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NUMBER OF EUROPEANS IN NHL FOR 2019-20 SEASON HIGHER THAN EVER BEFORE

While the 2019-20 season was both challenging and frustrating due in large part to the COVID-19 pandemic, there were still some good stories that have come out of it.

One neat fact from last season was that it was a record-setting one for European participation in the NHL. The season began on October 2, 2019, and didn’t conclude until the Tampa Bay Lightning hoisted the Stanley Cup on September 28, 2020, due to the long pause in play as a result of COVID.

In that time frame, 976 players skated in at least one game, with a record 305 of them being European-born. The previous record for most Europeans to skate in an NHL season was 300, set during the 2003-04 season, when there was a total of 1,028 players. This resulted in a record 31.3 per cent of NHLers coming from Europe.

During the 2001-02 season, 29.87 per cent of players were European, and a season later 29.27, followed by 29.18. That was the closest they ever got to 30 per cent, until this past season. To show just how big this milestone is, there were 253 U.S.-born players in the NHL, or 25.9 per cent, this past season. This means that Europe has become the second biggest provider of NHL players after Canada. The season prior, 2018-19, there were 286 American born players compared to 278 Europeans.

Non-surprisingly, Sweden led the way in 2019-20, sending a record 113 players to North America. This meant that last season, 11.6 per cent of all NHLers were Swedish, which is an incredible milestone for a country that has just 10 million people. The records don’t stop there, either, as there were 50 Finnish players in the NHL last season, beating out the previous record of 49 set a season prior. On top of that, there were also 50 Russians, which is the most since the 2005-06 season when there were 51.



While the numbers were smaller compared to the countries listed above, there were 34 Czechs and 12 Slovaks last season, as well as 15 Swiss players, which tied a record they had set in both 2016-17 and 2017-18. Denmark matched its record from 2016-17 with 10, while Germany had nine which was just one shy of their record 10 from 2014-15. There were also five from Latvia, three from France, two from Austria, and both Norway and Slovenia had one. Outside of both North America and Europe, one player came from Australia. This is great news as it proves just how much hockey is growing as a sport around the world.

COLTON PANKIW
DECEMBER 1, 2020  (14H32)
QUIZ ON TRADERUMOURS
$500 TO WIN
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In which American state is the city of San Jose located?
CALIFORNIA
FLORIDA
NEVADA
TEXAS
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