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NHL

The List: Feels Like The First Time (Stanley Cup Edition)

Are the St. Louis Blues a one-and-done Stanley Cup champion?

If so, they’ll be keeping in pattern with the recent trend when it comes to what first time winners of the Stanley Cup can do for an encore.

The Washington Capitals entered the 2018-19 playoffs as defending champions, and coming off a first-time Cup triumph in 2017-18. The Caps were eliminated in the opening round of postseason play by the Carolina Hurricanes.

The Blues are the 15th team since the 1967 NHL expansion to be a first-time Stanley Cup winner. Of the last five first-time champs, only one, the Los Angeles Kings, managed to win a playoff series the following spring.

The Kings advanced to the Western Conference final, as did the 1996-97 Colorado Avalanche. The 1999-2000 Dallas Stars reached the Stanley Cup final before succumbing.

Two teams – the 2006-07 Hurricanes and the 1995-96 New Jersey Devils – missed postseason play as first-time defending Cup champions. Three others joined the Capitals by making first-round exits.

You have to go all the way back to the 1991-92 Pittsburgh Penguins to find a team that successfully repeated the season following a first-time Cup triumph. But before that, it was commonplace.

The 1984-85 Edmonton Oilers, 1980-81 New York Islanders and 1974-75 Philadelphia Flyers all liked winning the Cup so much they did it again the following spring.

Following Up: What First-Time Stanley Cup Champions Do For An Encore*

Team First Stanley Cup Win Following Season Outcome
Washington Capitals 2017-18 Lost First Round
Los Angeles Kings 2011-12 Lost Western Conference Final
Anaheim Ducks 2006-07 Lost First Round
Carolina Hurricanes 2005-06 Missed Playoffs
Tampa Bay Lightning 2003-04 Lost First Round
Dallas Stars 1998-99 Lost Stanley Cup Final
Colorado Avalanche 1995-96 Lost Western Conference Final
New Jersey Devils 1994-95 Missed Playoffs
Pittsburgh Penguins 1990-91 Won Stanley Cup
Calgary Flames 1988-89 Lost First Round
Edmonton Oilers 1983-84 Won Stanley Cup
New York Islanders 1979-80 Won Stanley Cup
Philadelphia Flyers 1973-74 Won Stanley Cup

*Since the 1967 NHL expansion.

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