Thursday, June 27, 2013

NHL Stanley Cup Championship Droughts

Last night the Chicago Blackhawks erased their three year Stanley Cup drought with a Game 6 win over the Boston Bruins. The NHL's other 29 teams, however, extended their respective win-less droughts by another year.  The chart below describes, in descending order, the number of years each team has gone without winning a Stanley Cup, showing the last year they hoisted the hardware (if ever).

Team       Drought Last Cup Win
Toronto Maple Leafs  46 years       
St. Louis Blues 46 years
Buffalo Sabres 43 years
Vancouver Canucks 43 years
Washington Capitals 39 years
Philadelphia Flyers 38 years
Phoenix Coyotes* 34 years
New York Islanders 30 years
Calgary Flames 24 years
Edmonton Oilers 23 years
San Jose Sharks 22 years
Ottawa Senators 21 years
Montreal Canadiens 20 years
Florida Panthers 20 years
New York Rangers 19 years
Nashville Predators 15 years
Dallas Stars 14 years
Winnipeg Jets**      14 years
Minnesota Wild 13 years
Columbus Blue Jackets       13 years
Colorado Avalanche 12 years
New Jersey Devils 10 years
Tampa Bay Lightning 9 years
Carolina Hurricanes 7 years
Anaheim Ducks 6 years
Detroit Red Wings 5 years
Pittsburgh Penguins 4 years
Boston Bruins 2 years
Los Angeles Kings 1 year
Chicago Blackhawks None

* Includes record of Winnipeg Jets prior to relocation to Phoenix
** Includes record of Atlanta Thrashers prior to relocation to Winnipeg

The average drought rests at 19.8 years with longest being 46 years (Toronto Maple Leafs, St. Louis Blues), eight years shy of the all-time win-less streak of 54 years (New York Rangers 1940-1994). Not only has Toronto failed to win since the NHL expansion beyond its original six teams, they have not even reached the Final during that span.

More intriguing than the length of each team's drought is the fact that 12 of the 30 current NHL teams (40%) have never won the Stanley Cup. In fact, 6 of the 30 teams (20%) have never skated in a Final in their franchise history (Phoenix Coyotes, San Jose Sharks, Nashville Predators, Winnipeg Jets, Minnesota Wild, Columbus Blue Jackets).

In ten months the quest for the Stanley Cup continues for 16 of the 30 clubs that qualify for the postseason. Early Vegas odds favor the Pittsburgh Penguins at 6.5 to 1 while the Blackhawks probability to capture consecutive Cups is currently calculated at 7.5 to 1.