Eric Lindros....Hall of Fame Worthy?
The Hockey Hall of Fame will announce its 2011 inductees on the 28th of June where four players, two builders and one on-ice official will have the honour of having their names called. The players and on-ice official must have been retired for a minimum of three years before being eligible while the builder can be active or inactive. In the players category both male and female can be selected. Only two women can be voted in per year but four men can be voted in. The committee which includes 13 members, vote on who should be voted in. The committee looks at amateur years, professional years and international success.
There are many deserving players. Some are in their first year of eligibility while others have patiently waited their turn to have their name called and inducted into the Hall of Fame. For a list of who is eligible click here.
Eric Lindros Background Information
One of the players who did not make it his first time is Eric Lindros.
The 6’4 230lbs center from London, Ontario was the most hyped teenager in a decade after a tremendous Junior career.
He played parts of three seasons with the Oshawa Generals from 1989 to 1992 playing in 95 games, scoring 97 goals and 216 points to go along with his 304 penalty minutes. In the playoffs he added an additional 36 more goals and 74 points in 74 games while capturing the Memorial Cup in 1990.
In the 1990-1991 OHL season Lindros won the Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy as the league’s top scorer, the Red Tilson Trophy as the league’s MVP and the CHL Player of the Year award.
After a decorated Junior career Lindros had teams drooling over his blend of power and skill. He was clearly the best player in the draft and went 1st overall in the 1991 NHL Entry draft by the Quebec Nordiques.
However Lindros had made it clear he did not want to play there and did not put on the jersey when he went on stage. Many draft pundits questioned why the Nordiques selected him but later on it was one of the smartest moves.
Lindros held out a year and was eventually traded to Philadelphia Flyers on June 30th, 1992.
The Nordiques received, Peter Forsberg, Mike Ricci, Ron Hextall, Steve Duchesne, Kerry Huffman and Chris Simon. As well two first round picks (Jocelyn Thibault 10th overall 1993 who was later traded for Patrick Roy) with one being traded in the end to the Washington Capitals (10th overall Nolan Baumgartner 1994) and $15 million.
This is considered one of the most lopsided trades of all time as after the Nordiques moved to Colorado they won a Stanley Cup in 1995 thanks in large part to the majority of the players received in the Lindros trade.
Even with giving up the six players, two first round draft picks and money the Flyers were still rewarded by Lindros’ services. The hype translated into success on the ice which sold lots of tickets as Lindros could score, hit and outwork almost anyone in the game.
During his first 10 seasons in the NHL Lindros had scored 346 goals and 785 points. This equalled on average1.23 points per game which was second best in the entire league only behind the great Jaromir Jagr (1.34).
He was named to the NHL All-Rookie Team in 1993 and won the Hart Memorial Trophy and Lester B. Pearson Award in 1995. Lindros was a 7 times All-Star and winner of the Bobby Clarke Trophy 4 times as the Flyers team MVP.
Lindros enjoyed great International success both at the Junior and Senior levels.
He played in three World Junior Championships (1990-1992) winning Gold in 1990 and 1991. He is Canada’s all time points leader in the World Junior Tournament with 31 points (21 games played, 12 goals, 19 assists).
In 1991 Lindros played in the Canada Cup (8 games played, 3 goals, 5 points) capturing Gold. He also played in the 1993 World Championships and the 1996 World Cup of Hockey winning Silver.
Lindros took part in three Olympics (1992, 1998 and 2002), winning Silver in 1992, Captaining the 1998 team (4th place) and finally won Gold in 2002.
The two big knocks against Lindros questioning his candidacy is games missed due to injuries (55 average per season), most notably concussions and he has no Stanley Cups to his name.
When a players resume is questioned comparisons begin to occur between the player and someone who is already in the Hall of Fame. Lindros has a comparison and that is Cam Neely.
Neely too had a career cut short due to injuries and won no Stanley Cups the same as Lindros and he also played 34 fewer games then Lindros. Cam Neely scored 395 goals and 694 points while Eric Lindros scored 372 goals and 865 points. Both were power forwards, both have the same history career wise with injuries and games missed as well as point totals.
Credentials and Achievments
OHL - 169 games played, 133 goals, 157 assists, 290 points, 473 penalty minutes
NHL - 760 games played, 372 goals, 493 assists, 865 points, 1398 penalty minutes
NHL Playoffs - 53 games played, 24 goals, 33 assists, 57 points, 122 penalty minutes
Junior International - 29 games, 17 goals, 25 assists, 42 points
Senior International - 36 games 20 goals 14 assists 34 points
Memorial Cup - 1990
World Junior Championship Gold - 1990, 1991
Red Tilson Trophy - 1991
CHL Player of the Year - 1991
Canada Cup - 1991
Olympic Gold - 2002
Olympic Silver - 1992
Olympics 4th place - 1998 (Captain)
All-Rookie Team - 1993
Hart Memorial Trophy - 1995
Lester B. Pearson Award - 1995
All-Star - 1994, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002
Most compelling stat: Every Hart Trophy winning skater of the modern era is in the Hockey Hall of Fame. Lindros won the Hart Trophy in 1994-1995
Yes or No
Does Eric Lindros belong in the Hockey Hall of Fame?