It is coming up to that time of year when the Hockey Hall of Fame gets ready to decide which 4 players it is going to enshrine into the hallowed halls in Toronto.
That’s right…4 players get in. No matter how many players get enough votes, there are only 4 players each year selected.
Back in the original 6 days, guess how many players able to be inducted each year? 4 (and sometimes more). Now with 5 times as many players playing the game at its highest level, why are there not more players being inducted. The list of players being left out every year continues to grow, because there is simply not enough room every year to keep pace.
Look at the list of names that were eligible last year but not voted in: Dave Andreychuk, Phil Housley, Kevin Lowe, Jeremy Roenick, Brendan Shanahan, Eric Lindros, Theoren Fleury, Gary Suter, Pierre Turgeon, Curtis Joseph, Mike Richter and Andy Moog, just to name a few. There are a lot more suitable candidates that I have left off my list which just goes to show the antiquated way that the Hall makes their selections.
This year the list will grow, as the names that have become eligible include Scott Niedermayer, Chris Chelios, Rod Brind’Amour, Rob Blake, Paul Kariya, Bill Guerin, Keith Tkachuk, Sergei Zubov and Markus Naslund.
You can argue about the merits of each on a case by case basis, but in my eyes more than 4 of those players are Hall of Fame Material. There are 4 defensemen alone that could and should be there.
I am not saying you increase it to 20, but even starting this year with 4 first year candidates (as long as they get the required number of votes), as well as 3 or 4 “veteran” spots, consisting of players who were passed over the first few times around but are still eligible.
It wouldn’t take away from the distinction, but it would make it more equitable, because many of those players being left out are deserving, but might never make it in with the “4 player” rule. There are more than 5 times as many players playing in the game today, probably most of them are better athletes than many of the Hall-of -Famers that are in the Hall from the good old days.
The ratio doesn’t work, and very deserving people are being left out in the cold. Each year there are more and more being omitted and it isn’t right. Its too late for a change for this year, but something has to give.