Skip to main content

1926-27: The Original Six Are Set

The Three Stars:

Detroit, Chicago, New York Rangers Join NHL - The NHL loses it's west coast competition when Frank Patrick sells off the contracts of players to the NHL for $258,000. Two teams are essentially absorbed. The Victoria Cougars become the Detroit Cougars, later to be renamed Falcons and then Red Wings. The Portland Rosebuds become the Chicago Black Hawks, later renamed Blackhawks. The Rangers debut with much fanfare in New York, as the Bread Line of Frank Boucher with Bill Cook and Bun Cook dazzle audiences. Bill Cook wins the NHL scoring championship.

Toronto Turns Over New Leaf - Conn Smythe puts together a group of investors to buy the Toronto St. Patricks, perhaps saving the franchise's relocation to Philadelphia. Smythe's group buys the team for $160,000 and renames the team the Maple Leafs. The teams green and white colors are ditched for blue and white.

Green Barely Survives Nasty Hit - The NHL comes close to its first on-ice fatality when New York Americans star Shorty Green sustains a kidney injury on February 27th, 1927. Green absorbed a clean open ice hit from the much larger 225lb New York Rangers defenseman Taffy Abel. Green underwent surgery on March 3rd to remove the damaged kidney. At one point he was administered last rites. Green does recover, but never plays hockey again.

Season Highlights:
  • The New York Rangers had hired Conn Smythe to build their team but he was fired just before the start of the season thanks to a management dispute. Lester Patrick takes over control in New York.
  • Herb Gardiner becomes the second (and one of three all time) first year player to win the Hart Trophy as most valuable player. Nels Stewart also turned the trick. Several decades later Wayne Gretzky also joined this rare club. Gardiner, however, was a 35 year old veteran of the western leagues. A railway surveyor in the offseason, Gardiner scored just 6 goals and 12 points this season.
  • The Detroit Cougars played all of their 22 home games in Canada that first season. Due to lack of proper facilities in Detroit, the Cougars play across the border in near by Windsor at the Border Cities Arena.
  • Hal Winkler becomes the first NHL goalie to get a shutout in his first NHL game.
  • The demise of the western major leagues gives the NHL full control of the Stanley Cup.
  • The Ottawa Senators win the Stanley Cup, their last in franchise history. Goalie Alex Connell, dubbed the Ottawa Fireman, is a brick wall in net, recording 30 wins, 13 shutouts and a 1.57 GAA.
  • George Hainsworth is very first recipient of the Vezina Trophy, given to the top goalie in the NHL in memoriam of the late Georges Vezina.


Popular posts from this blog

100 Greatest Hockey Players Of All Time

What follows is a listing of the 100 greatest hockey players of all time, in my opinion. As discussed earlier, the definition of greatness is a very personalized endeavor and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it.
While there is no way of ever truly ranking the top 100 definitively, it is important for the creators of such lists to be open and transparent of how the came to their conclusions. That accountability allows the reader to better understand the process. 

Although admittedly I'm using a completely unscientific formula, I weigh career achievements (era statistics, awards, championships) and legacy (impact on and off ice, peak dominance) equally high. I rank player ability as the third most important ingredient, as first and foremost as a tie breaker. Hence, I'm not necessarily looking for the better player, as in text book definitions of what a hockey player should be, but for players with the greatest careers and greatest legacies. Therefore the best player is not n…

Top Ten Junior Players Of All Time

Let's take a look at the Top Ten junior players of all time. For the purposes of this list we will at players in the WHL, OHL and QMJHL only.

10. Pat Lafontaine, Verdun, QMJHL Rookie-record 104 goals, 234 points in 1982-83; major junior player of the year.

9. Denis Potvin, Ottawa, OHL 254 games, 95 goals, 234 assists, 329 points. Broke Bobby Orr's junior records.

8. John Tavares, Oshawa, OHL 215 goals, 433 points in 247 games; most goals in OHL history; eligibility rules changed to admit him at 15; 2006 major junior rookie of the year, 2007 major junior player of the year; two world juniors, named 2009 all-star, top forward and MVP.

7. Sidney Crosby, Rimouski, QMJHL 120 goals, 303 points in 121 games; two-time major junior player of the year; silver and gold with Canada at two world juniors.

6. Eric Lindros, Oshawa, OHL 97 goals, 216 points in 95 games; one Memorial Cup victory; three world junior tournaments; major junior player of the year in 1991.

5. Mike Bossy, Laval, Q…

Greatest Hockey Legends: M