The sport of ice hockey has seen several superstars grace the rink and showcase their abilities in front of thousands of people in the stadium and millions watching it live.
Forming a list of the five greatest ice hockey players to play this game is bound to get some angry reaction as opinions are subjective, and it is likely that someone's favorite player did not make it to the list. Sure Sidney Crosby is an excellent player and will be remembered for a long, long time, but unfortunately, he did not make the cut. He might someday, just not now.
It would be fair to say that these guys are Gods of the sport, and to reach their level would be a tough task. Several players do have the potential to reach the level of the athletes mentioned in this list, whether it happens or not remains to be seen. So without further ado, lets discuss the top 5 greatest ever ice hockey players of all time. See if your favorite player appears on the list.
The Best Hockey Players of All Time
1. Wayne Gretzky
Could you even discuss ice hockey players without mentioning Wayne Gretzky’s name at least once? It is virtually impossible. His records may as well be written in a separate book. Being the only player to score 200 points in one season, Gretzky became a crucial part of his teams.
Gretzky also has the record for scoring the highest number of goals in a single season along with the record of the 50 quickest goals. It is because of his performances that Ice Hockey became a widely recognized sport. His stint in the Los Angeles Kings, in particular, was a big reason why California became so big on ice hockey.
2. Bobby Orr
Ice hockey fans always debate if Bobby Orr could have been the face of Ice hockey if his career went on for longer. Some even say that he would have left Gretzky behind if that were the case. However, despite only playing for ten seasons in the NHL, Bobby Orr left a legacy behind that is hard to match. This offensive defenseman was a trailblazer during his heyday and bought so many changes to the game that players have started emulating his style.
3. Mario Lemieux
There aren’t many hockey players who can brag about only taking 70 games to score a whopping 282 points. Mario Lemieux however, holds that distinction. During his time, Mario was considered to be the biggest player in the national hockey league. Mario is also a classic case of what could have been, as injuries and bad health hampered his career. After his career was over, he started the Mario Lemieux Foundation for cancer research, showing that he is equally great off the pitch.
4. Gordie Howie
It would be fair to say that if Wayne Gretzky didn’t plan on having a career in ice hockey, Georgie Howie would never have been dethroned and would have been the ultimate record holder in the NHL. He still owns the record of scoring eight hundred goals, which justifiably earned him a nickname of Mr. Hockey. Gordie won 6 major trophies within ten years and was also lauded for his mental strength.
5. Jaromir Jagr
Some might argue that Jaromir’s name should be on a top ten list instead of a top 5, but the accolades he achieved during his career would make a strong argument. With one Hart, three Lester Pearsons, and five scoring titles, it is hard to argue against the legendary status of this hall of Famer. Jaromir took a three-year sabbatical in the middle of his career, and with his goal scoring record one might wonder how more he could have achieved.
Ice hockey players tend to sacrifice and give it their all on the pitch. With this kind of determination, it wouldn’t be a surprise seeing newer faces in the time to come.