The Winnipeg Jets and the Nashville Predators have faced against each other in the second round of 2017-2018 season of NHL Stanley Cup playoffs. Nashville finished the season with 117 points and won the President Trophy for having the most points in the league. Their Central division rivals, Winnipeg Jets finished the season with 114 points with the second most points in the league. In the old playoffs format the top 2 seeds would never meet before conference finals, but given the new playoffs format, these division rivals have to play one another before making it to the conference finals.

How many times the top 2 seeds in the league have played in the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs since the 1979 - 1980 season where the 16 team playoffs format was introduced?

2 Answers 2


Here are some such pairs (the team with most points - Presidents' Trophy winner - is listed first):

  • 1983–84 - Edmonton Oilers and New York Islanders (the met in the Stanley Cup Finals, Oilers won 4-1)
  • 1984–85 - Philadelphia Flyers and Edmonton Oiler (in the Stanley Cup Finals, Edmonton won 4-1)
  • 1986–87 - Edmonton Oilers and Philadelphia Flyers (in the finals, Edmonton won 4-3)
  • 1988–89 - Calgary Flames and Montreal Canadiens (in the Finals, Calgary won 4-2)
  • 1993–94 - New York Ranges and New Jersey Devils (in the conference finals, Ranges won 4-3)
  • 1995–96 - Detroit Red Wings and Colorado Avalanche (conference finals, Colorado won 4-2)
  • 2000–01 - Colorado Avalanche and New Jersey Devils (in the finals, Colorado won 4-3)
  • 2016–17 - Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins (in the second round, Penguins won 4-3)
  • 2017–18 - Nashville Predators and Winnipeg Jets (second round, Winnipeg won 4-3)

It happened at least one other time, in the 2000-01 NHL season.

The Colorado Avalanche and the New Jersey Devils had the two best records in the regular season and they met in the Stanley Cup, with the Avalanche winning.

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