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A Case For the Hall Part 5

The fifth set of names for my case for the Hall series.

Milan Hejduk Photo by Bruce Bennett Studios via Getty Images Studios/Getty Images

Derian Hatcher - Defence - 1991/92-2007/08

Drafted in the first round, eighth overall, in the 1990 NHL Entry Draft by the Minnesota North Stars, Hatcher debuted during the 1991/92 season. He scored 331 points (80G, 251A) in 1045 games, as well as 33 points (7G, 26A) in 133 playoff games, for the Minnesota North Stars and Dallas Stars (1991/92-2002/03), Detroit Red Wings (2003/04), and Philadelphia Flyers (2005/06-2007/08).

Hatcher won the Stanley Cup in 1999 with the Dallas Stars. He earned Second-Team All-Star honours in 2003, and played in one All-Star Game, representing Dallas in 1997. Internationally, he represented the United States, winning the 1996 World Cup of Hockey.

I have both of the Brothers Hatcher on this list. Hatcher the younger spent the vast majority of his career with the Stars franchise, leaving for the final years of his career. He was a more shut-down defensive type taking advantage of his large size, but wasn’t a slouch by any means, with five 30-point seasons. When the Stars won the Stanley Cup in 1999, it wasn’t Mike Modano, Joe Nieuwendyk, or Brett Hull that wore the “C” as captain, but Hatcher. And it is in fact Hatcher that was the first American-born captain in Stanley Cup history.

Dallas Stars v Washington Capitals Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

Kevin Hatcher - Defence - 1984/85-2000/01

Drafted in the first round, 17th overall, in the 1984 NHL Entry Draft by the Washington Capitals, Hatcher debuted 1984/85 season. Hatcher scored 677 points (227G, 450A) in 1157 games, as well as 59 points (22G, 37A) in 118 playoff games, playing for the Washington Capitals (1984/85-1993/94), Dallas Stars (1994/95-1995/96), Pittsburgh Penguins (1996/97-1998/99), New York Rangers (1999/00), and Carolina Hurricanes (2000/01).

Hatcher played in five All-Star Games, representing Washington in 1990, 1991, and 1992; Dallas in 1996; and Pittsburgh in 1997. Internationally, Hatcher represented the United States, placing second at the 1991 Canada Cup and winning the 1996 World Cup of Hockey.

I have both of the Brothers Hatcher on this list. Hatcher the elder bounced around during his career, especially during the latter years. While big and physical, he was the more offensively-inclined of the two brothers. He scored double-digit goals each season from 1987/88, his third season, through 1998/99, his third-to-last, with two seasons topping 20 goals in that time. Additionally, he scored at least 40 points ten times in his career, five of those reaching 50, and two of those reaching 70. His crowning achievement is 1992/93, when he scored 79 points, including 34 goals, the last time a defenceman would score 30 goals in a season until Mike Green in 2009, the only one to accomplish the feat since. Where Derian’s case for induction as a Cup-winner is hurt by his low production, Kevin’s case for induction as a big scorer is hurt by his lack of championships.

Washington Capitals v Toronto Maple Leafs Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images

Bill Hay - Centre - 1959/60-1966/67

Signed as an undrafted free agent by the Montreal Canadiens, Hay debuted during the 1959/60 season. Hay scored 386 points (113G, 273A) in 506 games, as well as 36 points (15G, 21A) in 67 playoff games, for the Chicago Blackhawks (1959/60-1966/67).

Hay won the Stanley Cup in 1961 with the Chicago Blackhawks. He won the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year in 1960. He played in two All-Star Games, representing Chicago in 1960 and 1961.

Hay is a player, who like Al Arbour, had a very solid NHL career and was inducted into the Hall of Fame as a builder. For the player category, the argument boils down to his Calder Trophy and the fact that, in his eight seasons in the NHL, he reached the 50-point mark five times, including one 60-point season. He was also a two-time 20-goal scorer. Hay was the player who centered Bobby Hull during the 1961 playoff leading up to Chicago’s first Stanley Cup since 1938.

Detroit Red Wings vs Chicago Blackhawks, 1966 NHL Semifinals Set Number: X11567

Dany Heatley - Left Wing - 2001/02-2014/15

Drafted in the first round, second overall, in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft by the Atlanta Thrashers, Heatley debuted during the 2001/02 season. Heatley scored 791 points (372G, 419A) in 869 games, as well as 63 points (16G, 48A) in 77 playoff games, for the Atlanta Thrashers (2001/02-2003/04), Ottawa Senators (2005/06-2008/09), San Jose Sharks (2009/10-2010/11), Minnesota Wild (2011/12-2013/14), and Anaheim Ducks (2014/15).

Heatley won the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year in 2002. He earned All-Rookie Honours in 2002, Second-Team All-Star honours in 2006, and First-Team All-Star honours in 2007, and played in three All-Star Games, representing Atlanta in 2003 and Ottawa in 2007 and 2009. Internationally, he represented Canada, winning Bronze at the 2000 and 2001 World Juniors; Silver at the 2005, 2008, and 2009 World Championships; and Gold at 2003 and 2004 World Championships, 2004 World Cup of Hockey, and 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

How could I not include the F***ing All-Star? Although his overall career was relatively short, only lasting 13 seasons, but he was a pretty incredible scorer for many of those 13 seasons. In only his second season he scored 41 goals and had a memorable showing at that season’s All-Star Game. While the 2003/04 season wound up being a write-off on the ice after he got injured getting into a car accident that killed his teammate and passenger, he came back after the lockout for five great seasons, scoring 50, 50, 41, 39, and 39 goals, respectively. His scoring dipped after that, but he did still eclipse 20 goals in each of 2010/11 and 2011/12 before the cracks really started to show. The decline was swift from there and he wound up with 49 points in 118 across the next three seasons. He played his last six NHL games in 2014/15 before spending a year in Europe and retiring, and that lack of longevity, not to mention one Cup Final appearance in 2007 and no Cup win, will hurt his case. But he was one of the top snipers in the league at his peak and has a significant pile of medals that do make him worthy of consideration.

Atlanta Thrashers v Washington Capitals Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

Anders Hedberg - Right Wing - 1978/79-1984/85

Signed as an undrafted free agent in 1978 by the New York Rangers, Hedberg debuted in during the 1978/79 season. In the NHL, Hedberg scored 397 points (172G, 225A) in 465 games, as well as 46 points (22G, 24A) in 58 playoff games, for the New York Rangers (1978/79-1984/85). In the WHA, Hedberg scored 458 points (236G, 222A) in 286 games, as well as 63 points (35G, 28A) in 42 playoff games, for the Winnipeg Jets (1974/75-1977/78).

In the NHL, Hedberg won the Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy for sportsmanship, perseverance, and dedication to hockey in 1985. He played in one All-Star Game, representing the Rangers in 1985. In the WHA, he won the AVCO World Trophy in 1976 and 1978 with the Winnipeg Jets. He was the leading goal-scorer in 1977. He won the Lou Kaplan Trophy as the WHA’s rookie of the year in 1975. He earned Second-Team All-Star honours in 1975 and First-Team All-Star honours in 1976, 1977, and 1978, and played in three All-Star Games, representing Winnipeg in 1976, 1977, and 1978. Internationally, he represented Sweden, winning Bronze at the 1972, 1973, and 1974 World Championships; and Silver at the 1970 World Championships.

I can understand why a player who scored most of his points in the WHA would not be considered as strongly for induction, but Hedberg was among the game’s trailblazers as a European star back before the major leagues had many. Though fairly short and not as productive in the NHL as he had been in the WHA, Hedberg had a solid few years in the NHL as well, ending with winning the Bill Masterton Trophy in 1985. He also played in an All-Star Game, representing the Rangers in 1985. Hedberg played with Sweden in the 1976 and 1981 Canada Cups, totaling 11 points in 10 games. And in my opinion, it’s not like players who accomplished a lot in the WHA are totally undeserving of consideration. He helped lend the WHA credibility playing on the Hot Line with Bobby Hull and Ulf Nilsson, helping normalize the acceptance of Europeans in North American competition. With players like Sergei Makarov and Vaclav Nedomansky being inducted in recent years after having achieved most of their accomplishments outside their brief and uneventful NHL careers, the two Swedes from the WHA Jets’ Hot Line ought to get a better look.

Chicago Blackhawks v New York Rangers Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images

Milan Hejduk - Right Wing - 1999/00-2012/13

Drafted in the fourth round, 87th overall, in the 1994 NHL Entry Draft by the Quebec Nordiques, Hejduk debuted during the 1999/00 season. Hejduk scored 805 points (375G, 430A) in 1020 games, as well as 76 points (34G, 32A) in 112 playoff games, for the Colorado Avalanche (1999/00-2012/13).

Hejduk won the Stanley Cup in 2001 with the Colorado Avalanche. He won the Maurice Richard Trophy in 2003 as the league’s leading goal scorer. He earned All-Rookie honours in 1999 and Second-Team All-Star honours in 2003, and played in three All-Star Games, representing Colorado in 2000, 2001, and 2009. Internationally, he represented the Czech Republic, winning Bronze at the 1998 World Championships and the 2006 Turin Olympics, and Gold at the 1998 Nagano Olympics.

Hejduk was a productive scorer throughout his career, reaching at least 20 goals in all but the first season of his career and the last two, the latter of which was a lockout-shortened season. It was that last season that was also the last time he failed to score double-digit goals. He had five 30-goal seasons in that mix, two of them being 40-goal seasons, but it was one of those 40-goal seasons that was Hejduk’s crowning individual achievement. He finished that season with 50 goals and 98 points, winning the Rocket Richard. Worth noting is that it was also one of five times he had at least 60 points, and one of ten 50-point campaigns. Hejduk’s career looks a little like that of Adam Graves, with an elite season crowded amongst more ordinarily great seasons. Worth noting however, is that Hejduk has a higher career-high in points than Graves, reached it in fewer games, and many of Hejduk’s seasons are superior to many of Graves’. Simply by nature of how difficult both accomplishments are individually, there is very little overlap between leading the league in goals and winning the Stanley Cup. In 22 years of the Rocket Richard Trophy’s existence, only seven have won both it and the Cup, Hejduk among them.

Milan Hejduk shoots

Paul Henderson - Left Wing - 1962/63-1973/74, 1979/80

Signed as an undrafted free agent by the Detroit Red Wings, Henderson debuted during the 1962/63 season. In the NHL, Henderson scored 283 points (140G, 143A) in 360 games, as well as 360 games, and two points (1G, 1A) in five playoff games, playing for the Detroit Red Wings (1962/63-partway through 1967/68), Toronto Maple Leafs (partway through 1967/68-1973/74), and Atlanta Flames (1979/80). In the WHA, Henderson scored 477 points (236G, 241A) in 707 games, as well as 25 points (11G, 14A) in 56 playoff games for the Toronto Toros and Birmingham Bulls (1974/75-1978/79).

In the NHL, Henderson played in two All-Star Games, representing Toronto in 1972 and 1973. In the WHA, Henderson played in one All-Star Game, representing Toronto in 1975. Internationally, he represented Canada, winning the 1972 Summit Series.

If you were to ask Henderson himself whether he should be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame, he’d tell you no. With modest career scoring numbers and no Stanley Cup championships to his credit, so convinced is Henderson that he doesn’t deserve a spot in the Hall that if he were to have a vote he says he would vote against his own induction. That makes Paul Henderson probably the only person in the entirety of Canada who thinks Paul Henderson shouldn’t be inducted into the Hall. Because while it is an unavoidable fact that his list of achievements during his professional career is a almost entirely non-existent, it’s the magnitude of what he did accomplish that gets him into the conversation. In case you somehow don’t know the story already, the Soviet Red Army team faced off in an eight-game series, four games played in Canadian cities and four in Moscow. The Soviets, despite being essentially professional players, had been able year in and year out to finagle themselves amateur status, and with no NHL comparable league, they were able to power their way to Gold medals at World Championships and the Olympics. The Summit Series was the first time an international competition was played where NHL players represented their countries. With a smaller NHL at the time and the various NHL stars that had defected to the WHA banned, Henderson found his way on to the team. The Canadians were caught off-guard and wound up going 1-1-2 in the Canadian leg and losing the first game of the Russian leg before evening up the series. In the dying moments of a 5-5 third period, Henderson took a pass from Phil Esposito and potted the series winner. And with that, Canada’s hockey reputation was saved. The goal spawned one of the most iconic photos in the nation’s history. Also, it was delightfully parodied in “The Good Old Table Hockey Game,” a 2007 episode of the Canadian sitcom Corner Gas. So yeah, while it may be true that Henderson’s career as a whole was lacklustre, he was the leading man in one of the most important moments in the history of hockey in Canada, and on that basis he deserves to be inducted.

Maples Leafs Forward Paul Henderson At MSG Photo by Melchior DiGiacomo/Getty Images

Camille Henry - Centre - 1953/54-1954/55, 1956/57-1964/65, 1967/68-1969/70

Signed as an undrafted free agent by the New York Rangers, Henry debuted during the 1953/54 season. Henry scored 528 points (279G, 249A) in 727 games, as well as 18 points (6G, 12A) in 46 playoff games, playing for the New York Rangers (1953/54-1954/55, 1956/57-partway through 1964/65, 1967/68), Chicago Blackhawks (part of 1964/65), and St. Louis Blues (1968/69-1969/70).

Henry won the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year in 1954, and the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy as the league’s most gentlemanly player in 1958. He earned Second-Team All-Star honours in 1958. He played in three All-Star Games, representing the Rangers in 1958, 1963, and 1964.

Henry was one of the smallest players in the NHL during his career, at 5’7” and 152 lbs, and the Rangers teams he played for were generally bad, but he carved out a solid NHL career. When he won the Calder Trophy he beat out Jean Beliveau for the honour. He twice reached the 30-goal mark in his career, first scoring 32 in his Lady Byng season and trailing only Dickie Moore and Gordie Howe, and scoring 37 in 1963, trailing only Howe by one. When Jacques Plante first wore a mask during a game, on November 1, 1959, it was Henry who scored the Rangers’ only goal in a 3-1 loss. Henry was named captain for the 1963/64 season, and continued as captain until he was traded to Chicago the following season. He helped the Blackhawks to the Cup Final in 1965, and helped the Blues reach it in 1969.

New York Rangers’ Lou Fontinanto sends Andre Pronovost flyin Photo by Charles Hoff/NY Daily News Archive via Getty Images

Ron Hextall - Goaltender - 1986/87-1998/99

Drafted in the sixth round, 119th overall, of the 1982 NHL Entry Draft, by the Philadelphia Flyers, Hextall debuted during the 1986/87 season. Hextall posted a 296-214-69 record, 0.896 Save%, 2.98 GAA, and 23 shutouts in 608 games, as well as a 47-43 record, 0.897 Save%, 3.03 GAA, and two shutouts in 93 playoff games, for the Philadelphia Flyers (1986/87-1991/92, 1994/95-1998/99), Quebec Nordiques (1992/93), and New York Islanders (1993/94).

Hextall won the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year and the Vezina Trophy as the league’s top goaltender in 1987. He earned All-Rookie and First-Team All-Star honours in 1987, and played in one All-Star Game, representing Philadelphia in 1988.

When people nowadays think of Ron Hextall, they most likely see him as he is now, as a seasoned executive and longtime NHL general manager, or they remember his main claim to fame, as the first goaltender to deliberately score a goal. While he wasn’t the first goalie credited with a goal, the difference is that Hextall was the first to shoot the puck and have it go in, rather than merely being the last to touch the puck before an opposing player scored an own-goal. Of course, Hextall did accomplish more than that in his career. In addition to his list of accomplishments during his rookie season, that year also saw the Flyers face the Edmonton Oilers in the Stanley Cup Final. He did have more good seasons after that, with an All-Star appearance as a sophomore. While he struggled in the early 90s, he got back on track after his involvement in the Eric Lindros trade, being one of many assets traded by the Flyers to the Quebec Nordiques, he backstopped the Nordiques to their first playoff appearance since 1987 and the following year backstopped the Islanders to a playoff appearance preceding a seven-year drought. By the time he got back to Philadelphia, he was back in star form, finishing third in the league standings in both 1995 and 1996, the first two years of the Legion of Doom, and getting back to the Cup Final in 1997, again losing to a powerhouse team, this time the Red Wings. Ultimately, it could really go either way. He has a decent list of accomplishments, but they’re relegated to very early and very late in his career, with some weak seasons, a contract dispute, six suspensions because of his violent style of play, a reputation for being thrown off his game too easily when emotional, and large swathes of the 1989/90 and 1990/91 seasons missed due to injuries, all in an 11-year career, fairly short for an elite goaltender, complicating matters. But on the other hand, he still accomplished what he accomplished, so he could be deserving of consideration.

Philadelphia Flyers v Montreal Canadiens Wales Conference Finals

Ken Hodge - Right Wing - 1964/65-1977/78

Signed as an undrafted free agent by the Chicago Blackhawks, Hodge debuted during the 1964/65 season. Hodge scored 800 points (328G, 472A) in 881 games, as well as 81 points (34G, 47A) in 97 playoff games, for the Chicago Blackhawks (1964/65-1966/67), Boston Bruins (1967/68-1975/76), and New York Rangers (1976/77-1977/78).

Hodge won the Stanley Cup in 1970 and 1972 with the Boston Bruins. He earned First-Team All-Star honours in 1971 and 1974, and played in three All-Star Games, representing Boston in 1971, 1973, and 1974.

Hodge is a bit surprising as a non-inductee in the Hall of Fame. Of course, when talking about his line and his team, much of the conversation is rightfully focused on teammates like Phil Esposito, John Bucyk, and Bobby Orr, all Hall of Famers, but an argument can be made for Hodge to be included. I have his and Esposito’s linemate Wayne Cashman on the list, so Hodge himself would definitely be on the list. He only played 13 NHL seasons, only notching one game in his first and 18 in his last, so really only 11, but in those core 11 seasons he left his mark. The Bruins teams he played for in the 1970s were the biggest offensive powerhouse in league history during its run, with Hodge himself busting out with 45 goals and 90 points. He had a disappointing follow-up in 1970, but the Bruins won the Cup that year, and he followed up with 43 goals and 105 points. That season was among Hodge’s finest achievements. Not only did Hodge himself set a since-broken record for points by a right winger, but he finished fourth in scoring, behind only Esposito, Orr, and Bucyk, the only time in NHL history that the four leading scorers were all on the same team. Hodge helped the Bruins win another Cup in 1972 while scoring 56 points in 60 games, and followed that up with 37 goals and 81 points. He had one more monster season in him with 50 goals and 105 points the year they lost in the Cup Final to Philadelphia, and while he held on for a few more years as a solid player, that was it. He produced 23 goals and 66 points and then came a 1975/76 season during which Esposito was traded and Orr would be limited to ten games, his NHL career, for all intents and purposes, over. Hodge would top 20 goals and 60 points again, this time 25 and 61, before being traded for Rick Middleton. The Rangers lost that trade, as Hodge produced 21 goals and 62 points before playing his final 18 games the following year, while Middleton would establish himself as a top scorer and better skater than Hodge. Despite how brief his career was, Hodge made the most of it with some top scoring seasons and a few championships.

Boston Bruins v Philadelphia Flyers Photo by Melchior DiGiacomo/Getty Images

Benoit Hogue - Left Wing - 1987/88-2001/02

Drafted in the second round, 35th overall, in the 1985 NHL Entry Draft by the Buffalo Sabres, Hogue debuted during the 1987/88 season. Hogue scored 543 points (222G, 321A) in 863 games, as well as 33 points (17G, 18A) in 92 playoff games, for the Buffalo Sabres (1987/88-partway through 1991/92), New York Islanders (partway through 1991/92-partway through 1994/95), Toronto Maple Leafs (partway through 1994/95-partway through 1995/96), Dallas Stars (partway through 1995/96-1997/98, part of 1998/99, 2000/01-partway through 2001/02), Tampa Bay Lightning (part of 1998/99), Phoenix Coyotes (1999/00), Boston Bruins (part of 2001/02), and Washington Capitals (part of 2001/02).

Hogue won the Stanley Cup in 1999 with the Dallas Stars.

Hogue is on this list thanks to both his Stanley Cup win and his successful seasons in the 1990s. Between the 1992, 1993, and 1994 seasons, he scored 30 goals and 76 points, 33 goals and 75 points, and 36 goals and 69 points, that stretch including the Islanders’ upset victories over the favoured Capitals and Penguins. He also had 64 points as the Leafs traded him to the Stars during 1995/96. The difference between Hogue being on this list and not is his Stanley Cup win in 1999, and that’s far from putting him over the top.

Buffalo Sabres v Toronto Maple Leafs Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images

Bobby Holik - Centre - 1990/91-2008/09

Drafted in the first round, 10th overall, in the 1989 NHL Entry Draft by the Hartford Whalers, Holik debuted during the 1990/91 season. Holik scored 747 points (326G, 421A) in 1314 playoff games, as well as 59 points (20G, 39A) in 141 playoff games, for the Hartford Whalers (1990/91-1991/92), New Jersey Devils (1992/93-2001/02, 2008/09), New York Rangers (2002/03-2003/04), and Atlanta Thrashers (2005/06-2007/08).

Holik won the Stanley Cup in 1995 and 2000 with the New Jersey Devils. He played in two All-Star Games, representing New Jersey in 1998 and 1999. Internationally, he represented the Czech Republic, winning Bronze with Czechoslovakia at the 1989 and 1990 World Juniors, and the 1990 World Championships.

Holik isn’t a player that jumps off the page as Hall worthy. Truthfully, there isn’t much there to argue about, but this list is about considering for induction players who were unappreciated, underappreciated, or differently appreciated. Holik is another who fits into that defensive forward category we can reexamine thanks to the recent induction of Guy Carbonneau. And I do truthfully think that’s the best comparison. While Holik has no Selke Trophies and one fewer championship, he was the more offensively potent, producing three 60-point campaigns back-to-back to close out the 90s after famously centering the Crash Line during the Devils’ 1995 Cup run. All I’m saying is there’s a case to be made now.

New Jersey Devils v Toronto Maple Leafs Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images

Flash Hollett - Defence - 1933/34-1945/46

Signed as an undrafted free agent by the Toronto Maple Leafs, Hollett debuted during the 1933/34 season. Hollett scored 313 points (132G, 181A) in 565 games, as well as 34 points (8G, 26A) in 80 playoff games, for the Toronto Maple Leafs (part of 1933/34, 1934/35-partway through 1935/36), Ottawa Senators (part of 1933/34), Boston Bruins (partway through 1935/36-partway through 1943/44), and Detroit Red Wings (partway through 1943/44-1945/46).

Hollett won the Stanley Cup in 1939 and 1941 with the Boston Bruins. He earned Second-Team All-Star honours in 1943 and First-Team All-Star honours in 1945.

Hollett is among the earliest names on this entire list to have played in the NHL. These days, it is very hard to find a star player who played in the first half of the 20th Century, especially before the Second World War, that is both worthy of being inducted into the Hall of Fame and yet not an actual inductee. Decades before Doug Harvey, Pierre Pilote, and Red Kelly, or Bobby Orr, Hollett helped formed the prototype for the offensive defenceman. He was as dynamic as you’d expect someone nicknamed “Flash” to be as well. When he scored 19 goals in both the 1941/42 and 1942/43 seasons, it became a record for goals by a defenceman. Then, in 1944/45, his first full year with Detroit, he became the first defenceman in NHL history to score 20 goals. According to the NHL website, Baldy Northcott of the Maroons and Georges Mantha of the Canadiens are defencemen who reached 20 before Hollett, but according to Wikipedia, HockeyDB, and Hockey-Reference, they were forwards first and foremost. Considering a good handful of defencemen reached the 30-goal mark between the 70s and 90s, and there are even 40-goal scoring defencemen, 20 goals doesn’t seem like much, but Hollett played in the days of Eddie Shore, when “defenceman” meant, to a greater degree than at any other point in history, “big conservative-styled player who hits things.” I suppose you could say Hollett walked so Orr et al could run.

Tomas Holmstrom - Right Wing - 1996/97-2011/12

Drafted in the tenth round, 257th overall, in the 1994 NHL Entry Draft by the Detroit Red Wings, Holmstrom debuted during the 1996/97 season. Holmstrom scored 530 points (243G, 287A) in 1026 games, as well as 97 points (46G, 51A) in 180 playoff games, for the Detroit Red Wings (1996/96-2011/12).

Holmstrom won the Stanley Cup in 1997, 1998, 2002, and 2008 with the Detroit Red Wings. Internationally, he represented Sweden, winning Gold at the 2006 Turin Olympics.

Holmstrom may be a bit of a controversial pick, as he scored just over a half a point per game in the NHL, but again, a large segment of the picks on this large list is underappreciated players. Holmstrom can definitely be considered such a player. Holmstrom reached the 20-goal mark five times in his career and 50 points twice, including a 30-goal season in 2007, the year after he reached 59 points. He scored at a 56-point pace during the 2007/08 season, the last of Detroit’s four Cups during their 25-year playoff streak. While overall, his production wasn’t elite, he formed a part of the “Swedish Mafia” that formed the Red Wings’ core during the late 2000s. Despite a modest height of 6’0” he was a fixture on the power play as a net-front presence thanks to his sturdiness and physicality, scoring 62% of his points on the power play. He was a fixture in the core of the dominant Red Wings teams, and his induction would be another added to the list of nine (and ten in a few years) inductees to have played on the 2002 edition specifically.

Detroit Red Wings v Nashville Predators Photo by Ronald C. Modra/Getty Images

Bronco Horvath - Centre - 1955/56-1962/63, 1967/68

Signed as an undrafted free agent by the Detroit Red Wings, Horvath debuted during the 1955/56 season. Horvath scored 326 points (141G, 185A) in 434 games, as well as 21 points (12G, 9A) in 36 playoff games, for the New York Rangers (1955/56-partway through 1956/57, part of 1962/63), Montreal Canadiens (part of 1956/57), Boston Bruins (1957/58-1960/61), Chicago Blackhawks (1961/62), Toronto Maple Leafs (part of 1962/63), and Minnesota North Stars (1967/68).

Horvath was the goal-scoring leader in 1960. Horvath earned Second-Team All-Star honours in 1960, and played in two All-Star Games, representing Boston in 1960 and 1961.

Twice in his career, Horvath hit the 30-goal mark, tying for the goal-scoring lead in 1960 with Bobby Hull with 39 goals. He twice reached the 60-point mark as well, scoring 66 in 1958 and 80 in 1960. Horvath never won a championship, but got a few All-Star nods during his career. Back in Horvath’s day, the goal-scoring lead was officially held exclusively by whichever of the tied players had played more games, making Hull the official lead, but in the modern day, all players who tie for the lead are considered co-leaders.

Charlie Huddy - Defence - 1980/81-1996/97

Signed as an undrafted free agent in 1979 by the Edmonton Oilers, Huddy debuted during the 1980/81 season. Huddy scored 453 points (99G, 354A) in 1017 games, as well as 85 points (19G, 66A) in 183 playoff games, playing for the Edmonton Oilers (1980/81-1990/91), Los Angeles Kings (1991/92-partway through 1994/95), Buffalo Sabres (partway through 1994/95-partway through 1995/96, 1996/97), and St. Louis Blues (part of 1995/96).

Huddy won the Stanley Cup in 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988, and 1990 with the Edmonton Oilers. Internationally, he represented Canada, winning the 1984 Canada Cup.

This being a Jets blog, the first thing that probably comes to mind when mentioning Huddy is his part in the Jets’ continually abysmal defence. But before he was a poorly-performing assistant coach he was a solid defenceman for the Oilers. As I have mentioned, and will continue to mention, players who won a Cup during the Oilers’ dynasty years who have some other level of achievement, such as individual awards, Cups with other teams, All-Star Game appearances, or seasons good enough to earn an All-Star appearance, get on this list. Between 1983 and 1989, he scored at least 40 points six times. Two of those times, he actually scored 50 points, scoring 57 points (including 20 goals) in 1983 and 51 points in 1985. He remained more productive than Lowe for longer, remaining a 20-point threat as recently as 1993 while Lowe’s last 20-point campaign was in 1990. While Lowe won six Stanley Cups to Huddy’s five, and also has an award and All-Star appearances under his belt, Huddy still has as much of a case as Lowe. Firstly, five Stanley Cups is still a lot, Lowe’s only award was a King Clancy Memorial Trophy, smack dab near the bottom of the NHL award hierarchy, only above the Mark Messier Leadership Award due to its longer tenure. And Huddy was, at his peak and throughout his career, and both in raw counting numbers and per-game scoring rate, the more potent offensive player. Essentially, if Lowe is in the Hall of Fame, that puts Huddy in the conversation in my eyes.

Edmonton OIlers v New Jersey Devils Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images