Canada produces a lot of hockey talent; there is no doubt about it. In basically every hockey tournament in the world, we see Canada perform as one of the top countries. The sport is Canada’s sport to be fair, but there is a reason hockey is so strongly associated with Canada. Even by looking at recent drafts, there are some top prospects from the city of Calgary, like Dylan Holloway. This got me thinking: what would a lineup of the best players from the city of Calgary look like? Let’s find out.
LW, Taylor Hall, BOS
Five-time All-star and a Hart Trophy winner? Yeah, I would say we are off to a pretty strong start. Taylor Hall was selected first overall in 2010, and was looked at as a franchise-changing player. Although he might not be that right now, he is still a very valuable forward in Boston, on a very team-friendly contract, and is on pace to finish with around 70 points. His career has come with some struggles, however, he looks to be back to playing effective hockey, and Boston is absolutely spoiled having him in their middle-six.
C, Brayden Point, TBL
Brayden Point is elite. There is no other way to say this. At just 26 years old, Brayden Point has been able to be a first line center on a two-time Stanley Cup winning team, an NHL Star, and is a near point per game player in his career. This season, Point is on pace to finish the year with 88 points. Point was a player who was not drafted high, probably because of his “small” size, currently standing at 5’10 and 183 lbs. He was selected 79th overall back in the 2014 NHL Draft and from then on, Tampa Bay knew they got an absolute steal.
RW, William Nylander, TOR
He may play for Sweden during international tournaments, but William Nylander was born in Calgary while his father, Michael Nylander, was playing for the Calgary Flames back in 1996. William Nylander was a very high draft pick, going eighth overall in the 2014 NHL Draft to the Toronto Maple Leafs. Though he is subject to some, albeit unfair, criticism from media, Nylander is one of the Leafs’ best players. He has 390 points in 483 games played for the team, and currently leads the Leafs in goals this year. He is on pace for 88 points this season which would be a career high for the 26-year-old. Oh, did I mention he has some of the best style in the league, too?
Nothing but respect and admiration for my Calgary King.
D, Josh Morrissey, WPG
A fellow former student of Western Canada High School (go Redhawks!), Josh Morrissey is a Calgary born player in the middle of a career year in Winnipeg. Morrissey is a contender for the Norris Trophy this year, as he is on pace for almost 90 points, as a defenceman no less. He was selected by the Jets in the 2013 NHL Draft at 13th overall and has been named to the 2023 NHL All Star Game. This year seems to be the breakout year for Morrissey, and it will be very interesting to see if he can keep up this elite level of play in the future.
D, Cale Makar, COL
What an embarrassment of riches on defence this lineup would have. Cale Makar was drafted fourth overall in the 2017 NHL Draft. He is the best defenceman in the game, a Stanley Cup Champion, and at only 24 years old, Makar’s play is honestly hard to put into words. He is a generational talent, and is one of the leagues best players. He is looking like he might end up as one of the leagues best defenceman of all time. Makar has won the Calder Trophy, Norris Trophy, Stanley Cup, and Conn Smythe Trophy. As a defenceman, he is over a point per game during his career, and this season, Makar is on pace to put up 84 points. It is very likely that two Calgarians will be Norris Trophy finalists this year.
G, Logan Thompson, VGK
In what has been a very surprising season, Logan Thompson has been fantastic in net for the Vegas Golden Knights this year. He seemed to almost come out of nowhere once Robin Lehner got injured, but Thompson has looked very comfortable. He’s a Calder Trophy contender this year, putting up a .913 save percentage and a 2.72 GAA for the pacific division-leading Golden Knights. It’s tough to tell whether Thompson will be a top goalie in the NHL in the future, however, based off what he is showing the world right now, the undrafted goaltender is absolutely capable of being a bonafide starter in the NHL.
This is literally an All Star game lineup. The talent is hard to describe, but I think it is fair to say that a starting lineup like the above would be the best in the NHL. If they did all play for the same team, the General Manager would no doubt have them all listed as untouchables. It will be very interesting to see if any new names make a case for themselves to be joining team Calgary in the near future, but right now, it’s easy to see that Calgary has produced some very strong NHL talent.
Other noteworthy NHLers who didn’t make the cut this year but could in future years include Peyton Krebs and Jake Neighbours. Prospects who could make this list in the coming years include Rieger Lorenz, Josh Davies,