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A ranked list of 15 of the best hockey players currently
The NHL has seen multiple talents grow to be legends in the game. Players have done almost everything to take their teams to the next level while lifting their status high to be named among the best. Here is a ranked list of 15 of the best hockey players currently.
The National Hockey League is the top hockey league with the best players on earth. This means the competition is stiff and to be ranked among the best is no joke. As the league gets tougher, these players have tried to remain relevant, facing their opponents head-on, and with the success they have brought to the team and individually, they deserve the credit. Below are the best hockey players right now.
Best hockey players today
The 2022-23 season is up and going with the most talented hockey players on earth. Here is a list of 15 of the best in the NHL.
15. Aleksander Barkov, C, Panthers
Aleksander is an incredible player and the best on the Panthers' roster. The two-way centre has earned the recognition he deserves from the past seasons in the league and has been a big reason for Florida's emergence as a contender. He is a 6-foot-four giant who uses his big frame and quickness to be dangerous once he is close to the net. Combined with his tremendous shooting and skills with the puck, he is a menace to his opponents.
14. Kirill Kaprizov, LW, Wild
Coming over two years ago from Russia, Kirill has been a perfect piece for the Wild. The 2021 Calder Trophy winner has given Minnesota a superstar they have been lacking. He has strong play-driving numbers, wild outscoring, speed and puck-possessing ability that make him almost single-handedly make the team one of the most exciting to watch.
13. Mitch Marner, RW, Maple Leafs
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Marner is the alternate captain for the Toronto Maple Leafs for a reason. He is a sensational talent and has been an incredible scorer for the squad producing over a point-per-game rate for the last five seasons (as of 2023). What makes him unique is that as he posts these incredible offensive numbers, he is also elite at the defensive end.
12. Igor Shesterkin, G, Rangers
Igor is an incredible goalie for the Rangers. He is strong and tactical, and his aggressive style has faired very well in the NHL, making him one of the best goalies in the league. He was the Rangers' MVP and won the Vezina as the league's best goalie in 2022. While the Rangers' defence is not the best, Igor's presence at the goalpost makes them better, and he has brought the emerging team along faster than they otherwise would have.
11. Roman Josi, D, Predators
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Roman Josi's incredible performance with the Predators has made him the best player in the franchise. The defenseman is a terrific skater, and he is best at making smooth and quick power turns and crossovers to change direction. In 2021, he led all defensemen with 96 points, narrowly missing the 100-point mark, which Brian Leetch last acquired in 1992. He also became the first player in franchise history to win the Norris Trophy and the second player to win a performance-based NHL award (Pekka Rinne, 2018 Vezina Trophy)
10. Andrei Vasilevskiy, G, Lightning
Andrei is arguably the best goalie in the NHL, thanks to his prowess and accomplishments. The Russian is a consistent player who, at 29 years, already owns two Stanley Cups, a Conn Smythe and a Vezina. Nicknamed 'The Big Cat' thanks to his cat-like quickness, massive frame, unflappable poise and unmatched production, he is the future of the Lightning. Fans have shown him unconditional love after he has established himself as one of the best big-game goalies of this generation.
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9. Alex Ovechkin, LW, Capitals
Alex is not a plant-himself-in-front-of-the-net type of guy, but he will surely break ankles with his between-the-legs gates. He is a Left winger who loves scoring off the rush and finishes with high-flying goals. With his remarkable consistency and interesting personality, he is one player that the league cherishes, and fans love him for that.
8. Victor Hedman, D, Lightning
Hedman is one of the most consistently dominant defensemen in the NHL. He is a two-time Stanley Cup champion and subsequently won a Conn Smythe and a Norris Trophy. Standing at 6 foot 7, he has been the top defenceman for the Lightning over the past decade. Some of the skills that make him a unique piece include his defensive prowess, and offensive instincts, providing quality minutes once he is in play while simultaneously being an amazing leader.
7. Sidney Crosby, C, Penguins
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Crosby is an amazing hockey centre and captain for the Penguins. He goes head-on-head with Jaromir Jagr as the hardest player to knock off the puck, thanks to his centre of gravity and low body strength. He is one of the complete players and is a future NHL Hall of Famer. He might not be racking in awards as he was during his prime, but Crosby is still putting in impressive numbers as he grows to be among the best.
6. Nikita Kucherov, RW, Lightning
Nikita has earned his spot as one of the best thanks to his skills, stats and awards e has earned throughout his amazingly successful career. With two Stanley Cups, a Hart Trophy, a Ted Lindsay and an Art Ross, he has solidified himself as one of the complete right-wingers in the game's history. With his unselfish play, he is also one of the league's best passers while still putting on incredible numbers.
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5. Leon Draisaitl, C, Oilers
Leon is undoubtedly the best German hockey player of all time. He has been with the Oilers since he was drafted in 2014 and has grown to be a menace on the hockey pitch. During the start of his career, he was nicknamed 'The German Gretzky' thanks to his prowess in the game and has indeed grown to the expectations. He is so good that he can still be a top-line centre on any other team in the league as he pursues his journey to the top.
4. Cale Makar, D, Avalanche
At 24 years of age as of January 2023, Cale Makar is an incredible player who has earned multiple awards in his 4-year career with the Colorado Avalanche. He is a Stanley Cup champion, a Conn Smythe winner, a Norris recipient and a Calder winner. His ability to defend well and his amazing skating capability makes him an elite player in all three zones of the ice, which is different from other defensemen.
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3. Nathan MacKinnon, C, Avalanche
Nathan MacKinnon has solidified his name as one of the NHL's greatest players thanks to his successful career with the Colorado Avalanche. With an amazing roster surrounding him, this does not shadow his incredible abilities, as he still is the face of the league. Being an offensive titan, he combines his high IQ, slick hands and sneaky shots to create amazing shots and build up fantastic statistics that have made him who he is.
2. Auston Matthews, C, Maple Leafs
Auston Martin has been known to be one of the best scorers in the league. No player has scored more goals than Matthews since he entered it, and he has registered the best adjusted-goal-scoring seasons by a Leaf in modern history. One thing that makes him who he is is how he deploys his energy and enthusiasm responsibly, one of the league's best attack mentalities ever seen. As he continues his quest to become the greatest of all time, most are yet to be seen from the great.
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1. Connor McDavid, C, Oilers
The Edmonton Oilers centre, Connor McDavid, is on the top of the list. In 2021-22, he was the league's regular season top scorer with 123 points, eight more than the runner-up. What makes him a great player is the strength, speed, skill and work ethic he displays on the field. Also, his leadership qualities make him bring the team together and make it better. As he continues his career, he will become one of the league's greatest players.
Best hockey players of all time
The NHL has one of the best hockey players in the world. Some players currently have the potential to be among the best hockey player the world has ever had. However, some veterans have to get honourable recognitions as they rocked the league decades ago. Some of the best hockey players are Mark Messier, Bobby Clarke, Stan Mikita, Jari Kurri and Wayne Gretzky.
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Best hockey players of the 2000s
The 2000s was when hockey as a game was coming up and gaining popularity worldwide. At this time, the top league, NHL, hoisted some of the best players to exist as they played a major role in popularising the sport. Some of the top players at the time were Joe Thornton, Martin Brodeur, Pavel Datsyuk, Jarome Iginla and Nicklas Lidstrom.
Who is the best hockey player in 2023?
McDavid is undoubtedly the best player in the 2022-23 campaign. He is a highlight reel with amazing quickness and vision as he continues to push his limits in the scoring department. He has scored more than 100 points in five of his seven seasons which he would have hit in all seasons had it not been for injuries in his rookie season.
Who is the king of hockey?
Major Dhyan Chad was a field hockey player in India who played internationally from 1926 to 1949. He was regarded as 'The Wizard' or 'The Magician' of hockey for his out-of-the-world ball control. According to his autobiography, Goal, he scored 570 goals in 185 games and over 1000 goals in his entire domestic and international career.
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Coming into the season, players have been great, and there has been the emergence of great talents. The ranked list of the best hockey players currently above clearly shows how competitive the league is, with amazing talents going head to head. More is to be seen as the season continues as players continue to work and go for the championship.
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