Canucks Sedin Twins and Luongo to Learn Hockey Hall of Fame Fate
Hockey’s most famous twins and Vancouver Canucks legends Daniel and Henrik Sedin will find out Monday whether they’ll be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2022. It would be fitting if they went in together, but it’s possible one could be voted in and the other not.
That’s seems unlikely given their history of being drafted into the NHL together, spending their entire careers together, and racking up Hall of Fame type numbers and performances at the same time. It would be odd, even for the distinguished nitpickers on the selection committee, to separate the brothers at this point.
Roberto Luongo, the Vancouver Canucks premiere goaltender for almost eight full seasons and a teammate of the Sedins, is also being considered.
This year’s voting concludes on Monday with an announcement to follow later in the day.
It’s practically a lock that at some point they’ll all be Hall of Fame inductees, the question is whether or not they make it in on their first ballot. This is their first year of eligibility after three years of retirement. Somehow the Covid pandemic added an extra year to the Sedins’ wait.
Daniel, the left wing, put up 1,041 points in 1,306 NHL games over 17 seasons. He tallied 393 goals.
Henrik, the deft play-making center, played 24 more games than his brother and put up 29 more points. 830 of his 1,070 points were assists.
Henrik, who wore number-33, was also the angrier twin, as he tallied 680 regular season penalty minutes to Daniel’s 546. Centers are generally more involved in the game.
Daniel wore number-22 and of course both brothers’ jerseys were retired and hang in the rafters at Rogers Arena. They led the Canucks to the 2011 Stanley Cup Final, falling just short of a championship in a seven-game loss to the Boston Bruins. It’s the last time the franchise has been to the Final and it was the first time since 1994.
Daniel won the Ted Lindsay Award, league most valuable player as voted by his peers in 2011, the same year he won the league scoring title. Henrik had won that Art Ross Memorial Trophy the year before, as well as the Hart Trophy as the “player deemed most valuable to his team.”
The brothers presently work for the Vancouver Canucks in a player development and management capacity.
Luongo piled up 489 NHL victories, most of them (252) with the Canucks. Almost all of the rest came with the Florida Panthers, a franchise he played for before and after Vancouver. He also won seven games with the New York Islanders his rookie season before being dealt.
Frankly, otherwise, it’s not a very strong first-year eligibility class. The most intriguing case could be made for the Sedins’ countryman Henrik Zetterberg, a career Detroit Red Wing. Although he fell just short of the 1,000 point mark, the former Detroit captain did win a Stanley Cup in 2008 and was named the Conn Smythe Trophy winner as playoff most valuable player. He played in 137 playoff games over 13 consecutive seasons.
He and the Sedins all won the King Clancy Award at some point for community involvement.
The former Canucks stanchest competition will be from those who’ve already been waiting a various number of years to get in. Names like Daniel Alredsson, Alexander Mogilny (5 seasons a Vancouver Canucks winger), Pierre Turgeon, and goaltenders and European players too numerous to mention.
It’s difficult to say which direction the selection committee will go. One recent example is Dave Andreychuk, a player who piled up 640 goals over a 23-year NHL career. He waited eleven years between retirement and induction. There are many other mild head scratching examples over the years, of players most pundits felt shouldn’t get in and did, and others just the opposite.
The Sedins path to the Vancouver Canucks, from Ornskoldsvik, Sweden to the NHL, is a legendary tale in its own right.
Famously, at the 1999 NHL Draft, Vancouver Canucks General Manager Brian Burke manoeuvred and moved picks in a successful effort to land the twins consecutively, Daniel 2nd-overall and then Henrik with the 3rd-overall pick. There’s a 94% chance that “Burkie” has told you that story, maybe even in person.
Twenty-three years later we’ll find out if the effort is worthy of the Hockey Hall of Fame.