In today’s NHL, speed reigns supreme. Teams can no longer field lumbering, bulky defensemen capable of impeding opponents into submission. However, if a player possesses speed and size, they may be dangerous.
The typical NHLer stands 6-foot-1 and weighs 201 pounds, according to Hockey-Graphs (as of the 2014-15 season). When compared to the typical NHL player during the 1944-45 season — 5-foot-10, 174 pounds – it looks like NHL teams have been administering Captain America Super-Soldier Serum to its players.
Today’s dominant players include Zdeno Chara, Brent Burns, and Evgeni Malkin. They are not, however, the biggest NHL players. Let’s take a look at the NHL’s heaviest players today based on body mass index (BMI), which interestingly does not include Chara, the NHL’s tallest player, or Jamie Oleksiak, the NHL’s heaviest player.
1. Anders Lee
Anders Mark Lee (born July 3, 1990) is an American professional ice hockey winger and the captain of the National Hockey League’s New York Islanders (NHL). Lee attended the University of Notre Dame and played ice hockey for the Fighting Irish. In the 2009 NHL Entry Draft, the Islanders selected him in the sixth round, 151st overall.
The New York Islanders captain makes his presence felt in front of opposition nets. Opponents just cannot move Lee, and goalkeepers cannot see around him. Ander’s 235-pound frame efficiently blocks advances, making him one of the biggest NHL hockey players of all time.
2. Pat Maroon
Pat Maroon, often known as “Big Rig” around the rink, has always exploited his bulk to his advantage. Maroon signed with the Tampa Bay Lightning after winning the Stanley Cup with his local team, the St. Louis Blues. Under Jon Cooper’s tutelage, the forward has become a nuisance in front of the net, frequently boxing out defensemen and screening goalies.
Make no mistake, despite his 238-pound weight, Maroon is agile and has delicate hands on the ice and around the spikeball net.
3. Georges Laraque
Georges Edy Laraque, born December 7, 1976, is a Canadian politician, sports pundit, and former ice hockey player. Laraque announced his retirement from hockey in 2010 when the Montreal Canadiens purchased out his contract. He is a TVA Sports pundit and was most recently the executive director of the nascent Canadian Hockey League Players’ Association.
During his 14-year NHL career, he was a member of the Edmonton Oilers, Phoenix Coyotes, Pittsburgh Penguins, and Montreal Canadiens. He was one of two deputy leaders of the Green Party of Canada from 2010 until 2013. Laraque sits amongst the heaviest NHL hockey players of all time with a weight of 273 lbs.
4. Derek Boogard
Derek Leendert Boogaard, a native of Saskatchewan where he grew up as the son of a Mountie, was renowned mostly as a fighter and enforcer throughout his career, from junior hockey to the pros. His fighting skills earned him the titles “Boogeyman” and “The Mountie,” and he became a fan favorite.
In 2007, he was rated the NHL’s second most scary player, trailing only Georges Laraque, who ascribed his retirement to a wish to avoid the significant harm Boogaard might cause, such as the cheekbone fracture Todd Fedoruk experienced, which required metal plates to be mended. Derek sits at a gross weight of 265 lbs making him one of the heaviest NHL hockey players of all time.
5. Nikita Tryamkin
Tryamkin, Nikita Andreyevich, was born on August 30, 1994. He is a professional ice hockey defenseman from Russia. He is presently a member of the Kontinental Hockey League’s Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg (KHL).
During the 2012–13 season, Tryamkin made his Kontinental Hockey League (KHL) debut with Avtomobilist Yekaterinburg. Tryamkin, who weighs 265 pounds, is one of the largest NHL hockey players of all time.
6. Robin Lehner
With his gear on, the Vegas Golden Knights goaltender resembles the Michelin Man. Robin Lehner also reminds everyone of an old Amstel Light commercial with a hulking goaltender with a gross weight of 250 pounds.
To be fair, Lehner is not a chubby goalie like the one in the commercial, but he is the heaviest in the NHL in terms of BMI. Lehner, on the other hand, can move quickly around the crease, defying the cliché that “large goalies can’t move.”
7. Nick Ritchie
Despite being only 6-foot-2, Nick Ritchie is the NHL’s sixth-largest player based on BMI. The Toronto Maple Leafs forward clearly takes use of his stature, even if it comes at a cost.
Ritchie, a former Anaheim Ducks first-round pick, was recently signed by the Maple Leafs to add more physicality to their lineup. The huge forward, who is only 24 years old, might be on this list for years to come. He currently sits at a gross weight of 230 pounds.
8. Dustin Byfuglien
Dustin Byfuglien is a Canadian hockey player who was born on March 27, 1985. He is an unrestricted free agent in the American professional ice hockey league.
He previously spent time with the Chicago Blackhawks, Atlanta Thrashers, and Winnipeg Jets. He was drafted as a defenseman and has played both forward and defense throughout his career, though he has mostly played defense in recent years.
In 2010, Byfuglien was a key contributor to Chicago’s Stanley Cup victory. Byfuglien is the first black player born in the United States to win the Stanley Cup. He’s also one of the largest NHL hockey players of all time with a weight of exactly 260 pounds.