Detroit’s Historical Museum is opening a new Legends plaza. This is not strictly a sports honor as other Detroit legends are enshrined there as well.
When thinking of the greats of Detroit sports history, names that instantly come to mind are Gordie Howe, Barry Sanders, Tommy Hearns, Joe Dumars, Al Kaline and Steve Yzerman. All but one of those names made the plaza.
For some unknown reason, Steve Yzerman has been left off the initial list. Other snubs include Alan Trammell, Isaiah Thomas, Lou Whitaker, Ernie Harwell, Herman Moore and Nick Lidstrom.
Still, none of those players will forever be known as “The Captain.” None of them ended years of misery for Hockeytown by finally raising the cup. None of them won three championships for the city as a player and a fourth in the front office.
Few players in any city have meant as much to a city than Yzerman has to Detroit. He carried this team from the “Dead Wing” era to the top franchise in the league. While the Pistons and the Lions had moved out of the city, Yzerman and the Red Wings played downtown. His calm, quiet, hardworking demeanor fit perfectly with the psyche of Detroit.
While all of the people in the Legends Plaza certainly deserve their place, it is shocking that Yzerman has not been included. There are plans to induct others once the plaza opens. One would think that Yzerman would be among the first additions.
PJ Sapienza is a featured columnist covering the Detroit Red Wings as well as many other sports.
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