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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

TTM Success: Bernie Federko

  Bernie Federko was a star center with the St. Louis Blues from 1976 to 1989, before finishing his career with a final season as a Detroit Red Wing.  He is also generally known as the whiping boy for the HHOF lack of standards.  While Federko scored 1130 points in 1000 games, he was never considered a dominant player in his era, never won any post season awards and only once led the Blues past the second round of the play-offs.  In his 14 year career, he only played in the mid-season all-star game twice.  I am not sure if he was injured every year at that time but Brian Sutter or Rob Ramage would represent the Blues instead of Federko.

  So does Federko belong in the HHOF?  Many people say he is vastly underrated.  He played on a small market team who never achieved any post season success.  If you look at Federko's teammates, he never had a 1A type player.  In New York, there was Bossy-Trottier.  In Edmonton, Gretzky-Kurri.  In Montreal, Lafleur-Shutt.  In Quebec, Stastny-Goulet.  In St.Louis, Federko linemates were the like of Brian Sutter and Wayne Babych.  With Federko's help, Babych was a 50 goal scorer in 1981 and Sutter consistently put 30 goal seasons.  It wasn't until the mid 1980 when, fellow future HHOFers, Joey Mullen and Doug Gilmour proved the skill level to help Federko put together three straight 100 point seasons.  Unfortunately, both Gilmour and Mullen would suffer similar fates, being traded to the Flames, albeit in different seasons.  While the Blues didn't have any play-off success, Federko consistently found the scoresheet in the postseason.  Federko scored 101 points in 91 post season games.  Federko would eventually be traded to the Detroit Red Wings in a deal that gave the Blues Adam Oates.  Federko would play a single season in Detroit before retiring.
  What do you think?  Is Federko the poster boy for the HHOF low standards?  Or is he the poster boy for the under-rated small market superstar?


  1. I kicked him out of my Hall of Fame. The 100 point seasons are nice and all, but I don't think he was ever considered dominant. He never finished in the top-10 for goals in any season. He finished in the top-10 for assists many times but if you are going to get into the HOF on assist numbers, I need you to at least lead the league a few times, something he never did.

    I also took into consideration that he was never named to the 1st or 2nd NHL All-Star Team and only played in two All-Star games (which is different). I have a hard time believing a guy who was barely an all-star is a HOFer.

    Federko was very good, but not great. The HOF, in my opinion, is for the truly great.

  2. I have to say under-rated small market superstar.... But, I'm from St. Louis and grew up watching him.... You're right though, He never had anyone else for most of his career.