Nico Hischier est le guide de l’équipe de Suisse au Mondial.

Ice Hockey: Captain Hischier: Lead, Goals and MVP Achievements

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Nico Hischier has been appointed captain of the Swiss team for the World Cup in Finland. The 23-year-old from Valais has so far led the Swiss selection on a perfect course with deeds.

Nico Hischier is the guide of the Swiss team at the World Cup.

Urs Lindt/fresh focus

To succeed Raphaël Diaz – captain of the selection since 2017 and up until the Beijing Olympics last February before being finally sacked – coach Patrick Fischer turned to Nico Hischier.

The coach of the Swiss team spoke to his new captain during a recent visit to North America at the end of the NHL regular season. Should Roman Josi, leader of the Nashville Predators, not join the Swiss selection for the World Cup, Hischier would become the new captain of the national team.

Captain, the Valaisian has been in the NHL with his team New Jersey Devils since the 2020/2021 season. On February 20, 2021, the Newark club made Hischier the then-youngest NHL captain (22 years old), 12th in New Jersey franchise history, and third Swiss captain of an NHL franchise (after Mark Streit with the New York Islanders then Roman Josi in Nashville).

At the Devils, Hischier followed directly from Andy Greene after his move to the New York Islanders, while also following in the footsteps of club legends such as Scott Stevens and Kirk Muller.

Rather introverted — especially towards the media — the 2017 draft’s top pick is above all a leader by action. “I prefer to act and set a good example,” said the Valaisan to the NHL side. My job is to play properly. Lead by example by acting. I have to do that every day.”

Nico Hischier is already captaining the Devils in the NHL.

Nico Hischier is already captaining the Devils in the NHL.

fresh focus

At the World Cup in Helsinki, Hischier has guided the Swiss on a perfect course (seven games, seven wins). The Valais hasn’t had a single bad evening since the Swiss selection entered the World Cup. This is proven by his statistics: With five goals and three assists, he is seventh in the scorers list, just a stone’s throw away from his teammate Denis Malgin, the current top scorer of the tournament with 12 points. On Tuesday against Germany (4-3 on penalties), Hischier showed the way on penalties by starting first and scoring his team’s first penalty brilliantly.

His game last Saturday against Canada (6-3 win) will remain his greatest accomplishment in the national team for the time being: an anthology goal on the power play, an assist and an overall monstrous performance.

As an exemplary captain, Hischier always puts the team before himself. “I’m happy with my performance and my game, but what’s most important to me is that the team wins their games,” he breathed in the aisles after the triumph against the Canadians, always concerned above all not to make waves beat for his person.

The 23-year-old from Valais is the most important player for the Swiss team in Finland.

The 23-year-old from Valais is the most important player for the Swiss team in Finland.

Urs Lindt/fresh focus

On the Helsinki ice, Hischier has been nothing short of exceptional: goals, assists, blocks, superior effort and defensive awareness. The Valais is in the oven and in the mill and offers performances worthy of a tournament MVP. “What he does for us on both sides of the ice and how he leads the team is fantastic. It’s just world class,” praised coach Patrick Fischer.

Against the USA on Thursday in the quarter-finals (7.20 p.m.) “Captain Nico” will try to lead his team into the last four of the competition. And to get there, Switzerland certainly needs an MVP performance from their guide.


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