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May 22, 2008

1984: Gretzky And The Oilers Win The Stanley Cup

The year is 1984. The Edmonton Oilers, in just their 5th year in the National Hockey League, win the Stanley Cup!

With the likes of Wayne Gretzky, Mark Messier, Paul Coffey, Jari Kurri, Glenn Anderson, Kevin Lowe and Grant Fuhr forming a young nucleus, Stanley Cup inheritance was only a matter of time.

But like all great teams, the oilers had to lose in order to learn how to win. That happened in 1983, as the Islanders swept the Oilers.

That would all be forgotten a year later, as the Oilers dismantled the Islanders incredible dynasty and began their own reign.

The Oilers marched into Long Island and posted a 1-0 shutout by Fuhr. Kevin McClelland, of all Oilers shooters, played hero scored the only goal.

The Islanders equaled the series convincingly in game 2, but then had to go to Edmonton for the next three games under the dreaded 2-3-2 series format. The Oilers routed the Isles on friendly ice at the Northlands Coliseum.

Gretzky led the way with 35 points, and Kurri with 14 goals. But it was Mark Messier, third in scoring with 26 points, who was named as the Conn Smythe trophy winner because of his intimidating physical play as well as his scoring. His leadership was inspirational for the young Oilers.

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