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Eric Lindros, Fred Shero snubbed from Hall of Fame again

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Feels like we write this story once a year at this point. Oh, wait. That's because we do.

The story remains the same for Fred Shero. There are no eligibility requirements for the builders category of the Hockey Hall of Fame, and it continues to be a travesty that he goes unnoticed by the committee. Because there are no eligibility requirements, the committee has no excuse not to vote him in at this point. As we wrote last year on Shero:

He was the head coach that brought Philadelphia our only two Stanley Cups, and he did it as one of the most influential head coaches in the history of the game.

He was the first North American coach to actually study and learn from the Soviets, which certainly helped when his Flyers beat them in 1976. He was one of the first coaches to use film to study opponents, and he was the first coach to utilize the help of assistants. He'd be inducted in the Builders category if he were to ever make the Hall, and it's hard to argue that Shero isn't one of the more innovative builders hockey has ever seen.

But on Eric Lindros, the story seems less than clear. There are surely some even in Philadelphia who may feel he's unworthy of the Hall. Those people are wrong.

Lindros was eligible for the Hall of Fame beginning in 2010, yet for the third season in a row Lindros will not join the ranks of hockey's elite. The Hockey Hall of Fame announced Tuesday that Adam Oates, Mats Sundin, Pavel Bure and Joe Sakic will be inducted into the player's category in 2012 -- a deserving class, to be sure. A maximum of four players are able to be inducted each year, and players must be retired from the game for at least three years to be eligible.

But with this class now headed for enshrinement, Lindros and Brendan Shanahan are the two notable snubs left on the list. Shanahan will almost certainly get in sooner than later -- this year was his first of eligibility and there's been general shock that he didn't make the cut this time around. Lindros is a different story.

Maybe it's because he's unpopular. He's only repaired ties with the Flyers organization over the last several months and we know how many bridges were burned throughout his hockey career. Maybe it's because his career was cut short by injury, which hurts his case considerably.

Nevertheless, Lindros was one of a handful of players who defined hockey in the 1990s. He's the only Hart Trophy winner since the 1970s who's eligible for the Hall but not in the Hall. He's also one of only two players in the top 30 in career points per game who's eligible but not in the Hall.

Players in green in these charts are Hall of Famers. Players in red are eligible but not in the Hall. Players in yellow are not eligible. Wayne Gretzky won the Hart Trophy a lot.

Year Hart Trophy Winner Team
Rk Career Points/Game Leaders
1975–76 Bobby Clarke Flyers
1 Wayne Gretzky 1.921
1976–77 Guy Lafleur Canadiens
2 Mario Lemieux 1.883
1977–78 Guy Lafleur Canadiens
3 Mike Bossy 1.497
1978–79 Bryan Trottier Islanders
4 Sidney Crosby 1.403
1979–80 Wayne Gretzky Oilers
5 Bobby Orr 1.393
1980–81 Wayne Gretzky Oilers
6 Marcel Dionne 1.314
1981–82 Wayne Gretzky Oilers
7 Peter Stastny 1.268
1982–83 Wayne Gretzky Oilers
8 Peter Forsberg 1.250
1983–84 Wayne Gretzky Oilers
9 Kent Nilsson 1.240
1984–85 Wayne Gretzky Oilers
10 Phil Esposito 1.240
1985–86 Wayne Gretzky Oilers
11 Evgeni Malkin 1.234
1986–87 Wayne Gretzky Oilers
12 Jaromir Jagr 1.228
1987–88 Mario Lemieux Penguins
13 Alex Ovechkin 1.228
1988–89 Wayne Gretzky Kings
14 Guy Lafleur 1.202
1989–90 Mark Messier Oilers
15 Joe Sakic 1.191
1990–91 Brett Hull Blues
16 Dale Hawerchuk 1.186
1991–92 Mark Messier Rangers
17 Pat LaFontaine 1.171
1992–93 Mario Lemieux Penguins
18 Steve Yzerman 1.159
1993–94 Sergei Fedorov Red Wings
19 Eric Lindros 1.138
1994–95 Eric Lindros Flyers
20 Bernie Federko 1.130
1995–96 Mario Lemieux Penguins
21 Denis Savard 1.119
1996–97 Dominik Hasek Sabres
22 Jari Kurri 1.117
1997–98 Dominik Hasek Sabres
23 Bryan Trottier 1.114
1998–99 Jaromir Jagr Penguins
24 Gilbert Perreault 1.113
1999–00 Chris Pronger Blues
25 Pavel Bure 1.110
2000–01 Joe Sakic Avalanche
26 Bobby Hull 1.101
2001–02 Jose Theodore Canadiens
27 Brett Hull 1.096
2002–03 Peter Forsberg Avalanche
28 Paul Coffey 1.087
2003–04 Martin St. Louis Lightning
29 Jean Beliveau 1.084
2004–05 Not awarded due to the NHL lockout.
30 Mark Messier 1.075

Maybe 2013 will be Eric Lindros' year. He's sure as hell deserving.