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Odd Couples: 15 NHL Players With Surprising Spouses

What would make someone want to date or marry a hockey player compared to an athlete of another pro sport? Hockey has a lower profile than basketball, baseball, or football in North America, so its players fly under the radar a little more. Hockey players are generally more reserved than the athletes from other pro sports, too. For example, Sidney Crosby is probably the most famous hockey player in the world, and we hardly know anything about his life or what he gets up to on a daily basis, compared to people like guys like LeBron James or Tom Brady. Sure, some hockey players—Patrick Kane, Sean Avery, and Alex Ovechkin come to mind—have been hot rods for media attention. But generally, it's safe to say that anyone looking to settle down with a hockey player is in for a more laid-back life than an NBA or NFL wife.

Given that hockey players are a quiet bunch, it's always surprising when they end up with someone famous. For some players on this list, their wives are more famous than they are. A well known example of this is Mike Fisher and Carrie Underwood, which was too obvious to even put on the list. In that case, Underwood's net worth greatly exceeds Fisher's. Hockey players make less money on average than NFL, MLB, or NBA players. They're often ugly too, with greasy hair and facial injuries and inelegant bodies with giant lower bodies and smaller upper bodies. It is always surprising to find out who ends up marrying famous hockey players, so let's take a look.

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15 Jonathan Toews And Lindsey Vecchione

via zimbio.com

This may be unfair to say, but I've always thought that there was something kind of creepy about Jonathan Toews. He always has that deer in the headlights kind of look on his face. He never smiles or laughs, even when he scores a huge goal or should be celebrating. He's also a born winner and has proven that on every stage. And whatever he's doing is working for Lindsey Vecchione, so good for him. Vecchione is from Chicago also, which is where the two of them met. She has done modelling for Playboy, and played in the Legends Football League—formerly and better known as the Lingerie Football League—for the Chicago Bliss. So she's not exactly an elite-level athlete like Toews, but you could make the argument that she's more watchable.

14 Ray Emery And Keshia Chanté

Via LKC
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This high-profile hockey relationship took a sour turn recently, as just a couple months ago, TMZ reported that Ray Emery had been arrested for assaulting Keshia Chanté with a weapon. Yikes! The couple were engaged at the time, but some outlets have reported that their marriage has now been called off. The assaults themselves apparently took place back in 2016, and Keshia Chanté has said that she has hard evidence of the claims.

Keshia Chanté is a pretty popular Canadian singer, actress, and TV personality. She has done loads of commercials and endorsements, and is considered to be a kind of fashion icon. She has had a lot of hit songs on Canadian radio, and she put out an EP earlier this year. Emery is retired from hockey now, but he took the Ottawa Senators to the Stanley Cup Finals, and won a cup with the Blackhawks. He was known for his very aggressive playing style, and he often got in fights. Some foreshadowing there.

13 Sean Avery And Hilary Rhoda

via justjared.com

Like Ray Emery, Sean Avery is one of the rare NHL players who has managed to make international headlines with his antics. Recently, he has given an explanation as to why he was such a jerk too. As a hockey player he was just OK, playing mostly on teams' fourth lines. He drew attention for standing in front of goalies and waving his stick around, which was such a controversial move that they made a rule against it, called The Avery Rule. He called Martin Brodeur fat after a game. Avery was also a fashion intern at Vogue, and a restauranteur. Most famously, he referred to Elisha Cuthbert and Rachel Hunter—two of his ex-girlfriends—as his "sloppy seconds" when other NHLers started dating them. He has been staying out of the spotlight more lately though, and he got married to Hilary Rhoda in 2015. Rhoda is an American model, known for appearances in Sports Illustrated swimsuit issues.

12 Brooks Laich And Julianne Hough

via theknotnews.com
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This hockey marriage is surprising in that it seems as though Julianne Hough could have done a little better. I'm sure Brooks Laich is a great guy and everything, but as a hockey player he was essentially average, never really putting up more than 20 or so goals a year on a high-powered Washington Capitals team. Laich spent a year playing in Toronto, and then was traded to the LA Kings, and he seems to be in the minors right now. Hough, on the other hand, is a very successful dancer, as well as a singer and an actress. She dated fellow dancer Chuck Wicks for a while, and then spent some time dating Ryan Seacrest. She went from Seacrest to Laich, which is kinda funny, as Ryan Seacrest seems like the opposite of a hockey player. They got married earlier this year.

11 Roman Josi And Ellie Ottaway

Via Gram Union

Ellie Ottaway isn't married to Roman Josi yet, and she isn't as famous as some of the other women on this list, but you'd be hard pressed to find a hotter WAG in the league. Ottaway is a model who seems to primarily be based on Instagram. You can often find her on Instagram either almost naked or posing with Josi. Roman Josi has been on the come up lately in more ways than one. The 27-year-old from Bern, Switzerland is one of the best young defensemen in the league, constantly racking up super impressive point totals. He has a solid contract right now that ends in a couple years, so he'll be looking for a major payday in 2020. Hard not to feel jealous of a guy in a situation like that.

10 Jeff Skinner And Cristine Prosperi

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Though Jeff Skinner and Cristine Prosperi have been dating for years, there aren't very many nice photos of them together on the internet, as it seems as though they like to keep a low profile. Prosperi, who is 24 years old, is a Canadian actress who is best known for her role on the Canadian teen drama Degrassi. Skinner is a year older than Prosperi, and he's best known for being insanely fast and scoring just under forty goals last year. He's not on quite as good of a scoring pace this year, but he's still the best offensive threat on the Carolina Hurricanes. Maybe Cristine is keeping him too busy. Prosperi has been a star since she was a teenager, and was on some shows on the Family channel, and she's keeping busy with her acting now, starring in multiple movies and shows, some just released and some still in production.

9 David Booth And Ashley Durham

via nhlhockeywags.tumblr.com

For a time, David Booth was a really promising hockey player, putting up 31 goals in 72 games in the 2008-09 season and seeming like he was well on his way to becoming one of the league's top snipers. Then he was traded to Vancouver and his career kind of went downhill. He got injured a lot and spent some time in the minors, and then played a season in Russia.

Now he's back in the NHL, having just signed a new deal with the Red Wings, and he has been doing OK so far. Back in 2012, he got in big trouble with the Vancouver media for posting a video of himself baiting and killing a black bear, which wasn't popular with fans. In 2014, he got married to Ashley Durham, a beauty queen from Tennessee. They're both blonde and religious and kind of airheads, so it seems like a perfect fit.

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8 Tomas Plekanec And Lucie Vondrackova

Via Expres
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Tomas Plekanec has been a mainstay for the Montreal Canadiens for years, but many fans don't really know all that much about his personal life because he's a pretty private guy. It turns out that 2011 he has been married to Lucie Vondrackova, who is also from the Czech Republic, and is a celebrity in her own right. She is one of the most successful and famous Czech singers, and she is also a respected actress. She speaks a whopping five languages as well. Just like Plekanec has been a steady on-ice contributor for the Habs, he seems to have a largely stable and uneventful marriage as well. He and Lucie have two sons, named Matyas and Adam, who are six and two years old respectively.

7 Ben Scrivens And Jenny Scrivens

via montrealgazette.com

The reason Jenny Scrivens makes this list of surprising hockey spouses is that Ben Scrivens seems to be one of the only well known hockey players that is also dating, or married to a hockey player. Jenny Scrivens has her own Wikipedia page and everything. She played college hockey and then played in the NWHL for a for a while. Her and Ben met because they were both playing hockey at Cornell at the same time. Sadly, they're probably apart a lot of the time now, since Ben is currently playing in the KHL in Russia, with his last NHL team being the Montreal Canadiens last year. Jenny, on the other hand, works for the Ronald McDonald House charity in Alberta. She is one of the better-known hockey WAGs on this list, in that she was featured on the Canadian reality TV show Hockey Wives.

6 Bret Hedican And Kristi Yamaguchi

via Heavy.com
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This is definitely one of the most surprising NHL spouses on the list, right? In this case, Yamaguchi is way more famous than Hedican. Though Hedican had a long career and really bounced around from team to team, he has never anything like a star player and was more of a reliable anchor on the blue line. He is, however, an example of a great diamond in the rough-style draft pick, as he was scooped up 198th overall. He also spent some time doing broadcast work as an analyst for the San Jose Sharks.

It's funny then that Hedican had such a long and reliable NHL career when his wife is easily the better and more graceful skater of the two of them. She's an Olympic champion, a U.S. champion, and she's in the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame. In 2008, she won Dancing with the Stars. They've been married since the year 2000, and they have two kids. Yamaguchi and Hedican may not be as young and racy as other couples on this list, but they're definitely the most impressive as a pair.

5 Valeri Bure And Candace Cameron

via theknotnews.com

It is actually pretty tough to say which of these two is more famous outside of their respective spheres. Valeri Bure did put up some pretty good numbers in his 10-year NHL career, but he will be forever in the shadow of his brother Pavel, who was one of the most electrifying players to ever lace them up. Sadly, if you look at their wives side-by-side, it kind of reflects this as well, as Pavel's current wife Alina Khasanova is a lot better looking than Valeri's wife. Guy can't catch a break. Candace Cameron is a celebrity in her own right though. She was on the shows Full House and Fuller House, as well as Dancing With the Stars and The View. Her brother is Kirk Cameron, who has been an actor in a bunch of terrible movies.

4 Lucia Slaninkova And Tomas Tatar

via hockeyfeed.com
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Tomas Tatar has evolved into a reliable scorer for the Red Wings in recent years, which is much needed with the aging of many of their existing players. This year, a new contract kicked in that pays him a bit over $5 million a year, and if you combine that with the fact that he's dating an absolute babe who was crowned Miss World Slovakia back in 2013, it's safe to say that things are looking pretty good for the 27 year old Slovak. Her Instagram is definitely worth taking a look at. Given that Tatar kind of flies under the radar as a hockey player and Slaninkova hasn't really done much other than her pageant wins and modelling on Instagram, not much is known about the couple, but they look happy.

3 Sheldon Souray And Barbie Blank

via usmagazine.com

If you keep up with your NHL wives and girlfriends, you may have heard that Sheldon Souray and Barbie Blank recently split up. As little as a month ago, Blank was in the media saying that her and Souray were taking some time apart to work through their issues. Barbie Blank, also known as Barbara Jean Blank-Souray, also known as former pro wrestler Kelly Kelly, is an American model and reality TV star too. Sheldon Souray is a retired defenceman who played for five teams in his NHL career and had one of the hardest slap shots in the league for years. They got married in Mexico early last year, and apparently they have been separated for months, with Blank already seeing new people. 

2 Ryan Miller And Noureen DeWulf

via lifeandstyle.com
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I've always thought that there was something kind of sophisticated about this couple, as they both have dark features and seem like serious people. Her real full name is Noureen Ahmed, and the last name DeWulf comes from her previous husband, who is the popular avant-garde designer James DeWulf. It seems like she kept the last name DeWulf as a kind of stage name and has used it in her acting career. She was in the sitcom Anger Managment, which is a reprisal of the Jack Nicholson movie from 2003. She has been in multiple other shows and movies too, and a lot of people know her from the show Hockey Wives, where she gives an inside look into her life with Ryan Miller. The two of them got married back in 2011, and they have one child.

1 Dion Phaneuf And Elisha Cuthbert

via dirtydangle.com

I think what's the most surprising about this couple is that they are still together. After all, their relationship has been the subject of intense media attention right from the start. As I talked about earlier in this article, Sean Avery referred to Cuthbert as his "sloppy seconds" which is a disgusting thing to say about someone in any context. A few years later, Phaneuf threatened to sue the sports network TSN for airing an inappropriate fan tweet about Cuthbert. Phaneuf is known for his huge hits and generally solid defensive play. Cuthbert is known for being in movies like The Girl Next Door and Old School, as well as the teen science show Popular Mechanics for Kids. Phaneuf and Cuthbert started dating in 2008, and the two of them got engaged in 2012, married in 2013, and they seem happy. A real feel good story, this one.

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