Who are the best hockey players in NHL history?
Read on to find out.
Hockey is famous in the United States, Canada, and a few countries in the European continent.
The National Hockey League (NHL) has served as the highest testing ground for any hockey player to prove his worth.
It is the most reputable professional hockey league in the world.
Over the decades, the NHL has produced great players in the sphere, who, in turn, have put in phenomenal plays in this league that has revolutionized hockey.
These great hockey players are the main reasons thousands gather at various NHL Arenas in flags and colors to enjoy another entertaining hockey match.
In this article, we look at those we believe are the top-10 greatest hockey players of all-time in the NHL.
Keeping this list to top-10 was not easy.
Still, with a thorough insight into the players’ exceptional hockey career achievements and a tiny influence on our sentiments, we compiled the list.
Table of Contents
The NHL Best Hockey Players of All Time
10. Martin Brodeur
Brodeur played in the position of a goaltender and hit the peak of his career in the New Jersey Devils’ colors as he aided the franchise to three Stanley Cups.
In 1,259 games played with the Devils, he had a record of 688-394-154.
He also recorded a total career save percentage of .912.
On four occasions Brodeur won the coveted Vezina Trophy.
He is a ten-time All-Star and one of 12 goaltenders in the NHL to score a regular-season goal.
He is one of the greatest goaltenders the NHL has witnessed.
9. Sidney Crosby
Crosby, nicknamed Sid the Kid, is one of the greatest hockey players in the NHL.
In his first 13 seasons in the NHL, he was one player who made the headlines for his credible performance on the ice rink.
His role-playing positions lie center.
At 30, he already had featured in 864 games, scored a total of 411 goals, and made 705 assists.
Three times Crosby won the Stanley Cup.
He also won the Richard, the Hart, and the Conn Smythe twice, and featured in seven All-Star teams.
Crosby presently plays for the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins and captains the team.
8. Mark Messier
Over 24 years of playing in the NHL, Messier has totaled an average of 1,900 points, scoring 694 goals and 1193 assists in at least 1,756 games.
He was one half of the formidable duo partnership with Gretzky, which ruled the ice rink.
Messier once recorded 50 goals in a single season.
In the span of his career, Messier has been named to five All-Star teams.
Twice he won the Hart trophies, and a whopping six times he won the Stanley Cups.
7. John Beliveau
The first winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy, Beliveau, played in the NHL from 1951-1971 for the Montreal Canadians and was one of the big names in the sport at that time.
His 20 years career saw him play in 1,125 games, hitting 507 goals and making 712 assists.
He won a total of ten Stanley Cups and featured in ten All-Star teams.
6. Mario Lemieux
Lemieux would have achieved more if injuries and illness had not plagued him throughout his career.
Despite that, his stats are still impressive, and he merits being on this list of NHL best hockey players of all time.
In over 915 games played in the NHL, he recorded amazing stats and totaled 690 goals and 1,033 assists.
He was a versatile scorer and once recorded 199 points in a season.
Despite his limited playing time, he was influential in the Pittsburgh Penguins’ success, winning the Stanley Cup twice.
5. Maurice Richard
He was often called by the nickname “Rocket” and was the first player in the history of the NHL to clock 50 goals in a season, achieving the feat in a 50-game season.
He was also the first NHL player to reach 500 career goals.
In over 978 games, Richard recorded 544 goals and 421 assists.
Rocket was a prolific force during his time in the NHL.
In respect to his inputs and achievement in the sport, the NHL immortalized Richard, naming the season scoring trophy in his name.
4. Bobby Hull
Left-wing Hull spent the majority of his playing days with the Chicago Blackhawks and was a ticking time bomb of goals on the ice rink.
He was so explosive on the ice rink; opponents assigned designated players to keep him tamed.
Hull recorded 610 goals and 560 assist in his 1,063 total games played.
His 23 years stint in the NHL saw him winning the Stanley Cup once, the NHL MVP twice, the Art Ross Trophies three times, and he was named to 12 ALL-Star games.
3. Bobby Orr
Defenseman Orr was one of the fastest skaters in the history of the NHL.
Sadly his career was cut short by frequent injuries.
He played a total of 12 seasons in the NHL but put in an incredible performance in those 12 seasons.
Orr won two Stanley Cups, two Art Ross and Conn Smythe trophies, and eight Norris trophies.
He hit a total of 270 goals and 645 assists in 657 career games.
2. Gordie Howe
Mr. Hockey, as Howe is fondly called, was dominant in his era.
With every single touch of his puck, you’d be sure for an exhilarating play.
He is one of the few players to enjoy a long span career, still active on the rink at 51 years of age.
In his 1,767 games played in the NHL, he scored a total of 801 goals and made an impressive 1,049 assists, and hit a total of 1,850 points.
He was a 23 All-Star invitee and held the record for the highest number of games and seasons played in the NHL.
Howe won a number of awards and trophies, including the Stanley Cup, which he won four times.
1. Wayne Gretzky
Gretzky tops our list of the NHL best hockey players of all time, and he sure deserves the spot.
The Great One, as he is often called, enjoyed a 20-year spell in the NHL, playing for four different franchises.
He is the all-time top scorer and assists in NHL history and the only player in the NHL to total over 200 points in a single season, a feat he went on repeating four times.
Although his stature, strength, and speed look discouraging, he made up for it with an excellent ability to read games accurately.
He was always at the right spot at the right time.
Gretzky’s style of always setting up goals behind his opponent’s net came to be called “Gretzky’s office.”
He was NHL MVP a record nine times, winning nine Hart Trophies, two Conn Smythe Trophies, ten Art Ross Trophies, and five Lester. B. Pearson Awards.
Upon his retirement, Gretzky held 61 NHL records and was immediately inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Recommended For You:
Hopefully you enjoyed our list of NHL best hockey players of all time.
As with every greatest of all time ranking, we know this compilation is debatable.
Let us know your opinion as regards this list in the the comment section.