This must be the last time I write about this subject. It is turning out to be an annual personal event and one that ends up with increased anger on my part for what I perceive as an injustice. This is my third consecutive June advocating for the election of Dave Andreychuk to the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Here’s hoping that the selection committee looked at the entirety of Andreychuk’s 23 year NHL career. Imagine, over two decades of being good enough to lace up a pair of skates and play for an NHL team. Aside from the fact that he has more power play goals than anyone who has ever played before or since.
It’s time. Actually, it is past time for this deserved recognition. He deserves it and this continued rejection of Andreychuk by the HHOF Selection Committee must come to an immediate halt.
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) May 22, 2016
There are 19 members of this committee. Of those members, eight have had solid coaching or executive careers in the NHL over the last 50 plus years. Four are world class NHL journalists and analysts. The remaining seven members were players, very good players. These members should have the best vantage point about deciding the Hall of Fame potential for Andreychuk. Hope abounds that during their selection process, they took into account their unique perspective of Andreychuk’s career.
Every one of these seven former players played at least two NHL seasons while Andreychuk was in the NHL. From
Bob Clarke, whose last two seasons were Andreychuk’s first two in the NHL. To Ron Francis who played 22 years in the NHL at the same time that Andreychuk did.
Also in this magnificent seven is Luc Robitaille who shared 19 NHL seasons with Andreychuk. This isn’t to compare the two players. Robitaille was a sure-fire Hall of Fame player. Like Andreychuk, Robitaille won a Stanley Cup late in his career.
Would it surprise you to know that Andreychuk is within 28 goals and 28 assists of Robitaille. The detractors will point out that Andreychuk took 192 more games to reach these levels. The longevity of Andreychuk who played for 23 NHL seasons, is the only reason the committee has continued to keep out this deserving player.
The fact that Andreychuk was capable of making an NHL club roster for 23 seasons even losing one season to the 2004-05 lockout should be celebrated. It shouldn’t be something that penalizes him.
It would be curious to know what Jari Kurri, Igor Larionov, and Mike Gartner think About Andreychuk’s chances as they played 15 or 16 years alongside him in the NHL. There must be some strong consideration from this group as they experienced playing against Andreychuk up close and personal. It stands to reason that the seven who had the best view of Andreychuk on the ice would be among his biggest backers in the selection process.
If not them, then perhaps the former coaches and executives who were coaching and managing during Andreychuk’s career could push him over the top. Scotty Bowman coached Andreychuk in Buffalo for the first five years of his career.
Maybe the needed support comes from the analysts and journalists who, combined, have covered the NHL longer than the league has been in existence. Maybe, could be, hopefully, all add up to another tense time for people who believe that Andreychuk deserves to be a Hockey Hall of Fame inductee once and for all.
He deserves this. He has performed and produced in his 23 years of playing in the NHL to warrant serious HOF consideration. He played and continues to be involved in this wonderful game now for well over three decades of his life. The selection committee ought to right the wrong that the HHOF has not yet called Andreychuk for this honor.
Born in Chicago, Illinois. Grew up playing and loving sports. Spent most of my formative years playing, debating, arguing and talking sports. for the last couple of years I have written about hockey. I am currently a Tampa Bay Lightning contributor for The Hockey Writers. I know that I may not always be right, but I am passionate about hockey and it is damn hard to hide that passion in my writing.