5 Junior Hockey Best Players of All Time

Brandon McNally

The best player in junior hockey is a highly sought-after commodity. This individual is a player that is capable of making an immediate impact on any team he or she joins. They possess elite skills, a passion for the game, and the tenacity to be a leader both on and off the ice.

This player is the epitome of a complete hockey player. They have the potential to become the next great star in the NHL. The name of the best player in junior hockey is not easily determined, as many talented athletes continue to shine in the sport.

However, there are a few names that stand out amongst the rest.

1. Henri Jokiharju

Henri Jokiharju is a Finnish ice hockey professional playing defense for the Buffalo Sabres of the National Hockey League (NHL). He is currently in his third season in the NHL, having been drafted in the first round of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

Jokiharju was selected with the 29th overall pick by the Chicago Blackhawks, the team with whom he spent his first two NHL seasons. As a defender, Jokiharju is known for his strong skating and puck-moving abilities.

He is a versatile player, able to play in both offensive and defensive situations. He is also an excellent passer and has a high hockey IQ which allows him to make accurate decisions on the ice.

He is a valuable asset to any team and is a key component of the Sabres’ blue line. Since joining the Sabres in 2019, Jokiharju has become a mainstay on the team’s defense. He has continued to develop his game and has become an integral part of the Sabres’ defensive core.

He has also shown great character and leadership and is a strong role model for the younger players on the team. Overall, Henri Jokiharju has shown that he is an extremely talented hockey player.

His experience in the NHL has been invaluable, and he is a great asset to the Buffalo Sabres. His skill set and leadership abilities have been a major factor in the Sabres’ success and will continue to be so in the future.

2. Kasper Puutio

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Kasper Akseli Puutio is a Finnish professional ice hockey defenceman who currently plays for KalPa in the Finnish Liiga. He was previously part of Oulun Kärpät, another team in the Liiga.

Puutio has been playing hockey since he was a young boy and has risen up the ranks ever since. He is considered one of the best Finnish hockey players of his generation.

Puutio’s career began when he joined Oulun Kärpät in 2016, where he quickly established himself as a strong defensive presence on the team. During his time with the team, he earned several accolades, such as being named to the Liiga All-Star team in 2017-18.

In 2019, he was traded to KalPa, where he has continued to develop and improve his game. Puutio is known for his defensive awareness, work ethic, and ability to read the game. He is also a great skater, which allows him to be effective on both sides of the ice.

His strong play has earned him recognition from both his fellow players and hockey analysts. With KalPa, Puutio has continued to impress and will look to take his game to the next level in the near future.

3. Zach Dean

Zachary Dean is a Canadian junior ice hockey player currently playing for the Gatineau Olympiques of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. He was selected in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft in the first round, 30th overall, by the Vegas Golden Knights.

As a result of this selection, Dean is seen as a promising prospect with the potential to join the National Hockey League’s St.

Louis Blues in the near future. Dean is known for his exceptional skating and stick-handling skills, as well as his ability to read the play and create scoring opportunities. His physicality and defensive play is also impressive, making him a reliable two-way player.

He has also proven to be a leader on the ice, captaining the Gatineau Olympiques during the 2020-2021 season. With the Vegas Golden Knights having drafted him in the first round, Zachary Dean is now one step closer to achieving his dream of playing in the NHL.

He has already shown great potential and all eyes are now on him to see if he can make the jump to the big leagues. Regardless of the outcome, Dean will surely be remembered as one of the best players to have come out of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

4. Jonathan Toews

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Jonathan Bryan Toews is a former professional ice hockey centre who is currently an unrestricted free agent. Toews is a Canadian player who is widely renowned for his skill and leadership. From 2008 to 2023, Toews served as the captain of the Chicago Blackhawks, an NHL team.

During his time with the Blackhawks, Toews was an integral part of the team, leading them to three Stanley Cup championships in 2010, 2013, and 2015.

Toews was widely praised for his leadership, and he was awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy in 2010 as the Most Valuable Player of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Toews was also awarded the Frank J. Selke Trophy in 2013, recognizing him as the NHL’s best defensive forward.

He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2021, cementing his legacy as one of the all-time greats.

5. Devon Levi

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Devon Levi is a professional ice hockey goaltender from Canada who is currently playing for the Buffalo Sabres.

Levi had an impressive year in 2019, where he earned MVP honors at the World Junior A Challenge and was also named the MVP and Top Goaltender of the Canadian Junior Hockey League and the Central Canada Hockey League.

His success earned him recognition from both the national and international hockey communities and set him up to excel further in the professional hockey ranks.

Levi has shown great promise and skill in his position, and he will continue to be a valuable asset to the Buffalo Sabres’ team.

Conclusion

The best player in junior hockey is a difficult title to bestow upon any single individual. There are a variety of elements that go into determining the best player in junior hockey, such as skill, speed, strength, and hockey IQ.

However, the ultimate measure of a player’s greatness is their ability to rise to the occasion and help their team to success. Therefore, the best player in junior hockey is ultimately the one that can become the most reliable and consistent contributor to their team’s success..

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Brandon McNally

I have been playing hockey my whole life. I am currently a professional hockey player with the Calgary Flames. I am also a part time coach at the University of Calgary and the head coach of the Calgary Northstars Minor Hockey Association. I have always wanted to be an NHL player and I am very excited to be one! My hobbies are playing hockey, coaching, and spending time with my family. LinkedIn