5 players who should be in the Hockey Hall of Fame

Profile Picture: Robert Criscola

April 29th, 2020

The Hockey Hall of Fame has done a wonderful job of enshrining the game’s greatest players, but they have missed a few stars over the years. These five former players have all surprisingly been passed over on more than one occasion.

5. Peter Bondra

Capitals right winger Peter Bondra played his prime years in the "dead puck era," but walked away from the game in 2007 with 503 career goals, 43rd all-time.

Bondra led the NHL in goals in the strike-shortened 1994-1995 campaign (34) as well as the 1997-98 season (52), the year before the Maurice "Rocket" Richard Award for most goals was introduced. His 12 points in 17 playoff games in 1998 helped guide Washington to the Stanley Cup Finals (swept by the Red Wings).

One of the best snipers of his era, Bondra belongs in the Hall of Fame.

4. Rick Martin

Part of the celebrated "French Connection" line with Hall of Fame center Gilbert Perrault and left winger Rene Robert, Rick Martin has been overlooked by the voting committee for far too long.

Martin, who scored 74 points in his rookie season, was a Calder Trophy runner-up to Hall of Fame netminder Ken Dryden. Starting two years later, Martin would be nominated to seven straight All-Star games. He tallied 382 goals in 10 seasons as a Sabre, including consecutive 52-goal performances in 1973-74 and 1974-75. The latter year saw Buffalo make the Stanley Cup Final, and Martin had 15 points in 17 playoff games.

Unfortunately, a severe knee injury suffered in 1980 ended Martin’s career prematurely. But he’s 11th all-time in goals scored per game (0.56).

3. Curtis Joseph

Curtis Joseph doesn’t really have the hardware to back him up, save for a King Clancy Memorial Trophy from 1999-2000 that speaks to his character, but the fact that he’s seventh all-time in wins by a goalie should be all the proof the powers-that-be need that he was a Hall of Fame talent.

Of the six netminders that have more wins than "Cujo," two are still active (Marc-Andre Fleury and Henrik Lundqvist). Of the top four, only Roberto Luongo, who just retired in 2019, is not in the Hall of Fame. Ed Belfour, Patrick Roy, and Martin Brodeur are the other three Hall of Famers ahead of Joseph, who finished in the top five in Vezina Trophy voting five times.

2. Keith Tkachuk

Keith Tkachuk was feared in his time on the ice because he could beat you, sometimes quite literally, in so many ways.

The power forward from Massachusetts led the NHL in goals in 1996-97 (52), two years before the Richard Trophy was introduced. In his prime years (1993-94 through 2008-09), Tkachuk’s 494 goals outpaced all scorers except for Hall of Famer Teemu Selanne and recently-retired shoe-in Jaromir Jagr.

Tkachuk is also one of three NHLers ever to amass 500 goals, 1,000 points and 2,000 penalty minutes, accompanied only by Hall of Famer Brendan Shanahan and Pat Verbeek.

1. Pierre Turgeon

The well-traveled Pierre Turgeon tallied 515 goals and 1,327 points despite playing the prime of his career in the "dead puck era," yet he’s not received the "Hall call" since retiring in 2007.

Turgeon appeared in four All-Star games and was a perennial Lady Byng Award contender, bringing home the honors in 1993 – a career-year for the Canadian-born sniper as he notched 132 points.

Of the 31 players to reach the 500-goal, 1,200-point plateau, 27 are in the Hall of Fame. Two are not yet eligible, and only Turgeon and the controversial Jeremy Roenick have been snubbed.

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