7 NHL Players to Watch in the Upcoming Season

Richard M. Coleman
3 min readOct 3, 2023

The National Hockey League (NHL) always delivers excitement and jaw-dropping moments, season after season. As fans eagerly anticipate the upcoming season, several players are poised to make a significant impact. These players possess exceptional skills, unwavering determination, and the ability to change the course of a game with their performance. This article will explore seven NHL players to watch in the upcoming season, highlighting their strengths and what makes them stand out in professional hockey.

Connor McDavid — Edmonton Oilers

It’s only possible to discuss NHL players to watch by mentioning Connor McDavid. Often referred to as “The Next One,” McDavid’s electrifying speed and sublime puck-handling skills make him a true marvel on the ice. With three Art Ross Trophies and a Hart Trophy already under his belt, McDavid is the epitome of a franchise player. Expect him to continue dazzling fans with his unmatched talent as he strives to lead the Edmonton Oilers to greatness.

Auston Matthews — Toronto Maple Leafs

Auston Matthews has become a goal-scoring sensation for the Toronto Maple Leafs. His quick release, accuracy, and ability to find the back of the net from virtually anywhere in the offensive zone are unmatched. Matthews won the Maurice “Rocket” Richard Trophy last season as the league’s leading goal-scorer, and he’ll be hungry for more. As he continues refining his game, Matthews is undoubtedly one of the most exciting players to watch in the upcoming season.

Cale Makar — Colorado Avalanche

Defensemen sometimes get a different level of attention than forwards in the NHL, but Cale Makar is changing that narrative. The Colorado Avalanche blueliner is a dynamic force on both ends of the ice. Makar’s incredible skating ability, vision, and puck-moving skills make him a game-changer. He won the Norris Trophy as the league’s top defenseman last season and is likely to remain in the conversation as one of the best in the business.

Kirill Kaprizov — Minnesota Wild

Kirill Kaprizov took the NHL by storm in his rookie season with the Minnesota Wild. His creativity and flair for the dramatic make him a joy to watch. Kaprizov was named the Calder Trophy winner as the league’s top rookie, and he’s expected to continue his ascent in the upcoming season. Wild fans have reason to be excited, as Kaprizov has the potential to become one of the league’s top offensive talents.

Elias Pettersson — Vancouver Canucks

Elias Pettersson possesses a unique combination of silky smooth hands and exceptional hockey IQ. The young Swedish forward has been a standout player for the Vancouver Canucks since he arrived in the league. Unfortunately, injuries limited his impact in the previous season, but Pettersson is a game-changer when healthy. Canucks fans are eager to see him return to form and lead the team to success.

Quinn Hughes — Vancouver Canucks

Vancouver Canucks’ Quinn Hughes is another young defenseman who deserves recognition. He’s known for his exceptional skating and playmaking ability from the blue line. Hughes finished second in Calder Trophy voting during his rookie season and has since continued to develop into one of the league’s top offensive defensemen. His partnership with Elias Pettersson could be a critical factor in the Canucks’ success this season.

Alex Ovechkin — Washington Capitals

Alex Ovechkin may not be a new face in the league, but he remains a player to watch every season. The Washington Capitals captain is chasing history as he continues his quest to become the NHL’s all-time leading goal-scorer. Ovechkin’s powerful shot and relentless work ethic have made him a hockey legend. He could be hoisting the Stanley Cup once again if he can maintain his scoring pace.

As the NHL season approaches, these seven players will surely provide fans with thrilling moments, jaw-dropping plays, and unforgettable performances. Whether it’s the established superstars like Connor McDavid and Alex Ovechkin or the rising talents like Cale Makar and Kirill Kaprizov, each player on this list has the potential to make a significant impact on their respective teams and the league as a whole. As hockey enthusiasts, we are fortunate to witness these incredible athletes showcase their skills on the ice, and the upcoming season promises to be another unforgettable chapter in NHL history. So, mark your calendars and tune in to watch these players light up the rink.

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Richard M. Coleman

Richard Coleman worked at the Medical School of Harvard University in Boston, Massachusetts. Additionally, he worked at the Stanford University Medical School.