As hockey continues to grow, the game grows faster, more intense and more creative. A new wave is taking over the NHL, as the younger players start to rise among the NHL’s elite. And Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid leading the charge.
The Oilers captain led the NHL last season with 70 assists and 100 points and took home the Art Ross Trophy, the Ted Lindsay Award and the Hart Memorial Trophy. At just 20 years old, he is only going to get better from here. Entering just his third year in the league, he’s already projected to take over in the top player in the NHL.
Examining his revolutionary style of play, McDavid is a revolutionary, generational talent ready to lead the new wave of professional hockey.
First off, McDavid is the perfect player. He is perhaps the best skater in the league, and arguably the fastest in the NHL. McDavid also has great hands and stickhandling ability and can unleash a deadly accurate shot. Combining that and his vision, as well as the completely different way he thinks the game, he is a talent that comes to the NHL once every so often.
The one thing that truly makes him unstoppable is his speed. His stride and ability to take off to pull speed go unmatched. Defencemen, even the ones who have been playing for years, have trouble keeping up with him, and there’s no sure way to stop him. When defenders skate backward and try to keep up with him, he will simply go around them. Going toward him, he will outplay you and get around you.
Leading the New Wave
McDavid took on the captaincy at just 19 years old, becoming the youngest captain in NHL history. He is also set to become the highest-paid player in the league, making $15 million per season after 2017-18.
With players like McDavid taking over as the NHL’s elite, he is inspiring the other young stars to take charge as well. Auston Matthews is following in his footsteps and is having the same impact on Toronto as McDavid is having on Edmonton. And with McDavid raising the bar, Matthews will only want to continue to grow and improve.
Players like Nico Hirschier and Nolan Patrick are also coming in hoping to take charge over their respective franchises, and are likely looking to McDavid as a role model.
Overall, as the younger players are taking over, McDavid continues to lead the charge, with his revolutionary style of play and his continued growth.