The Ice Kings: NHL's legendary teams
While the record-setting Blackhawks are enjoying a special season, the NHL history books are loaded with the exploits of some amazing teams. Scot Gregor offers this list of the NHL's best teams of all-time:
1. Montreal Canadiens, 1976-77
Season record: 60-8-12. Coach: Scotty Bowman. Key players: Bowman, still working as a Blackhawks special advisor, marvels about the 11 players on this powerhouse club who are in the NHL Hall of Fame. Guy Lafleur, Larry Robinson, Ken Dryden and Steve Shutt get special nods. Notable nugget: Finishing with most regular-season points (132) in history, Habs were an astounding 33-1-6 in home games. End game: Montreal swept Philadelphia in the Stanley Cup Finals.
2. 1983-84 Edmonton Oilers
Record: 57-18-5. Coach: Glen Sather. Key players: Wayne Gretzky led star-studded team with an astounding 87 goals and 205 points. Jari Kurri, Paul Coffey and Mark Messier weren't too shabby, either. Notable nugget: Headed by Gretzky, the Oilers had five players with 99 or more total points and eight players scored 20 or more goals. End game: Edmonton beat the New York Islanders 4-1 in the Finals.
3. 1988-89 Calgary Flames
Record: 54-17-9. Coach: Terry Crisp. Key players: Joey Mullen, Joe Nieuwendyk, Doug Gilmour, Mike Vernon. Notable nugget: The Flames beat the Blackhawks 4-1 in Conference Finals. End game: Calgary beat the Canadiens 4-2 to win the Cup.
4. 1977-78 Montreal Canadiens
Record: 59-10-11. Coach: Scotty Bowman. Key players: Guy Lafleur, Ken Dryden, Bob Gainey, Steve Shutt, Jacques Lemaire. Notable nugget: From mid-December to late February, the Canadiens put together a 28-game unbeaten streak (23-0-5). End game: Montreal beat the Boston Bruins 4-2 in the Stanley Cup Finals.
5. 1981-82 New York Islanders
Record: 48-18-14. Coach: Al Arbour. Key players: Mike Bossy, Denis Potvin, Bryan Trottier, Billy Smith. Notable nugget: From Jan. 21-Feb. 20, the Isles went 15-0. End game: The Islanders swept Vancouver for a third straight Stanley Cup.
6. 1970-71 Boston Bruins
Record: 54-13-11. Coach: Tom Johnson. Key players: Phil Esposito, Bobby Orr, Johnny Bucyk, Gerry Chevers. Notable nugget: After starting season 8-5-1, Bruins went on a 40-3-8 roll. End game: Boston beat N.Y. Rangers 4-2 to win the Cup.
7. 2001-02 Detroit Red Wings
Record: 51-17-10. Coach: Scotty Bowman. Key players: Steve Yzerman, Nicklas Lindstrom, Sergei Federov, Dominik Hasek, Brendan Shanahan. Notable nugget: The Red Wings opened the season with a 22-3-1 record. End game: Detroit beat the Carolina Hurricanes 4-1 to win the Cup.
8. 2000-01 Colorado Avalanche
Record: 52-16-10. Coach: Bob Hartley. Key players: Joe Sakic, Patrick Roy, Peter Forsberg, Raymond Bourque. Notable nugget: Roy was brilliant with 4 playoff shutouts, including 2 in the Finals. End game: Avs beat Devils in 7 to win the Cup.
9. 1986-87 Edmonton Oilers
Record: 50-24-6. Coach: Glen Sather. Key players: Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Glenn Anderson, Grant Fuhr, Paul Coffey. Notable nugget: In the opening round of the playoffs, Gretzky had 1 goal and 6 assists to lead a 13-3 win over the Kings. End game: Beat Philadelphia 4-3 in the Stanley Cup Finals.
10. 1974-75 Philadelphia Flyers
Record: 51-18-11. Coach: Fred Shero. Key players: Bobby Clarke, Bernie Parent, Rick MacLeish, Reggie Leach, Bill Barber. Notable nugget: There's a reason the Flyers were known as the "Broad Street Bullies." Forward Dave Schultz set an NHL record with 472 minutes in penalties. End game: Beat Buffalo in 6 to win the Cup.