With What Was An Inevitable Induction, Marty Brodeur Is Officially Amongst Hockey's Finest In The 'Hall Of Fame'
I'm not sure there's all that much that needs to be said prior to the ceremony in which the full extent of Martin Brodeur's contributions to both the sport of hockey and the goaltending position will be truly honored. After all, his immediate induction into the 'Hockey Hall Of Fame' is only newsworthy in how non-newsworthy it is. The numbers, which are record breaking in all the ways that matter the most, have long spoken for themselves, and the voters who are more visual learners already had plenty of time to study up on the trophy case that's the size of a walk-in closet. Simply put, you could have set your calendar to this announcement years out and rested easy that you wouldn't be made to look either stupid or presumptuous, which is a rarity in today's sports' climate.
That being said, this does provide an excellent opportunity to take a walk down memory lane, and boy is it an absolute treat to anyone that has a shred of interest in the history of hockey. The fact of the matter is that due to both the dominance of the man who's been affectionately coined 'Marty' and the NHL's apparent familiarity with elementary geometry, we will probably never see another player like him. Even if you ignore that his style of stopping pucks was novel in how casually styleless it appeared most of the time, his ability to negate a forecheck as an All-Star caliber third defenseman revolutionized his position. So much so, in fact, that it made the league step in and force a devolution by actively handcuffing one of their most talented players while he was still near the peak of his powers.
You can loathe him as person, and/or diminish what we did because of who he did it behind. However, even if you remained insanely ignorant to the fact that he won two of his four Vezina Trophies behind an extremely mediocre defense and found himself in the Finals as he neared the age of 40, you'd still be foolish not to appreciate all that he brought to the sport. Whether he was the greatest pure puck-stopper of all time is up for debate. Whether he's the most accomplished is not. Accentuate those absurdly untouchable accolades with a highlight reel that epitomizes both creativity and athleticism. Add to that ridiculous resume a lasting impact on the game that unquantifiably unmatched. Whether he is the best or not is inconsequential, because - as the total package that didn't just stop shots, but undeniably suppressed and created them - Marty's universally better.
There's already plenty of reasons to believe that the G.O.A.T. of goaltending just officially received his set of keys to the house that hockey built, and there will only be more as his mere existence is responsible for the redecoration of future wings.