NHL hockey is the most physical professional sport in existence, and there are certain players who are known for their truculence and physical checking while on the ice.
While Sidney Crosby and Steven Stamkos are known for their offense, players like Niklas Kronwall, Chris Neil, Ryan Callahan and assorted others are known to be some of the league's top hitters.
It is the month of March and the Sweet 16 will be coming around the corner, so here are the top 16 players you don't want to get body-checked by.
Willie Mitchell is currently a defender for the Los Angeles Kings, and he is a very physical defender. He uses his size well and is always a threat when on the ice. Many players have felt the wrath of Mitchell throughout his career.
Although Alex Ovechkin has regressed offensively over the past few years, he is still a player who can play a very physical game.
Ovechkin is a very strong forward, and he uses his size well when body-checking opponents on the ice.
Brandon Prust is a tough guy who is never afraid to dish out a hard hit or drop the gloves to defend a teammate, so players are always wary when he is on the ice.
Although Prust isn't the biggest of forwards, he always throws his whole weight into hits as a physical spark plug for the Montreal Canadiens.
Cal Clutterbuck has one of the best hockey names in league history, and he certainly likes to knock players around on a consistent basis.
Clutterbuck plays a very physical game, and there is a reason why he is always a hits leader in the NHL.
Dustin Brown is a physical winger who was huge for the Los Angeles Kings during the Stanley Cup playoffs. While Brown is a player who is a solid secondary scorer, he is also a solid physical player who has used his body checks to lay out numerous opponents.
He also plays the game with an edge, so players often have to watch their back while he is on the ice.
Matt Martin is a physical player who currently skates for the New York Islanders, and he adds a ton of toughness to the roster.
He has always been one of the league's most physical players, and when you consider that he is a player who also likes to drop the gloves, you try and not get leveled by Martin if possible.
Brad Stuart is one of the NHL's most physical defenders, and his physical presence has been felt this season in San Jose.
Gabriel Landeskog got absolutely hammered during this open-ice hit that was seen around the world.
Chris Neil is the Ottawa Senators' main pugilist, but he is also their hardest hitter.
When Neil is on the ice, the opposition's players have to keep an eye on where he is, because if they lose sight of Neil, they run the risk of being flattened by a hard hit.
Ryan Callahan is one of the NHL's most consistent hitters, and he plays a physical game whenever he is on the ice.
There have been many memorable hits by Callahan on players like Tyler Myers, Lubomir Visnovsky and assorted others, but these hits on Evgeni Malkin really give an impression of how tough Callahan was when he entered the league.
Jordin Tootoo has always been a player who plays a physical game, and for that reason, many players have to be aware when he is on the ice.
Tootoo has a history of laying out huge hits, but this most recent hit on Christopher Tanev was a very aggressive one.
Brooks Orpik is a very physical defenseman for the Pittsburgh Penguins who loves to hit and body-check. He is a grizzled veteran who has registered tons of hits throughout his career, and physicality is a huge part of his game.
This clip is a great example of Orpik being an effective and physical player, and how his play can help set the tone on the ice.
Zdeno Chara is a huge physical specimen who uses his size in all facets of his game.
Big Z is one of the league's most feared hitters, and hits like this really give Chara a reputation as one of the league's most punishing checkers.
Milan Lucic is a player who is one of the biggest dual threats in the NHL today. In addition to his physical prowess, Lucic is a skilled 30-goal scorer.
While Lucic may be known for his newfound scoring ability, he is still a player who needs to have an effective physical game to be productive, and hits like this really give Lucic a notorious reputation as a hard hitter.
Dion Phaneuf is an absolute truck when it comes to flattening players with hits, and he is the ideal truculent Brian Burke player.
Throughout his career, Phaneuf has made a name for himself as an aggressive hitter, and opponents definitely avoid him when possible.
Raffi Torres is a player with a reputation for being a cheap-shot artist, and he's feared by many of his peers.
When you look at his history as a player, he is definitely someone you don't want to get checked by.
There is a reason why Niklas Kronwall's last name has become an adjective to describe when a player gets devastated on the ice. Kronwall loves to hip check in addition to body-checking, and he is one of the most physical defenders in the NHL today.