|ESPN.com: NHL||[Print without images]|
|What was the best dynasty of all time?|
A panel of 41 writers were asked their opinions on various great debates in hockey. Multiple choices were not provided so as not to color the outcome.
The Oilers of the 1980s won four Stanley Cups and featured a cast that included Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Grant Fuhr, Paul Coffey, Jari Kurri and Kevin Lowe.
|N.Y. Islanders (1980s)||10.1%|
After three expansions in the early 1970s, the NHL was dreadfully weak when
the Canadiens won those four straight Cups.
Six teams were added in the 1970s. It's true four more were added in 1979, but they were established WHA franchises, including the Oilers themselves. By 1983-84, when the Oilers won their first of five Cups, there was far more parity in the NHL.
More Europeans were arriving, adding to its strength in the 1980s. No Canadiens club ever had a player as good as Wayne Gretzky. Nor did it ever score 446 goals, as Edmonton did in 1983-84. And even without Gretzky, the Oilers had enough depth to win again in 1990.