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Stanley Cup

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noun Ice Hockey.
a trophy emblematic since 1926 of the championship of the National Hockey League, composed of Canadian and U.S. professional teams.
the best-of-seven-games series in which the champion of the Prince of Wales Conference and that from the Clarence S. Campbell Conference oppose each other for this trophy.
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Origin of Stanley Cup

Named after Frederick Arthur, Lord Stanley of Preston (1841–1908), governor general of Canada, who donated the trophy for the best amateur team of the 1893–94 season
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

MORE ABOUT STANLEY CUP

What is the Stanley Cup?

The Stanley Cup is the trophy presented to the champion of the National Hockey League (NHL) each year.

The NHL playoffs are called the Stanley Cup Playoffs, and the championship series is called the Stanley Cup Finals.

The Stanley Cup trophy is sometimes simply called the Cup. Winning the NHL championship is commonly referred to as winning the Stanley Cup or winning the Cup.

Unlike championship trophies in many other professional sports, a new Stanley Cup trophy is not made each year for the winning team to keep forever. Instead, the names of the players, coach, and some staff members of the winning team are engraved onto part of the trophy, which stays in possession of the team for a year (including, per tradition, one day with each member of the winning team).

The Stanley Cup trophy is known for being large compared to many other professional sports trophies—it’s three feet tall and weighs about 34 pounds (about 15 kg)

When are the Stanley Cup Finals?

The 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs will begin on April 17, 2023. The 2023 Stanley Cup Finals are expected to occur some time in early June (depending on the length of earlier playoff rounds).

The Stanley Cup Finals are usually held in late May or June. It is a best-of-seven series and can last up to two weeks.

More information and context on the Stanley Cup

Who is the Stanley Cup named after?

The Stanley Cup is named for Sir Frederick Arthur Stanley, Lord Stanley of Preston, a British politician who served as Canada’s governor general in the 1890s. Lord Stanley purchased the trophy in 1892 to be awarded to the champions of Canadian hockey. The NHL acquired ownership of the cup in 1926. (The word cup is used in the name of other cup-shaped trophies and competitions named after them, including the sailing competition known as America’s Cup).

How many Stanley Cups are there?

The original cup was retired in 1962 to prevent further wear and tear. The newly designed trophy introduced at that time is informally known as the “Presentation” Cup. A replica of this was made in 1993 to be kept at the Hockey Hall of Fame. The bands on the cup that’s presented to champions can be replaced when new space is needed for engraving their names.

What are some terms that often get used in discussing the Stanley Cup?

How is the Stanley Cup discussed in real life?

NHL champions are often said to have won the Stanley Cup. The trophy itself is known for being unique in that a new one is not made every year. Instead, it’s engraved with the names of the winners, who famously get to spend a day with it.

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The Stanley Cup is named after Lord Stanley of Preston.

How to use Stanley Cup in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for Stanley Cup

Stanley Cup

noun
(in North America) the trophy presented annually to the champions of the National Hockey League

Word Origin for Stanley Cup

C19: named after Lord Stanley (1841–1908), 6th Governor-General of Canada, who first presented it in 1893
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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