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Frei: Avalanche’s 2000-01 team deservedly makes the cut to the NHL’s “Top 20 Greatest NHL Teams”

May 19th, 2017 at 7:40 PM
Aggregated By Sports Media 101

The 1969-70 Boston Bruins? What they’re most remembered for is captured in a single photograph (or the equivalent film snippet), showing Bobby Orr leaping through the air after scoring the Stanley Cup-winning goal in Game 4 of the Finals against St. Louis.

The 2000-01 Colorado Avalanche? It’s the sequence of captain Joe Sakic handing off the Stanley Cup to Ray Bourque, whose two decades of anticipation show on his face as â?? with Denver Post photgrapher John Leyba and others shooting away â?? he holds and thrusts it aloft.

That, plus homage to teams’ dynastic runs, are what struck me when looking over the list of the single-season “Top 20 Greatest NHL Teams” selected in fan voting in conjunction with the league’s 100th anniversary. It’s a marketing contrivance, yet fun. The first round cut the field from the NHL’s 96 Stanley Cup championship teams to 50, the second round got it down to 20 and the subsequent voting eventually will select the “Greatest NHL team.”

In those two cases, an iconic, summing-it-up moment is so memorable and powerful.

The final 20 is a modern-era list. That Bruins team is the farthest back, from the third season of the post-”Original Six” era. That shut out any teams from the six-team league, or even the earlier seasons when the NHL included as many as 10 franchises (that’s why “Original Six” calls for quotation marks).

The exclusion of the 1951-52 Red Wings with Gordie Howe and Ted Lindsay, and the 1955-56 …

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Tags: Boston Bruins, Colorado, Colorado Avalanche, Dallas Stars, Joe Sakic, Latest News, Los Angeles, Milan Hejduk, More Avalanche News, New Jersey, NHL, NHL playoffs, Patrick Roy, Ray Bourque, Sports, St. Louis Blues, Stanley Cup, Western Conference Finals

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