The greatest hockey teams of all time are the teams that have dominated the sport throughout its history. These teams have won the most Stanley Cups, the most conference championships, and the most Presidents’ Trophies. They have had the most Hall of Fame players and the most All-Stars. They have been the most dominant teams of their respective eras. Keep reading to learn about the greatest hockey teams of all time!
The Chicago Blackhawks
The Chicago Blackhawks are a professional ice hockey team based in Chicago, Illinois. They are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The club was founded on September 25, 1926, as one of the Original Six teams of the NHL and is one of the “Original Six” teams still in existence today. The team has had success throughout its history, winning six Stanley Cups—the most in NHL history for a U.S.-based team—as well as making it to thirteen Stanley Cup Finals.
The Blackhawks have been especially successful since their revival in the early 1990s; they have won five championships between 2010 and 2015, including three consecutive titles from 2013 to 2015, becoming only the fourth team in NHL history to do so. With their sixth Stanley Cup win in 2015, they also became the first team to win multiple championships within a four-year span since the Detroit Red Wings did so between 1997 and 2002. Led by captain Jonathan Toews and superstar Patrick Kane, both originally drafted by Chicago in 2006, they are one of the most popular franchises in all of sports with a passionate fan base that regularly sells out United Center.
The Los Angeles Kings
The Los Angeles Kings are a professional ice hockey team based in Los Angeles, California. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The Kings were founded on June 5, 1967, as one of the six inaugural teams in the league.
The Kings won their first Stanley Cup championship in 2012, becoming the second NHL franchise to win all four major championships (the Montreal Canadiens being the first). In 2014, they became the fastest American-born team to win three Stanley Cups, doing so in just nine years. As of 2019, the Kings have won two more Stanley Cups, for a total of five. The team plays its home games at Staples Center, an arena shared with fellow NHL team Anaheim Ducks and NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers.
The Pittsburgh Penguins
The Pittsburgh Penguins are a professional hockey team based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The team was founded in 1967 as one of the first expansion teams in the National Hockey League (NHL) and has played its home games at the Consol Energy Center since 2010. The Penguins are one of the most successful franchises in NHL history, having won five Stanley Cup championships (1991, 1992, 2009, 2016, 2017).
The Penguins were founded as part of the NHL’s first wave of expansion teams in 1967. The franchise was awarded to Pittsburgh after a group led by Tony O’Neill unsuccessfully bid for an NHL franchise in Philadelphia. The Penguins made their debut on October 11, 1967, against the Montreal Canadiens and lost 7–1. They went on to finish their inaugural season with a record of 23-39-14 and failed to make the playoffs.
The Penguins struggled during their early years and did not post a winning record until 1976-77 when they finished with a 38-33-9 record under head coach Red Kelly. In 1979-80, led by head coach Bob Johnson, the Penguins made their first appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals but were swept by the New York Islanders. After Johnson’s death from cancer midway through the 1991–92 season, Herb Brooks took over as head coach and led the team to victory in Game 6 of the Finals against the Chicago Blackhawks to win their first Stanley Cup championship.
Since then, Mario Lemieux (the only player to have his number retired by both Pittsburgh and Montreal), Sidney Crosby (the youngest captain ever to lead his team to a Stanley Cup), Evgeni Malkin (a three-time winner of both Art Ross Trophy and Hart Memorial Trophy), Phil Kessel (an Olympic gold medalist) have all become synonymous with success for this storied franchise.
The New York Islanders
area. The team is a member of the Metropolitan Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The franchise was founded in 1972 as one of the league’s original teams and has played at Barclays Center since 2015.
The Islanders won four consecutive Stanley Cup championships from 1980 to 1983, with players such as Bryan Trottier, Mike Bossy, Denis Potvin, and Billy Smith. Al Arbour coached the team to all four titles. After winning their fourth championship, they reached the Stanley Cup Finals again in 1984 but lost to the Edmonton Oilers. They would not make another appearance in the Finals until 1993 when they lost to Wayne Gretzky and the Los Angeles Kings.
The Islanders returned to prominence in 2015 after hiring head coach Jack Capuano and general manager, Garth Snow. That year, they made it to the second round of the playoffs for only the second time since 1993 before being eliminated by Washington Capitals. The following season, they won their first division title since 1988 and advanced to their first conference finals since 1993; however, they were once again defeated by Washington.
The Icemen are a professional hockey team that competes in the NHL. The team is based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, and was founded in 1971. The team won the Stanley Cup twice, in 1978 and in 1990, and are a member of the Central Division of the Western Conference. Their most notable players are Charles Williams, Garet Hunt, and Jacob Panetta.
Overall, the greatest hockey teams of all time are important because they have set the standard for what is possible in the sport. They have inspired other teams and players to reach new heights and have helped to shape the game into what it is today.