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Who’s headed to the Hockey Hall of Fame?

The greatest women’s player of all-time will be inducted this year, but she might be the only female in the players’ category

Hayley Wickenheiser is a shoo-in when the Hockey Hall of Fame announces its 2019 induction class this summer. And she’s going in at the head of the class as the best player in the history of women’s hockey.

And there’s a good chance she will be the lone inductee in the players’ category, as there are no NHLers who retired in 2016 who fall into the “automatic” department. Wickenheiser’s accomplishments are undeniably Hall of Fame-caliber – she’s a five-time Olympic medallist (four golds) and has 13 World Championship medals, including seven golds. She’s the all-time leader in goals (168), assists (211) and points (379) for the Canadian women’s team.

The only question that remains is who walks down the red carpet with her at the Hall’s induction showcase in November. There are three first-year eligible players who will surely be considered. They’re solid candidates, but not slam dunks.

  • Brad Richards:Won Stanley Cup and Conn Smythe Trophy with Tampa Bay and had 298 goals and 932 points in 1,126 games.
  • Vincent Lecavalier:Won Cup and Rocket Richard Trophy with Tampa Bay and had 421 goals and 949 points in 1,212 games.
  • Patrik Elias:Won two Cups with New Jersey and had 408 goals and 1,025 points in 1,240 games.

If you’re not sure any of these three are Hall of Famers, there’s a list of candidates from the unofficial Hall of Very, Very Good who will be considered again this year. In the past four years alone, seven new inductees were leftovers from previous years.

  • Curtis Joseph:Didn’t win any Stanley Cups or major individual awards, but he was a Vezina Trophy finalist three times and ranks fifth in all-time wins with 454. Eligible since 2012.
  • Alexander Mogilny:Cup winner with New Jersey had 76 goals and 127 points in his best season with Buffalo. Ranks 53rd all-time with 473 goals and 77th with 1,032 points. Eligible since 2009.
  • Tom Barrasso: Won two Cups, the Vezina, Calder and Jennings Trophies and ranks 19th in all-time in wins with 369. Eligible since 2006.
  • Sergei Zubov:Helped two teams (Rangers and Dallas) to Cups and was a second-team all-star. Ranks 19th in all-time scoring among defensemen with 152 goals and 771 points. Eligible since 2012.
  • Theoren Fleury:Won Cup as a rookie with Calgary and averaged more than a point per game (455 goals and 1,088 points in 1,084 games). Eligible since 2006.
  • Daniel Alfredsson: Won Calder Trophy. Had 444 goals and 1,157 points in 1,246 games. Eligible since 2017.
  • Doug Wilson: Had 39 goals in his Norris Trophy-winning season. Ranks 15th all-time in points by defensemen with 827. Eligible since 1996.
  • Keith Tkachuk:One of the top power forwards of his era, ranks 33rd in all-time goals with 538. Eligible since 2013.

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