Why they were hyped: The Boston Bruins won the 1970 Stanley Cup and had one of the most brilliant offensive teams of all time. Bobby Orr, perhaps the greatest player in NHL history, was at the peak of his powers and was joined by Phil Esposito, Ken Hodge and Johnny Bucyk to give the Bruins an offense that was nearly unstoppable. It wasn't a matter of if the "Big, Bad Bruins" would win their second straight Stanley Cup, it was a matter of whether any opponent could even make them sweat. The Bruins averaged a remarkable 5.11 goals per game in '70-'71.
Season record: 57-14-7, 121 points, won Presidents Trophy
Playoff finish: Lost in first round; Defeated by Montreal Canadiens, 4-3
Best player: Orr scored 37 goals and 102 assists, finishing second in scoring to Espositio, who had 76 goals and 76 assists.
What went wrong: The Bruins had a first-round date with the aging Canadiens, and they were expected to punish their old rivals. After a 3-1 victory in the first game, the Bruins built a 5-1 lead in the second game.
While the Bruins were laughing, joking and back-slapping, the Canadiens mounted a sensational comeback. They scored a late goal in the second period and five more in the third to shock the Bruins 7-5. The series was extended to a Game 7 and Montreal closed out the Bruins with a 4-2 victory at the Boston Garden.
The Bruins won the Stanley Cup in 1970 and '72, but the team that failed to win in '71 may have been the most talented team of all. It certainly was the most hyped.