Canada's past NHL playoff celebrations have been party-like, peaceful but also ugly
From the Red Mile to riots, Whyte Avenue to the Winnipeg Whiteout, Canadians in NHL cities have taken to the streets and rallied during their team's Stanley Cup playoff run.
The celebrations have been spontaneous and remained party-like and peaceful. At other times, the scene has turned ugly, resulting in burned buildings and vehicles, injured people and hundreds of arrests.
It's been a long time since the ultimate Stanley Cup party in Canada — 1993, to be exact, when the Canadiens won. Oddly enough, that celebration 25 years ago in Montreal, which should have been jubilant and full of excitement, turned ugly.
Now the Cup dreams of a hockey-crazed nation rest squarely on the shoulders of the Winnipeg Jets, who are into the Western Conference final for the first time in franchise history.
The scene inside Bell MTS Place and on the streets has been extraordinary as fans ratchet up excitement to support their team. Upwards of 40,000 packed the downtown area during games, dressed in white to cheer on the Jets. Now they face the Vegas Golden Knights with a Stanley Cup Final berth on the line.
It will be electric for Game 1 in Winnipeg on Saturday (CBC, CBCSports.ca, 7 p.m. ET).
Let's look at how Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, Montreal and Toronto have supported, celebrated and rioted for its teams.
1993: Montreal wins 24th Stanley Cup — and fans riot
The last time a Canadian team hoisted the Stanley Cup was June 9, 1993. The Canadiens defeated the Los Angeles Kings 4-1 at the Montreal Forum to win the best-of-seven series in five games.
The fans inside the arena were frenzied — a frenzy that soon took the streets. It turned ugly as the night progressed. Fans started vandalizing stores and set police cars on fire. More than 150 people were injured leading to about 100 arrests, with damages estimated at $2.5 million.
It isn't the only time Canadiens fans have rioted, however. They did so after losing to Boston in Round 2 in 2008 and two years later following a second-round defeat at the hands of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
2004: Calgary's Red Mile lights up 17th Avenue
The city was ready for a party with the Flames in the playoffs for the first time since 1996.
What began as a spontaneous and somewhat innocent celebration erupted into a full-on street party that became famously known as the Red Mile.
Thousands of fans took to 17th Avenue through the post-season to celebrate each of the team's goals. By the Cup Final, the scene took was Mardi Gras-like, but controversy soon followed when women repeatedly exposed their breasts in the middle of the party.
The Red Mile was extinguished, though, in Game 7 when Tampa Bay prevailed 2-1.
2006: Whyte Avenue the place to be for Oilers fans
It was Edmonton's turn to take to the streets to live and die on the team's success, two years after its provincial rivals from Calgary fell short in their Cup run.
Whyte Avenue quickly became the gathering place when thousands of fans were sent into a frenzy following an Oilers victory. On three or four occasions during Edmonton's run to Game 7 of the Cup final, however, police lost control of the crowd.
People broke windows, started bonfires in the streets and hurled bottles at police, leading to more than 850 arrests.
There would be no final chance to celebrate or riot for Oilers fans as the club suffered the same fate as Calgary, dropping Game 7 to the Carolina Hurricanes.
2007: Senators celebrate in polite, kind manner
Perhaps so quintessentially Canadian, Ottawa's fans celebrated in the most polite of ways while watching their Senators march to the 2007 Stanley Cup Final.
Thousands assembled on patios outside of Scotiabank Place to watch the games and go wild. There was some spontaneous celebration that erupted on the Elgin Street bar strip but it was also polite and kind as police were spotted high-fiving fans. The street would later become known as the Sens Mile.
The season ended in defeat for the Senators, who succumbed in five games to the Anaheim Ducks.
During the team's run to the Eastern Conference final last year, Ottawa fans would take to the street during a red light and go crazy before returning to the sidewalk when the light was green.
2011: Vancouver riots garner international headlines
Rioting in Vancouver wasn't really anything new. When the Canucks lost Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final to the New York Rangers in 1994, upwards of 50,000 fans took to downtown streets and vandalized buildings and cars.
Police and the RCMP were called in to try to quiet the crowd as more than 200 people were injured and damages exceeded $1 million.
When it came to Game 7 of the 2011 Cup Final against Boston, police and authorities braced themselves — and then 1994 happened all over again, except this was much worse. It's estimated upwards of 100,000 people were in the streets that night when chaos broke out.
Buildings were burned, cars burned and flipped over, stores looted, and widespread violence. In total, 887 charges were laid against 301 people and damages topped $5 million.
1967: Leafs faithful bask in glory of most recent Cup win
Once upon a time, the Toronto Maple Leafs and their fans had serious reason to celebrate.
In May 1967, the Leafs beat their arch-rivals from Montreal in a six-game Stanley Cup Final, but haven't claimed victory since. More than 25,000 lined a parade route that snaked along Church Street, across Wellington and up Bay Street to City Hall. Confetti and ticker tape fell as Leafs fans basked in the glory of it all.
It has been a long, arduous haul for Toronto fans since that time. In recent years, fans take to Maple Leafs Square to watch the game on the big screen. But that Cup eludes a fan base desperate for a reason to let the confetti fly again.