The Stanley Cup Finals kick off tonight between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Boston Bruins and for one team, they will hoist their second cup in the last few years. The Hawks last won the cup back in 2010, followed by the Bruins in 2011. While it’s impressive to win two championships in the last two or three years, it’s a far cry from being considered a dynasty. Which brings up the point that the Edmonton Oilers are the last true NHL dynasty.
People might argue that it’s a lot more difficult to repeat as Stanley Cup Champions in this day and age than it was back in the 80’s when the Oilers were ripping through the league. There hasn’t been back-to-back champions in the NHL since the Detroit Red Wings won in 1997 and 1998. You could argue that winning two years in a row is a modern day dynasty, but let’s talk about a good old fashion legendary dynasty. The Edmonton Oilers are the last one that the league has seen.
There was the Montreal Canadiens dynasty from 1976-1979 that saw them win four cups in a row. The New York Islanders strung together their own bit of history by following that up with four of their own from 1980-1983. Then it was the Oilers turn.
You may or may not remember the first Stanley Cup in 1984 when a baby faced Wayne Gretzky hoisted the silver chalice for the first time. Another followed in ’85 and after a brief interruption by the Canadiens in ’86, Edmonton would celebrate two more titles in ’87 and ’88. Four Stanley Cups in five years. A dynasty? I think so.
One could go even further by looking at what happened the next two years. After the rival Calgary Flames won their first and only Cup in 1989, the Oilers reclaimed their spot as champions in 1990 giving them five cups in seven years and reinforcing their legacy as the last true dynasty in the NHL.
I doubt we’ll ever see another team win four Cups in five years, let alone win four or five straight. It is said there is too much parity in the league to ever have another dynasty like there was in the 70’s and 80’s.
While the Oilers are a ways away from being considered a contender for the Stanley Cup, it’s this time of year that makes in enjoyable to reflect on the glory years and what was an impressive decade for the city of Edmonton.
This Oilers fan is confident that those glory years will return to Edmonton, sooner rather than later I might add. And while Flames fans love to see the Oilers smoldering near the bottom of the league over the past few years, it’s always entertaining to remind them of the old joke from the 80’s. How do you spell dynasty in Calgary? O N E!
Enjoy the finals everyone.
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