The Stanley Cup is the holy grail of hockey. Lord Stanley’s Mug is handed to the National Hockey League’s playoff champion each season. Test your knowledge and broaden your hockey horizons with the following four bits of trivia.
Q. What was the first non-‘Original Six’ NHL team to win the Stanley in the post expansion era?
A. The Philadelphia Flyers, known as the ‘Broad Street Bullies’ won the Stanley Cup with a victory over the Boston Bruins in the 1974 Stanley Cup. The Flyers would repeat the accomplishment the following season with a victory over the Buffalo Sabres. Those were the only two times the Flyers have ever won the Cup, although Philadelphia reached the finals in 1975-76 against the Montreal Canadiens, 1979-80 against the New York Islanders, 1984-85 and 1986-87 against the Edmonton Oilers, 1996-97 against the Detroit Red Wings and 2009-10 against the Chicago Blackhawks.
The Flyers entered the NHL for the 1967-68 season. Previous to their first Stanley Cup championship in 1973-74, Philadelphia had won just one playoff series. In 1972-73, the Flyers knocked off the Minnesota North Stars in the quarter-finals before falling to the Montreal Canadiens in the semi-finals.
Q. Unfortunately, there are defunct franchises throughout the history of the NHL. What was the last now-defunct team to win the Stanley Cup?
A. The Montreal Maroons were the darlings of the English population in Montreal. The Maroons won the Stanley Cup in 1935. In that 1934-35 NHL season, Montreal was just fourth in the nine team league during the regular season. In the finals, they swept the Toronto Maple Leafs in three games. Toronto had finished first overall.
The Maroons entered the National Hockey League for the 1924-25 season. The following year, they captured their first of two Stanley Cup championships. Montreal would also lose in the finals in 1927-28 to the New York Rangers. It was New York's first ever championship in only their second year in the league. The Maroons played their final NHL season in 1937-38.
Q. How many Stanley Cups did the Montreal Canadiens win during the 1970’s?
A. The Habs won a total of six Stanley Cups in the 1970’s. They dominated the Cup from four years from 1976 to 1979. They also won in 1971 and 1973. Montreal has won 24 championships, to date. Since the 1970's, however, the Canadiens have won the Stanley Cup just twice, in 1985-86 over the Calgary Flames and in 1992-93 over the Los Angeles Kings.
Q. What team has gone the longest without winning the Stanley Cup?
A. Until the 2009-10 season ended, the answer to this question was the Chicago Blackhawks, not having won the Stanley Cup since 1961. Chicago's win left the Toronto Maple Leafs as the team that has gone the longest without a Stanley Cup victory. The Leafs last won in 1967, a year before the league expanded to twelve teams. The St. Louis Blues remain the only 1967 expansion team to have never won a Stanley Cup but entered the league a year after Toronto won their last Cup.