Minnesota Produces the Most NHL Players Born in the U.S.

We thought it would be interesting to find out which U.S. State produces the most U.S. born professional hockey players and, without too much surprise, we found that Minnesota is the birthplace of the largest number of U.S. born professional hockey players. These stats include the World Hockey Association (WHA), a professional league that operated in North America from 1972 to 1979. (Updated Mar 2016):

 

Sorted by # Players 2010 2015 2016 Sorted by State 2010 2015 2016
Minnesota 200 233 240 Alabama 2 2 3
Massachusetts 163 179 187 Alaska 11 12 13
Michigan 118 148 154 Arizona 1 2 2
New York 82 102 107 Arkansas 0 0 0
Illinois 42 52 58 California 24 36 38
California 24 36 38 Colorado 7 10 11
Pennsylvania 19 31 33 Connecticut 22 29 30
Wisconsin 25 29 31 Delaware 1 1 1
Connecticut 22 29 30 District of Columbia 2 3 3
Ohio 20 22 22 Florida 3 7 9
Rhode Island 18 18 19 Georgia 3 3 3
Missouri 7 14 15 Hawaii 0 0 0
New Jersey 8 13 14 Idaho 2 2 2
Alaska 11 12 13 Illinois 42 52 58
North Dakota 13 13 13 Indiana 7 8 9
Washington 9 11 12 Iowa 1 1 1
Colorado 7 10 11 Kansas 0 0 0
New Hampshire 7 10 11 Kentucky 0 0 0
Florida 3 7 9 Louisiana 0 0 0
Indiana 7 8 9 Maine 5 6 6
Texas 2 8 8 Maryland 3 4 4
Maine 5 6 6 Massachusetts 163 179 187
Oklahoma 3 5 5 Michigan 118 148 154
Oregon 5 5 5 Minnesota 200 233 240
Maryland 3 4 4 Mississippi 0 0 0
Utah 2 4 4 Missouri 7 14 15
Virginia 4 4 4 Montana 0 1 1
Alabama 2 2 3 Nebraska 2 2 2
District of Columbia 2 3 3 Nevada 0 0 0
Georgia 3 3 3 New Hampshire 7 10 11
Arizona 1 2 2 New Jersey 8 13 14
Idaho 2 2 2 New Mexico 0 0 0
Nebraska 2 2 2 New York 82 102 107
North Carolina 1 2 2 North Carolina 1 2 2
Vermont 2 2 2 North Dakota 13 13 13
Delaware 1 1 1 Ohio 20 22 22
Iowa 1 1 1 Oklahoma 3 5 5
Montana 0 1 1 Oregon 5 5 5
South Carolina 0 1 1 Pennsylvania 19 31 33
Arkansas 0 0 0 Rhode Island 18 18 19
Hawaii 0 0 0 South Carolina 0 1 1
Kansas 0 0 0 South Dakota 0 0 0
Kentucky 0 0 0 Tennessee 0 0 0
Louisiana 0 0 0 Texas 2 8 8
Mississippi 0 0 0 Utah 2 4 4
Nevada 0 0 0 Vermont 2 2 2
New Mexico 0 0 0 Virginia 4 4 4
South Dakota 0 0 0 Washington 9 11 12
Tennessee 0 0 0 West Virginia 0 0 0
West Virginia 0 0 0 Wisconsin 25 29 31
Wyoming 0 0 0 Wyoming 0 0 0

One of the largest reasons that Minnesota is able to produce such a large number of professional hockey players is partially because Minnesota kids can begin playing hockey - at a very young age - on the frozen lakes, ponds, rivers and creeks that dot the "Land of 10,000 Lakes". This commonly referred to as "Pond Hockey", and it's not unusual to have kids playing pond hockey by the time they're age 5 or 6.

Another crucial element in the development of young hockey players is the predominance of organized youth hockey leagues at the community level. This goes a long way in helping kids make the transition from pond hockey into a more organized hockey league so that they continue to develop their skills and interests.

Data Sources: hockey-reference.com, census.gov

Comments

2 Responses to Minnesota Produces the Most NHL Players Born in the U.S.

  • Thanks Minnesota Funfacts! Finally I found a clear concise table of US born NHL players by birthplace. Totals current and past. I saw another site (Quant Hockey I believe) which listed Massachusetts at 187 total all-time players. Can you doublecheck this?
    Us hockey players are a very tribal group.
    Sincerely
    Bruinforlife

    Minnesota, Massachusetts, Michigan, NY rock on!!!!

Photos of Minnesota