DENVER — In more than a century of postseason hockey, a team has won the Stanley Cup three times in a row on only five occasions. All in an era before free agency and the salary cap. With Tampa Bay just four victories from winning their 12th consecutive series and becoming the sixth three-peat winner in NHL history, here’s a look at how the Lightning stack up against hockey’s royalty.
— Consecutive series wins: 6
— The story: The Maple Leafs were utterly dominant in those three postseasons, winning 24 of the 29 games they played. They never went to a Game 7 and swept the Red Wings in the Stanley Cup Final in back-to-back seasons. The Leafs lost in the semifinals in 1950 but came back to win a fourth Stanley Cup in 1951.
— Hall of Famers: Syl Apps, Max Bentley, Turk Broda, Hap Day (coach), Ted Kennedy, Frank Mathers, Bud Poile, Harry Watson.
— Consecutive series wins: 10
— The story: The gold standard when it comes to repeat titles in the NHL. The Canadiens won five consecutive Stanley Cups, and none of them were particularly close. They went to Game 6 only two times in that five-year span, and finished with a flourish with back-to-back sweeps of Chicago and Toronto in the 1960 postseason. Overall, they were 40-9 in the playoffs.
— Hall of Famers: Jean Beliveau, Toe Blake (coach), Butch Bouchard, Bernie Geoffrion, Doug Harvey, Tom Johnson, Dickie Moore, Bert Olmstead, Jacques Plante, Henri Richard, Maurice Richard