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Least impressive roster for a Stanley Cup Finalist

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Old
11-10-2011, 05:33 AM
  #1
Al Bundy*
 
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Least impressive roster for a Stanley Cup Finalist

From a pure players-on-the-roster and talent perspective, who would you consider weak least impressive team/teams to make the Cup Finals, win or lose?

The '96 Panthers are usually mentioned, but a team that still baffles me is the 1999 Sabres. Aside from Peca and Satan, they had as unintimidating and overpowering a roster of forwards and defenseman as you could ever see.

Their offense by today's standards was staggering even for/during the Dead Puck era.

Given that and the low number of goals they scored that season, it is astonishing they even got as close to winning the Cup as they did.

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11-10-2011, 09:23 AM
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The Patriot
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I'd say the 1995 New Jersey Devils and the '96 Panthers. Sabres had Hasek the best goalie in the world at the time. That cannot be underestimated.

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Old
11-10-2011, 09:33 AM
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GuineaPig
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2006 Oilers? Pronger, and...


Peca?

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Old
11-10-2011, 09:37 AM
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tarheelhockey
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Gotta be the '96 Panthers. At least the Oilers had Pronger.

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11-10-2011, 10:24 AM
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tony d
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The 1996 Panthers. Aside from Mellanby, Barnes, Svehla and Vanbiesbrouck that roster was a bunch of Who's That's?

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11-10-2011, 10:33 AM
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SidGenoMario
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Not really the best answer or even a good answer, but the 09 Pens are kind of funny when you ignore their 2 best players. Old man Guerin, Chris Kunitz and Max Talbot carried us to victory. >_>

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11-10-2011, 10:55 AM
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tjcurrie
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96 Panthers
02 Hurricanes

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11-10-2011, 11:32 AM
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reckoning
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1982 Vancouver Canucks would get my vote. All the other teams mentioned had at least one or two players would could be considered stars or near the best at their position at the time.

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11-10-2011, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjcurrie View Post
96 Panthers
02 Hurricanes
Francis, Irbe, Brind'Amour. Wasnt THAT bad.

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11-10-2011, 01:03 PM
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Yes I cant believe people mention the 02 hurricanes. They had a solid roster and I would say that the 79 Rangers were worse for example. Then we have the 68 Blues and the '86 Flames (not a bad roster on paper but they were too young).

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Old
11-10-2011, 02:48 PM
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MVP of West Hollywd
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Am I the only one who thinks the 98 Caps were one of the worst finalists. They had more name value than some teams like the 96 Panthers but just seems like the soff type of team who usually loses in the playoffs for the same reason the recent Caps and Wilson's Sharks have, except the top 3 seeds went out in Rd 1 so somebody had to make the Finals. The Capitals making the Finals in the last 15 years sometimes feels like it didn't happen. Maybe it'd be more accurate to call it the least impressive Finals run instead of the least impressive Finals teams


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Old
11-10-2011, 02:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MVP of West Hollywd View Post
Am I the only one who thinks the 98 Caps were one of the worst finalists. They had more name value than some teams like the 96 Panthers but just seems like the soff type of team who usually loses in the playoffs for the same reason the recent Caps and Wilson's Sharks have, except the top 3 seeds went out in Rd 1 so somebody had to make the Finals. The Capitals making the Finals in the last 15 years sometimes feels like it didn't happen. Maybe it'd be more accurate to call it the least impressive Finals run instead of the least impressive Finals teams
Oates, Bondra, and Kolzig. Not a bad trio of stars.

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Old
11-10-2011, 03:31 PM
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I'd say the 1995 New Jersey Devils and the '96 Panthers. Sabres had Hasek the best goalie in the world at the time. That cannot be underestimated.
I would say Sabres are far closer to what is OP asking than Devils 1995.

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11-10-2011, 03:46 PM
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Big Phil
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Originally Posted by SidGenoMario View Post
Not really the best answer or even a good answer, but the 09 Pens are kind of funny when you ignore their 2 best players. Old man Guerin, Chris Kunitz and Max Talbot carried us to victory. >_>
Gonchar? Staal? Fleury? Depending on how you view it, Letang was pretty good even then. The Pens did lack depth compared to other Cup winners per se, but they are nowhere near the other teams on this list.

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Originally Posted by reckoning View Post
1982 Vancouver Canucks would get my vote. All the other teams mentioned had at least one or two players would could be considered stars or near the best at their position at the time.
This could be the team that wins this debate. I mean, there are no HHOFers on that team. In fact, there aren't any that are even CLOSE to it. Who is the best all-time player on that team? Stan Smyl? I'm serious. And Richard Brodeur was not much of a goalie either. This was a below .500 team that benefitted from the best teams in the NHL getting dropped early (Montreal, Edmonton). Their path to the final was not hard at all until they met the Islanders and then it was lights out.

The 1996 Panthers might have been a mediocre team, but at least they had Beezer in net. And Mellanby, Barnes and Sheppard are better than the trio the Canucks had. Not to mention even a rookie in Jovanovski was better than the Canucks best defenseman (Harold Snepsts?) Yikes.

The 2004 Flames were within a goal from winning the Cup (some still believe it was in) and they had the worst team in the final that I've seen in a while. Even with Iginla in there it was woeful. But they still had Kipper. Even so, their next best forward was possibly Craig Conroy and their defense were players that couldn't hit the broad side of a barn. And I still put them ahead of the 1982 Canucks.

The 2006 Oilers had Pronger in there at least. But I don't know, after that who is their next best player? Shawn Horcoff? That's bad. Roloson was a steady goalie, and still is, but he isn't all that different from Brodeur in 1982. Take away Pronger from the Oilers and you've got the 1982 Canucks basically.

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Old
11-10-2011, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tony d View Post
The 1996 Panthers. Aside from Mellanby, Barnes, Svehla and Vanbiesbrouck that roster was a bunch of Who's That's?
Take Hasek, Peca, Satan off the Sabres and they're a bunch of defects and marginal scrubs!

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11-10-2011, 04:01 PM
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Quote:
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Gonchar? Staal? Fleury? Depending on how you view it, Letang was pretty good even then. The Pens did lack depth compared to other Cup winners per se, but they are nowhere near the other teams on this list.
None of them are wingers. I look at the group of wingers and chuckle to myself.

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11-10-2011, 04:38 PM
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The 1937-38 Chicago Blackhawks had a .385 winning %. Their record that year was 14 wins 25 losses 9 ties. They did have some future HHOF's on the team but without checking I doubt any other SC Champion had a worse record.

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11-10-2011, 04:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MVP of West Hollywd View Post
Am I the only one who thinks the 98 Caps were one of the worst finalists. They had more name value than some teams like the 96 Panthers but just seems like the soff type of team who usually loses in the playoffs for the same reason the recent Caps and Wilson's Sharks have, except the top 3 seeds went out in Rd 1 so somebody had to make the Finals. The Capitals making the Finals in the last 15 years sometimes feels like it didn't happen. Maybe it'd be more accurate to call it the least impressive Finals run instead of the least impressive Finals teams
No you're not. The 1996 Panthers, 1998 Capitals, and 2002 Hurricanes are the only teams I remember (since the early 90s) that nobody gave a chance to win even before the finals started.

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Originally Posted by GuineaPig View Post
Oates, Bondra, and Kolzig. Not a bad trio of stars.
Eh... Oates was past his prime and Bondra wasn't much of a playoff player. They were carried to the finals by Kolzig and team defense; also helped by the fact that all the favorites in the East lost early.

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Old
11-10-2011, 04:43 PM
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The Oilers of 06

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Old
11-10-2011, 05:09 PM
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GuineaPig
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Eh... Oates was past his prime and Bondra wasn't much of a playoff player. They were carried to the finals by Kolzig and team defense; also helped by the fact that all the favorites in the East lost early.
Bondra and Oates were at 11th and 13th that year in points. I'm not saying they were a superb team, but compared to some of the other teams being discussed here, there were a couple players one could legitimately call "stars."

And almost all the teams being discussed here got in on team defence and goaltending. It's the only way these teams get anywhere in the playoffs.

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11-10-2011, 07:22 PM
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Another good question is: What is the least impressive roster to actually win a Stanley Cup?

2006 Hurricanes (Recchi, Brind'amour, E. Staal, Wesley, Ward) is the first one that comes to mind.

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11-10-2011, 07:59 PM
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MVP of West Hollywd
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Originally Posted by BurrowsIsBeast View Post
Another good question is: What is the least impressive roster to actually win a Stanley Cup?

2006 Hurricanes (Recchi, Brind'amour, E. Staal, Wesley, Ward) is the first one that comes to mind.
Would probably be my choice. Can't remember a champion with more unimpressive parts of their roster than the 09 Pens though.


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Old
11-10-2011, 08:10 PM
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With all due resspect to Phil Esposito: how about the 78-79 Rangers?

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Old
11-11-2011, 12:55 AM
  #24
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This could be the team that wins this debate. I mean, there are no HHOFers on that team. In fact, there aren't any that are even CLOSE to it. Who is the best all-time player on that team? Stan Smyl? I'm serious. And Richard Brodeur was not much of a goalie either. This was a below .500 team that benefitted from the best teams in the NHL getting dropped early (Montreal, Edmonton). Their path to the final was not hard at all until they met the Islanders and then it was lights out.
Gradin and Hlinka? Not hall of famers but both had highly respectable careers.

And if beating the Triple Crown-era Kings was easy, how come Edmonton couldn't do it?

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Old
11-11-2011, 06:25 AM
  #25
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1982 Vancouver Canucks would get my vote. All the other teams mentioned had at least one or two players would could be considered stars or near the best at their position at the time.
That was my first thought too.

A 77 point regular season and a goal differential of only +4.

Once Edmonton had their growing pains loss to Los Angeles, the Canucks only had to beat 75 points Calgary, the returning to Earth 63 points Kings, and a 72 points Chicago team.

To their credit, they took good advantage of the opportunity, and had plenty of "good" players --- Gradin, Smyl, Boldirev, King Brodeur, etc --- but the universe aligned nicely for them that Spring.

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