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Stanley Cup Champions 1970-1979

Montreal dominates the decade; Bruins, Flyers each win two titles

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Bobby Orr opened the 1970s with one of the NHL's iconic moments, giving the Boston Bruins their first Stanley Cup title in 39 years by scoring a spectacular overtime goal in Game 4 of the Final against the St. Louis Blues. Boston added another title two years later. The Philadelphia Flyers' broke the Original Six's hold on the Cup with back-to-back championships in 1974 and 1975. Just as they had in the two previous decades, however, the Montreal Canadiens were again the dominant franchise in the League, winning Cups in 1971 and 1973 before assembling one of the most talented rosters in NHL history and winning four consecutive championships.

 

1970 Boston Bruins

The Boston Bruins won their first Stanley Cup in 29 years with a sweep over the St. Louis Blues. The image of the Cup-winning goal by Bobby Orr - with Orr flying through the air - is among the most memorable in hockey history.

Their season was defined by the brilliance of Orr, who smashed several scoring records and collected a display case full of silverware. By March, Orr had become the first defenseman to reach 100 points in a season and he finished the campaign with a League-leading 120, becoming the first blueliner to win the Art Ross Trophy. He also collected the Hart and Norris trophies and First Team All-Star honors. The great No. 4 later added the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP, setting League records for goals and points by a defenseman in a postseason (9-11--20). Putting the finishing touch on an already-extraordinary campaign, Orr scored the Stanley Cup-winning goal 40 seconds into overtime in Game 4 against St. Louis. With Orr flying through the air, his winning tally is among the most iconic images in hockey history.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: n/a (No Captain)
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Bobby Orr 
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Bobby Orr (0:40, OT, Game 4)
Head Coach: Harry Sinden
General Manager: Milt Schmidt

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Johnny Bucyk  LW
Phil Esposito  C
John McKenzie  RW
Bobby Orr  D
Gerry Cheevers  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Quarterfinals: New York Rangers (4-2) 
Semifinals: Chicago Blackhawks (4-0)
Stanley Cup Final: St. Louis Blues (4-0)

 

1971 Montreal Canadiens

After missing the playoffs for the first time in 22 years in 1970, the Canadiens rebounded to win their 16th Stanley Cup. The hero was rookie goaltender Ken Dryden, who had entered the postseason with just six career NHL appearances.

For Montreal, the road to the Stanley Cup went through Boston, where the defending champion Bruins had rampaged to the NHL's best regular-season record (57-14-7) and scored a League-record 399 goals. Backstopped by rookie goaltender Dryden, who had entered the postseason with just six career NHL appearances, the Canadiens - who recorded 24 fewer points during the regular season - upset the Bruins in the Quarterfinals. In an epic Stanley Cup Final against Chicago, the Canadiens became just the second team in NHL history to win Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final on the road. While the playoffs signaled the beginning of Dryden's career, it also marked the conclusion for Jean Beliveau, who retired as the all-time leader in playoff assists (97) and points (176).

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: Jean Beliveau
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Ken Dryden
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Henri Richard (2:34, 3rd Period, Game 7)
Head Coach: Al MacNeil
General Manager: Sam Pollock

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Jean Beliveau  C
Yvan Cournoyer  RW
Frank Mahovlich  LW
J.C. Tremblay  D
Ken Dryden  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Quarterfinals: Boston Bruins (4-3) 
Semifinals: Minnesota North Stars (4-2)
Stanley Cup Final: Chicago Blackhawks (4-3)

 

1972 Boston Bruins

The Boston Bruins won their second Stanley Cup in three years, defeating their Original Six rival New York Rangers in six games. Bobby Orr, who scored his second Cup-winning goal in three years, became the first two-time winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy.

It marked the first Bruins-Rangers Stanley Cup Final in 43 years. Bruins defenseman Bobby Orr, who scored his second Cup-winning goal in three years, became the first two-time winner of the Conn Smythe Trophy. With four goals and four assists in the Final, Orr raised his playoff totals to five goals and 19 assists, setting a League record for assists by a defenseman in one postseason. Bruins center Phil Esposito and Orr, who finished 1-2 in the NHL in regular-season scoring with 133 and 117 points, respectively, each tallied a League-high 24 playoff points. The Bruins scored 28 goals in their Semifinal series sweep over the St. Louis Blues, the most goals ever scored by an NHL team in a four-game series.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: n/a
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Bobby Orr 
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Bobby Orr (11:18, 1st Period, Game 6)
Head Coach: Tom Johnson
General Manager: Milt Schmidt

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Johhny Bucyk  LW
Phil Esposito  C
Ken Hodge  RW
Bobby Orr  D
Eddie Johnston  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Quarterfinals: Toronto Maple Leafs (4-1) 
Semifinals: St. Louis Blues (4-0)
Stanley Cup Final: New York Rangers (4-2)

 

1973 Montreal Canadiens

The Montreal Canadiens captured the Stanley Cup, defeating the Chicago Black Hawks in the Final for the second time in three years. Canadiens center Henri Richard became the first player to play for 11 Stanley Cup champions.

Goaltenders Ken Dryden of Montreal and Tony Esposito of Chicago, teammates in Canada's dramatic 1972 Summit Series win over the Soviet Union prior to the start of the season, now competed at opposite ends of the ice. Montreal's Yvan Cournoyer scored a record 15 goals in the playoffs en route to winning the Conn Smythe Trophy. Cournoyer (6-6-12) and Jacques Lemaire (3-9-12) each tied Gordie Howe's record for points in the Final, while Lemaire also set a record for assists in the Final with nine. Henri Richard became the first player to play for 11 Stanley Cup champions and tied the overall record held by Toe Blake, who played on three and coached eight more. After coaching the St. Louis Blues to three successive Finals from 1968 to 1970, Montreal's Scotty Bowman earned his first Stanley Cup.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: Yvan Cournoyer
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Yvan Cournoyer
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Yvan Cournoyer (8:13, 3rd Period, Game 6)
Head Coach: Scotty Bowman
General Manager: Sam Pollock

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Yvan Cournoyer  RW
Jacques Lemaire C
Frank Mahovlich  LW
Guy Lapointe  D
Ken Dryden  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Quarterfinals: Buffalo Sabres (4-2) 
Semifinals: Philadelphia Flyers (4-1)
Stanley Cup Final: Chicago Blackhawks (4-2)

 

1974 Philadelphia Flyers

The Philadelphia Flyers made history by becoming the first expansion team to win the Stanley Cup. The Flyers stunned the Boston Bruins, who owned home ice advantage entering the Final and a 19-game home unbeaten streak against Philadelphia (17-0-2).

The Philadelphia Flyers made history by becoming the first expansion team to win the Stanley Cup, reaching the summit in just their seventh NHL season. The Flyers stunned the Boston Bruins, who owned home ice advantage entering the Stanley Cup Final and a 19-game home unbeaten streak against Philadelphia (17-0-2). Flyers captain Bobby Clarke ended his team's drought at the Boston Garden in Game 2 by scoring two goals, the second in overtime. Goaltender Bernie Parent limited the Bruins to three goals in his three remaining wins, including a Game 6 shutout. Parent won the Conn Smythe Trophy and had a 12-5-0 record and 2.02 goals-against average in 17 games. Flyers head coach Fred Shero, well-known for sharing inspirational messages on the team chalkboard, wrote prior to Game 6, "Win today and we walk together forever." According to Clarke, the quote's popularity has endured for decades because Shero was right.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: Bobby Clarke
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Bernie Parent
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Rick MacLeish (14:48, 1st Period, Game 6)
Head Coach: Fred Shero
General Manager: Keith Allen

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Bobby Clarke C
Ross Lonsberry  LW
Rick MacLeish  C
Tom Bladon  D
Bernie Parent  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Quarterfinals: Atlanta Flames (4-0) 
Semifinals: New York Rangers (4-3)
Stanley Cup Final: Boston Bruins (4-2)

 

1975 Philadelphia Flyers

The Philadelphia Flyers repeated as Stanley Cup champions, defeating the Buffalo Sabres in the first Stanley Cup Final between two expansion teams. Flyers goaltender Bernie Parent became the first player to win the Conn Smythe Trophy in consecutive years.

Flyers goaltender Bernie Parent shone in the series, allowing only 12 goals in six games and clinched the Cup with a shutout for the second consecutive year. Parent became the first player to win the Conn Smythe Trophy in consecutive years and joined Boston's Bobby Orr as the only players to have won the award twice. Philadelphia's Rick MacLeish led all playoff scorers for the second consecutive year with 11-9-20 in 17 games. The Flyers received their toughest test of the playoffs from the upstart New York Islanders in the Semifinals. The Islanders had become just the second team in NHL history to successfully overcome a 3-0 series deficit against Pittsburgh in the Quarterfinals and were one game away from repeating the feat against Philadelphia until the Flyers won Game 7.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: Bobby Clarke
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Bernie Parent 
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Bob Kelly (0:11, 3rd Period, Game 6)
Head Coach: Fred Shero
General Manager: Keith Allen

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Bill Barber  LW
Bobby Clarke  C
Rick MacLeish  C
Jimmy Watson  D
Bernie Parent  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Preliminary Round: n/a 
Quarterfinals: Toronto Maple Leafs (4-0) 
Semifinals: New York Islanders (4-3)
Stanley Cup Final: Buffalo Sabres (4-2)

 

1976 Montreal Canadiens

Returning to the Stanley Cup Final after a two-year absence, the Montreal Canadiens swept Philadelphia to end the Flyers' two-year reign as champions. Montreal's Guy Lafleur scored his first two goals in the Final and both proved to be game winners.

With the sweep, the Canadiens completed the 19th Stanley Cup triumph in team history and heralded the start of a new dynasty - the first of four consecutive championships. The Canadiens prevailed despite the brilliance of Flyers forward Reg Leach, who scored four times in the series to finish the postseason with the all-time record of 19 playoff goals. Leach became the third player on a Stanley Cup Final loser to win the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP. Montreal had staked its claim as the NHL's best during the 1975-76 regular season, compiling the League's best record (58-11-11) for a then club-record 127 points.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: Yvan Cournoyer
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Reggie Leach (played for Flyers)
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Guy Lafleur (14:18, 3rd Period, Game 4)
Head Coach: Scotty Bowman
General Manager: Sam Pollock

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Guy Lafleur  RW
Peter Mahovlich  C
Steve Shutt  LW
Serge Savard  D
Ken Dryden  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Preliminary Round: n/a 
Quarterfinals: Chicago Blackhawks (4-0) 
Semifinals: New York Islanders (4-1)
Stanley Cup Final: Philadelphia Flyers (4-0)

 

1977 Montreal Canadiens

Meeting their rival Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1958, the Montreal Canadiens swept the series to capture their second consecutive championship. The dominant Canadiens went 60-8-12 during the regular season and 12-2 in the postseason.

Montreal extended its undefeated streak against Boston in the Final to six straight series. Jacques Lemaire, who scored the Stanley Cup-winner in overtime of Game 4, joined Maurice Richard (3) and Don Raleigh (2) as the only players to record more than one overtime goal in Cup Final play. Lemaire first scored in overtime against the St. Louis Blues in the 1968 Final. In Game 2, Ken Dryden posted his fourth shutout of the 1977 playoffs to tie the single-season record shared by five goaltenders. Guy Lafleur won the Conn Smythe Trophy, notching 9-17-26 in 14 games.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: Yvan Cournoyer
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Guy Lafleur 
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Jacques Lemaire (4:32, OT, G4)
Head Coach: Scotty Bowman
General Manager: Sam Pollock

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Guy Lafleur  RW
Jacques Lemaire  C
Steve Shutt  LW
Guy Lapointe  D
Ken Dryden  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Preliminary Round: n/a 
Quarterfinals: St. Louis Blues (4-0) 
Semifinals: New York Islanders (4-2)
Stanley Cup Final: Boston Bruins (4-0)

 

1978 Montreal Canadiens

The Montreal Canadiens, who lost just 10 regular-season games in 1977-78, similarly powered their way through postseason en route to the club's third consecutive Stanley Cup. Conn Smythe Trophy winner Larry Robinson led all playoff performers with 17 assists.

The Canadiens needed just nine games to reach the Stanley Final, going 4-1 against the Detroit Red Wings in the clubs' first postseason meeting since the 1966 Stanley Cup Final, and 4-0 against the Toronto Maple Leafs, whom they hadn't faced since the 1967 Final. Meeting the Boston Bruins for the championship in a rematch of their 1977 series, the Canadiens prevailed in six games. Conn Smythe Trophy winner Larry Robinson led all playoff performers with 17 assists and tied teammate Guy Lafleur (10 goals, 11 assists) for the overall playoff scoring lead with 21 points. Robinson was one of three Canadiens, including Doug Jarvis and Steve Shutt, to appear in all 95 games during the course of the season.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: Yvan Cournoyer
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Larry Robinson
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Mario Tremblay (9:20, 1st Period, Game 6)
Head Coach: Scotty Bowman
General Manager: Sam Pollock

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Guy Lafleur  RW
Jacques Lemaire  C
Steve Shutt  RW
Larry Robinson  D
Ken Dryden  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Preliminary Round: n/a 
Quarterfinals: Detroit Red Wings (4-1) 
Semifinals: Toronto Maple Leafs (4-0)
Stanley Cup Final: Boston Bruins (4-2)

 

1979 Montreal Canadiens

The Montreal Canadiens eliminated Original Six rivals Toronto, Boston and New York Rangers to capture their fourth straight Stanley Cup, marking the second-longest streak of championships in NHL history. Only the Canadiens' five-year stronghold on the Cup from 1956 to 1960 lasted longer.

Montreal's Game 5 series-winning effort against the Rangers came at the Forum, marking the first time since 1968 that the Canadiens won the Cup on home ice. After the series, forwards Jacques Lemaire and Yvan Cournoyer plus goaltender Ken Dryden retired from the NHL. The trio left the game with a combined total of 24 Cup victories among them. Head coach Scotty Bowman, who had amassed his fifth Cup title in seven seasons behind the Canadiens bench, also made his farewell appearance with the team. Forward Bob Gainey won the Conn Smythe Trophy, averaging a point per game (6-10-16) while stifling opposing forwards in the defensive zone.

KEY COMPONENTS

Captain: Yvan Cournoyer
Conn Smythe Trophy Winner: Bob Gainey
Stanley Cup-Winning Goal: Jacques Lemaire (1:02, 2nd Period, Game 5)
Head Coach: Scotty Bowman
General Manager: Irving Grundman

NOTABLE PLAYERS

Bob Gainey  LW
Guy Lafleur  RW
Jacques Lemaire  CD
Larry Robinson  D
Ken Dryden  G

ROAD TO THE CUP

Preliminary Round: n/a 
Quarterfinals: Toronto Maple Leafs (4-0) 
Semifinals: Boston Bruins (4-3)
Stanley Cup Final: New York Rangers (4-1)

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