Raptors could end a 232-season Canadian major pro sports championship drought

Jun 10 2019, 8:19 pm

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If the Toronto Raptors can finish off the Golden State Warriors in the NBA Finals, it won’t just be their franchise’s first-ever championship.

It’ll be the first title won by a Canadian team in the four major pro sports leagues in North America since 1993, when Patrick Roy and the Montreal Canadiens lifted the Stanley Cup.

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To best get a sense of how remarkably long the drought is, consider that 12 Canadian teams in the NBA, NHL, and MLB have completed 232 seasons since then. That number includes defunct franchises like the Vancouver Grizzlies (six seasons), Quebec Nordiques (two), and Montreal Expos (12). It also includes two incarnations of the Winnipeg Jets.

Team League Seasons
Toronto Raptors NBA 25
Vancouver Grizzlies NBA 6
Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 25
Montreal Canadiens NHL 25
Vancouver Canucks NHL 25
Calgary Flames NHL 25
Edmonton Oilers NHL 25
Ottawa Senators NHL 25
Winnipeg Jets NHL 11
Quebec Nordiques NHL 2
Toronto Blue Jays MLB 26
Montreal Expos MLB 12

Many teams have come close since then, of course.

The Montreal Expos were the best team in baseball when a labour dispute cancelled the 1994 World Series.

The Vancouver Canucks have lost Game 7 of the Stanley Cup twice since then (1994 and 2011). Also coming to within one win of lifting the Cup since 1993 were the Calgary Flames (2004) and Edmonton Oilers (2006). The Ottawa Senators made it to the Final in 2007.


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