The Prince of Wales Trophy, also known as the Wales Trophy, is an award presented to the Eastern Conference(formerly the Wales Conference) playoff champions, prior to the final series of games for the Stanley Cup.
The Prince of Wales Trophy was first announced in December 1925. The trophy, sponsored by the Prince of Wales and bearing the royal coat of arms cost $2,500, and was to be in the possession of the league champion.With the expansion of the NHL in 1967, and the creation of the Western Division, the Wales Trophy was given to the team that finished in first place in the Eastern Division, during the regular season. When the league formed two conferences in 1974, the cup transferred to the team that finished with the best regular season record in the Wales Conference, until 1981, when the NHL changed its playoff format so that the two teams meeting in the Stanley Cup finals could no longer come from the same conference, and the Prince of Wales Trophy was presented to the Wales Conference playoff champions. By 1994, the trophy was awarded to the Eastern Conference playoff champions.