Top 5 NHL players from Halton

Published October 2, 2019 at 12:49 pm

With the puck set to drop on the 2019-20 NHL season, let’s take a look at the top pro hockey players from the Halton region. The ranking methodology is based on both past NHL success and future outlook.

1) Josh Anderson

NHL team: Columbus Blue Jackets
Position: RW
Hometown: Burlington, Ont
DOB: 4/7/1994

For the first time in his career, Josh Anderson played all 82 regular season games for the Columbus Blue Jackets during the 2018-19 season; scoring a career-high 27 goals and added 20 assists for 47 points and a plus-25 rating. Anderson also played in all 10 playoffs games for the Blue Jackets in 2018-19, scoring 1 goal (shorthanded) and adding 2 helpers.

The 6-3, 220-pound winger is projected to play a top-9 role this season with Columbus while getting significant powerplay time.


2) Evan Bouchard

NHL team: Edmonton Oilers
Position: D
Hometown: Oakville, Ont
DOB: 10/20/1999

Long-term expectations are high for the Edmonton Oilers’ 1st-round draft pick (10th overall) in 2018. Evan Bouchard had a decorated junior hockey career with the London Knights, winning the OHL Championship and 2016 Memorial Cup in his first year with the organization. Bouchard was named captain of the Knights in 2017.

On October 25, 2018, Bouchard became the youngest Oiler defenceman in history to record a goal when he scored in a 4-1 win over the Washington Capitals. He had turned 19 five days before the game. After seven games with the Oilers, he was returned to the Knights on November 2. Bouchard was named the winner of the Max Kaminsky Trophy as the league’s top defenceman.

Bouchard will start the 2019-20 season with Edmonton’s AHL affiliate in Bakersfield.

3) Scott Laughton

NHL team: Philadelphia Flyers
Position: C
Hometown: Oakville, Ont
DOB: 5/30/1994

The 6-1, 190-pound pivot will again handle 4th line duties for the Philadelphia Flyers, one season after Laughton played all 82 regular season games for the first time his NHL career; falling one game shy of a full season the year prior. The Flyers’ 1st-round pick (20th overall) in 2012 reached career highs in goals (12), assists (20), and points (32) in 2018-19.

Scott Laughton signed a new two-year deal with Philadelphia this past summer, worth $2.3 million per season.

4) Corey Conacher

NHL team: Tampa Bay Lightning
Position: LW
Hometown: Burlington, Ont
DOB: 12/14/1989

The definition of “organizational depth”, the former Burlington Cougar has a total of 199 NHL and 384 AHL regular season and playoff games under his belt. Corey Conacher went undrafted after four years at Canisius College where he became the school’s all-time leader in points (147), goals (62) and game-winning goals (12) in 129 games. Conacher shattered 12 total records during his collegiate career.

Conacher would sign multiple American Hockey League deals before finally catching on in 2012. He was selected to play in the AHL All-Star Classic, after leading all rookies in scoring. Conacher would go on to lead the Milwaukee Admirals to a Calder Cup before he was named the league’s MVP, becoming just the fourth rookie to win it since it was first presented in 1948.

Conacher signed a two-year, two-way contract with the Admirals’ NHL affiliate, the Tampa Bay Lightning, on March 1, 2012. He would go on to spend time with the Ottawa Senators, Buffalo Sabres, New York Islanders, and SC Bern (Switzerland).

Conacher once again signed with the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2016, and he’s been with the organization ever since.

5) Scott Wilson

NHL team: Buffalo Sabres
Position: C/LW
Hometown: Oakville, Ont
DOB: 4/24/1992

Scott Wilson will look to rebound after a disappointing 2018-19 campaign. The former Georgetown Raiders (OJHL) standout won a pair of Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

On Oct 21, 2017, Wilson was traded to the Detroit Red Wings but lasted just months before he was flipped to Buffalo in December.

After missing the first half of the 2018-19 season with an injured ankle, the Sabres placed Wilson on waivers. Having cleared the following day, Wilson was re-assigned to AHL affiliate, the Rochester Americans.

Wilson will begin the season in Rochester in 2019-20 as he tries to work his way back into the Sabres bottom 6.

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