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The lowest seeds to win the Stanley Cup

The 8-seed Los Angeles Kings captured Lord Stanley in 2012 to become the lowest seed ever crowned NHL champions.

The team shocked everyone with its 4-3 first-round upset of the Boston Bruins, who broke the league's record for most wins (65) and points (135) in a season. 

Florida continued its run with a 4-1 series win over the Toronto Maple Leafs in the second round and now face the Carolina Hurricanes in the Eastern Conference finals, with a chance to play for, and win, the Stanley Cup, still a possibility. 

This amazing run nearly did not occur. The Panthers narrowly edged the Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabres by one point to earn the Eastern Conference's second wild card slot, essentially the No. 8 seed. With 91 points, they are technically the lowest seed in the entire NHL playoffs. 

If Matthew Tkachuk and company end up hoisting Lord Stanley's Cup, they will join some select company among the lowest seeds to ever do so.

#8 Los Angeles Kings (2012)

Unlike the Panthers, who lost their last two regular season games, the Kings had to win their final regular season contest to even make the 2012 Stanley Cup playoffs. 

Once in, they simply dominated. Los Angeles first eliminated No. 1 seed Vancouver, the defending Western Conference champs and 2011/2012 Presidents' Trophy winner. 

They followed that with knockouts of No. 2 seed St. Louis and No. 3 seed Arizona, jumping out to 3-0 leads in each of those three series. 

The team then defeated the New Jersey Devils, 4-2, in the Stanley Cup final, including a 6-1 thrashing in a decisive Game 6 rout, for the franchise's first title. 

Los Angeles went on to win its second Stanley Cup just two years later, in 2014.

#5 New York Islanders (1980)

Hockey fanatics know that the Islanders kicked off the 1980s by reeling off four consecutive Stanley Cup victories, becoming one of two NHL dynasties that decade, along with the Edmonton Oilers. 

Those four titles still represent the club's total haul to this day, while seven members of those four squads – Al Arbour, Mike Bossy, Clark Gillies, Dennis Potvin, Billy Smith, Bill Torrey, and Bryan Trottier, are now enshrined in the Hockey Hall of Fame. 

However, many fans forget that the Isles' first trophy was not exactly expected. The NHL played 1-through-16 seeds during those days and the Islanders, as the No. 5 seed, knocked off the No. 13 seed Penguins, No. 4 seed Bruins, No. 2 seed Sabres and then the top-seeded Philadelphia Flyers to win their first title.

#5 New Jersey Devils (1995)

The Devils, located in New Jersey since 1982 after stops in Kansas City and Denver, had not reached the Stanley Cup Finals before 1995, suffering a heartbreaking seven-game defeat to the New York Rangers in the 1994 Eastern Conference finals. 

The 1995 season was strike-shortened, with only 48 regular season games as a result. 

The Devils were the fifth seed, matching the Islanders' 1980 position, and proceeded to defeat the No. 4 seed Bruins, No. 3 seed Pittsburgh, and No. 2 seed Flyers before sweeping the Detroit Red Wings to win the first of three Stanley Cups over the next decade.

Near upsets 

Only two other No. 8 seeds have even reached the Stanley Cup Finals. The Edmonton Oilers were the No. 8 seed coming out of the Western Conference in 2006, but fell to Carolina in seven games, the Hurricanes' only Stanley Cup triumph to date. 

The Nashville Predators were the second wild card out of the Western Conference in 2017, which, like Florida this year, made them the conference's No. 8 seed. 

They also reached the Stanley Cup Finals before bowing to the Penguins, who repeated as champions, in six games.

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