June 23, 2010

Hall of Shame

I thought Larry Brooks of the NY Post summed up the Hall's heartless call on not including Pat Burns in the class of 2010 very nicely:
"Hockey HOF selection committee that meets behind closed doors and that answers to no one, disgraced itself this year bypassing Burns. ... I guess Burns was never a member of the Good Ole Boys Club that acts as the gateway to the Hall. ... If committee members have any honor, they will resign now."
The public outrage goes beyond Burns' omission to the fact that the Hall should have included at least 2 more players in the men's category. In a year when there were several candidates equal to Dino Ciccarelli, they should have had the brains to agree to loosen the logjam of eligible players.

Of course, just because a player is eligible does not mean his name was discussed. There is a nomination process, and only nominated players are debated and voted upon. On Fan590's Prime Time Sports radio show John Shannon suggested he had reason to believe Eric Lindros was not even nominated for discussion today.

Judging by media and public reaction to Tuesday's Hall of Fame announcement, people are pissed. I would like to think the outrage will be the beginning of a change at the Hall to a more accountable procedure. In all likelihood it will lead only to a more dismissive attitude to the selection committee and process. That only leads to disinterest.

That's the last thing we want, as that leads to irrelevancy.

Slap Shots
  • While the headlines are all about who is not included by the Hall, congratulations must go out to Ciccarelli, James, Granato, Jimmy Devellano and the late Doc Seaman for being inducted. No one is arguing against their inclusion. Let's give the Hall credit where credit is due.
  • One good thing about the lack of NHL talent is that the women's game will very much be front and center come induction day in November. They would have been overshadowed had someone like Eric Lindros was named.
  • Note to the NHL - proceeding the annual Hockey Hall of Fame Game on induction weekend (presumably between the Capitals and North Stars?) the NHL should arrange for a game involving the top women's players in the game today. It is time for NHL to embrace women's hockey. It's good for the game, and good for their business.

1 comment:

Bruce said...

It's too damn bad that on the historic day that they finally saw fit to admit women, the HHoF selection committee shit the bed with the rest of the selection process. I for one Would argue against the inclusion of Ciccarelli, who was a one-dimensional player/PP specialist. There's a long list of more deserving guys, like Mark Howe who's been waiting a lot longer than Dino, as well as Andreychuk, Nieuwendyk, Gilmour, Bure, Lindros ...

As for the exclusion of Burns, I guess the argument is against making an emotional decision, but the guy made a difference in four cities. Won the Adams his first year in Montreal, Toronto, and Boston, and won the Stanley Cup his first year in Jersey. The time to recognize him is Now, and the comm dropped the ball entirely.

On balance, a very disappointing day for the HHoF. One step ahead, two or three back.