Skip to main content


Odds not in Oilers' favour after going down 2-0 in Stanley Cup Final


The Edmonton Oilers have their backs against the wall after dropping the opening two games of the Stanley Cup Final against the Florida Panthers in Sunrise. 

Teams facing a 2-0 deficit in the championship series have come back to win just five times in 54 attempts. This means the Panthers have a 90.7 per cent of capturing the franchise's first Stanley Cup, according to past results in NHL history. 

The only time the Oilers have rallied back from a 2-0 deficit in a best-of-seven series was the last time they made a run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2006. Edmonton defeated the San Jose Sharks four straight times after losing the opening two games of their second-round series that year. 

The last time a team accomplished the feat in the Cup Final was in 2011, when the Boston Bruins broke the hearts of Vancouver Canucks fans everywhere with a Game 7 win on the road despite a slow start to the series. 

Seven teams have taken 2-0 leads in Stanley Cup Finals in the 12 years since, all finishing the job to hoist Lord Stanley. 

Let's take a closer look at the teams that have erased 2-0 deficits to come back and win the Stanley Cup in the past. 


Toronto Maple Leafs (1942)

Not only were the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs one of five teams in NHL history to win a Stanley Cup after falling to a 2-0 series deficit, but they were the first and only team to come back after being down 3-0. 

The Detroit Red Wings took both games at Maple Leaf Gardens and then routed Toronto on home ice in Game 3 by a score of 5-2 to take a stranglehold in the series. 

In Game 4, the Wings took a 2-0 lead in the second period before the Leafs stormed back as Nick Metz scored the winner in the third period for the 4-3 victory. 

The final moments of the game saw Red Wings coach Jack Adams punch the referee after a couple late penalties were called against his team. Adams was suspended indefinitely and missed the rest of the series. 

Back on home ice, Toronto hammered Detroit 9-3 in Game 5 before earning a shutout victory in Game 6 to send the series to a do-or-die Game 7 at Maple Leaf Garden.

Sweeney Schriner scored two goals in the third period of the final game as the Maple Leafs won their fourth Stanley Cup in franchise history and first since 1932. 


Montreal Canadiens (1966)

Henri Richard

The Montreal Canadiens finished first in the standings during the 1965-66 regular season, 16 points better than the fourth-place Detroit Red Wings

The wide disparity in the standings wasn't evident to start the Stanley Cup Final as the Wings, led by a 38-year-old Gordie Howe, won both games at the Montreal Forum to take a 2-0 series lead. 

Habs winger Gilles Tremblay netted two third period goals in Game 3 to pick up the 4-2 victory before Ralph Backstrom scored the late winner in Game 4 to even the series at 2-2. 

After coasting to a 5-1 victory in Game 5 in Montreal, the Canadiens had the chance to capture their 14th Stanley Cup in franchise history and their seventh in 11 seasons. 

At 2:20 of the first overtime period in Game 6, Henri Richard, nicknamed the "Pocket Rocket," scored his only goal of that postseason to capture the championship for the Habs. 


Montreal Canadiens (1971)

Montreal Canadiens

The third time a team came back from a 2-0 series deficit in the Stanley Cup Final also marked an end of an era in Montreal. 

The 1970-71 season was the last for legendary Habs captain Jean Beliveau and the very first for future Hall of Fame goalie Ken Dryden. 

Montreal lost Games 1 and 2 on the road against the Chicago Blackhawks before winning four of the next five games to capture the 17th Cup in franchise history, including No. 10 for the retiring Beliveau. 

The series took an interesting turn after the Canadiens were shut out in Game 5. Henri Richard called out head coach Al MacNeil, calling him the "worst coach [he had] ever played for," which led to death threats and a bodyguard presence for MacNeil in Game 6.

Chicago took a 2-0 lead in Game 7 before Montreal tallied three straight goals, including Richard's winner early in the third period. 

Brothers Frank and Peter Mahovlich combined for nine goals for the Habs in the series. 


Pittsburgh Penguins (2009)

Sidney Crosby Penguins

The 2009 Stanley Cup Final featured the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins going head-to-head for the second straight season after the Wings captured the Cup the previous year in six games. 

The Red Wings looked well on their way to a title defence after picking up a pair of 3-1 victories at Joe Louis Arena to open the series. 

In Pittsburgh, the Penguins won both Games 3 and 4 by a score of 4-2 as young superstars Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby led the way. 

With Pavel Datsyuk returning to Detroit's lineup for the first time in the series, the Red Wings routed the Penguins 5-0 in Game 5 to pull within one game of a Stanley Cup victory. 

Following a 2-1 victory by Pittsburgh in Game 6, the series would be decided back in Detroit in Game 7. 

Max Talbot scored twice for the Penguins in the second period to take 2-0 lead. The second period also featured Sidney Crosby leaving the game due to a knee injury.

From the sidelines, Crosby watched the Penguins hold on in the final period to win the franchise's third Stanley Cup and first since 1992. 

Malkin won the Conn Smythe Trophy and a 21-year-old Crosby became the youngest captain to hoist Lord Stanley. 


Boston Bruins (2011)

The Boston Bruins are the most recent team to come back from a 2-0 deficit in the Stanley Cup Final. 

Boston squared off with the Presidents’ Trophy-winning Vancouver Canucks in 2011.

Roberto Luongo stopped all 36 shots by the Bruins in a 1-0 Game 1 victory before Alex Burrows scored the winner just 11 seconds into overtime of Game 2 to give the Canucks a 2-0 lead heading to Boston. 

Despite owning all the momentum, the Canucks suffered a Bruin beatdown in Boston, losing 8-1 in a disastrous Game 3 followed by a 4-0 shutout in Game 4. 

Luongo managed to stand on his head in Game 5, picking up his second 1-0 shutout victory of the series. 

The Bruins took a 3-0 first period lead in Game 6, eventually winning 5-2 to force a deciding Game 7 in Vancouver. 

Vancouver came out flat in Game 7 as Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand each scored twice alongside a 37-save shutout performance by Tim Thomas to propel the B's to their first championship since 1972. 

At age 37, Thomas became the oldest player to win the Conn Smythe Trophy.

The heartbreak turned to embarrassment for Vancouver following the game as the city infamously rioted in the downtown core, resulting in millions of dollars in damages as well as dozens of arrests.