Central Division (NHL)

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Central Division
Conference Western Conference
League National Hockey League
Sport Ice hockey
Formerly Norris Division
Inaugural season 1993–94 season
Teams
No. of teams 7
Championships
Most recent Central Division champion(s) Chicago Blackhawks (3rd title)
Most Central Division titles Detroit Red Wings (13 titles)

The NHL's Central Division was formed in 1993 as part of the Western Conference in a league realignment. Its predecessor was the Norris Division. As part of the 2013 realignment, the Central Division expanded into 7 teams. It is also one of two successors to the Northwest Division. Three of its teams—Minnesota, Nashville, and Winnipeg (as the Atlanta Thrashers) — joined the NHL in the league's last phase of expansion between 1998 and 2000. The fourth team in that group, the Columbus Blue Jackets, are no longer part of the Central Division. After the addition of the Vegas Golden Knights to the Pacific Division in 2017, the Central Division is currently the only division in the NHL without eight teams.

The Central Division has sent five teams to the Stanley Cup playoffs on six different occasions. In the first three seasons after the most recent realignment in 2013, Central Division teams occupied both Wild Card playoff spots in the Western Conference.

Division lineups

1993–1996

Changes from the 1992–93 season

  • The Central Division is formed as the result of NHL realignment
  • The Minnesota North Stars move to Dallas, Texas, and become the Dallas Stars
  • The Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, Detroit Red Wings, St. Louis Blues, and Toronto Maple Leafs come from the Norris Division
  • The Winnipeg Jets come from the Smythe Division

1996–1998

  • Chicago Blackhawks
  • Dallas Stars
  • Detroit Red Wings
  • Phoenix Coyotes
  • St. Louis Blues
  • Toronto Maple Leafs

Changes from the 1995–96 season

  • The Winnipeg Jets move to Phoenix, Arizona, to become the Phoenix Coyotes

1998–2000

Changes from the 1997–98 season

  • The Dallas Stars and Phoenix Coyotes move to the Pacific Division
  • The Toronto Maple Leafs move to the Northeast Division
  • The Nashville Predators are added as an expansion team

2000–2013

Changes from the 1999–2000 season

  • The Columbus Blue Jackets are added as an expansion team

2013–Present

Changes from the 2012–13 season

Division Champions

Season results

Season 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th
1993–94 Detroit (100) Toronto (98) Dallas (97) St. Louis (91) Chicago (87) Winnipeg (57)
1994–95 Detroit (70) St. Louis (61) Chicago (53) Toronto (50) Dallas (42) Winnipeg (39)
1995–96 Detroit (131) Chicago (94) Toronto (80) St. Louis (80) Winnipeg (78) Dallas (66)
1996–97 Dallas (104) Detroit (94) Phoenix (83) St. Louis (83) Chicago (81) Toronto (68)
1997–98 Dallas (109) Detroit (103) St. Louis (98) Phoenix (82) Chicago (73) Toronto (69)
1998–99 Detroit (93) St. Louis (87) Chicago (70) Nashville (63)
1999–2000 St. Louis (114) Detroit (108) Chicago (78) Nashville (70)
2000–01 Detroit (111) St. Louis (103) Nashville (80) Chicago (71) Columbus (71)
2001–02 Detroit (116) St. Louis (98) Chicago (96) Nashville (69) Columbus (57)
2002–03 Detroit (110) St. Louis (99) Chicago (79) Nashville (74) Columbus (69)
2003–04 Detroit (109) St. Louis (91) Nashville (91) Columbus (62) Chicago (59)
2004–05 No season due to 2004–05 NHL lockout
2005–06 Detroit (124) Nashville (106) Columbus (74) Chicago (65) St. Louis (57)
2006–07 Detroit (113) Nashville (110) St. Louis (81) Columbus (73) Chicago (71)
2007–08 Detroit (115) Nashville (91) Chicago (88) Columbus (80) St. Louis (79)
2008–09 Detroit (112) Chicago (104) St. Louis (92) Columbus (92) Nashville (88)
2009–10 Chicago (112) Detroit (102) Nashville (100) St. Louis (90) Columbus (79)
2010–11 Detroit (104) Nashville (99) Chicago (97) St. Louis (87) Columbus (81)
2011–12 St. Louis (109) Nashville (104) Detroit (102) Chicago (101) Columbus (65)
2012–13 Chicago (77) St. Louis (60) Detroit (56) Columbus (55) Nashville (41)
2013–14 Colorado (112) St. Louis (111) Chicago (107) Minnesota (98) Dallas (91) Nashville (88) Winnipeg (84)
2014–15 St. Louis (109) Nashville (104) Chicago (102) Minnesota (100) Winnipeg (99) Dallas (92) Colorado (90)
2015–16 Dallas (109) St. Louis (107) Chicago (103) Nashville (96) Minnesota (87) Colorado (82) Winnipeg (78)
2016–17 Chicago (109) Minnesota (106) St. Louis (99) Nashville (94) Winnipeg (87) Dallas (79) Colorado (48)
  • Green background denotes qualified for playoffs

Stanley Cup winners produced

  1. 1997—Detroit Red Wings
  2. 1998—Detroit Red Wings
  3. 2002—Detroit Red Wings
  4. 2008—Detroit Red Wings
  5. 2010—Chicago Blackhawks
  6. 2013—Chicago Blackhawks
  7. 2015—Chicago Blackhawks

Presidents' Trophy winners produced

  1. 1995—Detroit Red Wings
  2. 1996—Detroit Red Wings
  3. 1998—Dallas Stars
  4. 2000—St. Louis Blues
  5. 2002—Detroit Red Wings
  6. 2004—Detroit Red Wings
  7. 2006—Detroit Red Wings
  8. 2008—Detroit Red Wings
  9. 2013—Chicago Blackhawks

Central Division titles won by team

Team Number of Championships Won Last Year Won
Detroit Red Wings 13 2011
Chicago Blackhawks 3 2017
Dallas Stars 3 2016
St. Louis Blues 3 2015
Colorado Avalanche 1 2014
Minnesota Wild 0
Nashville Predators 0
Winnipeg Jets 0
Columbus Blue Jackets 0
Toronto Maple Leafs 0
Winnipeg Jets/Phoenix Coyotes 0

Teams in bold are currently in the division.

References

  • NHL History
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