings plugging his ears," but the Hockey Hall of Fame will almost certainly consider the American superstar for entry.

A great dancer and natural goal scorer, JR's 1,216 NHL points place him just a few rungs below the likes of Sakic and Sundin in terms of point production.

The Hall of Fame-bound Sundin was minus one in his last playoff shift as a Maple Leaf thanks to Roenick. As a member of the Flyers, Roenick ended the Maple Leafs 2004 playoff run with a wrister that beat Eddy Belfour to win Game 6 of the 2003-2004 Eastern Conference semi-final, and the series.

His overtiem marker against the Bud’s was just one of many game winners scored by the Boston native.

With 92 game clinching tallies, Roenick ranks 11th all-time in game-winning goals.

Roenick was instrumental in leading the Blackhawks to the Stanley Cup Final appearance in the 1991-1992 season. Like Hall of Fame entry’s Bure, Oates, and Sundin, Roenick never did hoist the cup.

Multiple 100-point seasons and a member of the 500-goal club, Roenick was a consistent 60-100 point man throughout the 90's and early millennium.

Tumultuous post-lockout performance and a lack of hardware on his shelf may hinder his application to the hall.  

His status as one of the all-time great Americans and popularity with the fans will likely see him in.

John LeClair

One-third of the "Legion of Doom,” John LeClair along with Eric Lindros and Mikael Renberg terrorized goalies from 1995 to 1997.

LeClair was the first American to score 50 goals in three consecutive seasons. It was in Philadelphia where LeClair would accomplish the milestone and serve his most productive years in the NHL.

Like Roenick, LeClair will go down as one of the all-time great Americans. He has already been inducted into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame.

His lack of consistency in his later years and lack of individual awards may keep him out of the hall.

However, his contributions to American hockey, philanthropy (Leclair is president of the John LeClair foundation, a charity which sponsors children's hockey programs), and his status as a Flyers great are his tickets in.

Brendan Shanahan

Of the aforementioned players on this list, the now hard-nosed NHL disciplinarian is the most likely to become a Hall of Famer.

The power-forward played the "Rock em' Sock em" style of hockey. He was a productive goal-scorer with a great physical element.

Shanahan holds an unofficial, but exciting NHL record. ‘Shanny’ holds the record for the most Gordie Howe Hat-tricks.

The Mimico, Ontario native tallied a goal, an assist and dropped the gloves in a single game 17 times.

His numbers reflect his style of play. Shanahan racked up 2,489 penalty minutes in 1,524 games with Detroit, Hartford, New Jersey, New York Rangers, and St. Louis.

He could fight, but he could also score goals, netting 656 in an impressive 21 NHL campaigns.

His three Stanley Cups with the Red Wings, longevity, versatility, and continued contribution to the game should make Shanahan a lock to enter the Hockey Hall of Fame next year. 

Comments

Dillon Friday's picture

I'm not sure I like how you spotted Patrick the "s" when he clearly said "ear." O well.
Out of the three, I bet Shanahan gets in first. He remained a potent scorer late into the 2000's while Roenick's best years were in the high flying early nineties. His loud mouth got him more attention in his later years than his actual play. As much as I like John LeClair he probably won't get in. Although he is one of the greatest American born scorers in league history he didn't have the same kind of longevity as contemporary Americans Tkachuk, Roenick, Weight, Guerin, fellow forwards that will likely get the call before him.