from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,
Teemu Selanne, the 15th highest score in league history with a batch of trophies, is considered a lock to be announced in his first year, one of four spots open in the player category, including up to two female candidates. Of 14 skaters joining the waiting list this year with a common link of 1,000 NHL regular season games, 300 goals, 400 assists or 700 points, three besides Selanne have improved chances as winners of a Cup or Olympic gold medal, Daniel Alfredsson, Alex Kovalev and Ray Whitney. Among goalies, Nikolai Khabibulin comes in with 333 wins, 46 shutouts and a Cup and Olympic gold.
Beyond Selanne, there aren’t any sure-fire picks, perhaps opening a crack for a lengthy list of players that go back to the Original Six. Many arguments have been heard through the years on behalf of multi-Cup winners Claude Provost (nine), Jean-Guy Talbot (seven) and Ralph Backstrom, Larry Hillman and Kevin Lowe (six each). It follows the narrative that not just points make a player Hall-worthy.
It’s believed one of the strongest pushes behind the scenes this year was for four-time champion Butch Goring. The veteran centre of 16 seasons as the two-way demon for the Islanders dynasty,
FYI, the announcement comes tomorrow.