NHL Playoffs 2012: Can the LA Kings Become the Most Dominant Playoff Team Ever?

The Los Angeles Kings have steamrolled their way through the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs. The eighth seeded Kings defeated the President’s Trophy winning Vancouver Canucks in five games, before sweeping the St. Louis Blues, the No. 2 seed, in four games.

The Kings currently hold a 3-0 series lead over the Phoenix Coyotes in the Western Conference Final. At 11-1, the Kings are on pace to become one of the most dominant playoff teams ever, at least in terms of wins and losses.

With that said, it’s important to consider the teams that the Kings will be compared to. These are teams who have dominated the playoffs during different eras of NHL history, under a variety of playoff formats.

Since 1927, only NHL teams have competed for the Stanley Cup. In that time only three teams have managed to win every single playoff game en route to hoisting the Cup.

The 1929 Boston Bruins went 5-0, the 1952 Detroit Red Wings went 8-0 and the 1960 Montreal Canadiens went 8-0.

There are a number of champions who lost only one game during their playoff run, which is where the Kings stand now. Most came prior to the 1967-68 expansion, and therefore they only had to win eight games to lift the Stanley Cup. This makes them less dominant than the unbeaten teams listed above.

However, the 1968 and 1976 Montreal Canadiens each compiled 12-1 records on their way to winning the Stanley Cup.

Starting in the 1987 postseason, the NHL changed its first-round series from a best-of-five, to a best-of-seven format. This meant the Stanley Cup champion would be required to win 16 games, a format that stands to this day.

The most dominant playoff team of this era is the 1988 Edmonton Oilers. As the No. 2 seed in the Smythe Division, the Oilers lost only two playoff games en route to their fourth Stanley Cup championship.

However, there is one catch to the 1988 Oilers 16-2 re...

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