The Presidents' Trophy is an award presented by the National Hockey League (NHL) to the team that finishes with the most points in the league during the regular season. If two teams tie for the most points, then the trophy goes to the team with the most wins. The winning team is also awarded $350,000 in cash bonuses. The Presidents' Trophy has been awarded 27 times to 15 different teams since first being awarded in 1985. The most recent winner is the Tampa Bay Lightning for the 2018–19 NHL season.
|Given for||National Hockey League team with the most points (best record) in the regular season|
|First award||1985–86 NHL season|
|First winner||Edmonton Oilers|
|Most wins||Detroit Red Wings (6)|
|Most recent||Tampa Bay Lightning (1)|
The trophy was introduced at the start of the 1985–86 NHL season by the league's Board of Governors. Before the 1985–86 NHL season, the best team in the league during the regular season was allowed to hang a banner stating "NHL League Champions". The winning team is also awarded 350,000 Canadian dollars, to be shared between the team and its players. The Presidents' Trophy winner is guaranteed home-ice advantage in all four rounds of the Stanley Cup playoffs, provided the team goes that far, so it remains the most likely position to produce the cup winner.
From 1937 to 1968, the same rules now used for winning the Presidents' Trophy were used to award the Prince of Wales Trophy. With the Modern Era expansion in the 1967–68 season and the start of the West Division, the Wales Trophy was awarded to the team that finished in first place in the East Division during the regular season. However, no trophy was awarded to the team that finished with the best overall record in the league during this period, and no trophy at all was awarded from the 1981–82 season through the 1984–85 season; the Wales and Campbell trophies were transferred to the playoff champions of those conferences in 1981–82. A cash bonus was given to each player on the team with the league's best regular-season record during these years, to which the Presidents' Trophy was added in 1985–86.
The only teams to have won the Presidents' Trophy more than twice are the Detroit Red Wings with six and the Washington Capitals with three. However, the Montreal Canadiens have finished first overall 21 times, the most times in league history, although they have yet to win the Presidents' Trophy. Detroit is second with 18 first-overall finishes.
Bold Team with the most points ever accumulated in a season during the trophy's existence.
|Year||Winner||Points||Margin||Win #||Playoff Result|
|1985–86||Edmonton Oilers||119||9||1||Lost Division Finals (CGY)|
|1986–87||Edmonton Oilers||106||6||2||Won Stanley Cup (PHI)|
|1987–88||Calgary Flames||105||2||1||Lost Division Finals (EDM)|
|1988–89||Calgary Flames||117||2||2||Won Stanley Cup (MTL)|
|1989–90||Boston Bruins||101||2||1||Lost Stanley Cup Finals (EDM)|
|1990–91||Chicago Blackhawks||106||1||1||Lost Division Semifinals (MNS)|
|1991–92||New York Rangers||105||7||1||Lost Division Finals (PIT)|
|1992–93||Pittsburgh Penguins||119||10||1||Lost Division Finals (NYI)|
|1993–94||New York Rangers||112||6||2||Won Stanley Cup (VAN)|
|1994–95||Detroit Red Wings||[nb 2]70||5||1||Lost Stanley Cup Finals (NJD)|
|1995–96||Detroit Red Wings||131||27||2||Lost Conference Finals (COL)|
|1996–97||Colorado Avalanche||107||3||1||Lost Conference Finals (DET)|
|1997–98||Dallas Stars||109||2||1||Lost Conference Finals (DET)|
|1998–99||Dallas Stars||114||9||2||Won Stanley Cup (BUF)|
|1999–2000||St. Louis Blues||114||6||1||Lost Conference Quarterfinals (SJS)|
|2000–01||Colorado Avalanche||118||7||2||Won Stanley Cup (NJD)|
|2001–02||Detroit Red Wings||116||15||3||Won Stanley Cup (CAR)|
|2002–03||Ottawa Senators||113||2||1||Lost Conference Finals (NJD)|
|2003–04||Detroit Red Wings||109||3||4||Lost Conference Semifinals (CGY)|
|2004–05||The Presidents' Trophy was not awarded due to the lockout that canceled the entire season.|
|2005–06||Detroit Red Wings||124||11||5||Lost Conference Quarterfinals (EDM)|
|2006–07||Buffalo Sabres||113||0||1||Lost Conference Finals (OTT)|
|2007–08||Detroit Red Wings||115||7||6||Won Stanley Cup (PIT)|
|2008–09||San Jose Sharks||117||1||1||Lost Conference Quarterfinals (ANA)|
|2009–10||Washington Capitals||121||8||1||Lost Conference Quarterfinals (MTL)|
|2010–11||Vancouver Canucks||117||10||1||Lost Stanley Cup Finals (BOS)|
|2011–12||Vancouver Canucks||111||2||2||Lost Conference Quarterfinals (LAK)|
|2012–13||Chicago Blackhawks||77[nb 3]||5||2||Won Stanley Cup (BOS)|
|2013–14||Boston Bruins||117||1||2||Lost Second Round (MTL)|
|2014–15||New York Rangers||113||3||3||Lost Conference Finals (TBL)|
|2015–16||Washington Capitals||120||11||2||Lost Second Round (PIT)|
|2016–17||Washington Capitals||118||7||3||Lost Second Round (PIT)|
|2017–18||Nashville Predators||117||3||1||Lost Second Round (WPG)|
|2018–19||Tampa Bay Lightning||128||21||1||Lost First Round (CBJ)|
- The playoff format has changed over the years. See Stanley Cup playoffs for more information.
- Only 48 games were played in the 1994–95 season due to a lockout. Detroit's 70 points in 48 games extrapolates to 122 points in 84 games, which was the standard season length at the time.
- Only 48 games were played in the 2012–13 season due to a lockout. Chicago's 77 points in 48 games extrapolates to 132 points in an 82-game season; this number would have eclipsed Detroit's record by one, and would have tied the record-high of points held by the 1976–77 Montreal Canadiens (the trophy did not exist at the time, and Montreal accomplished the feat in 80 games).
- "Presidents' Trophy history". NHL. Retrieved 2007-09-15.
- "Presidents' Trophy history". LegendsofHockey.net. Retrieved 2007-09-15.
- "Stanley Cup Champions and Finalists". NHL. Retrieved 2007-09-15.
- "Presidents' Trophy history". NHL.com. Retrieved 2009-10-10.
- "Presidents Trophy Buffalo Bound". NHL.com. Archived from the original on 2008-04-08. Retrieved 2007-09-15.
- Rosen, Dan. "A short-term celebration". NHL.com. Retrieved 2009-10-26.
- "History of the Prince of Wales Trophy". Legends of Hockey.net. Retrieved 2007-09-05.
- "Final Standings". NHL.com. Retrieved 2007-09-15.