Cup droughts: a statistical analysis
Now that the hubbub over the draft and free agent day has died down, it's time for what we do best: pointless number crunching!
I've seen it quite a number of posts bemoaning the Habs' Cup drought recently, and I wondered how well they compare to the rest of the league. As an afterthought, I wondered how they compared to teams that existed in 1993. (Obviously, a franchise that wasn't there in 1993 is going to have a shorter Cup drought than the Habs will, no matter what, and is therefore not that good a measuring tool.)
Here is what I found out:
Franchises that have won Stanley Cups, organised by expansion eras (teams that had a franchise in 1993 are in bold)
Pens 3 (2009, 1992, 1991)
Wings 4 (2008, 2002, 1998, 1997)
Devils 3 (2003, 2000, 1995)
Avalanche 2 (2001, 1996)
Oilers 5 (1990, 1988, 1987, 1985, 1984)
Islanders 4 (1980-1983)
Canadiens 8 (1976-1979, 1973, 1971, 1969, 1968)
Flyers 2 (1974, 1975)
Bruins 2 (1972, 1970)
Maple Leafs (1967)
Points of interest:
- While Pittsburgh's early 90's Cups are thrown into the modern era, I remember a bit of those years and I'd argue they were in fact the last dynasty of the dynastic 80's. That stunner against the NYI in 93 deprived them of the Cup to prove it, but ask anyone around that time and there's no doubt they were in that mold.
- I can barely imagine how frustrating watching hockey and looking at those Cup-winning dynasties has been for, say, a Sabres, Kings or Blues fan in the 70's and 80's.
Years since end of initial season or last Stanley Cup (franchise):
Anaheim Ducks: 4 (2007)
Boston Bruins: 0 (2011)
Buffalo Sabres: 40 (1971)
Calgary Flames (Atlanta Flames) : 22 (1989)
Carolina Hurricanes (Hartford Whalers) : 5 (2006)
Chicago Blackhawks: 1 (2010)
Colorado Avalanche (Quebec Nordiques) : 10 (2001)
Columbus Blue Jackets: 14 (1997)
Dallas Stars (Oakland Seals / Cleveland Barons / Minnesota North Stars) : 12 (1999)
Detroit Red Wings: 3 (2008)
Edmonton Oilers: 21 (1990)
Florida Panthers: 17 (1994)
Los Angeles Kings: 43 (1968)
Minnesota Wild: 10 (2001)
Montreal Canadiens:18 (1993)
Nashville Predators: 12 (1999)
New Jersey Devils (Kansas City Scouts / Colorado Rockies) : 8 (2003)
New York Islanders: 28 (1983)
New York Rangers: 17 (1994)
Ottawa Senators (modern): 18 (1993)
Philadelphia Flyers: 36 (1975)
Phoenix Coyotes (Winnipeg Jets): 31 (1980)
Pittsburgh Penguins: 2 (2009)
San Jose Sharks: 19 (1992)
Saint Louis Blues: 43 (1968)
Tampa Bay Lightning: 7 (2004)
Toronto Maple Leafs: 44 (1967)
Vancouver Canucks: 40 (1971)
Washington Capitals: 36 (1975)
Winnipeg Jets (Atlanta Thrashers): 11 (2000)
Average cup drought: (existing franchises in 1992-1993): 21 years (504/24 = 21)
Average cup drought (all teams): 19 years (572/30 = 19,067)
Median cup drought: (existing franchises in 1992-1993): 18 years (Montreal / Ottawa)
Median cup drought: (all teams): 17 years (Florida / NY Rangers)
Points of interest:
The average cup drought will worsten next year unless Buffalo, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Saint Louis, Toronto, Vancouver or Washington win the cup.
Montreal's cup drought will actually keep pace with the "1993-franchise" drought average or catch up to it, even if they don't win the Cup, if Boston, Chicago, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Carolina or any other franchise that didn't exist in 1993 win the Cup next year.
You could also mention that these numbers would be much higher if the Blackhawks and Bruins hadn't just ended two lenghty Cup droughts two years running, though the counterpoint to that is that it's irrelevant since they did indeed do it.
Years a modern winner (since 1993) had to wait for their last Cup since end of initial season or previous Stanley Cup:
Bruins: 39 years (1972-2011)
Hawks: 49 years (1961-2011)
Pens: 17 years (1992-2009)
Wings: 6 years (2002-2008)
Ducks: 13 years (1994-2007)
Canes (Whalers): 26 years (1980-2006)
Lightning: 11 years (1993-2004)
Devils (Scouts/Rockies): 3 years (2003-2000)
Avalanche (Nordiques): 5 years (2001-1996)
Stars (/North Stars/Barons/Seals): 31 years (1999-1968)
Rangers: 54 years (1940-1994)
Canadiens: 7 years (1986-1993)
Average (existing franchises in 1993): 23 years
Average (all modern cup winners): 22 years
Median (existing franchises in 1993): 17 years (Pittsburgh)
Median (all modern cup winners): 13 years / 17 years (Pittsburgh/Anaheim)
Points of interest:
Not much, I was just curious, really.
The Habs' Cup drought seems a bit better than average, when compared to other teams that existed in 1993, which is pretty much what I expected.
To me, the charts show that there's really three kinds of teams as far as Cup wins are concerned: the modern winners, the long sufferers and a small group that managed to grab a few Cups in eras which were dominated first by dynasties, then by the Detroit/Colorado/New Jersey triumvirate. The Habs, obviously, are in that last block.
As to whether it is acceptable for the Habs to be an "average" team as far as Cups are concerned, I'm not touching that one with Hal Gill's stick!
nicely done :handclap:
Vancouver didnt come in the league in 1968 but in 1970... along with the Sabres and both of them has never won the stanley cup.
My mistake... that will change the numbers a bit, though not that much I expect.
I'll post updated numbers soon.
(Obviously, neither won a Cup, so no changes there)
Edit: fixed! Please note that all numbers indicated are the year of the *end* of either the Cup-winning season or the inaugural season of the franchise. I considered teams were not in a Cup drought until they had played at least a full season.
Thanks for this, it was an interesting read.
You're on the Habs board...Statistical analysis mean nothing.
We are the Habs, we should be winning it every few of years.
I'd hate to be an Oilers or Isles fan. They probably never imagined droughts this long after their last one.
The scary thing is the Habs in the sixties almost won more than 5 in a row I think...
and the Oil could have won 7 in a row in the 80's very easily...Steve Smith in 86, thank god, and I forget how they lost in 89 to Calgary...
I have nothing personal against the OP but I think his analysis is useless trivia and has no bearing on the present. Personnel change so much that a 2011-12 team has nothing in common with a 2001-2002 team but the name and city (and in some cases even that has changed).
Who cares what bearing it has? It has no bearing. Long story short though fans are reacting over nothing. There's a salary cap now and a real draft. There are 30 teams not 6. People need to wake up and realize management wants to win. They sell out the stands whether or not they win. But they are hired to win and not only that they really want to. Sometimes one of the other 29 teams in the league beats you though, it happens. You can't always be the best team in a 30 team salary cap world. People need to wake up and realize they'd be doing no better themselves at running this team. In fact far worse more likely.
Well, I did say this was pointless, right there in the first line... ;)
More seriously, Teufelsdreck, you bring up a good point that I hadn't made forcefully enough in the initial post because I didn't realize it was needed: this means absolutely nothing as a predictive tool, and even less now in the post-cap era.
Neither the Habs, the Leafs or any other teams are "due" a Cup because they haven't won one in a long time. That's the kind of fallacy that makes you lose all your money at the casino.
Other much more established posters have already come to the defense of my post much better than I could so I'll just add this, which is a bit of a tangent, being my opinion rather than fact-based, but still: in my opinion, dynasties went out the window with expansion and the introduction of the 1-8 format for playoffs, and the cap slammed the door shut. In the long term, unless something happens to skew the playing field again, even the best managed and most profitable teams will have, in the long run (say, a couple of centuries) a 1/20 Cup-per-season played ratio or thereabouts.
A Cup run just depends on too many variables (a healthy team at the right time, a hot goalie, etc.) for any team to win Cups more reliably. So, let's cherish the memories of the Cups we did have, because there's no telling what the future holds. :)
edit, sry, shoudl have added :sarcasm:
What will be valid and interesting is to do this analysis when the NHL has had about 30 teams for 30 years.
In theory, every team has a 1/30 chance every year. (In reality of course this is false) If you win one in thirty, you're making the odds. 2 in 30 or more, you're beating the odds. None in 30, loser time...
How long have we had about 30 teams?
Current Vegas odds to win the cup
ODDS TO WIN THE 2012 NHL STANLEY CUP
Los Angeles 12/1
San Jose 12/1
Tampa Bay 12/1
New Jersey 30/1
N.Y. Rangers 40/1
St. Louis 40/1
WIN JETS 50/1
N.Y. Islanders 80/1
Habs are 11th at 20/1 - note theses odds are lower in order to increase the sports book profit and are about 10% understated - ie 20/1 is really about 22/1. LA at 12/1 is a little high, but that's probably due to local kings fans betting on them. Philly at 10/1 is high as well given their youth movement.
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