The National Hockey League, or NHL, has a rich history of iconic players, thrilling games, and unforgettable moments. For many hockey fans, the NHL represents the pinnacle of the sport, with its intense competition, skilled athletes, and passionate fan base.
Within the NHL, there are two conferences: the Eastern Conference and the Western Conference. The Eastern Conference is made up of two divisions, the Atlantic Division and the Metropolitan Division. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the Metropolitan Division, and specifically at its championship teams over the years.
The Metropolitan Division was established in 2013 as part of the NHL’s realignment plan, meant to balance out the number of teams in each division. It currently consists of eight teams: the New York Rangers, New York Islanders, New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia Flyers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Columbus Blue Jackets, Washington Capitals, and Carolina Hurricanes. Over the years, these teams have had their share of ups and downs, but each has had its own historic moments and championship victories.
One of the most dominant teams in the Metropolitan Division is the Pittsburgh Penguins. Led by superstar players such as Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin, the Penguins have won the Metropolitan Division title five times, including back-to-back wins in 2013-14 and 2014-15. In these seasons, the Penguins went on to win the Stanley Cup, solidifying their place as one of the premier teams in the NHL.
Another notable team in the Metropolitan Division is the Washington Capitals. Known for their high-powered offense and strong goaltending, the Capitals have won the Metropolitan Division title eight times. However, it wasn’t until 2018 that they finally captured their first Stanley Cup, after years of disappointments in the playoffs. Led by captain Alex Ovechkin, the Capitals’ win was a long-awaited moment for their loyal fans.
The New York Rangers, one of the original six teams in the NHL, have a storied history and have also seen success in the Metropolitan Division. With four division titles under their belt, the Rangers have made it to the Stanley Cup Finals five times, winning the coveted trophy once in 1994. This victory was a significant moment for the franchise and its fans, as it ended a 54-year drought without a Stanley Cup win.
The Metropolitan Division has also seen some championship success from some of its newer teams, such as the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Carolina Hurricanes. The Blue Jackets won their first ever division title in 2016-17, making it to the playoffs for the third time in franchise history. The Hurricanes, on the other hand, have made it to the playoffs numerous times since their move from Hartford, but their biggest moment came in 2006 when they won the Stanley Cup for the first and only time in franchise history.
The other three teams in the division, the New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia Flyers, and New York Islanders, have each had their share of successes and challenges over the years. The Devils have won the Metropolitan Division title three times and have won the Stanley Cup three times as well, including back-to-back wins in 2000 and 2001. The Flyers have only won the division title once, but they have a passionate fan base and have made it to the Stanley Cup Finals eight times. The Islanders, meanwhile, have won the Stanley Cup four times, but have only won the division title twice, with their most recent win coming in 2018-19.
The Metropolitan Division may not have the same level of glamour and star power as the Atlantic Division, which includes teams like the Boston Bruins, Montreal Canadiens, and Toronto Maple Leafs. But what it lacks in big-name markets, it makes up for in fierce competition between its teams. Every season, the Metropolitan Division is a battle to the top, with each team fighting for the chance to be crowned division and conference champions.
In a league as competitive and physically demanding as the NHL, winning a division title is no small feat. It takes hard work, dedication, and a little bit of luck to come out on top. And for the teams in the Metropolitan Division, their championship years will forever hold a special place in their history and in the hearts of their fans.
The Metropolitan Division of the NHL has seen its fair share of ups and downs over the years. From historic victories to heartbreaking losses, each team has carved out a unique place for themselves in the league’s rich history. These championship years live on in the memories of fans and serve as a reminder of the intense passion and dedication required to succeed in the sport of hockey.