Players from British Columbia have had a massive impact on the NHL. The 2022-23 season is no different, as so far, almost 50 players from Canada’s fourth-largest province have played a game in the NHL. Here is a look at what an all-B.C.-born active NHL roster would look like.
Team B.C.’s first line is stacked with speed and skill. Starting at center is the pride of Coquitlam, Mathew Barzal, who is sure to rack up the points and be strong defensively. On his right wing is another player who can fill up the scoresheet in West Vancouver’s Sam Reinhart. Rounding out the trio on the left side is Vancouver’s Evander Kane, whose combination of speed, size and skill has helped him eclipse the 550-point mark for his NHL career.
The second line also brings plenty of offence with team captain and Burnaby’s Ryan Nugent-Hopkins leading the way at center. He is flanked by two veteran NHLers starting with Jamie Benn on the left wing. The Victoria native leads all active B.C.-born NHLers with 813 points, and at the age of 33, doesn’t look to be slowing down. Completing the line is Vancouver’s Ryan Johansen, who brings a wealth of experience to the lineup.
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One of B.C.’s brightest future stars highlights the third line in Port Moody’s Kent Johnson. The 20-year-old has been very impressive in his short NHL career and should be on this list for a long time. Beside him on the right wing is Langley’s Danton Heinen, with Golden’s Dillon Dubé flanking on the left. With a good mix of speed and skill, this third line should have no problem generating offence.
The fourth line is a hard-checking, physical group that can play matchup minutes all game. Vancouver’s Alexander Kerfoot is flanked by Salmon Arm’s Curtis Lazar and North Vancouver’s Colton Sissons. The one thing that sticks out about this line is they aren’t afraid to throw hits or drop the gloves if needed. All three are very experienced, with each having played at least 400 career games and making up what many would consider an ideal checking line.
|Evander Kane||Mathew Barzal||Sam Reinhart|
|Jamie Benn||Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (C)||Ryan Johansen (A)|
|Dillon Dubé||Kent Johnson||Danton Heinen|
|Curtis Lazar||Alexander Kerfoot||Colton Sissons|
B.C.’s top pairing features a pair of former WHL Best Defencemen winners in Victoria’s Tyson Barrie and Langley’s Shea Theodore. Both have had plenty of success throughout their NHL careers, with each passing the 240-point marks for their careers. While this pair may not be used in a shutdown capacity, they are both proven reliable defencemen in their own zone.
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An all-Colorado Avalanche duo makes up B.C.’s second pair as Abbotsford’s Devon Toews and Cranbrook’s Bowen Byram lead what would be the shutdown pair. They have played together in the past but aren’t used often as a pair because both are left-shot defencemen. If both can stay healthy, which is the biggest question mark, they could develop into a solid pairing if given the time to work on their chemistry.
As for B.C.’s third pairing, it is the most experienced featuring over 1,300 regular season games split between West Vancouver’s Morgan Rielly and Kelowna’s Justin Schultz. Just like the first pairing, this duo features two offensively gifted defenders who have had no issues hitting the scoresheet throughout their careers.
|Shea Theodore||Tyson Barrie|
|Devon Toews||Bowen Byram|
|Morgan Rielly (A)||Justin Schultz|
In goal, Team B.C. features a pair of former Stanley Cup winners. Surrey’s Tristan Jarry is starting in net, as he has developed into one of the top goaltenders in the NHL. An All-Star at the NHL and American Hockey League (AHL) levels, his 109 wins sit sixth all-time among British Columbia-born goaltenders.
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As for Jarry’s backup, the position goes to North Vancouver’s Martin Jones. Just like his counterpoint, the current Seattle Kraken goaltender has been an All-Star at the NHL and AHL level but sits fourth all-time in wins by a B.C.-born goaltender with 221. This tandem is experienced, knows how to win championships and is one of the stronger goaltending sets compared to other Provinces across Canada
Head Coach: Jon Cooper
Leading Team B.C. is none other than Prince George’s Jon Cooper. The two-time Stanley Cup Champion has the most wins among active NHL coaches and his 466 wins sit sixth all-time in coaching wins with a single franchise. Arguably the best coach of the last decade, Team B.C. is in good hands with him in charge.
British Columbia Continues To Produce Talented Hockey Players
Team B.C. is very strong offensively and would easily be one of the favourites in a cross-Canada Provincial battle. They are a great mixture of speed, skill and size, which would match up well against any competition. Just like throughout history, British Columbia is responsible for producing some very talented hockey players.