Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Alanah McGinley on 02/15/08 at 04:45 PM ET
From Eric Duhatschek at the Globe & Mail,
Yes, recent history shows that while any number of teams can get to a championship final, over the past dozen years — through the pre-salary cap and post-salary cap eras — every single Stanley Cup winner following the lockout-shortened 48-game season of 1994-95 finished in the top three in points in its conference and in the top five in points overall.
The reality is, it was easier to win a championship during the previous decade (1986 to 1995) by coming out of nowhere than it has been of late. In those 11 seasons (no NHL games were played in 2005-06), the teams that won the Stanley Cup finished first in their conferences four times, second in their conferences five times and third in their conferences twice (the Devils of ‘00 were actually placed fourth because they didn’t win their division, but actually finished with more points than the team seeded third).
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