The gap between Americans and Canadians in the NHL is smaller than ever

The percentage of NHL players that are from Canada has fallen to 48.0%, its lowest percentage ever, according to data collected by Meanwhile, the percentage of U.S.-born players in the NHL held steady at 24.6% for the second-straight year, the highest level ever.

The gap between the two nations (23.4%) is the narrowest ever. Just 15 years ago, the gap was 40.3%. Americans represent the group that has grown the most over the last 20 years, up 6.6% from 18.0% in 1995-96 and up 22.1% from 1970-71 when just 2.5% of the players were from the United States.

NHL players from Sweden have also been on the rise recently, up to 8.9% of all NHL players this season. On the other hand, the number of NHL players from Russia and the Czech Republic have been reduced by about half over the last 15-20 years, from 7.7% for Russians in 1999-2000 and 7.9% Czechs in 2001-02 to 4.2% and 3.8%, respectively, this season.

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