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I asked this question: How many times has a 4 game sweep occurred during the Stanley Cup finals? about 2 years ago. It got 2 answers. One was a link to a TSN webpage, other was the list of sweeps with no source. Since the second answer did not provide any sources I did not accept it, and accepted the answer with link to a sports network with high reputation.

However, today I noticed that the link to the accepted answer no longer exists. So I unaccepted that and left the user a comment. What to do now? I know ideally we want answers and the link to the source. But should I accept the answer with no source now? I have no way of confirming if the list provided is correct.

  • BTW in cases of link rot, sometimes Internet Archive (a.k.a. Wayback Machine) can be useful. In this case, check this. – Martin Apr 24 '16 at 9:56
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If you "required" the link, then it would have been appropriate to provide context to what was relevant in said link so that the previously accepted answer would have been more robust and standalone (the list was from TSN, but why wouldn't a list from the NHL or another "sports network with high reputation" suffice otherwise?). See how to answer for more information.

Because the source was of utmost importance for you to confirm the answer's findings, I see where you are coming from. However...

I have no way of confirming if the list provided is correct.

For such information, I cannot imagine it would be very hard to use a different source (out of several...NHL, Hockey Reference, etc.) to confirm the data. It may have included repetitive lookups, but not impossible to confirm (eg, 1998 Stanley Cup Playoffs from Hockey Reference showing the results of each series that year). Thus, you do have a way (out of potentially several ways) of confirming if the list provided is correct.

Below is how I would have handled such a case. "Users are charged with the task of editing to improve ... formatting and content." I have replaced the dead link with a cached snapshot from web.archive.org. If links die, you can use said resource to "resurrect" a link, but again, we prefer our answers to provide context for links. Considering the user stated, "I could post the same list as above or you can check out the list from TSN," this user could have as easily incorporated this information into the other answer that actually provided a list of occurrences to improve that answer dramatically.


There have been 20 [Stanley Cup finals sweeps]. I could post the same list as above or you can check out the list from TSN

https://web.archive.org/web/20130503105854/http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/feature/?id=5844

Year       Winning Team       Losing Team
1998    Detroit Red Wings   Washington Capitals
1997    Detroit Red Wings   Philadelphia Flyers
1996    Colorado Avalanche  Florida Panthers
1995    New Jersey Devils   Detroit Red Wings
1992    Pittsburgh Penguins Chicago Blackhawks
1988    Edmonton Oilers     Boston Bruins
1983    New York Islanders  Edmonton Oilers
1982    New York Islanders  Vancouver Canucks
1977    Montreal Canadiens  Boston Bruins
1976    Montreal Canadiens  Philadelphia Flyers
1970    Boston Bruins           St. Louis Blues
1969    Montreal Canadiens  St. Louis Blues
1968    Montreal Canadiens  St. Louis Blues
1960    Montreal Canadiens  Toronto Maple Leafs
1952    Detroit Red Wings   Montreal Canadiens
1949    Toronto Maple Leafs Detroit Red Wings
1948    Toronto Maple Leafs Detroit Red Wings
1944    Montreal Canadiens  Chicago Black Hawks
1943    Detroit Red Wings   Boston Bruins
1941    Boston Bruins       Detroit Red Wings
  • Yeah I could've checked result of every single year of the stanley cup final, but if I was interested in doing that I wouldn't have posted the qustion. Wow didn't know about web.archive.org, looks very powerful. I have reaccepted the answer since the web.archive.org link will always be available – alamoot Apr 25 '16 at 14:06
  • Well, you claimed you had no way to confirm the data, which isn't the case. That link wasn't the "be-all, end-all" resource as you claimed. – user527 Apr 25 '16 at 14:12

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