Getty Images

Welcome to the NHL Star Power Index: A weekly gauge of the players who are controlling substantial buzz around the league. When a player is included on this list it may not be a good thing -- it means that they are capturing a large amount of the hockey world's attention.

These players are in no particular order when it comes to the amount of buzz that they're creating. We'll revisit the Star Power Index every week throughout the regular season.

Connor McDavid
EDM • C • #97
View Profile

It's not much of a stretch to say Connor McDavid is the best player in the world. As the 2023-24 season chugs along, the Edmonton Oilers star continues to showcase his special abilities on a nightly basis.

McDavid has racked up two goals and five assists in just his last three games, including a massive five-point performance (one goal and four assists) in a 5-2 win against the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday. It marked the second five-point performance of the season for the Oilers center.

McDavid also recorded his 900th career point on Tuesday, becoming the fifth fastest player in NHL history to achieve the feat. The 26-year-old tallied 900 career points in just 602 career games, and only Wayne Gretzky (385), Mario Lemieux (463), Mike Bossy (582) and Peter Stastny (599) reached that mark faster

McDavid is also just the fifth player in Oilers history to reach 900 career points.

The Oilers star got his sensational night started at the 15:55 mark of the opening period. The Oilers were able to dig the puck out from along the boards in the defensive zone, and McDavid raced down the ice with the puck on his stick. McDavid ended up weaving his way through the Flyers defense, stickhandled around defenseman Travis Sanheim, and ripped a shot past goaltender Carter Hart for the highlight reel goal.

At the 8:12 mark of the second period, McDavid had a drive that was stopped by Hart, and the puck squirted over into the corner. McDavid was able to chase it down and dished out a perfect backhanded pass to teammate Zach Hyman for the jaw-dropping goal and McDavid's 900th career point.

When the dust settled, McDavid earned the primary on all four of his helpers in Tuesday's contest. He also assisted on goals from Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (twice) and Leon Draisaitl in addition to Hyman.

McDavid has now tallied at least one assist in six consecutive games. As impressive as his goals can be sometimes, the Oilers star's ability to set up his teammates for scores of their own is just as mind-blowing.

Sebastian Aho
CAR • LW • #20
View Profile

Sebastian Aho is another player that has really been showcasing his playmaking skills lately.

The Carolina Hurricanes center has tallied a mind-boggling seven assists in just his last three games. In addition, Aho has registered multiple assists is three of his last four contests, including a pair of four-point outings.

In doing so, Aho became the first player in franchise history to record four-point games on consecutive days. Aho also became the first player to accomplish the feat since Jeremy Roenick had eight points (six goals and two assists) for the Phoenix Coyotes on Nov. 25-26, 1999.

Aho's most impressive performance came when he dished out four assists in a 5-3 win against the Montreal Canadiens on Dec. 28. He became just the fourth player in Hurricanes/Hartford Whalers history to register three consecutive three-point games as he joined Eric Staal (10 points in three games in 2005), Andrew Cassels (nine points in three games in 1993) and Mike Rogers (10 points in three games in 1980).

Aho has also racked up 12 multi-point games on the season.

In Saturday's game against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Aho made his mark on the power-play early on. The puck ended up squeaking free to Aho behind the net, and Aho found an open Michael Bunting, who was charging towards the net. Bunting buried the one-timer in the slot on a shot that just slid past Maple Leafs goaltender Martin Jones for the early goal.

Aho also earned a secondary assist on a second period power-play goal from teammate Seth Jarvis, and added an empty net goal late in the contest.

The Hurricanes star is currently on a four-game point streak in which he's recorded 12 points (two goals and 10 assists). After a slow start to the season, Carolina continues to rise in the Metropolitan Division standings and is now all the way up to second place behind the New York Rangers.

If the Hurricanes are going to make a run at the Stanley Cup, Aho being at this level would be absolutely massive.

Luke Hughes
NJ • D • #43
View Profile

After settling in, New Jersey Devils defenseman Luke Hughes has been one of the NHL's more impressive rookies during the 2023-24 campaign.

Hughes has tallied six points (three goals and three assists) over his last four games and has registered a goal in three of those contests. The Devils blue-liner scored four of his seven goals during the month of December.

During a 5-2 Devils loss to the Boston Bruins on Dec. 30, Hughes made his mark on the game yet again.

Just 1:11 into the second period against the Bruins, Hughes received a pass from teammate Tyler Toffoli and skated his way into the offensive zone. Hughes weaved his way into the face-off circle, then uncorked a snap shot that beat Bruins netminder Linus Ullmark to give the Devils a 2-0 lead at the time.

With the goal, Hughes became just the second rookie defenseman in Devils history to score a goal in three consecutive as he joined Barry Beck (1977-78). Beck had two goal-scoring streaks of at least three games during the 1977-78 season.

After getting some experience late in the 2022-23 season, Hughes has really proved that he's capable of contributing at the NHL level in a big way. Hughes currently leads all rookie defensemen in goals (7) and ranks fourth among rookies in points (21) behind only Connor Bedard (33) of the Chicago Blackhawks, Marco Rossi (23) of the Minnesota Wild and Adam Fantilli (23) of the Columbus Blue Jackets.

Hughes also ranks fourth on the Devils in points (22), while also ranking third on the team in assists (15). With valuable experience under his belt, the 20-year-old has become a huge playmaker for New Jersey at both ends of the ice.

Joey Daccord
SEA • G • #35
Save %91.9
View Profile

On one of the NHL's biggest stages, Seattle Kraken goaltender Joey Daccord absolutely thrived in the Winter Classic.

Daccord was easily the star of the show as he helped the Kraken defeat the Vegas Golden Knights, 3-0, in Monday's Winter classic at T-Mobile Park. He stopped all 35 shots that he faced and earned the second shutout of his NHL career. Daccord's first shutout came recently on Dec. 12 in a 4-0 win against the Florida Panthers

Daccord's shutout was the first such performance in the history of the Winter Classic.

Daccord had appeared in just 19 games over his previous four seasons, but he has already played 22 games (19 starts) during the 2023-24 campaign. Kraken goaltender Philipp Grubauer is currently dealing with a lower-body injury and has missed the last two weeks. With Grubauer being out of the lineup, Daccord has thrived and been victorious in each of his last four starts. 

In his last three starts, Daccord has yielded just three total goals, and is the one of the biggest reasons that the Kraken are currently on a five-game winning streak. In his last 11 games, Daccord has tallied a 6-2-3 record, a 1.55 goals-against-average and a .946 save percentage.

With the way that Daccord is playing, it's no wonder the Kraken have bounced back from their slow start. If Daccord can continue to play at an elite level, Seattle will be a tough out come playoff time.