The Colorado Avalanche are a professional ice hockey team based in Denver. They compete in the National Hockey League (NHL) as a member of the Central Division in the Western Conference. The Avalanche play their home games at Ball Arena. Founded in 1972 as the Quebec Nordiques, the team was one of the charter franchises of the World Hockey Association. The franchise joined the NHL in 1979 as a result of the NHL–WHA merger. Following the 1994–95 season, they relocated to Denver. During their first season in Denver, the Colorado Avalanche won the Pacific Division and went on to sweep the Florida Panthers in the 1996 Stanley Cup Finals. The Avalanche are the first major professional sports championship a Denver-based team brought to the city. In the 2001 Stanley Cup Finals, the Avalanche defeated the New Jersey Devils in seven games to win their second championship. In the 2022 Stanley Cup Finals, the Avalanche defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning in six games to win their third championship. As a result, they remain the only active NHL team that has won all of their appearances in the Stanley Cup Finals. The Colorado Avalanche have won eleven division titles since relocating to Denver and set the league record for most consecutive division titles at nine in a row from 1995 to 2003.