Vulgar Opinions: NHL Supporter Cups
If you watch Major League Soccer (or any soccer), you’re familiar with the concept of Supporter Cups, trophies created by the fans and given to the winner of certain rivalries. The best example is the Cascadia Cup, awarded to whichever of the Seattle Sounders, Portland Timbers, or Vancouver Whitecaps performs the best in matches versus the other two teams. NHL fans should do something similar, at least in a few good markets. Because of the conference format and the unequal amount of games, standings will have to go by points percentages. Here are my suggestions:
Battle of California
Teams: San Jose, Anaheim, and Los Angeles
To be fair, this one already sort of exists, and with three teams packed into one state, makes perfect sense.
Trophy: Not sure if they have one. We’ll go with Pacifica Cup
- San Jose (2-1-0)
- Anaheim (2-1-1)
- Los Angeles (1-2-0)
Western Canada Rumble
Teams: Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton
An add-on to the Battle of Alberta, and leaving Winnipeg off (for good reason). These three teams already hate each other.
Trophy: Depends who wins it. If Vancouver, the B.C. Cup, if Edmonton the Great Oil Rig, and if Calgary, the Eternal Flame.
- Vancouver (3-1-1)
- Calgary (2-1-1)
- Edmonton (1-1-1)
The Northern Heartland
Teams: Winnipeg, Minnesota, Colorado
I wanted to put all the Canadian teams together, but I think there’s real potential here throwing Winnipeg in with Minnesota and Colorado.
Trophy: I’m not sure what to call it, but it’ll probably move.
- Minnesota (2-0-1)
- Colorado (1-2-0)
The Southern Heartland
Teams: Nashville, Dallas, Phoenix
This might be the worst of them with the teams spread out geographically and each having little to no history. It’ll be made or broken with the strength of the Nashville fans and the future of Phoenix.
Trophy: The Garth Brooks
- Nashville (3-1-0)
- Phoenix (3-2-1)
- Dallas (2-3-1)
Old Time Hockey
Teams: Chicago, Detroit, St. Louis
There, now everyone can quit whining about the destruction to the relatively toothless Detroit – Chicago rivalry. This one will have the fewest games between teams, so every minute on the ice counts.
Trophy: Don’t know what to call it, but it should be an old school goalie mask.
- Chicago (4-0-0)
- Detroit (2-3-1)
- St. Louis (2-4-0)
Teams: Columbus, Carolina, Tampa Bay, and Florida
This one could be interesting with four underwhelming fanbases and largely underwhelming teams. Hey, if it gets fans into hockey, great.
Trophy: An imaginary tree falling in an imaginary forest.
- Tampa Bay (5-0-0)
- Carolina (2-3-0)
- Florida (1-4-1)
Teams: Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Washington
Ah, the most over-discussed teams in the NHL. This is a win for everybody, NBC Sports can pimp the hell out of it, and the rest of us can continue to not care.
Trophy: Milbury and Jones…never mind.
- Pittsburgh (4-1-0)
- Philadelphia (2-3-0)
- Washington (1-3-0)
Teams: NY Rangers, NY Islanders, New Jersey
If NYI can up their game talent-wise, this one could get real interesting given the proximity of the teams.
Trophy: The Empire Cup
- New Jersey (3-1-1)
- NY Rangers (2-1-1)
- NY Islanders (3-3-1)
The Great Northeastern Battle Royale
Teams: Buffalo, Boston, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto
There is so much at play here, I couldn’t find a good way to split them up, and the NHL couldn’t either. Buffalo hates Boston, Ottawa, and Toronto, Boston hates Montreal, Montreal hates everything, Ottawa hates Toronto and Montreal, and Toronto hates Montreal, Buffalo, and Ottawa. It will be a bloodbath.
Trophy: TBD, but something really awesome.
- Boston (6-3-0)
- Ottawa (5-3-3)
- Toronto (6-5-0)
- Montreal (5-4-2)
- Buffalo (4-5-1)