Hockey is Canada’s game. There may not be any sport more closely associated with a country than hockey is to Canada, and throughout its history, Canadians have loved following and playing the sport. Many Canadians enjoy nothing more than tuning in to the NHL on TV, gambling on different odds on hockey betting sites, and attending games in stadiums. A big reason why is the numerous elite Canadian hockey players that play in the NHL.
The NHL has many world-class players, and some of the best ones hail from Canada. Throughout the league’s history, many of its best players have been Canadians, and that remains true today. Let’s look at some of the NHL’s premier Canadian players who are currently in the league.
Connor McDavid is still only 26 years old, but he has already established himself as one of the top offensive talents in the history of the league. McDavid already has six 100-point seasons, including a 2022-23 season that was one of the most prolific offensive years in recent history. McDavid scored 64 goals and added 89 assists for a point total of 153. He led the Oilers into the second round of the playoffs and received a Hart Trophy for the third time. He is quite clearly the best player on the planet right now and is still starting his prime.
Cale Makar has had one of the best starts to an NHL defenceman’s career in recent history. The Canadian from Calgary has achieved some monumental victories in a short period of time. In just four seasons, Makar has won a Calder Trophy, Norris Trophy, Conn Smythe Trophy, and the Stanley Cup with the Colorado Avalanche. He has been more than a point-per-game defenceman since the Avalanche added him to the lineup, and his rare speed and change of direction make him impossible to stop. He is a special talent who will continue to add to his trophy case.
Nathan MacKinnon was a first-overall pick after a hugely successful junior career in the QMJHL. He has not disappointed the massive expectations that were put on him by Avalanche fans. MacKinnon has been spectacular since entering the NHL. He has 759 points in 709 games and has been a key part of turning the Avalanche into one of the league’s elite squads. He is coming off his best year yet, scoring 42 goals and adding 69 assists in just 111 games. Mackinnon is one of the league’s most unique talents and a great leader.
Mitchell Marner has been the subject of many trade rumours, as the Leafs’ disappointments are assigned blame. But angry Leafs fans can’t overlook what is one of the most talented players in the league. Marner was selected 4th overall in 2015 as an undersized but highly skilled forward. He has done nothing but shine since the Leafs selected him. Marner has three seasons with more than 90 points, and the Leafs have made the playoffs every year of his career. Marner has been an above a point-per-game player throughout his 507 NHL games.
Sidney Crosby has been a world-famous Canadian player for decades now and has had one of the most decorated hockey careers ever. Crosby has more than 1500 points in the NHL in just under 1,200 games. He has been an elite player for the Pittsburgh Penguins since 2005 and has won three Stanley Cups, two Hart Trophies, and two Conn Smythes. He also scored the Golden Goal for Canada at the Vancouver Olympics, which won the team the Gold Medal. He has had a legendary career that surpassed even the most optimistic expectations when he was taken first overall in 2005.