As the NHL playoffs start, Canadians may be hoping the Stanley Cup will return north of the border this year, but a new poll suggests they’re not overly optimistic that it will actually turn out that way.
The Canadian Press Harris-Decima poll found 44 per cent of respondents across the country felt the chances for a Stanley Cup win by a Canadian team were slim, while 30 per cent felt there was a good chance or a very good chance of that happening.
Among ardent fans – those who follow the playoffs closely – 50 per cent said chances were good or better for a Canadian champion.
“While few would describe it as very likely, fans from coast-to-coast clearly feel that once in the playoffs anything can happen, with half of the most ardent fans saying there is at least a good chance that one of the three Canadian teams will end up triumphant,” Harris-Decima vice-president Doug Anderson said in a release.
No Canadian-based club has brought home the Cup since Montreal in 1993.
The survey also asked Canadians which of the country’s NHL teams was most likely to win the Cup.
Calgary and Vancouver were each picked by 18 per cent of respondents as the most likely Canadian team to win the NHL title.
Montreal was chosen by 16 per cent of those surveyed.
The poll was taken before the end of the regular season, so three teams that did not make the playoffs got some support. Five per cent of overall respondents chose the Toronto Maple Leafs, four per cent the Ottawa Senators and three per cent the Edmonton Oilers.
About one-in-four ardent fans surveyed said the team with the best chance of winning the Stanley Cup was the Detroit Red Wings.
The Canadian Press Harris-Decima survey was taken during the final two weeks of the regular season from April 2 to 13. The poll of just over 2,000 Canadians has a margin of error of 2.2 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.