There are Three Stanley Cups

June 10, 2010 at 12:01 am 7 comments

Congratulations to the 2010 Chicago Blackhawks for winning their first cup since 1961 last night.

For those who don’t know, the Stanley Cup is the National Hockey League’s playoff trophy. 30 franchised teams from Canada and the United States compete from October to June for the honor of having the players, coaches, managers and staff names engraved in the cup.

There are six historic bands (“rings”) at the top of the cup where names were engraved between 1893 and 1927. Then there are five main bands on the body of the cup where more recent names have been engraved. The historic bands never change, but the oldest of the five main bands is retired when a new ring is added to make room for new names.

The retired rings are displayed in the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto Canada and the cup itself is always accompanied by a minimum of one Hockey Hall of Fame representative.

After winning the Stanley Cup, the team captain will be presented with the cup. It is a tradition for the players to skate a lap around the rink with the cup held above their head. This tradition was started by Ted Lindsay of the Detroit Red Wings in 1950. He did it to give the fans a better look at the trophy.

After the winning game, there is usually a home-town parade. Each winning player is also allowed to spend an entire day with the cup. Players have baptized their children with the cup, swam in their pool with the cup and even fed their dogs from the cup.

Rings removed (retired) from Stanley Cup

There are three Stanley Cups in total. The original “cup” resembles a large bowl and is mounted to a wooden stand. It no longer has bands at the bottom and was retired after its first 71 years of service — it remains on display at the Hockey Hall of Fame. Then there are two nearly identical cups. One is the official cup and bears the official seal on the bottom, the other is a replica and remains on display at the Hockey Hall of Fame when the official cup (“Authenticated Cup”) is elsewhere.

The easiest way to spot the real cup is to look at the 1984 Edmonton Oilers engraving. Basil Pocklington’s name has been crossed out with X’s. He is the father of Peter Pocklington, the Oiler’s owner at the time and his name was added in error. The NHL claims Peter added his father’s name to the engraving list and they failed to validate that list. Peter claims it was the engraver’s error and the list with his father’s name on it was a list of people who should receive miniature replicas.

The full size replica cup does not contain Basil’s name at all.

Broken Secrets | By: Chad Upton

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Sources: Wikipedia (Stanley Cup, Peter Pocklington, NHL)

Photos: Colby Cosh (cc), Vidiot (cc)

Entry filed under: Demystified. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

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7 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Brett  |  June 10, 2010 at 3:08 pm

    It should also be noted this is the only trophy in North American professional sports where you have your name engraved on it, as long as you win. The NBA, NFL and MLB don’t do that with their trophies.

  • 2. James  |  June 10, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    Wow, last night as I was watching the game I wondered what happened when they ran out of room for names. I guess that answers it.

  • 3. Roman  |  January 10, 2012 at 6:01 pm

    Very informative, thanks! But I wonder… how will you be able to spot the real Stanley Cup after the band containing the 1984 Edmonton Oilers is retired and removed from the cup???

  • 4. Jj  |  March 31, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    The top bands are never changed bud!

  • 5. Roman  |  July 30, 2012 at 3:54 pm

    Jj: Re-read the paragraph above about the bands — only the smaller bands at the top of the cup (up to 1927) are preserved. The five larger main bands, including the one with the 1984 Oilers, will eventually be retired when new bands are added to the bottom. Then I suppose we will have to ask the keeper of the cup to turn it upside down so we can look for the official seal on the bottom!

  • 6. Why I Love the NHL Playoffs | Kira Weinstein  |  May 28, 2013 at 7:19 am

    […] each year and the winning team keeps it permanently.  However, there is only one Stanley Cup.  (Okay, three, but you get the idea).  The winning team gets 100 days with the Cup and it is tradition for each player to take it for […]

  • 7. Itinerary: Hockey Hall of Fame  |  July 27, 2015 at 12:15 am

    […] somewhere. When that’s the case, the stand-in is usually available for visitors to the Hall. Follow this link to find out how to tell the difference between the […]


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