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facts & figures

Facts and Figures: NHL season-opening roster breakdown

League's 690 players come from 20 countries; more than 40 percent are 25 or younger

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / NHL.com Managing Editor

The NHL lists 690 players on the official season-opening rosters of its 31 teams. Here's a look at how they break down in some key areas:

 

Nationality

Of the 690 players on season-opening rosters, 295 (42.8 percent) are from Canada (as listed by birth country). The defending Stanley Cup champion St. Louis Blues have 16 Canada-born players, the most from any country on one team. There are 177 U.S. players (25.7 percent) on season-opening rosters; last season, an NHL-record 153 U.S.-born players skated in their team's opening game. The Minnesota Wild lead the NHL with 11 U.S.-born players; the Arizona Coyotes, New Jersey Devils and Winnipeg Jets are next with 10 each.

Sweden is third with 79 (11.4 percent), followed by Finland (33; 4.8 percent) and Russia (31; 4.5 percent). In all, there are 20 countries with at least one player on an NHL opening-night roster.

Two teams each have players from nine countries on the 23-man roster -- the Colorado Avalanche (Canada, 9; United States, 4; Russia, 3; Finland, 2; Austria, 1; Czech Republic, 1; Germany, 1; France, 1; Sweden, 1) and Columbus Blue Jackets (Canada, 7; United States, 5; Sweden, 4; Finland, 2; Denmark, 1; France, 1; Latvia, 1; Russia, 1; Switzerland, 1).

A total of 35 players on season-opening rosters have yet to play a regular-season NHL game.

 

Age

A total of 284 players (41.2 percent) on season-opening rosters are age 25 or younger (as of Oct. 2); 22.8 percent (157 of 690) are 23 or younger. The 25-and-under players have combined for 6,887 NHL goals and 18,050 points; of those, 3,269 goals and 8,116 points were generated by players 23 and under.

By percentage, skaters are younger than goalies. Of the 626 skaters, 483 (77.2 percent) are less than 30 years old; 143 (22.8 percent) are 30 or older. However, the 64 goalies are split evenly -- 32 are less than 30; 32 are 30 or older. The oldest is 39-year-old Ryan Miller of the Anaheim Ducks; the youngest is 21-year-old Carter Hart of the Philadelphia Flyers.

The League has 14 teenagers, with center Jack Hughes of the New Jersey Devils, the No. 1 pick in the 2019 NHL Draft, being the youngest (18 years, 141 days). Hughes is one of four 18-year-olds; the others are Los Angeles Kings defenseman Tobias Bjornfot (18 years, 179 days), New York Rangers forward Kaapo Kakko (18 years, 231 days) and Winnipeg Jets defenseman Ville Heinola (18 years, 241 days).

There are 11 players who were born in the 2000s; the only team with two is the Jets (Heinola and center David Gustafsson). In contrast, there are just two players (Boston Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara and San Jose Sharks forward Joe Thornton) who skated in an NHL game during the 1990s. Chara, 42, and Thornton, 40, are also the only players born before 1980.

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