Activities Sports & Athletics NHL Presidents' Trophy Not a Curse The award for top-scoring team is not a predictor of playoff failure Share PINTEREST Email Print Frederick Breedon / Getty Images Sports & Athletics Ice Hockey Basics Best of Ice Hockey Baseball Basketball Bicycling Billiards Bodybuilding Bowling Boxing Car Racing Cheerleading Cricket Extreme Sports Football Golf Gymnastics Martial Arts Professional Wrestling Skateboarding Skating Paintball Soccer Swimming & Diving Table Tennis Tennis Track & Field Volleyball Other Activities Learn More By Adam Gretz Adam Gretz writes exclusively about hockey and the National Hockey League (NHL). He is a member of the Professional Hockey Writers Association. our editorial process Adam Gretz Updated February 13, 2020 When it comes to NHL team awards, few seem to care about the Presidents' Trophy, which has been handed out annually since 1985–86 to the team that finishes the regular season with the most points in the standings. In the eyes of some fans, the award has little meaning in the league unless the team goes on to win the Stanley Cup, the trophy presented the winner of pro hockey's annual championship tournament. There is a belief that the President's Trophy carries with it a curse — that the team that wins this prize is destined not to win the Stanley Cup. That mistaken notion is a myth. Background of the Myth Only eight of the Presidents' Trophy winning teams have actually gone on to win the Stanley Cup, but three other teams have reached the finals but failed to win the title. Still, the statistics show that about one-third of teams that have won the trophy have gone on to at least compete in the NHL's championship series. Indeed, Presidents' Trophy-winning teams reach the Stanley Cup Final — and win it — more than any other seed in the playoffs. The Statistics More than half of NHL teams are thrown into the playoff tournament — which, essentially, starts a second season with teams participating in four best-of-seven series. The randomness of a best-of-seven series can sometimes lead to unexpected results. Top seeds are upset from time to time, but more often than not the top team in the regular season ends up at least reaching the NHL's final four, as these figures illustrate: Stanley Cup Winners: 8Lost Stanley Cup Final: 4Lost Conference Finals: 5Lost Second Round: 7Lost First Round: 6 Year-By-Year Look To get a clearer view of the myth of the President's Trophy "curse" — or lack thereof — it's helpful to view an annual listing trophy winners together with their eventual results in the playoffs. Information from recent years was compiled by Wikipedia. Year Presidents' Trophy Winner Playoff Result 2015-16 Washinton Capitals Lost Second Round 2014-15 New York Rangers Lost Conference Finals 2013-14 Boston Bruins Lost Second Round 2012-13 Chicago Blackhawks Won Stanley Cup 2011-12 Vancouver Canucks Lost First Round 2010-11 Vancouver Canucks Lost Stanley Cup Final 2009-10 Washington Capitals Lost First Round 2008-09 San Jose Sharks Lost First Round 2007-08 Detroit Red Wings Won Stanley Cup 2006-07 Buffalo Sabres Lost Conference Final 2005-06 Detroit Red Wings Lost First Round 2003-04 Detroit Red Wings Lost Second Round 2002-03 Ottawa Senators Lost Conference Final 2001-02 Detroit Red Wings Won Stanley Cup 2000-01 Colorado Avalanche Won Stanley Cup 1999-00 St. Louis Blues Lost First Round 1998-99 Dallas Stars Won Stanley Cup 1997-98 Dallas Stars Lost Stanley Cup Final 1996-97 Colorado Avalanche Lost Conference Final 1995-96 Detroit Red Wings Lost Conference Final 1994-95 Detroit Red Wings Lost Stanley Cup Final 1993-94 New York Rangers Won Stanley Cup 1992-93 Pittsburgh Penguins Lost Second round 1991-92 New York Rangers Lost Second Round 1990-91 Chicago Blackhawks Lost First Round 1989-90 Boston Bruins Lost Stanley Cup Final 1988-89 Calgary Flames Won Stanley Cup 1987-88 Calgary Flames Lost Second Round 1986-87 Edmonton Oilers Won Stanley Cup 1985-86 Edmonton Oilers Lost Second Round The 5 Highest Scoring Games in NHL History Stanley Cup Winners: The Complete List Most Stanley Cup Wins by Team Hockey History: The Time Line, 1917-1945 The Longest Games in NHL History Who Are the Original Six of the NHL? The Longest NHL Suspensions in Hockey History History of NHL Conferences and Divisions NHL Teams That Have Never Won the Stanley Cup 2006 World Junior Hockey Championships The Greatest Stanley Cup Comebacks in History Stephen Curry - NBA Superstar Bio of Golfer David Duval How Justin Thomas Became One of Golf's Rising Stars Players' Names Get Equal Billing With Teams on the Stanley Cup Arnold Palmer: Biography of 'The King'