Only two of Canada’s seven NHL teams are having decent years—and it’s easy to see why.
The Winnipeg Jets and Toronto Maple Leafs each have a handful of very good players, some of whom could be considered superstars as their careers progress.
In Winnipeg there’s Wheeler, Scheifele, Byfuglien, Hellebuyck, Myers, Ehlers and Laine.
Toronto is getting star-like performances from Matthews, Nylander, Gardiner, Kadri, Rielly and van Riemsdyk.
Talented, inexpensive, youthful players mixed with reasonably-priced veterans.
None of the other Canadian franchises can boast so many good players, so many stars. Ottawa’s got Karlsson, Montreal has Weber and Price, Edmonton has McDavid and Draisaitl, Vancouver has a rookie phenom named Boeser with the aging Sedin twins and Calgary has Gaudreau plus some under-performers.
Recent Stanley Cup winners like Pittsburgh, Chicago and Los Angeles won with only two or three superstars, but to be successful their surrounding players performed like stars.