1985-86 NHL Season
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1985%E2%80%9386 NHL Season
1985-86 NHL season
LeagueNational Hockey League
SportIce hockey
DurationOctober 10, 1985 - May 24, 1986
Number of games80
Number of teams21
TV partner(s)CBC, CTV, SRC (Canada)
ESPN (United States)
Top draft pickWendel Clark
Picked byToronto Maple Leafs
Regular season
Presidents' TrophyEdmonton Oilers
Season MVPWayne Gretzky (Oilers)
Top scorerWayne Gretzky (Oilers)
Playoffs MVPPatrick Roy (Canadiens)
Stanley Cup
ChampionsMontreal Canadiens
  Runners-upCalgary Flames
NHL seasons

The 1985-86 NHL season was the 69th season of the National Hockey League. This season saw the league's Board of Governors introduce the Presidents' Trophy, which would go to the team with the best overall record in the NHL regular season. The Edmonton Oilers would be the first winners of this award.

The Montreal Canadiens defeated the Calgary Flames four games to one in the final series to win the Stanley Cup.

League business

On June 13, 1985, the NHL board of governors voted 17-4 in favour of amending a penalty rule. Previously, coincidental minor penalties would result in 4-on-4 play. The amendment allowed teams to substitute another player to keep the play 5-on-5. It was seen by many as a shot at trying to slow down the high-flying Edmonton Oilers. Wayne Gretzky was quoted as saying, "I think the NHL is making a big mistake. I think the NHL should be more concerned with butt-ending, spearing, and three-hour hockey games than getting rid of 4-on-4 situations." It wasn't until 1992, with the Oiler dynasty (five cups in seven years) having ended, that the NHL reverted to the original 4-on-4 rules.

Regular season

The Edmonton Oilers once again regained control of top spot in the NHL and were awarded with the Presidents' Trophy--the first time the trophy had been awarded for the best record--while last year's best team, the Philadelphia Flyers slipped to second. The Flyers continued their dominance of the Wales Conference despite the death of their Vezina-winning goaltender, Pelle Lindbergh, in a car accident on November 11. Edmonton's Wayne Gretzky won his seventh straight Hart Memorial Trophy and his sixth straight Art Ross Trophy. This season saw Gretzky score 52 goals, and set records of 163 assists and 215 points. This was the fourth time in five years that Gretzky reached the 200 point plateau; no other player has reached 200 point mark, although Mario Lemieux would garner 199 points in 76 games in 1988-89. Edmonton's defenceman Paul Coffey broke Bobby Orr's record of 46 goals for most goals in a season by a defenceman by scoring 48 times.

Final standings

Note: GP = Games Played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, GF= Goals For, GA = Goals Against, Pts = Points, PIM = Penalty Minutes

Prince of Wales Conference

Adams Division
Quebec Nordiques 80 43 31 6 330 289 92
Montreal Canadiens 80 40 33 7 330 280 87
Boston Bruins 80 37 31 12 311 288 86
Hartford Whalers 80 40 36 4 332 302 84
Buffalo Sabres 80 37 37 6 296 291 80


Patrick Division
  GP W L T GF GA Pts
Philadelphia Flyers 80 53 23 4 335 241 110
Washington Capitals 80 50 23 7 315 272 107
New York Islanders 80 39 29 12 327 284 90
New York Rangers 80 36 38 6 280 276 78
Pittsburgh Penguins 80 34 38 8 313 305 76
New Jersey Devils 80 28 49 3 300 374 59


Clarence Campbell Conference

Norris Division
Chicago Black Hawks 80 39 33 8 351 349 86
Minnesota North Stars 80 38 33 9 327 305 85
St. Louis Blues 80 37 34 9 302 291 83
Toronto Maple Leafs 80 25 48 7 311 386 57
Detroit Red Wings 80 17 57 6 266 415 40


Smythe Division[1]
Edmonton Oilers 80 56 17 7 426 310 119
Calgary Flames 80 40 31 9 354 315 89
Winnipeg Jets 80 26 47 7 295 372 59
Vancouver Canucks 80 23 44 13 282 333 59
Los Angeles Kings 80 23 49 8 284 389 54


The 1986 playoffs saw three first place teams eliminated in the opening round and the fourth, Edmonton, bowed out in the second.

The Montreal Canadiens decided to go with a rookie goaltender by the name of Patrick Roy. This decision proved to be a good one just like when the Canadiens rode rookie goalie Ken Dryden to a Stanley Cup championship in 1971. In the Final, the Canadiens beat the Calgary Flames, who were also riding a rookie netminder, Mike Vernon. Patrick Roy won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the playoff MVP and had a sparkling 1.92 goals against average along with 15 wins.

The 1986 Stanley Cup playoffs are the last time to date (as of 2021) that all active Canadian teams have qualified in the same season. It is also the second time that all seven active teams at the time qualified, the first occurring three years earlier. Also, the Hartford Whalers won their only playoff series during their tenure in Hartford against the Quebec Nordiques.

Playoff bracket

Division Semifinals Division Finals Conference Finals Stanley Cup Finals
A1 Quebec 0
A4 Hartford 3
A4 Hartford 3
A2 Montreal 4
A2 Montreal 3
A3 Boston 0
A2 Montreal 4
Prince of Wales Conference
P4 NY Rangers 1
P1 Philadelphia 2
P4 NY Rangers 3
P4 NY Rangers 4
P2 Washington 2
P2 Washington 3
P3 NY Islanders 0
A2 Montreal 4
S2 Calgary 1
N1 Chicago 0
N4 Toronto 3
N4 Toronto 3
N3 St. Louis 4
N2 Minnesota 2
N3 St. Louis 3
N3 St. Louis 3
Clarence Campbell Conference
S2 Calgary 4
S1 Edmonton 3
S4 Vancouver 0
S1 Edmonton 3
S2 Calgary 4
S2 Calgary 3
S3 Winnipeg 0

Stanley Cup Finals

After a 2-year trial of the 2-3-2 home ice format, the finals reverted to the 2-2-1-1-1 format.

May 16 Montreal Canadiens 2-5 Calgary Flames Olympic Saddledome
May 18 Montreal Canadiens 3-2 OT Calgary Flames Olympic Saddledome
May 20 Calgary Flames 3-5 Montreal Canadiens Montreal Forum
May 22 Calgary Flames 0-1 Montreal Canadiens Montreal Forum
May 24 Montreal Canadiens 4-3 Calgary Flames Olympic Saddledome
Montreal won series 4-1


1986 NHL awards
Presidents' Trophy:
Team with most points, regular season
Edmonton Oilers
Prince of Wales Trophy:
(Wales Conference playoff champion)
Montreal Canadiens
Clarence S. Campbell Bowl:
(Campbell Conference playoff champion)
Calgary Flames
Art Ross Trophy:
(Top scorer, regular season)
Wayne Gretzky, Edmonton Oilers
Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy:
(Perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication)
Charlie Simmer, Boston Bruins
Calder Memorial Trophy:
(Best first-year player)
Gary Suter, Calgary Flames
Conn Smythe Trophy:
(Most valuable player, playoffs)
Patrick Roy, Montreal Canadiens
Frank J. Selke Trophy:
(Best defensive forward)
Troy Murray, Chicago Black Hawks
Hart Memorial Trophy:
(Most valuable player, regular season)
Wayne Gretzky, Edmonton Oilers
Jack Adams Award:
(Best coach)
Glen Sather, Edmonton Oilers
James Norris Memorial Trophy:
(Best defenceman)
Paul Coffey, Edmonton Oilers
Lady Byng Memorial Trophy:
(Excellence and sportsmanship)
Mike Bossy, New York Islanders
Lester B. Pearson Award:
(Outstanding player, regular season)
Mario Lemieux, Pittsburgh Penguins
NHL Plus/Minus Award:
(Player with best plus/minus record)
Mark Howe, Philadelphia Flyers
William M. Jennings Trophy:
(Goaltender(s) of team(s) with best goaltending record)
Bob Froese/Darren Jensen, Philadelphia Flyers
Vezina Trophy:
(Best goaltender)
John Vanbiesbrouck, New York Rangers
Lester Patrick Trophy:
(Service to hockey in the U.S.)
John MacInnes, Jack Riley

All-Star teams

First Team   Position   Second Team
John Vanbiesbrouck, New York Rangers G Bob Froese, Philadelphia Flyers
Paul Coffey, Edmonton Oilers D Larry Robinson, Montreal Canadiens
Mark Howe, Philadelphia Flyers D Ray Bourque, Boston Bruins
Wayne Gretzky, Edmonton Oilers C Mario Lemieux, Pittsburgh Penguins
Mike Bossy, New York Islanders RW Jari Kurri, Edmonton Oilers
Michel Goulet, Quebec Nordiques LW Mats Naslund, Montreal Canadiens

Player statistics

Scoring leaders

Player Team GP G A Pts
Wayne Gretzky Edmonton Oilers 80 52 163 215
Mario Lemieux Pittsburgh Penguins 79 48 93 141
Paul Coffey Edmonton Oilers 79 48 90 138
Jari Kurri Edmonton Oilers 78 68 63 131
Mike Bossy New York Islanders 80 61 62 123
Peter Stastny Quebec Nordiques 76 41 81 122
Denis Savard Chicago Black Hawks 80 47 69 116
Mats Naslund Montreal Canadiens 80 43 67 110
Dale Hawerchuk Winnipeg Jets 80 46 59 105
Neal Broten Minnesota North Stars 80 29 76 105

Source: NHL[2]

Leading goaltenders

Player Team GP MIN GA SO GAA
Bob Froese Philadelphia Flyers 51 2728 116 5 2.55
Al Jensen Washington Capitals 44 2437 129 2 3.18
Clint Malarchuk Quebec Nordiques 46 2657 142 4 3.21
Kelly Hrudey New York Islanders 45 2563 137 1 3.21
John Vanbiesbrouck New York Rangers 61 3326 184 3 3.32
Patrick Roy Montreal Canadiens 47 2651 148 1 3.35
Pat Riggin Washington Capitals / Boston Bruins 46 2641 150 1 3.41
Rick Wamsley St. Louis Blues 42 2517 144 1 3.43
Pete Peeters Boston Bruins / Washington Capitals 42 2506 144 1 3.45
Don Beaupre Minnesota North Stars 52 3073 182 1 3.55

Source: NHL[2]


Patrick Division

Adams Division

Norris Division

Smythe Division



The following is a list of players of note who played their first NHL game in 1985-86 (listed with their first team, asterisk(*) marks debut in playoffs):

Last games

The following is a list of players of note that played their last game in the NHL in 1985-86 (listed with their last team):

See also


  • Diamond, Dan, ed. (2000). Total Hockey. Kingston, New York: Total Sports. ISBN 1-892129-85-X.
  • Dinger, Ralph, ed. (2011). The National Hockey League Official Guide & Record Book 2012. Toronto: Dan Diamond & Associates. ISBN 978-1-894801-22-5.
  • Dryden, Steve, ed. (2000). Century of hockey. Toronto, ON: McClelland & Stewart Ltd. ISBN 0-7710-4179-9.
  • Fischler, Stan; Fischler, Shirley; Hughes, Morgan; Romain, Joseph; Duplacey, James (2003). The Hockey Chronicle: Year-by-Year History of the National Hockey League. Lincolnwood, Illinois: Publications International Inc. ISBN 0-7853-9624-1.
  1. ^ a b c d Dinger, Ralph, ed. (2011). The National Hockey League Official Guide & Record Book 2012. Dan Diamond & Associates. p. 153. ISBN 9781894801225.
  2. ^ a b Dinger 2011.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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