Average Height and Weight of NHL Forwards

Average Height and Weight of Hockey Forwards (NHL 2023)

I’ve been a collegiate sports performance coach for 20 years. One thing I always felt was effective was showing guys the heights and weights of players at their position in the pros.

It helped give many players the extra motivation needed to gain weight when they were able to compare themselves to guys at the next level.

So, this is essentially the same research I would share with players, but now I’m sharing it with you. I took the active rosters for the 2022-2023 NHL hockey season, over 800 players total and broke them down by position.

For this guide, I took an average of the heights and weights of the 475 forwards (centers, left wings and right wings) across the league. In addition, just for fun, I listed the tallest, shortest, heaviest and lightest forwards as well. Go ahead and impress someone today with your newfound random hockey knowledge.

Average Height of an NHL Forward

The average height of an NHL Forward is 72.91 inches (just under 6’1″ tall)

Average Weight of an NHL Forward

The average weight of an NHL Forward is 197.67 pounds.

Who Are The Tallest Forwards in the NHL?

There are six players all listed at 6’6″, the tallest of any forward in the league.

Tallest Forwards in the NHL
Player Height Position Team
Jordan Greenway 6’6″ Left Wing Minnesota Wild
Alexey Toropchenko 6’6″ Right Wing St Louis Blues
Tage Thompson 6’6″ Center Buffalo Sabres
Logan Brown 6’6″ Center St Louis Blues
Michael Rasmussen 6’6″ Center Detroit Red Wings
Nick Bjugstad 6’6″ Center Arizona Coyotes

Who are the Shortest Forwards in the NHL?

There are 6 guys listed at 5’8″ or shorter, but only one – Cole Caufield – is listed at 5’7″.

Shortest Forwards in the NHL
Player Height Position Team
Cole Caufield 5’7″ Right Wing Montreal Canadiens
Kailer Yamamoto 5’8″ Right Wing Edmonton Oilers
Cam Atkinson 5’8″ Right Wing Philadelphia Flyers
Alex DeBrincat 5’8″ Right Wing Ottawa Senators
Mats Zuccarello 5’8″ Right Wing Minnesota Wild
Tyler Johnson 5’8″ Center Chicago Blackhawks

Who are the Heaviest Forwards in the NHL?

There are 5 forwards in the NHL that weigh 235 pounds or more.

Heaviest Forwards in the NHL
Player Weight Position Team
Milan Lucic 240 Left Wing Calgary Flames
Alex Ovechkin 238 Left Wing Washington Capitals
Juraj Slafkovsky 238 Left Wing Montreal Canadiens
Nick Ritchie 236 Left Wing Arizona Coyotes
Anders Lee 235 Left Wing New York Islanders

Who are the Lightest Forwards in the NHL?

There are only 5 guys (out of 475) who weigh less than 170 pounds.

Lightest Forwards in the NHL
Player Weight Position Team
Kailer Yamamoto 153 Right Wing Edmonton Oilers
Jakob Pelletier 160 Left Wing Calgary Flames
Johnny Gaudreau 165 Left Wing Columbus Blue Jackets
Noah Cates 165 Left Wing Philadelphia Flyers
Conor Garland 165 Right Wing Vancouver Canucks

Size of Forwards vs Defensemen

If you’re curious to know how forwards compare to defensemen when it comes to size, you’re in luck, because I researched all 261 active defensemen as well.

On average, there actually isn’t really much of a difference. There is less of an inch difference in average height (72.9 vs 73.76 for defensemen). And, the difference in weight is only about 5 pounds (197.67 vs 202.84 for defensemen).

While there are substantial differences in some individual players, when you take the average of any particular position on the ice (with the exception of goalies who are a little bit taller overall), they come out pretty close.

Final Thoughts

So, what did I learn?

I’m always fascinated by the range of body types that play the same positions. You find it in sports like football and basketball and you see it here in hockey as well. Guys that are almost a foot different in height (from 6’6″ to 5’7″) and about 90 pounds in weight (153 to 240) are all playing the same position at the very highest level.

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