1937-38 Chicago Blackhawks
The underwhelming 14-25-9 Blackhawks were the American Division's third and final qualifier. After rallying to beat the favored Canadiens in a best-of-three first round, they reached the final by eliminating the New York Americans, two games to one. Before taking on Toronto in the best-of-five final, starting goalie Mike Karakas was lost to a broken toe. Chicago signed Alfie Moore, who won the opener, but he was then ruled ineligible by NHL President Frank Calder. Minor leaguer Paul Goodman tried to hold the fort, but lost Game 2. Fortunately, Karakas was able to return wearing a steel-toed boot and the Hawks went on to become the first team to win the Stanley Cup after missing the playoffs the previous season. As defending champions, they would fail to qualify in 1938-39.