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Eastern team guaranteed favorite in Cup final

With the top seeds in the West eliminated, the road to the Stanley Cup is less daunting from the East.

Updated: May 6, 2003, 4:55 PM ET
By Chris Stevenson | Special to ESPN.com

PHILADELPHIA -- Since 1994, the road to the Stanley Cup always looked like an arduous trek to a mountain top a team in the Eastern Conference.

STANLEY CUP: WEST VS. EAST

Stanley Cup winners since 1994, when the NHL adopted a conference-based seeding system, with regular-season points in parenthesis (* -- team with home-ice advantage in the Stanley Cup final):

YEAR

WEST

EAST

1993

Los Angeles

Montreal*

--->

1994

Vancouver ...

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