As the recent NHL All-Star Game illustrated fairly clearly, the NHL is clearly a league that is dominated by its young stars these days. In back-to-back seasons Connor McDavid, who is 21-years-old, has been the fastest skater, although this year he was given some tough competition from Braden Point and Jack Eichel, both of whom are also 21. The most accurate shot belonged to Brock Boeser, who is only 20 but is one of the league's leading scorers in his rookie season. While all the North American major pro sports have their fair shares of talented youngsters, the NHL in particular seems to be under the influence of a youth movement. If you take a look at the NBA players who are performing well in statistical categories this season—James Harden, LeBron James, Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook—you'll find that they're all hovering around 30 years of age, while the average age of the top NHL performers is closer to 25.
Keeping in mind that much of the stars of the NHL in 2018 are so young, it's no surprise that these youthful, skillful athletes are performing pretty well with the women as well. These guys are brash and full of confidence, some of them recently picking up major pay increases, and with that comes a shift in lifestyles, away from the billeting and parental support of their junior hockey days and more into the role of celebrity that guys like Alex Ovechkin have been occupying for years. Let's take a look at 15 young NHLers who have the hottest girlfriends.
15 Connor McDavid’s Girlfriend Lauren Kyle
At the beginning of this season, hockey pundits were making the bold claim that Connor McDavid is the best hockey player in the world. It seems to be too early to say that. He might be the fastest player in the league, and he is definitely the most exciting player in the league, but he's sitting at tenth in the league in points right now and has not quite had the season Oilers fans have been expecting so far. What isn't up for debate is that his girlfriend, Lauren Kyle, a Toronto-based interior designer, is one of the best looking hockey girlfriends in the league. She has racked up around 20,000 Instagram followers by posting photos of her charmed life alongside McDavid, who doesn't seem to be smiling as much as most people would in his situation.
14 Patrik Laine’s Girlfriend Sanna Kiukas
Patrik Laine is only 19-years-old, but he's already a certified NHL star, putting up thirty six goals in his rookie season for the Winnipeg Jets, and on pace to perhaps surpass that this year. While a lot of young hockey players are either dating their high school sweethearts or models they met after striking it big, Laine is dating a fellow hockey player. That shows an impressive commitment to eating, sleeping, and breathing hockey. Sanna Kiukas is also nineteen and is also from Finland. Like Laine, she had an impressive early career, appearing for the international under-18 Finnish women's team and playing for a Finnish club team, but she recently stopped playing hockey to move to North America to be with Laine. His Instagram is filled with cute photos of the two of them, spending time together during the holidays and doing activities on his days off.
13 Aleksander Barkov’s Girlfriend Maria Doroshina
Aleksander Barkov has been called one of the most underrated young players in the league by Jaromir Jagr, which is a huge compliment from one of the league's all-time greats. Barkov doesn't put up points at the same level as guys like McDavid and Matthews, but he has some of the slickest hands around and is absolutely lethal in the shootout. Also lethal is his girlfriend Maria Doroshina, who is a Finnish model that seems to be famous for always, uh, hanging out in photos. Take a look at her Instagram to see what I mean; there's a reason she has just under three million followers on there. Aside from her provocative photos it's hard to get a sense of what she does, or what her history is. There are no photos of Barkov on her feed, it's just selfies. A true enigma.
12 Bo Horvat’s Girlfriend Holly Donaldson
Bo Horvat, who is 22, is probably one of the more underrated young players in the league right now. He's the top line centre on a very bad Vancouver Canucks team, and reliably puts up points without a whole lot in the way of support. With the recent emergence of Brock Boeser, there's hope for Canucks fans that the team will be strong a few years down the road. Bo Horvat hasn't been hesitant to attribute his early success to his girlfriend Holly Donaldson, who he's been dating for six years. They live together and have a French bulldog named Gus. Apparently, Donaldson is a good support system for Horvat because she's a fairly successful curler, and knows the demands of being an athlete.
11 Mitch Marner’s Girlfriend Stephanie Lachance
Mitch Marner is only 20-years-old, making him one of the youngest guys on this list, and he isn't done any favours from his baby face, which makes him look even younger than he is. He has been nothing but impressive so far in his limited time with the Toronto Maple Leafs, putting up a whopping forty two assists last season, and keeping it going this year albeit at a slightly lesser pace. His girlfriend, Stephanie Lachance, also exudes youthfulness. Only a couple years back, she posted a photo of herself on Twitter after legally buying alcohol for the first time. Unlike some other hockey WAGs who seem uninterested in the specifics of their boyfriends' careers, Lachance seems to enjoy being along for the ride, frequently posting about Marner, his statistical accomplishments, and his teammates.
10 Jeff Skinner’s Girlfriend Cristine Prosperi
Jeff Skinner is not the most famous young player on this list. That title would have to go to either McDavid or Matthews. Skinner doesn't get as much attention as his peers, partially because Carolina is an easily overlooked hockey market, and because he seems like a pretty reserved and shy guy who never really garners media attention. He dazzles on the ice, though, and his girlfriend is probably the most famous WAG on this list. Cristine Prosperi is an accomplished Canadian actress who, like Drake, has appeared on the show Degrassi. Her Instagram followers are in the six figures. She won a Young Artist Award for her work on Degrassi, and last year she was in one of the Bring It On direct-to-video movies. Not exactly highbrow stuff, but you can't say she's not living the good life.
9 Tomas Hertl’s Girlfriend Aneta Netolicka
Remember how exciting it was when Tomas Hertl first busted into the league? One month into his rookie season he scored four goals in one game, becoming the youngest player to ever score four goals in a game, and the first San Jose Shark to do it since Owen Nolan in the '90s. Since then, he has established himself as a solid contributor, but he has had some problems with injuries. One place he isn't having problems is with the ladies. His girlfriend is Aneta Netolicka. Like Hertl, she's from the Czech Republic. Her Instagram posts are mostly of the two of them, mostly on vacation, mostly in a bikini. She moved to San Jose with him once he started playing with the team full time.
8 Auston Matthews’ Girlfriend Jordyn Johnson
The debates as to who is better between Auston Matthews and Connor McDavid will likely go on for at least the next decade. It's like Crosby vs. Ovechkin for a new generation. Both of their girlfriends have been in the spotlight quite a bit as well, and so it seems as though the debate as to which one of the two young stars has a better looking significant other will also rage on. I'm biased towards Jordyn Johnson, Matthews' girlfriend, who is closing in on 20,000 Instagram followers herself. If you're thinking "she looks like a model" it's because she is. She's represented by the Ford Modelling agency, one of America's most prestigious modelling agencies. Like Matthews, she's from Arizona. Matthews is on pace to put up 40 goals in back-to-back seasons—a great start to his NHL career—and he's surely doing it in style.
7 Nathan MacKinnon’s Girlfriend Vanessa Morgan
There's quite a bit of ambiguity online as to whether Nathan MacKinnon and his girlfriend Vanessa Morgan have split up or whether they're still together, but we'll leave her here until there's definitive proof that they've split. There's certainly no indication that MacKinnon is having any kind of personal problems off the ice, as his on-ice production has been phenomenal lately. He's on pace for more than a hundred points this season, and trails only Tampa's Nikita Kucherov in overall points. Morgan is a Canadian actress who has been in a bunch of teen sitcoms and also recently has been featured on the hit show Riverdale as one of the South Side Serpents. Like Jeff Skinner's girlfriend Cristine Prosperi, she was on the show Degrassi, which seems to be a kind of rite of passage for young Canadian actresses.
6 Jack Eichel’s Girlfriend Erin Basil
There's no doubt that Jack Eichel is a weird looking dude. His hair is strange, he always has an uncomfortable look on his face, and he's super ineloquent in interviews. However, the young American is also one of the most electrifying players in the game today, frequently pulling off slick, creative plays that make defencemen look silly. It must be Eichel's on-ice play—and of course the earnings it looks like he'll be pulling in during his promising NHL career—that drew in Erin Basil, who is a complete babe. It's hard to get a sense of where Basil is from or what she does because she recently made her Instagram and other social media accounts private, no doubt after receiving unwanted attention from hockey fans who wanted insight into their lives.
5 Vladimir Tarasenko’s Wife Yana
Compared to a lot of young hockey players who are still figuring out how to navigate their newfound fame, Vladimir Tarasenko really seems to have things figured out. In addition to being probably the best player on one of the league's best teams, he has a stunning wife, as well as a child who is approaching two years of age. The Tarasenkos live in a gated community near St. Louis, and he seems to be a dedicated father based on profiles of him and his family. For example, their basement is decked out as an indoor hockey playing area. In interviews, Taraseko often attributes his success to his stable family situation at home, which gives him the mental clarity to focus on his craft. Based on how focussed and upstanding he seems to be, it seems as though Tarasenko will continue to be one of the league's premier scorers for years to come, even though he was rudely snubbed in the All-Star game this year.
4 Filip Forsberg’s Girlfriend Jennifer Persson
Doesn't Jennifer Persson kind of sound like a name that you'd make up to give someone who you didn't want to know your real name? Suspicious. Filip Forsberg is one of my favourite young NHL players because he puts up a lot of goals and is responsible at the other end of the ice as well. He seems modest and determined, and even though I'm not a Preds fan, I want to see them succeed, for whatever reason. Forsberg's girlfriend is Jennifer Persson, a radio broadcaster and podcast host. Like Forsberg, she's from Sweden but currently lives in Nashville. She has a personal website where she seems to document events from her life, but it's all in Swedish, so perhaps it's directed at her family and friends back home, so they can follow her life while she's living in abroad with Forsberg.
3 Jonathan Huberdeau’s Girlfriend Allie Beckwith
Some NHL WAGs seem intent on keeping their privacy, not wanting their relationships with high profile hockey players to mean that the details of their own lives are subject to media scrutiny. Allie Beckwith is not one of those people, though. She refers to herself as a "brand influencer" which means that she posts a lot of photos on social media and poses with a camera a lot. It's funny that a lot of the WAGs on this list are dating guys on the Florida Panthers. What's better than locking down a young hockey player making millions of dollars a year? Locking down a young hockey player making millions of dollars a year that also plays in a beachy city with beautiful sunny weather most of the year.
2 Matt Duchene’s Wife Ashley Grossaint
Being with Matt Duchene probably hasn't been terribly easy recently. As a third overall pick expected to help turn the Colorado Avalanche's fortunes around after years of disappointing play, he burned out in Colorado, feeling that he was being mistreated by management, and requested a trade. This situation—Duchene's unhappiness, and the Avs' inability to find a trade partner—dragged on an one, but he finally got a fresh start in Ottawa, where he has been playing OK so far. Aside from hockey related concerns, though, Matt Duchene and his wife Ashley Groissaint seem to be happy. They got married last year, and there are plenty of photos of them on social media taking in sporting events, on vacation, and seemingly enjoying time together away from the rink.
1 Ryan Johansen’s Girlfriend Madison Bell
Ryan Johansen is a very good young hockey player who may never quite live up to the expectations pinned on his shoulders as a fourth-overall draft pick, but he has found a comfortable home in Nashville, and last year he put up 47 assists: the most in his career so far. His girlfriend is Madison Bell, who also lives in Nashville, and seems to be an American based on the fact that on her Instagram profile, she's posing with a photo of an American flag behind her. While some of the other women on this list seem to use their NHL player boyfriends as social leverage to advance their own careers on social media—a savvy move indeed—Madison Bell just posts nice photos of the two of them, and their dog Dozer.