Let us put the Eric Lindros Hall of Fame debate aside for a few moments. Here are three other former NHLers (listed alphabetically) I believe should be inducted into the Hall:
Glenn Anderson: OK, he was accused of not paying his child support; that may make him a bad person, but it should not take him out of the running for the Hall.
The speedy – and very gritty – Anderson was a significant player on five Stanley Cup champions in Edmonton and a sixth in New York with the Rangers.
His numbers – 498 goals and 1,099 points in 1,129 regular season games to go with 93 and 214 in 225 playoff games – are significant, as is the fact he had five overtime winners in the Stanley Cup playoffs, third all-time to Rocket Rickard’s six and Joe Sakic’s seven.
When players such as Scott Stevens and Al MacInnis, who are being inducted into the Hall of Fame Tuesday, give Anderson their endorsement, that’s good enough for me.
Steve Larmer: The Peterborough, Ont., native was the model of consistency in a career that included being named rookie of the year in the American League and NHL, a Stanley Cup with the Rangers in 1994 and a Canada Cup championship with Canada in 1991.
What made Larmer such a special player was both his durability – he played 884 consecutive games for Chicago – and the fact he was as good defensively as he was on offense.
Like a trusted mailman, Steve Larmer delivered.
Claude Lemieux: Let’s get this out of the way right off the bat: His cheap-shot hit on Kris Draper was despicable. But one dirty play does not undo a career that included four Stanley Cups with New Jersey (twice), Montreal and Colorado.
Lemieux was also the Conn Smythe Trophy winner as playoff MVP with the Devils in 1995.
Although Lemieux put up decent numbers in his nearly 1,200-game NHL career – 379 goals and 785 points – his value is not illustrated by numbers. He was a tough, physical checker who made life miserable for the other team’s stars. And he was a winner.