Will Andreychuk get into the Hall of Fame?
The 2010 Hockey Hall of Fame class is expected to be announced next week and former Lightning captain Dave Andreychuk is up again. Here's an interesting post on Yahoo's always interesting Puck Daddy blog about the odds for the eligible players. The post has former Lightning standouts Andreychuk and Dino Ciccarelli both at 10-to-1. Writer Sean Leahy writes:
Andreychuk has 640 goals and is in his second year of eligibility. Ciccarelli has 608 and has been on the ballot since 2002. They are the only two Hall-eligible members of the NHL's 600-goal club not enshrined in Toronto. For Andreychuk, there was no way last year he was making it with the power class that was inducted.
For Ciccarelli, there have been opportunities for him to get in, but off-ice issues during his career and clashes with the media might be responsible for him being left out.
The stats and on-ice success are similar -- though Andreychuk does have a Cup ring, but does he scream "Hall of Famer'' at you despite the 640 goals?
If Ciccarelli has been given the cold shoulder for almost a decade, why would 2010 be the year he finally gets in?
Not to be too hard on the blog post because Leahy is a sharp hockey guy, but doesn't 640 goals alone scream "Hall of Famer?'' I mean, only 12 in NHL history have more. Plus, Andreychuk is the game's all-time leader in power-play goals. He's won a Cup, he's among the all-time goal scorers among left wings. Quite simply, he's a Hall of Famer.
So is Ciccarelli. It's true that Ciccarelli did have some off-ice issues, and a couple of run-ins with the media after he retired. But those who covered him on a day-to-day basis (as I did from 1996 to 1998 when he was with the Lightning) will tell you that he was generally available, cooperative and even friendly. His exclusion from the Hall, so far, is hard to figure because I don't think it's anything to do with media issues.