11 NHL Teams That Never Won the Stanley Cup

Winning in the NHL is something however simple. When contemplating how laborious it’s to win every particular person battle inside the sport whereas additionally making an attempt to return out forward in the video games themselves over the course of a season, the issue degree will increase exponentially.

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This is why successful a Stanley Cup is one thing that has eluded so many franchises in the NHL. Only one staff can win, and for groups that come shut and in the end lose, there’s no assure they’ll ever get the alternative once more. It’s a fickle endeavor, however it’s one which followers of the sport love. Here now are the many NHL groups which have by no means gained the Stanley Cup.

Arizona Coyotes (Formerly the Winnipeg Jets)

Even earlier than the Arizona Coyotes began enjoying hockey in Phoenix and Glendale, the franchise struggled to compete for a championship. As the unique Winnipeg Jets, the franchise by no means managed to advance previous the second spherical of the postseason. It was a troubling affair as followers in Winnipeg cherished their franchise, however with the disappointing seasons including up, a change was wanted.

Arizona Coyotes Bench Celebration
Arizona Coyotes Bench Celebration (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Since transferring to Arizona and changing into the Coyotes, issues haven’t gotten significantly better. The staff managed to qualify for the playoffs in every of its first 4 seasons. Unfortunately, every berth resulted in the identical end result; a first-round exit to the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, Detroit Red Wings, St. Louis Blues and Colorado Avalanche respectively.

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After failing to qualify for the postseason in the 2000-01 season, the Coyotes had been as soon as once more bounced in the first spherical the following 12 months in 5 video games to the San Jose Sharks. It’s been a tough journey for the Coyotes, who of their 22 seasons, have did not qualify for the playoffs 13 instances and misplaced in the first spherical seven instances.

The Coyotes’ greatest season got here in 2011-12 when the staff completed first in the Pacific Division and third in the Western Conference. Winning a playoff collection for the first time in the desert, the Coyotes truly superior to the Western Conference Finals. Unfortunately, they fell quick to the Los Angeles Kings – the eventual Stanley Cup champions.

Buffalo Sabres

The historical past of sports activities in Buffalo has been fascinating and filled with heartbreak. Since the 1965 AFL championship, it has been 57 years since a sports activities franchise from Buffalo had gained a championship till the Buffalo Beauts of the NWHL did so in 2016-17. For the Buffalo Sabres, the journey has been a curler coaster that has but to reward the metropolis with a Stanley Cup victory. In the historical past of the franchise courting again to the 1970-71 season, the staff has did not qualify for the playoffs 17 instances and misplaced in the first spherical 14 instances. The staff has had some success, although, as they’ve performed in the second spherical 14 instances, advancing to the Conference Finals six instances and even enjoying in the Stanley Cup Final in 1975 and once more in 1999.

The Sabres in the end misplaced each of these appearances with the most up-to-date loss coming towards the Dallas Stars who claimed their first and solely championship to this point.

It wasn’t a collection that got here with out controversy, nonetheless, as the game-winning objective and subsequent press conferences have change into ingrained in the historical past of the NHL. Though the objective might or might not have been a superb one, the historical past books will endlessly learn that the Dallas Stars gained the Stanley Cup that evening; Lindy Ruff, then the coach of the Sabres,  will seemingly endlessly really feel the identical approach about the play.

Though one objective price the Sabres the Stanley Cup in 1999, the latest pattern of the Sabres has been a regarding one. The staff has did not qualify for the postseason in 13 of the final 15 years, together with 11 consecutive seasons and not using a playoff look ranging from the 2011-12 season and persevering with to this very day.

Columbus Blue Jackets

One of the NHL’s latest franchises, the Columbus Blue Jackets have been in the league since the 2000-01 season. The staff received off to a rocky begin, nonetheless, failing to qualify for the playoffs till the 2008-0 season once they had been swept 4-0 by the Detroit Red Wings. It wasn’t till the 2013-14 season that the Blue Jackets would get one other alternative in the playoffs, although the consequence wasn’t significantly better as they had been eradicated in the first spherical as soon as once more, this time by the Pittsburgh Penguins in six video games.

Brad Larsen Columbus Blue Jackets
Brad Larsen, Head Coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

The Blue Jackets adopted that up with one other two consecutive missed playoff bids. In the 2016-17 season, the Blue Jackets shocked the hockey world, going from final place in the Eastern Conference and in twenty seventh place in the NHL to a 108-point marketing campaign and a playoff alternative. Unfortunately, one other first-round loss to the Penguins as soon as once more, this time in 5 video games, ended the Blue Jacket season as soon as once more.

For the Blue Jackets, that season was only a glimpse of what was to return, nonetheless. The staff earned 97 and 98 factors in the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons, respectively, qualifying for the playoffs for 3 consecutive seasons. They’d even made it to the second spherical of the postseason for the first time in franchise historical past final season.

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With a really thrilling roster and a ton of younger expertise simply ready to make the bounce to the NHL, the future seems to be vibrant in Columbus. Though the previous couple of seasons might not have ended the approach followers would have appreciated, the staff has confirmed they’re dedicated to creating issues work.

Florida Panthers

It’s been a tough tenure for the Florida Panthers franchise. In the staff’s 28 seasons, they’ve did not qualify for the postseason 20 instances. In 4 of the 5 seasons that the staff certified for the postseason, they had been eradicated in the first spherical. To be honest to the Panthers, their first journey to the postseason was about as profitable because it will get for a staff that was in simply its third season at the time.

Paul Maurice Florida Panthers
Paul Maurice, Head Coach of the Florida Panthers (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Fresh off of the franchise’s first 40-plus win season, the Panthers eradicated the Boston Bruins in 5 video games in the first spherical of the playoffs to win their first playoff collection, of their first playoff look no much less. They weren’t accomplished there, nonetheless, as they went on to get rid of the Philadelphia Flyers in six video games to qualify for the Eastern Conference Final.

A seven-game collection win towards the Pittsburgh Penguins catapulted the Panthers into the Stanley Cup Final for the first and solely time to this point in the historical past of the franchise. Unfortunately, the enjoyable ended there. A sweep at the arms of the Colorado Avalanche ended the Panthers’ season. The Panthers have solely gotten previous the first spherical of the playoffs as soon as in the years since.

Ottawa Senators (1992)

The Ottawa Senators have but to win the huge one of their 25 years as a franchise. This hasn’t all the time been the case, nonetheless, as the unique Ottawa Senators founded in 1883 gained 11 Stanley Cups and performed in the NHL for 17 years from 1917 till 1934. The present iteration of the Senators – although nonetheless younger, have had their fair proportion of profitable seasons as nicely.

Ottawa Senators Bench Celebration
Ottawa Senators Bench Celebrates a Goal (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

In the late-Nineteen Nineties to mid-2000s, the Senators had been considered one of the higher groups in the NHL in the common season. Unfortunately, that didn’t essentially translate to postseason success.

In the historical past of the franchise, the staff has did not qualify for the postseason solely eight instances – together with in every of its first 4 seasons. With 16 playoff berths – together with a run of 11 straight appearances from 1996-97 till 2007-08, the Senators had constantly made the playoffs. In reality, the staff had by no means gone consecutive seasons and not using a playoff look till the 2018-19 season – considered one of hockey’s most spectacular streaks.

The Senators have performed in the convention finals thrice in franchise historical past, together with the 2006-07 season when the staff superior to the Stanley Cup Final earlier than finally dropping to the Anaheim Ducks. Both groups fell in need of their final targets in 2017 when the Ducks misplaced to the Nashville Predators and the Senators misplaced to the Stanley Cup-winning Pittsburgh Penguins in the convention finals.

Minnesota Wild

The second NHL franchise to grace the state of Minnesota following the motion of the North Stars to Dallas, the Wild are nonetheless a really younger franchise. In 18 seasons, the Wild have certified for the playoffs 9 instances whereas lacking the playoffs 9 instances. The staff has been bounced from the first spherical six instances whereas enjoying in the second spherical in three completely different seasons together with a visit to the Conference Finals in simply their third season, leading to a sweep to the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

Joel Eriksson Ek Minnesota Wild
Joel Eriksson Ek, Minnesota Wild (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

Yet to play in a Stanley Cup Final, the Wild had their greatest season as a franchise in 2021-22 with a 53-22-7 report, good for 113 factors and second place in the Central Division. Competing in considered one of the hardest divisions in hockey towards a few of the greatest groups in the league, the Wild may have their work lower out for them every 12 months as they give the impression of being to compete for his or her first championship.

Nashville Predators

The Nashville Predators had been considered one of the ultimate two groups competing in the 2017 NHL Playoffs. Appearing in the convention finals for the first time in franchise historical past, the objective for the Predators from the very begin of the season has been the Stanley Cup. Making historical past with a convention finals look is a pleasant objective to have achieved, however the end-game for each franchise is successful a Stanley Cup. Unfortunately, the staff fell simply quick as the Penguins went on to seize their second title in as a few years.

Michael McCarron Nashville Predators
Michael McCarron, Nashville Predators (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

After lacking the playoffs in every of the franchise’s first 5 seasons, the Predators have truly had a strong run from 2003-04 up till the current day. Only lacking the playoffs thrice since 2003, the Predators have certified for the postseason 12 instances. The staff sadly misplaced in the first spherical in seven of these seasons, although they’ve additionally performed in the second spherical 5 instances in historical past, together with their Stanley Cup run.

Starting the 2016-17 postseason off in decisive style with a sweep of the first-place Chicago Blackhawks, the Predators have confirmed that they’ll compete with the greatest in the league. That remained true in 2017-18 when the Predators had been in the end the greatest staff in the common season and appeared like they’d the potential to go on a deep postseason run.

San Jose Sharks

The San Jose Sharks had been considered one of the greatest groups in the NHL for almost a decade. With seven 100-plus level seasons from 2003-04 till 2013-14 – regardless of the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season, the Sharks proved to be a pressure to be reckoned with. Unfortunately, nonetheless, the story for the Sharks has been regular-season success and failures in the postseason.

To the credit score of the franchise, they’ve solely missed the playoffs six instances in comparison with the 21 playoff berths since the 1991-92 season. In that point, they’ve certified for not less than the second spherical 13 instances and have competed in the convention finals 4 instances. Despite this, the Sharks have solely appeared in a single Stanley Cups Final collection, in the end dropping in six video games to the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2015-16.

San Jose Sharks Celebration
San Jose Sharks rejoice a objective (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Despite the success that the franchise has skilled in its 30 seasons, the Sharks stay the solely present California-based staff to have by no means gained a Stanley Cup. The Los Angeles Kings have two championships – each coming after the 2010 season, and the Anaheim Ducks gained their first and solely championship to this point in 2007.

Seattle Kraken

The Seattle Kraken is the NHL’s latest franchise, so it shouldn’t be too stunning to see them make an look on this listing. While many anticipated the Kraken to have success throughout the Expansion Draft course of and probably come away with a playoff-ready staff, the Kraken would falter of their inaugural season and would seemingly set themselves up extra for the future than the current.

The Kraken went simply 37-46-6 of their first season and would fail to qualify for the postseason. Only two groups would end with a worse report than the Kraken in the 2021-22 season, with the Coyotes and the Montreal Canadiens ending thirty first and thirty second, respectively. It’s a marathon and never a dash; the Kraken not showing on this listing would have been extra stunning than seeing their inclusion. The future can maintain something

Vancouver Canucks

The Vancouver Canucks have seen their fair proportion of ups and downs all through the historical past of the franchise. Though the Canucks have missed the postseason 21 instances, they’ve additionally certified for the playoffs 27 instances. While they’ve made the playoffs and competed in aggressive hockey as a rule since their debut in the 1970-71 season, that success might have additionally induced much more heartbreak to the followers in Vancouver.

With three Stanley Cup Final appearances, the Canucks have did not hoist their first Stanley Cup. A sweep to the New York Islanders in 1981-82 adopted by consecutive game-seven collection losses to the New York Rangers and Boston Bruins in 1993-94 and 2010-11, respectively, have left a complete metropolis eager for extra.

Vancouver Canucks Bench Celebration
Vancouver Canucks Bench Celebrates a Goal (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

In the protection of the Canucks, the staff has strung collectively profitable seasons in recent times which have put them in prime positions coming into the playoffs. From 2003-04 till 2012-13, the Canucks completed first of their division in seven out of 9 years together with 5 straight seasons from 2008-09 till 2012-13. Multiple 100-plus level seasons and Presidents’ Trophy wins weren’t sufficient, nonetheless, as the Canucks have did not win the championship up to now.

With a younger staff that appears able to compete for playoff place for the foreseeable future, nonetheless, the Canucks might flip issues round after lacking the postseason in six of their final seven seasons.

Vegas Golden Knights

The Golden Knights got here so shut of their first season in the NHL. After a Cinderella story kind 12 months, the NHL’s latest franchise had the most profitable first 12 months in the historical past of the NHL and probably all {of professional} sports activities and got here only a few wins away from successful the Stanley Cup.

The staff that Vegas assembled was met with criticism early on following their growth draft however it didn’t take lengthy to comprehend that this staff was a legit menace in the Western Conference.

After some adjustments got here to the staff over the subsequent season, together with some main additions to the squad on offense, the Golden Knights might come off of this listing before anybody might have ever anticipated regardless of dropping in the first spherical of their second postseason try. That try additionally noticed the franchise’s first taste of controversy.

The Golden Knights stay a contender and their objective of successful their first Stanley Cup nonetheless feels nicely inside attain for this present group of gamers.

Winnipeg Jets (Formerly the Atlanta Thrashers)

Between the Atlanta Thrashers and the present Winnipeg Jets franchise, there hasn’t been a number of significant hockey performed. For the Thrashers who debuted in the 1999-00 season, did not make the playoffs in every of its first six seasons. In reality, the staff solely certified as soon as for the postseason, leading to a 4-0 loss to the New York Rangers, whereas failing to qualify in the different 10 seasons.

Upon transferring to Winnipeg and getting a contemporary begin, issues didn’t go significantly better at first. The Jets have been in the NHL for eight seasons and have solely certified for the postseason thrice.

Winnipeg Jets Celebrate
Dylan Samberg, Nikolaj Ehlers, Vladislav Namestnikov, and Blake Wheeler of the Winnipeg Jets rejoice a objective (Photo by Darcy Finley/NHLI through Getty Images)

The first occasion noticed them play in a 4-0 collection loss to the Anaheim Ducks in the first spherical. The second time round, nonetheless, the Jets appeared poised to run the gauntlet and make it to the Stanley Cup Final. They fell simply in need of their final objective, dropping to the Golden Knights in the convention finals. In their third journey, they fell quick in the first spherical to the eventual Stanley Cup Champion Blues.

In Summary: Here are the 12 NHL groups which have by no means gained the Stanley Cup.

  • Buffalo Sabres
  • Vancouver Canucks
  • San Jose Sharks
  • Florida Panthers
  • Arizona Coyotes
  • Nashville Predators
  • Winnipeg Jets
  • Minnesota Wild
  • Columbus Blue Jackets
  • Vegas Golden Knights
  • Ottawa Senators (1992 incarnation)
  • Seattle Kraken

Honorable Mention: Toronto Maple Leafs – Zero Stanley Cups since 1967, although they’re removed from the solely staff with a prolonged drought.

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