Cool Lists: 25 of the Best NHL Player-to-Musician Comparisons

Tom Urtz Jr.@@TomUrtzJrContributor IAugust 9, 2012

Cool Lists: 25 of the Best NHL Player-to-Musician Comparisons

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    Are you sick of hearing about power rankings, NHL trade rumors and speculation on where Shane Doan will sign? Most fans are and it is the summer months when you could be at the beach but you decided to open Bleacher Report.

    The NHL is full of talented players who have been known to be slick and highly skilled but these players are also everyday human beings.

    Some of these players have many different talents and they have characteristics that link them to some pop-culture figures.

    The NHL has a good relationship with various musicians so this is a fun list to analyze some NHL players and their musical comparisons.

    Some of these players have strong personalities and come across in an interesting way with the media and fans.

    Like music stars, players have to perform night-in and night-out through the good and the bad.These players are highly skilled just like music stars and they are more alike than you think.

    Some of the players listed may have one move they try to live off just like certain music stars have the connotation of being a one-hit wonder.

    Here are 25 of the best comparisons between active NHL players and their all-time musical counterpart.

Jaromir Jagr: Madonna

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    Both these stars have been around their industry for over 20 years and just when you think they are done, they re-emerge.

    Madonna is a performer that has been in and out of the music spotlight for the past few decades. She was in her prime during the 1980s, she reinvented herself in the 90s. and made a return to the prime-time in the 2000s.

    Jaromir Jagr was a young phenom in the 1990s who took the world by storm with his amazing talents. Then in the 2000s, Jagr had to reinvent himself and he also took a brief break from NHL action.

    Both stars are in the spotlight today and just as it appears that their spotlight is set to fade, they come back better than ever.

Shea Weber: Taylor Swift

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    This comparison is more apparent than you may think. Both Shea Weber and Taylor Swift are both two stars that currently make Nashville proud and they both come from small towns.

    Although both stars were not born in Music City, Weber is captain of the Nashville Predators and Swift is an accomplished music star who has been honored by the Nashville Songwriters Association for her outstanding achievements.

    Swift is a top-notch country star that really represents the country music that is popular in the Nashville area and Weber will represent the Predators as their captain for the foreseeable future.

    It also helps that Swift is a big Predators fan so this comparison makes sense in more ways than one.

Zach Parise: Justin Timberlake

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    Both Justin Timberlake and Zach Parise are All-American boys who are similar in a few ways. Both got their starts in their field very early on. Timberlake started out on The Mickey Mouse Club as a kid and Parise was playing hockey at a very young age.

    Both quickly rose up the ranks and became top stars in their respective fields. When Timberlake did everything he thought he could do in music, he moved on and got into acting.

    Parise, after doing everything he could do in New Jersey, decided to sign with the Minnesota Wild to get a fresh start.

    The comparison may be basic but it makes sense for the two stars involved.

Nicklas Backstrom: Avicii

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    Nicklas Backstrom is a young Swedish playmaker who has tons of moves. Avicii, real name Tim Bergling, is a musician who specializes in electronic music.

    Bergling relies on a ton of different sounds in order to make his music. If he stayed with the same sounds over and over again, his music would become stale.

    In the same vain, if Backstrom only relied on one move, defenders and goaltenders would know how to stop him.

    Both are Swedes, both have flowing locks and both know how to use multiple "moves" to their advantage.

Claude Giroux: Carly Rae Jepsen

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    This is not a knock on Claude Giroux in anyway so don't take offense.This is a comparison of how quickly Giroux's name spread around the NHL last season.

    Giroux is a very talented player who really impressed the fans last season. He was a player who had been in the league for a number of years but no one expected him to turn into this big superstar.

    He had success the year before when he posted 76 points, but after the departure of Jeff Carter and Mike Richards, no one expected him to carry the Flyers.

    Carly Rae Jepsen enters the picture because she was an artist that was unheard of until her hit single "Call Me Maybe" spewed across the airwaves. After that song was played over and over, everyone knew who she was.

    After Giroux dominated early on in 2011-12, you couldn't find a person that didn't know who he was.

    Giroux's name has spread like wildfire around the league and he is now one of the most well-known players.

Pavel Datsyuk: Thom Yorke

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    This is probably one of the easiest comparisons to make. Pavel Datsyuk and Thom Yorke are probably the most creative men in their current field today. Datsyuk has so many moves and ways to beat an opponent and Thom Yorke is always ahead of the curve when it comes to music.

    Yorke has been cited by many different publications as one of the most influential individuals in music today and one of the greatest artists of all time.

    When you look at Datsyuk, it is fair to say that when his career is over, he will be looked at as one of the most creative playmakers in NHL history just like Yorke is one of the most creative musicians of all-time.

Teemu Selanne: Eric Clapton

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    Teemu Selanne is a classic player and he has been around the game for quite sometime. He is very memorable and has definitely left his mark on the game of hockey forever.

    He also has played for many different teams throughout his career and had an impact on each team. He is a kindred soul who represents the greatness of the past in the new-age NHL. 

    Eric Clapton is an accomplished musician who definitely has left his mark on the music industry. Like Selanne, Clapton has been a member of many different groups including Blind Faith, Cream, Derek and The Dominoes and the Yardbirds.

    He is also a kindred spirit who connects the stylings of the past with the sounds of today.

    Both Selanne and Clapton are older and are in the tail-end of their careers, but they still can keep up with the best of today.

Sidney Crosby: Justin Bieber

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    Sidney Crosby is one the most talented players in the world and he is a player who everyone seems to hate except his die-hard fans.

    Some may be jealous of his talents and some don't want to admit that he does in fact have talent.

    In the pop music world, who is one of the most universally hated stars? Justin Bieber came out of now where with a string of viral YouTube videos and he evolved into one of the industry's biggest names.

    If you are a male, you automatically hate him because he is over with the ladies and has the pleasure of dating Selena Gomez.

    Both these stars are good at their craft and they are usually hated by everyone in the world except their biggest fans.

    Most fans wish they had the hockey talents and instincts of Sidney Crosby and they also wish they could date Selena Gomez.

Henrik Lundqvist: James Blunt

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    Henrik Lundqvist is the NHL's best goaltender and James Blunt was one of the top musicians during 2005, coincidentally when Lundqvist made his NHL debut.

    Both of these individuals came out of nowhere before they made their impact. Lundqvist was drafted 205th overall in 2000 and James Blunt was a musician from England.

    Although both are talented professionals in their given field, both only have one major claim to fame. Lundqvist is a talented goaltender but the only major award he has won is the Vezina Trophy.

    When you think of James Blunt, you automatically think of what is considered to be his one-hit wonder "You're Beautiful".

    This is not a knock on Lundqvist in any way because he has time-in and time-out been one of the league's top goaltenders. He just hasn't always been recognized for his efforts in a similar fashion to Blunt who has been nominated many times for Grammys.

    *Lundqvist's Gold medal was excluded from personal achievements for the purposes of this comparison.

Ilya Bryzgalov: Ozzy Osbourne

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    Watch this video and if you don't get the connection, then you should continue reading.


    After watching this video, can you understand what Ilya Bryzgalov was actually talking about?

    He doesn't always make a lot of sense just like another music star that is very familiar to the world. Ozzy Osbourne has had a lengthy musical career but whenever he is talking and not singing, can you really understand what he is saying?

    Another comparison between the two is that both stars are usually hit or miss. Ozzy has had some good albums and horrendous ones just like Bryzgalov is usually either really good or really bad for the Philadelphia Flyers.

Steven Stamkos: Adele

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    Adele is a talented singer who has a booming voice that can hit many different ranges. Steven Stamkos is a talented hockey player who has a booming slap shot and is also a very versatile player.

    The comparison is spot-on for these individuals because of the success they have experienced recently. 

    In 2008, Adele released her debut album 19. Later that year, Steven Stamkos was an NHL rookie. Three years later in 2011, Adele released her second album 21 and it was a huge hit.

    Coincidentally, during the 2011-12 season, Stamkos had a huge impact season in which he scored 60 goals. Both Adele and Stamkos are still very young and are in the early stages of their careers.

    Both have bright futures and appear to have the golden touch as of late.

Evgeni Malkin: Nick Jonas

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    Evgeni Malkin is a star for the Pittsburgh Penguins who used to be in Sidney Crosby's shadow. The same could be said about Nick Jonas of the Jonas Brothers fame. 

    However, both individuals had their opportunities to shine on their own. Malkin led the Penguins to incredible heights during the regular season while Crosby was sidelined. 

    Jonas on the other hand, took a break from the Jonas Brothers and he has really made a name for himself away from his brothers especially on Broadway.

    Recently, Jonas played a starring role in the Broadway play "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying."

    At the end of the day, both Evgeni Malkin and Nick Jonas have made a name for themselves and hilariously enough, the two even resemble each other.

Nicklas Lidstrom: U2

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    Both of these names are well known in their respective circles. U2 is a legendary rock group that has remained together for over 30 years without ever breaking up. Nicklas Lidstrom was a legendary defenseman who just ended his career with the Detroit Red Wings.

    He was looked at as the perfect human and U2 has been commended for their efforts to raise awareness for AIDS. 

    There will never be another Nicklas Lidstrom just like there will never be another U2. Groups may try to be U2 and players may be compared to Lidstrom but each are one-of-a kind.

Erik Karlsson: Coldplay

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    This analogy will piggyback the last slide. After an amazing breakout year, Erik Karlsson has been looked at as the potential second coming of Nicklas Lidstrom. 

    Both players are Swedish, both players are very talented but Karlsson will never be Nicklas Lidstrom.

    Enter Coldplay, a band that has been closely linked as a younger, newer version of the band U2. Coldplay, no matter how successful, will also have that connotation, especially given the interactions the two bands have had.

    Erik Karlsson will never be Nicklas Lidstrom just like Coldplay will never be U2.

Rick Nash: Graham Nash

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    Both these men share the same surname but their situations are similar. Graham Nash was a successful guitarist for an unknown band named The Hollies. The Hollies were a band that achieved success overseas in Europe, but it took a while for the band to gain recognition in the United States.

    Rick Nash was a top draft choice of the lesser known NHL team The Columbus Blue Jackets. Nash slowly became the face of the franchise and he was the top guy in town.

    The comparison continues to take shape as both men left their familiar homes when their group was going in a new direction. The Hollies were one of the most successful pop bands at the time but Graham Nash wanted to do bigger and better things.

    He was a creative individual and he departed the band to form the super group Crosby, Stills and Nash—and later Young—with David Crosby and Stephen Stills.

    Rick Nash saw that the Columbus Blue Jackets were going in a new direction and he requested a trade and eventually was traded to New York. In New York, Nash will join a super group of stars that already includes Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik. 

    The comparison comes full circle when you realize that both men stuck it out in their respective groups as long as they could but ultimately they had to do what was best for their own career.

Alex Ovechkin: Robert Plant

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    Robert Plant and Alex Ovechkin are among the best at what they do, but they also have huge egos. Ovechkin is a talented superstar who dazzled and impressed early on in his career. He put himself first and valued his individual accomplishments.

    Ovechkin was criticized for putting himself above the league when he sat out the All-Star game. 

    Towards the end of Bruce Boudreau's coaching stint there was tension between the two and when Dale Hunter attempted to infuse a team-first style, Oveckhin was a bit resistant.

    Enter Robert Plant one of the greatest vocalists in hard rock history. He had a lengthy career with Led Zeppelin and started a solo career when the group broke up after the death of drummer John Bonham.

    However, when Plant had an opportunity to embark on a reunion tour with original band members Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones and Jason Bonham, the son of the late John Bonham, he decided to put a solo career first.

    Both these individuals have a penchant for being selfish but at least Ovechkin is starting to change and learn from his ways.

Ilya Kovalchuk: Jimi Hendrix

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    When you think of Ilya Kovalchuk it is hard not to associate him with an explosive musician like Jimi Hendrix. Kovalchuk is a player who has tons of raw and explosive talent that just smacks you in the face.

    His slap shot is one of the hardest in the game and it defines him.

    Jimi Hendrix was a pioneer of rock-n-roll and he had such a large impact in so short a playing career. Hendrix had such a lasting impact on the music industry and his style of play also smacks you in the face.

    Like Kovalchuk is defined by his hard slap shot, Hendrix was defined by his hard rock and blues guitar solos that were so creative and magical.

    At the end of the day, Kovalchuk and Hendrix are comparable in more ways than you might have initially thought.

Daniel and Henrik Sedin: The Allman Brothers

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    I think it is pretty obvious that the common theme here is brothers. Daniel and Henrik Sedin are brothers just like Gregg and Duane Allman were brothers. 

    The chemistry shared between brothers is something that can't be easily described. Sometimes you know what the other is thinking without even asking. While Gregg and Duane were not twins, they still thrived while playing together instead of separately.

    This can also be applied to the Sedin twins. 

    Henrik Sedin was without his brother Daniel Sedin during the playoffs after Daniel was sidelined with a concussion and Henrik looked a bit lost. You can tell that when the two are on the ice, they know where the other will be and it often results in a Vancouver Canucks goal.

    Gregg went on and had a solo career of his own and so did Duane, but it never rivaled the combined success of their joint career as the Allman Brothers.

    While each Sedin is very talented, they are even better when they are paired together.

Marian Gaborik: John Coltrane

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    Marian Gaborik is a talented player and he has a style that is unique. He is a very fluid skater and he doesn't waste movement, he has solid hands and even better vision.

    John Coltrane was a jazz musician who had a very soulful and heartfelt sound. He is considered a pioneer in jazz and he was often a sideman on tons of recordings featuring other jazz musicians like Thelonious Monk and Miles Davis. 

    Currently, Gaborik will be a supporting cast member for the New York Rangers alongside Brad Richards and Rick Nash, but he can make significant contributions to the Rangers like Coltrane did for Jazz.

Tyler Seguin: John Mayer

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    Tyler Seguin is a fresh faced youngster who is one of the Boston Bruins' best players. He had a solid 2011-12 campaign and he will only get better. He also is quite the ladies man and he has a big following no matter where he goes.

    John Mayer is a musician that is very talented and unique. He was a youngster when he made his mark and he has gradually gotten better as his career has progressed. Mayer is also quite the ladies' man and he has had some high profile relationships with individuals like Taylor Swift.

    When you look at a player like Seguin it is easy to compare him to a guy like John Mayer.

The Edmonton Five: Any Major Boy Band

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    When you look at the Edmonton Oilers, they have a core group of young players that include Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Nail Yakupov and Justin Schutlz. Any major boy band of the last few years have had multiple young members that work well with each other.

    This young core of top draft picks really could be synonymous with any one of the numerous boy bands from the last 20 years. 

Patrick Kane: Axl Rose

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    Patrick Kane is a talented player who has had explosive moments on and off the ice. For as good as Kane was during his Stanley Cup season in which he almost won the Conn Smythe, he has had explosive and embarrassing moments off the ice.

    There was the infamous cab driver incident in Buffalo and then there was this past summer's drunken adventures at the University of Wisconsin.

    Axl Rose was a very famous and talented front-man for the band Guns N Roses but he is often known more for his antics then he is for his music career. 

    Although Kane doesn't go to the extreme that Rose does, there is a pretty solid comparison between the two.

Jarome Iginla: Paul McCartney

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    Both of these men are good leaders and have had lengthy careers. Jarome Iginla has had an amazing career leading the Calgary Flames and he has become the face of their franchise.

    Paul McCartney was the leader of the group Wings and it can be argued that he was also the leader of The Beatles. McCartney is a person who was considered to have put the group first and he was a big contributor to each of his bands as a main songwriter.

    Iginla has been a team player for his entire career and he puts the Calgary Flames first.

Ryan Callahan: Bruce Springsteen

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    Ryan Callahan is a blue-collar player who epitomizes what it means to be a hard worker. He is a perfect model of the hard working middle class American who does what it takes everyday.

    Callahan is a big part of the New York Rangers and he puts his body on the line by throwing hits, blocking shots and doing whatever his team needs him to do.

    If that involves dropping the gloves, Callahan will do it.

    If you have ever listened to Bruce Springsteen, there is a rugged and gritty sound to his lyrics and his overall meaning. He is a typical blue-collar performer who loves his country and he has written many different songs that express that level of determination and devotion.

Martin Brodeur: The Rolling Stones

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    Martin Brodeur is like Mick Jagger and The Rolling Stones in a lot of ways. Brodeur will forever be known as one of the greatest goaltenders of all time just like Jagger is one of the greatest vocalists for one of the greatest bands of all time.

    When you think Mick Jagger is going to come out with The Rolling Stones for a farewell tour, he sticks around for good. 

    It was thought that this was going to be it for Martin Brodeur but he proved everyone wrong when he signed a new two-year deal with the New Jersey Devils.

    At the end of the day, when you think they are going to call it quits, they come back for more.