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The 1990–91 NHL season was the 74th season of the National Hockey League (NHL). The season lasted from October 4, 1990 to May 25, 1991.

The Stanley Cup winners were the Pittsburgh Penguins, who won the best of seven series 4–2 against the Minnesota North Stars.

This was the last NHL season to end in the month of May.

League Business[]

At meetings in Florida in December, the NHL Board of Governors awarded provisional franchises to groups from Ottawa and Tampa.

The Ottawa franchise marked a return to one of the original cities of the NHL, while Tampa meant the first franchise in the sunbelt state of Florida.

In a later book published by NHL president Gil Stein, Stein revealed that the two groups were the only ones of the applicants who agreed to the $50 million expansion fee without question.

The Ottawa Senators and Tampa Bay Lightning begin play in the 1992–93 NHL season.

Regular Season[]

Final standings[]

Note: W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, GF= Goals For, GA = Goals Against, Pts = Points

Wales Conference

Template:1990–91 Adams Division standings Template:1990–91 Patrick Division standings

Campbell Conference

Template:1990–91 Norris Division standings Template:1990–91 Smythe Division standings

Playoffs[]

Main article: 1991 Stanley Cup playoffs

The North Stars defeated the Edmonton Oilers to become the first Norris Division team to appear in the Stanley Cup Finals since the 1981 realignment.

A record high 92 playoff games were held, and for the first time since the 1973 playoffs, no team was swept in a playoff series, it would not happen again until the 2002 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Note: All dates in 1991

Playoff bracket[]

Template:16TeamBracket

Final series[]

The championship was the first in Penguins history.

Main article: 1991 Stanley Cup Finals
Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Minnesota North Stars
Date Away Score Home Score Notes
May 15 Minnesota 5 Pittsburgh 4
May 17 Minnesota 1 Pittsburgh 4
May 19 Pittsburgh 1 Minnesota 3
May 21 Pittsburgh 5 Minnesota 3
May 23 Minnesota 4 Pittsburgh 6
May 25 Pittsburgh 8 Minnesota 0
Pittsburgh wins series 4–2
and Stanley Cup
Mario Lemieux (Pittsburgh)
wins Conn Smythe Trophy

NHL Awards[]

Presidents' Trophy: Chicago Blackhawks
Prince of Wales Trophy: Pittsburgh Penguins
Clarence S. Campbell Bowl: Minnesota North Stars
Art Ross Trophy: Wayne Gretzky, Los Angeles Kings
Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy: Dave Taylor, Los Angeles Kings
Calder Memorial Trophy: Ed Belfour, Chicago Blackhawks
Conn Smythe Trophy: Mario Lemieux, Pittsburgh Penguins
Frank J. Selke Trophy: Dirk Graham, Chicago Blackhawks
Hart Memorial Trophy: Brett Hull, St. Louis Blues
Jack Adams Award: Brian Sutter, St. Louis Blues
James Norris Memorial Trophy: Ray Bourque, Boston Bruins
King Clancy Memorial Trophy: Dave Taylor, Los Angeles Kings
Lady Byng Memorial Trophy: Wayne Gretzky, Los Angeles Kings
Lester B. Pearson Award: Brett Hull, St. Louis Blues
NHL Plus/Minus Award: Marty McSorley, Los Angeles Kings & Theo Fleury, Calgary Flames
Vezina Trophy: Ed Belfour, Chicago Blackhawks
William M. Jennings Trophy: Ed Belfour, Chicago Blackhawks
Lester Patrick Trophy: Rod Gilbert, Mike Ilitch

All-Star teams[]

First Team   Position   Second Team
Ed Belfour, Chicago Blackhawks G Patrick Roy, Montreal Canadiens
Ray Bourque, Boston Bruins D Chris Chelios, Chicago Blackhawks
Al MacInnis, Calgary Flames D Brian Leetch, New York Rangers
Wayne Gretzky, Los Angeles Kings C Adam Oates, St. Louis Blues
Brett Hull, St. Louis Blues RW Cam Neely, Boston Bruins
Luc Robitaille, Los Angeles Kings LW Kevin Stevens, Pittsburgh Penguins

Player stats[]

Scoring leaders[]

Note: GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points, PIM = Penalties in minutes

Player Team GP G A Pts PIM
Wayne Gretzky Los Angeles Kings 78 41 122 163 16
Brett Hull St. Louis Blues 78 86 45 131 22
Adam Oates St. Louis Blues 61 25 90 115 29
Mark Recchi Pittsburgh Penguins 78 40 73 113 48
John Cullen Pittsburgh Penguins / Hartford Whalers 78 39 71 110 103
Joe Sakic Quebec Nordiques 80 48 61 109 24
Steve Yzerman Detroit Red Wings 80 51 57 108 34
Theoren Fleury Calgary Flames 79 51 53 104 136
Al MacInnis Calgary Flames 78 28 75 103 90
Steve Larmer Chicago Blackhawks 80 44 57 101 79

Milestones[]

Debuts[]

The following is a list of players of note who played their first NHL game in 1990–91 (listed with their first team, asterisk(*) marks debut in playoffs):

  • Robert Reichel, Calgary Flames
  • Dominik Hasek, Chicago Blackhawks
  • Keith Primeau, Detroit Red Wings
  • Mike Sillinger, Detroit Red Wings
  • Sergei Fedorov, Detroit Red Wings
  • Bobby Holik, Hartford Whalers
  • Geoff Sanderson, Hartford Whalers
  • John LeClair, Montreal Canadiens
  • Patrice Brisebois, Montreal Canadiens
  • Sean Hill*, Montreal Canadiens
  • Doug Weight*, New York Rangers
  • Tony Amonte*, New York Rangers
  • Mike Ricci, Philadelphia Flyers
  • Jaromir Jagr, Pittsburgh Penguins
  • Mats Sundin, Quebec Nordiques
  • Owen Nolan, Quebec Nordiques
  • Petr Nedved, Vancouver Canucks
  • Dmitri Khristich, Washington Capitals
  • Peter Bondra, Washington Capitals
  • Kris Draper, Winnipeg Jets

Last games[]

The following is a list of players of note that played their last game in the NHL in 1990–91 (listed with their last team):

  • Gord Kluzak, Boston Bruins
  • Tony McKegney, Chicago Blackhawks
  • Glen Hanlon, Detroit Red Wings
  • Don Maloney, New York Islanders
  • Lindy Ruff, New York Rangers
  • Pete Peeters, Philadelphia Flyers
  • Guy Lafleur, Quebec Nordiques
  • Harold Snepsts, St. Louis Blues
  • Paul MacLean, St. Louis Blues
  • Rick Meagher, St. Louis Blues
  • Stan Smyl, Vancouver Canucks
  • Joel Quenneville, Washington Capitals

Trading deadline[]

  • March 4, 1991: Ron Francis, Grant Jennings, and Ulf Samuelsson traded from Hartford to Pittsburgh for John Cullen, Jeff Parker, and Zarley Zalapski.
  • March 5, 1991: Allan Bester traded from Toronto to Detroit for Detroit's sixth round pick in 1991 Entry Draft.
  • March 5, 1991: Geoff Courtnall, Robert Dirk, Sergio Momesso, Cliff Ronning ,and future considerations traded from St. Louis to Vancouver for Dan Quinn and Garth Butcher.
  • March 5, 1991: Mark Hunter traded from Calgary to Hartford for Carey Wilson.
  • March 5, 1991: Mark Pederson traded from Montreal to Philadelphia for Philadelphia's second round pick in 1991 Entry Draft and future considerations.
  • March 5, 1991: Keith Osborne traded from St. Louis to Toronto for Darren Veitch and future considerations.
  • March 5, 1991: Ken Priestlay traded from Buffalo to Pittsburgh for Tony Tanti.
  • March 5, 1991: Dana Murzyn traded from Calgary to Vancouver for Ron Stern, Kevan Guy and future considerations.
  • March 5, 1991: Kim Issel]] traded from Edmonton to Pittsburgh for Brad Aitken.
  • March 5, 1991: Steve Weeks traded from Vancouver to Buffalo for future considerations.
  • March 5, 1991: Marc Bureau traded from Calgary to Minnesota for Minnesota's third round choice in 1991 Entry Draft.
  • March 5, 1991: Joey Kocur and Per Djoos traded from Detroit to NY Rangers for Kevin Miller, Jim Cummins and Dennis Vial.
  • March 5, 1991: Bobby Reynolds traded from Toronto to Washington for Robert Mendel.
  • March 5, 1991: Mike McNeill and Ryan McGill traded from Chicago to Quebec for Paul Gillis and Daniel Vincelette.
  • March 5, 1991: Ilkka Sinisalo traded from Minnesota to Los Angeles for Los Angeles' eighth round choice in 1991 Entry Draft.

See also[]

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