by James Kwantes
Published first at


I heard Connor McDavid called this even before I saw him play at the NHL level. Afterwards, it made sense.

McDavid is the playoff scoring leader (for now) but was no saviour for the Edmonton Oilers. The sole remaining Canadian team got knocked out of the Stanley Cup hunt on Sunday by the desert-based Vegas Golden Knights.

McDavid is an electrifying hockey player, the best in the world. It wasn’t enough. Only 11 NHL players scored more than 100 points during the regular season and the Oilers had three of them – McDavid (#1, 153 points), Leon Draisaitl (#2, 128) and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (#9, 104). That wasn’t enough, either.

Hockey is a team game.

Lessons for your portfolio? There may be a few.

1. Choose wisely. General managers stake the owner’s money and their own reputations on assembling a team capable of winning it all. NHL teams can dress a maximum of 20 players. Do you own more than 20 juniors?

2. Top-performing stocks give you dollars and dopamine but your worst performers also count towards portfolio performance. Hockey is a team game; winning portfolios require more than one or two “superstar” stocks. Holding a basket of sole-risk exploration companies is not portfolio construction – it’s gambling.

3. Manage risk. For an NHL team, the biggest risk is that your goalie becomes a sieve at the wrong time. In the regular season, Oilers goalie Stuart Skinner was an NHL Rookie of the Year finalist and sported a .914 save percentage. On Sunday, he was pulled for the third time in four games. Are you in love with your top stock performers? Put differently - are you capable of putting aside your own personal "Jesus complex" and taking a few profits in a high-risk sector?

Disclosure: With no Canadian teams remaining in the playoffs, my Cascadia pick the Seattle Kraken eliminated, and no Bruins to cheer against, I am trading evenings spent watching TV hockey for warm evenings outside.