RALEIGH, NC - SEPTEMBER 25: A general view of the arena taken during the game between the Carolina Hurricanes and the Atlanta Thrashers at the RBC Center on September 25, 2009 in Raleigh, North Carolina. The Hurricanes won 4-3.

When you think of professional sports cities in the Carolinas Raleigh isn’t always at the top of mind. With the Panthers, Hornets, Knights, and other teams a lot of people think of Charlotte. And across the country, if you’re thinking of Raleigh hockey probably isn’t the first thing you think of. But Raleigh did in fact make the 2022 Top Hockey Cities List. In fact, it cracked the top 15I’ll be honest as a huge sports fan (mainly college and NFL), and actually, as someone who lived in Raleigh for several years, hockey really isn’t my thing. I did go to my first Hurricanes game this year and enjoyed it more than I thought it was. It’s also very obvious that the city loves it. That fanbase is passionate and PNC Arena is constantly packed.

And they are pretty good. The Hurricanes did advance to the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs this year but lost in game 7 to the New York Rangers. Coincidentally New York also topped Raleigh on this hockey cities list.

Who came up with this? Well, WalletHub is responsible for creating the list of best places for hockey enthusiasts. They ranked 72 U.S. cities based on 21 key indicators of a good hockey city. This includes ticket prices to stadium capacity to the performance level of each city’s teams. The full methodology is at the end of this article. Read on to see where exactly Raleigh ranked and which city took the top spot on the list. (And even as a less than casual hockey fan 1 and 2 didn’t surprise me!)

  • 20. San Jose, CA

    San Jose Sharks

    SAN JOSE, CA – MAY 25: Joel Ward #42 of the San Jose Sharks celebrates after scoring on his second goal on Brian Elliott #1 of the St. Louis Blues in Game Six of the Western Conference Final during the 2016 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at SAP Center on May 25, 2016 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

  • 19. Glendale, AZ

    Glendale

    GLENDALE, AZ – APRIL 14: Shane Doan #19 of the Phoenix Coyotes celebrates with teammates after Keith Yandle scored a first period goal against the Detroit Red Wings in Game One of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2010 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Jobing.com Arena on April 14, 2010 in Glendale, Arizona. The Coyotes defeated the Red Wings 3-2 to take a 1-0 series lead. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

  • 18. Las Vegas, NV

    Vegas Golden Knights

    LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JUNE 14: Nick Holden #22 of the Vegas Golden Knights celebrates after scoring a goal against the Montreal Canadiens during the third period in Game One of the Stanley Cup Semifinals during the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at T-Mobile Arena on June 14, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

  • 17. Dallas, TX

    Dallas Stars

    DALLAS – MAY 4: Sergei Zubov #56 of the Dallas Stars looks on the ice against the San Jose Sharks during game six of the Western Conference Semifinals of the 2008 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs on May 4, 2008 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas. The Starts won 2-1 in the 4th overtime. (Photo by: Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

  • 16. Anaheim, CA

    Ducks

    ANAHEIM, CA – JUNE 06: Corey Perry #10 of the Anaheim Ducks celebrates with the Stanley Cup after defeating the Ottawa Senators in Game Five of the 2007 Stanley Cup finals on June 6, 2007 at Honda Center in Anaheim, California. The Ducks defeated the Senators 6-2 to win the Stanley Cup Finals 4 games to 1. (Photo by Dave Sandford/Getty Images)

  • 15. Washington, DC

    Capitols

    TORONTO, ONTARIO – AUGUST 09: T.J. Oshie #77 of the Washington Capitals celebrates with Alex Ovechkin #8 after scoring a goal on Tuukka Rask #40 of the Boston Bruins during the first period in an Eastern Conference Round Robin game during the 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scotiabank Arena on August 09, 2020 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Andre Ringuette/Freestyle Photo/Getty Images)

  • 14. Philadelphia, PA

    Flyers

    TORONTO, ONTARIO – SEPTEMBER 01: Scott Laughton #21 of the Philadelphia Flyers celebrates after scoring the game-winning goal against the New York Islanders during the first overtime period to win Game Five of the Eastern Conference Second Round during the 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scotiabank Arena on September 01, 2020 in Toronto, Ontario. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

  • 13. St. Paul, MN

    Wild

    ST. PAUL, MN – APRIL 11: Niklas Backstrom #32 of the Minnesota Wild makes a save during game two of the 2008 NHL Western Conference Quarterfinals on April 11, 2008 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota. Minnesota won in overtime, 3-2. (Photo by Scott A. Schneider/Getty Images)

  • 12. Raleigh, NC

    carolina hurricanes

    RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – MAY 30: Alex Nedeljkovic #39 of the Carolina Hurricanes pauses during a break in play against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the second period in Game One of the Second Round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at PNC Arena on May 30, 2021 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

  • 11. Chicago, IL

    Blackhawks

    CHICAGO, IL – JUNE 15: Jonathan Toews #19 and Patrick Kane #88 of the Chicago Blackhawks celebrate by hoisting the Stanley Cup after defeating the Tampa Bay Lightning by a score of 2-0 in Game Six to win the 2015 NHL Stanley Cup Final at the United Center on June 15, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

  • 10. Sunrise, FL

    Florida Panthers

    SUNRISE, FLORIDA – JANUARY 04: Radko Gudas #7 of the Florida Panthers celebrates a third period goal by Patric Hornqvist #70 against the Calgary Flames on January 04, 2022 at the FLA Live Arena in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

  • 9. Newark, NJ

    New Jersey Devils

    NEWARK, NJ – MAY 25: Adam Henrique #14 of the New Jersey Devils celerbates after scoring the game winning goal in overtime against Henrik Lundqvist #30 of the New York Rangers to win Game Six of the Eastern Conference Final and advance to the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Final at the Prudential Center on May 25, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

  • 8. Tampa, FL

    Lightning

    TORONTO, ONTARIO – AUGUST 19: Blake Coleman #20 of the Tampa Bay Lightning celebrates after scoring a goal at 6:39 against the Columbus Blue Jackets during the first period Game Five of the Eastern Conference First Round during the 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scotiabank Arena on August 19, 2020 in Toronto, Ontario. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

  • 7. Buffalo, NY

    Buffalo Sabres

    HAMILTON, ONTARIO – MARCH 13: Vinnie Hinostroza #29, Peyton Krebs #19 and Mark Pysyk #13 of the Buffalo Sabres celebrate a goal against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the second period during the Heritage Classic at Tim Hortons Field on March 13, 2022 in Hamilton, Ontario. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)

  • 6. Denver, CO

    Colorado Avalanche

    EDMONTON, ALBERTA – AUGUST 12: Nazem Kadri #91 of the Colorado Avalanche celebrates after scoring a goal on Darcy Kuemper #35 of the Arizona Coyotes during the third period in Game One of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Rogers Place on August 12, 2020 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/Getty Images)

  • 5. New York, NY

    Rangers

    RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – MAY 30: Chris Kreider #20 of the New York Rangers reacts with his teammates following a third period goal in Game Seven of the Second Round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena on May 30, 2022 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

  • 4. St. Louis, MO

    Blues

    ST LOUIS, MISSOURI – MAY 15: David Perron #57 of the St. Louis Blues celebrates with Colton Parayko #55 and Vladimir Tarasenko #91 after scoring his second goal on Martin Jones #31 of the San Jose Sharks during the second period in Game Three of the Western Conference Finals during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Enterprise Center on May 15, 2019 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

  • 3. Detroit, MI

    Red Wings

    PITTSBURGH – JUNE 04: Stanley Cup Playoff MVP, Henrik Zetterberg #40 of the Detroit Red Wings celebrates with teammate Chris Chelios #24 after defeating the Pittsburgh Penguins in game six of the 2008 NHL Stanley Cup Finals at Mellon Arena on June 4, 2008 in Pittsburgh. Pennsylvania. The Red Wings defeated the Penguins 3-2 to win the Stanley Cup Finals 4 games to 2. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

  • 2. Pittsburgh, PA

    Penguins

    PITTSBURGH, PA – MAY 04: Trevor Daley #6, Sidney Crosby #87, Ian Cole #28 and Evgeni Malkin #71 of the Pittsburgh Penguins celebrate after Patric Hornqvist scored the game-winning overtime goal against the Washington Capitals in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Second Round during the 2016 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Consol Energy Center on May 4, 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

  • 1. Boston, MA

    Bruins

    TORONTO, ONTARIO – AUGUST 17: Brad Marchand #63 of the Boston Bruins celebrates after scoring the go-ahead goal at 11:40 against the Carolina Hurricanes during the third period in Game Four of the Eastern Conference First Round during the 2020 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Scotiabank Arena on August 17, 2020 in Toronto, Ontario. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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