Nico Hischier
Courtesy Twitter @NJDevils

Nico Hischier becomes the youngest captain in the NHL.

On Saturday morning the New Jersey Devils named 22-year-old center Nico Hischier the 12th captain in team history.

Hischier becomes the youngest current captain in the NHL and the second youngest player to be named a captain in the history of the Devils’ franchise; Kirk Muller was 21 years, 243 days old when he was given the “C.”

High pick, high hopes

New Jersey selected Hischier with the number one overall pick at the 2017 NHL Draft, making him the first (and still only) Swiss-born player to be selected first. He joins Nashville’s Roman Josi as the second current Swiss-born captain in the NHL.

Among all players from the 2017 NHL Draft, Hischier ranks first in NHL games played (209) and second in goals (51), assists (84) and points (135), trailing only Vancouver’s Elias Pettersson, the fifth overall pick, in all three offensive categories.

Last season, Hischier scored 14 goals with 22 assists in 58 games for the Devils. He will make his 2021 season debut wearing the “C” on Saturday afternoon against Buffalo. He was absent from the team’s first 11 games because of a leg injury.

Outstanding resume

Hischier enjoyed a stellar junior career in Canada. He was named CHL and QMJHL Rookie of the Year, QMJHL Offensive Rookie of the Year, a member of the QMJHL All-Rookie Team, and was awarded with the Mike Bossy Trophy as the QMJHL’s Best Professional Prospect. Decent hardware for a teenager!

He also has been impressive international play. Hischier has represented Switzerland in two World Junior Championships (2016, 2017) in which he accounted for four goals and five assists in 11 games. He also represented Switzerland in the 2019 IIHF World Championship and led the team with nine points.

Nico Hischier

#13 becomes #12

Hischier is the 12th captain in the history of the Devils, joining this historic list:

  • Andy Greene (Oct. 9, 2015 – Feb. 16, 2020)
  • Bryce Salvador (Jan. 17, 2013 through 2014-15)
  • Zach Parise (Oct. 5, 2011 through 2011-12)
  • Jamie Langenbrunner (Dec. 5, 2007 – Jan. 7, 2011)
  • Patrik Elias (Oct. 5, 2006 through 2006-07)
  • Scott Niedermayer (Jan. 9, 2004 – Aug. 4, 2005)
  • Scott Stevens (Sept. 24, 1992 – Sept. 6, 2005)
  • Bruce Driver (Oct. 5, 1991 – Sept. 24, 1992)
  • Kirk Muller (June 18, 1987 – Sept. 20, 1991)
  • Mel Bridgman (Jan. 9, 1984 – Mar. 9, 1987)
  • Don Lever (1982-83 through Jan. 9, 1984)



Tab has written about MLB, the NHL and the NFL for more than a decade for publications including The Fourth Period, Bleacher Report and La Vida Baseball. He is the author of two books about the Chicago Blackhawks and has been credentialed for the MLB All-Star Game and postseason and multiple Stanley Cup Finals. He is the co-host of the Line Drive Radio podcast.