The Buffalo Sabres Hall of Fame committee reduced its list of nominees for this year’s class from eight to six, dropping Tom Barrasso and Paul Wieland. Joe Crozier, Dominik Hasek, Rick Jeanneret, Jim Lorentz, Alex Mogilny and Rob Ray moved on to the next round of voting by the 11-man committee. The group will be cut to four in the next two weeks before a final vote on the inductees is made.
Mind of Joe
Dominik Hasek hands down should be number 1 on the list. The guy is arguably the greatest goaltender of all-time. He should of been inducted after he retired (the first time) if you ask me. If it wasn’t for him, the Sabres of the 90’s wouldn’t of been close to being in contention. I know he wasn’t the most popular player because he ran off Ted Nolan and I always had the feeling American fans don’t exactly embrace European players. But without him, the 90’s for the Sabres would of been like the 2000’s for the Bills.
My next guy on the list would have to be Mogilny. In all honesty his career kind of reads like a poor mans Hasek. At one point he was the best player in the world, scoring a Sabres record 76 goals. But Buffalo fans rather embrace the tough guy (Barnaby and Ray) than a guy who wasn’t considered tough. Mogilny was awful in his own end and normally stood by the blue line waiting for the team to get possession so he could break to the opposition zone. But if you doubt Mogilny’s skill, then just watch the “May Day” series highlights to be dazzled. As good as Pat LaFontaine was, people don’t give Mogilny enough credit for helping make Patty a household name in Buffalo.
As far as the two announcers go, look I’ve never been a fan of going overboard for anything off the ice. I hate when fans make an uproar about uniforms or saving the shout song. Lorenz was a decent defenseman in his day, but not rafter material. I do miss him as a analyst, considering Harry Neal says absolutely nothing, besides his random stats of “the Sabres are 5-3-1 when Lindy Ruff wears green.” As for Jeannert, he’s a great announcer, and considering the majority of NHL play-by-play guys don’t even do their job title for most games, he’s a top 5 guy. But that’s why they have the Buffalo Broadcasters HOF. If you start putting these two up, then you have to put Robbie and Pete Webber in. And if they go in, then you’ve to put in Sabre Tooth and the Goo Goo Dolls. You get me?
If you think the announcers going up in the rafters would water down the selection process, then Rob Ray going up would completely open up Pandora’s box. I know he’s a popular guy and he’s done a lot for charity in Buffalo. But you can’t put up someone in the rafters who played 5 minutes a game and was scratched every other night. I can’t even think of any goons who are in the rafters for any team. Simply put, team hall of fames should be for the best players. Not for the best broadcast teams or fighters.