As a 19-year-old rookie from Switzerland, Nico Hischier has had to acclimate himself to the physical grind of the NHL.
The no. 1 overall pick in the 2017 NHL Draft has been durable this season, playing in each of the Devils' 68 games so far. He admits that the NHL is incomparable to any other league in the world.
"It's tough for sure," Hischier said, via Chris Ryan of NJ.com. "There are some tough battles, but I think unlike any league like that, at the end of the year it gets harder. You can't compare other leagues. It's tough but you've just got to find a way to help the team."
Hischier is second on the team in points with 43 (14 G, 29 A) this season, trailing only Taylor Hall. He ranks fifth among all rookies in points as well.
"He's handled himself well away from the rink. That's a big part of it," Devils coach John Hynes said. "We talk about having the right kind of lifestyle as a young guy, particularly to be in your first year in the league and be that durable."
The Devils are mired in a race for the playoffs, currently holding the eighth seed and are just three points behind the Flyers for third in the Metropolitan Division.
"Knock on wood, I haven't hurt anything, and nobody wants to be injured," Hischier said. "I think everybody who's not able to play wishes they can play. For me, I'm lucky that I can play and I'm really happy.