Ken Campbell is wrong. Very, very wrong. In his latest gem of an article he proclaims that the Leafs have never had a "true superstar" on the team, that Sundin doesn't belong in the HHOF in his first year of eligibility, and the HHOF is biased towards Toronto players.
Campbell argues that Toronto bias runs deep throughout the HHOF. He cites the fact that 53 Leafs are in the hall (26 of which spent the bulk of their careers with Toronto), despite the fact that Toronto has never had a true superstar on their team. The latter claim depends on your definition of superstar, but in Campbell's terms he states a "true superstar" is someone who was one of the top 5 players in the game at any given time. Things is, there are Toronto players that fit Campbell's definition, namely King Clancy and Frank Mahovlich. Both players were at the height of their careers in Toronto, both players were 1st team all-stars with Toronto multiple times, and both players were "true superstars." In fact, King Clancy retired as the highest scoring defenseman in NHL history. While they haven't had many, the claim that the Leafs have never had a true superstar is completely false.
Ken seems to be missing the point that you don't have to be a true superstar to be in the HHOF. Does he realize the majority of players inducted weren't his definition of true superstars? That's just not the way the HHOF works, and you don't have to be a so-called "true superstar" to be inducted. The "true superstar" argument Campbell maintains is really just completely idiotic. He also uses lack of individual awards as an argument that there shouldn't be many Leafs in the HHOF. While Leafs players haven't won many individual awards over the years, his claim is still baseless. By his logic, to name a few, Borje Salming, Daryl Sittler, Denis Savard, Mike Modano, and Brendan Shanahan all don't belong in the HHOF. It's even more hilarious considering in the same article he states Shanahan is a lock for the HHOF in his 1st year of eligibility. It further accentuates everything you need to know about Ken Campbell's flawed logic.
He goes on to state Mats Sundin doesn't belong in the HHOF in his 1st year of eligibility, wouldn't even be in the conversation if he didn't play in Toronto, and will only get in because of "Toronto bias" in the HHOF. He couldn't be more wrong, erroneous, and out of line. Any hockey fan knows that by reading Sundin's list of accomplishments, he belongs in the HHOF.
-26th overall in points in NHL history
-T21st overall in goals in NHL history
-Career PPG player
-One of only 27 players in NHL history to have 500+ goals and 1300+ points
-Tied for the lead in overtime goals in NHL history
-All-time leading scorer (goals and points) for Swedish players in the National Hockey League
-All-time leading scorer (goals and points) for the Toronto Maple Leafs, an original 6 franchise
-First European to be drafted first overall
-Three time Swedish Olympic captain
To suggest that Sundin wouldn't even be in the discussion if he played in Los Angeles or Nashville or San Jose is absurd. Furthermore, the indication of Toronto bias belittles and compromises the integrity of the HHOF. It's disgusting, really. There's only 4 people on the selection committee with Toronto ties: Pat Quinn, Jim Gregory, Mike Gartner, and Lanny Mcdonald. Meanwhile, he whines about there not being enough Canadiens in the HHOF. Yet, there are more people on the selection committee with Montreal ties (5) than Toronto ties. If the HHOF was so biased towards the Leafs, why wasn't Pat Burns inducted in the past 2 years when the whole hockey world thought otherwise? The accusation of Toronto bias, especially considering Ken failed to actually mention Leafs players who don't belong in the HHOF, is fallacious and false.
Ken Campbell is a silly Habs fan with clouded views and a penchant for writing anti-Leafs drivel. He once denounced Teeder Kennedy as overrated and basically proclaimed "Habs > Leafs" in an OBITUARY for Teeder after the legend passed away. It doesn't surprise me that Campbell would write such a skewed article.