The “National Hockey League,” commonly known as NHL, has gained recognition and fans across the globe. This is an ice hockey league that consists of 32 teams, where seven of the teams are from Canada, and 25 of the teams are from the United States.
Besides that, reliable and well-known sportsbooks have also included NHL as one of the main sports for people to place their bets on. Both professional and new bettors will also come across the March Madness expert picks provided on this ice hockey league during every NHL season.
But at times, there are some NHL players who step away from this league and take part in other sports. In this article, you will learn about some of the best and existing players of the NHL whose skills in athletics have overextended beyond ice. Let’s learn about it in detail.
NHL Players Who Are Great in Other Sports
In this section, you will learn about current NHL players who have showed their talents in other sports:
Leon Draisaitl – Edmonton Oilers
Known as one of the toughest players of NHL, Leon Tim Draisaitl has worked extremely hard to help his team get into the finals of West Conference in the previous season. He is also the winner of “NHL Most Valuable Player Award” along with Connor McDavid.
Furthermore, Draisaitl have scored 306 goals, 744 points and has 438 assists in his entire NHL career. He plays at the centre position and he is also the son of the legendary ice hockey player, Peter Draisaitl. Born and grew up in Cologne, Germany, Leon used to play all kinds of sports.
But among all the other sports, he showed off his skills in soccer. Many people even thought that he would certainly make an excellent career out of soccer, but he was mostly interested in ice hockey. He decided to keep other sports as a hobby and focus to build a career in the sports he likes.
At present, he has become a well-known and one of the best players in NHL, which helped in earn many awards and recognition.
Jamie Benn – Dallas Stars
The captain and left winger of the Dallas Stars, Jamie Benn is dubbed as one of the most elite ice hockey players in NHL. In this entire NHL career, Jamie played 1036 games, scored 847 points, 362 goals and has 485 assists.
But the game that he currently plays professional might have been something instead of ice hockey. Born and brought in Victoria, British Columbia, he showed off his talent in baseball. He used to play outfield and first played position but occasionally played in the pitched position.
Playing baseball would’ve cost him his NHL career. During the 2007 draft, it was not until the fifth round when he was picked by the Dallas Stars. It most partially due to the fact he didn’t has the time to train for ice hockey while he played baseball.
But the decision made by the Stars to pick Benn has given positive results because he collected around 20 goals every season for his team and even won the Art Ross back in 2014–15.
Victor Hedman – Tampa Bay Lighting
Dubbed as one of the greatest defencemen in National Hockey League, Victor Hedman has gained plenty of recognition and awards for his contribution as a professional ice hockey player. Born in Omskoldsvik, Sweden, Hedman has become an NHL superstar for his excellent performance in previous three seasons.
While playing for the Tampa Bay Lighting, he played 974 games, scored 143 points and 652 goals for the team. He also has 509 assists and have also played for the Swedish Hockey Team. But before he started his ice hockey journey, Hedman showed a lot of interest in soccer and used to play it as well.
His father even pointed out that he would outrun all the people in the field he also said that he has more knowledge about soccer when compared to ice hockey. But he decided to choose hockey because he believed that he was liked the sport a lot more and wanted to play it professionally.
Just like all the other major sports leagues, NHL has been dominating the sports realm effectively. It has produced some of the greatest ice hockey players, and many trusted sportsbooks started to offer wagering options on it.
Apart from that, the NHL players didn’t stop showing off their exceptional skills in other sports. This didn’t just help them gain a lot more popularity and improved their reputation in the ice hockey realm.