The Philadelphia Phantoms were a professional ice hockey team that played in the American Hockey League from 1996 to 2009. The club was based in Philadelphia and played most of its home games at the Spectrum. During schedule conflicts or some Calder Cup playoff games, games were moved to the adjacent Wachovia Center; the Phantoms won two Calder Cup titles during their tenure in Philadelphia. In anticipation of the planned closure and demolition of the Spectrum, the franchise was sold in early 2009; the new owners moved the club to Glens Falls, New York, for the 2009–10 season and renamed them the Adirondack Phantoms. Beginning in the 2014–15 season, the team moved to Allentown, Pennsylvania, in a new 8,500-seat arena, the PPL Center; the Phantoms were the fourth AHL franchise to call Philadelphia home, following the Ramblers/Rockets and Firebirds. When the Canadian-American Hockey League and original International Hockey League began playing an interlocking schedule in 1936–37 as the International-American Hockey League, the defending "Can-Am" champion Philadelphia Ramblers became one of the new combined circuit's eight original member clubs.
After two seasons of interlocking play, the two leagues formally merged on June 28, 1938, the circuit renamed itself the American Hockey League in 1940. By 1942, that original Philadelphia franchise fell on hard times and permanently suspended operations; the AHL's next two tries in Philadelphia were made in 1946 by a new Philadelphia Rockets and again in 1977 by the NAHL refugee Philadelphia Firebirds, but neither team met with much longevity or on-ice success. The 1946–47 Rockets in fact still hold the AHL mark for fewest wins in a season at five on a record of 5–52–7; the AHL's dismal record in the city all changed, with the establishment in 1996 of a fourth AHL club in the city, the Phantoms, which went on to win a pair of Calder Cup titles during its thirteen-season run. For the 12 seasons prior to the Phantoms' founding, the National Hockey League's Philadelphia Flyers had maintained a highly-successful affiliation with the AHL's oldest franchise, the Hershey Bears, which included a Calder Cup title in 1988.
In September 1996, the Flyers left their long-time home arena, the Spectrum, moved across the parking lot into the soon-to-be-completed CoreStates Center. Instead of demolishing the Spectrum, Comcast Spectacor, the owner of both arenas as well as the Flyers, elected to keep it open and active, but doing so would require a tenant to fill the 80 to 100 NHL and National Basketball Association dates the Spectrum would lose to the CoreStates Center. To help achieve this end, the Flyers purchased an AHL expansion franchise in December 1995 which would begin operation in the 1996–97 season. A few weeks it was announced that the new team would be named the Philadelphia Phantoms and be coached by Hall of Famer and former Flyer winger Bill Barber, assisted by veteran ex-Bear and Flyer defenseman Mike Stothers; this was the same tandem who were coaching the Flyers' prospects in Hershey. The Phantoms played their first regular season game on October 4, 1996, defeating the Springfield Falcons 6–3 in Springfield.
The franchise's first goal was scored by the team's first captain. The club made its Spectrum debut two days on October 6 before an enthusiastic crowd of 9,166 which saw them defeat the visiting Rochester Americans 3–1 in the first regular season AHL game played in Philadelphia since the departure of the Philadelphia Firebirds in 1979. By season's end, the Phantoms had compiled a 49–18–3–10 record for a League-best 111 points, ten more than second overall Hershey's 101. Center Peter White captured the Sollenberger Trophy as the AHL's top scorer with 105 points while center Vaclav Prospal finished fourth overall in the League with 95 despite having been called up to the Flyers with 17 games left in the season. After sweeping aside the Baltimore Bandits in three games in the opening round of their first-ever playoffs, the Phantoms met their now archrivals, the Hershey Bears, in a most eventful best-of-seven second round set. After dropping the opening game 5–3, the Phantoms evened the series with a 7–4 victory in a most memorable Game 2 which featured, among other things, 350 minutes in penalties, 14 game misconducts, a pair of suspensions, a one-sided fight in which goaltender Neil Little knocked-out Bears' backup goaltender Sinuhe Wallinheimo and, most unusual of all, the appearance in the game of no less than five goalies.
After dropping Game 6, 3–2, in a marathon affair at Hershey that ended when Blair Atcheynum slipped the Bears' 57th shot of the night behind Little on a breakaway at:42 of the third overtime, the Phantoms' first season came to an end when Hershey edged them again, 3–2, in Game 7 at the Spectrum three nights on May 14. As in their inaugural season, the Phantoms again finished first overall in 1997–98 with 106 points on a record of 47–23–2–10, again Peter White took home the Sollenberger Trophy as the league's top scorer with another 105-point season. Sell-out crowds of 17,380 packed the Spectrum eight times during the regular season schedule with a total season attendance of 472,392, over 100
New York Rangers
The New York Rangers are a professional ice hockey team based in New York City. They are members of the Metropolitan Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League; the team plays its home games at Madison Square Garden in the borough of Manhattan, an arena they share with the New York Knicks of the National Basketball Association. They are one of three NHL teams located in the New York metropolitan area; the Rangers are one of the Original Six, along with the Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs, to compete in the NHL until the league's expansion in 1967, after the team was founded in 1926 by Tex Rickard. The team attained success early on under the guidance of Lester Patrick, who coached a vibrant team containing Frank Boucher, Murray Murdoch, Bun and Bill Cook to Stanley Cup glory in 1928, making them the first NHL franchise in the United States to win the trophy; the team would go onto win two additional Stanley Cups in 1933 and 1940.
Following this initial grace period, the franchise struggled between the 1940s and 1960s, whereby playoff appearances and success was infrequent. The team enjoyed a mini renaissance in the 1970s, where they made the Stanley Cup finals twice, losing to the Bruins in 1972 and the Canadiens in 1979; the Rangers subsequently embraced a rebuild for much of the 1980s and early 1990s, which paid dividends, where the team, led by Mark Messier, Brian Leetch, Adam Graves, Mike Richter, captured their fourth Stanley Cup in 1994. The team was unable to duplicate that success in the years that followed, entered into another period of mediocrity, enduring a franchise-record seven-year postseason drought from 1998 to 2005, languished for the majority of the 2000s, but reached another Stanley Cup finals in 2014, being led by Martin St. Louis. However, they have since entered into another period of rebuilding. Several former members of the Rangers have been inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame, four of whom—Buddy O'Connor, Chuck Rayner, Andy Bathgate, Messier—have won the Hart Memorial Trophy while playing for the team.
George Lewis "Tex" Rickard, president of Madison Square Garden, was awarded an NHL franchise for the 1926–27 season to compete with the now-defunct New York Americans, who had begun play at the Garden the previous season. The Americans proved to be an greater success than expected during their inaugural season, leading Rickard to pursue a second team for the Garden despite promising the Amerks that they were going to be the only hockey team to play there; the new team was nicknamed "Tex's Rangers". Rickard's franchise began play in the 1926–27 season; the first team crest was a horse sketched in blue carrying a cowboy waving a hockey stick aloft, before being changed to the familiar R-A-N-G-E-R-S in diagonal. Rickard managed to get future legendary Toronto Maple Leafs owner Conn Smythe to assemble the team. However, Smythe had a falling-out with Rickard's hockey man, Col. John S. Hammond, was fired as manager-coach on the eve of the first season—he was paid a then-hefty $2,500 to leave. Smythe was replaced by Pacific Coast Hockey Association co-founder Lester Patrick.
The new team Smythe assembled turned out to be a winner. The Rangers won the American Division title their first year but lost to the Boston Bruins in the playoffs; the team's early success led to players becoming minor celebrities and fixtures in New York City's Roaring Twenties' nightlife. It was during this time, playing at the Garden on 48th Street, blocks away from Times Square, that the Rangers obtained their now-famous nickname "The Broadway Blueshirts". On December 13, 1929, the New York Rangers became the first team in the NHL to travel by plane when they hired the Curtiss-Wright Corporation to fly them to Toronto for a game against the Toronto Maple Leafs, which they lost 7–6. In only their second season, the Rangers won the Stanley Cup, defeating the Montreal Maroons three games to two. One of the most memorable stories that emerged from the finals involved Patrick playing in goal at the age of 44. At the time, teams were not required to dress a backup goaltender, so when the Rangers' starting goaltender, Lorne Chabot, left a game with an eye injury, Maroons head coach Eddie Gerard vetoed his original choice for a replacement.
An angry Patrick lined up between the pipes for two periods in Game 2 of the finals, allowing one goal to Maroons center Nels Stewart. Frank Boucher scored the game-winning goal in overtime for New York. After a loss to the Bruins in the 1928–29 finals and an early struggle in the early 1930s, the Rangers, led by brothers Bill and Bun Cook on the right and left wings and Frank Boucher at center, defeated the Maple Leafs in the 1932–33 best-of-five finals three games to one to win their second Stanley Cup, exacting revenge on the Leafs' "Kid line" of Busher Jackson, Joe Primeau and Charlie Conacher; the Rangers spent the rest of the 1930s playing close to 0.500 hockey. Lester Patrick was replaced by Frank Boucher. In 1939–40 season, the Rangers finished the regular season in second place behind Boston; the two teams met in the first round of the playoffs. The Bruins gained a two-games-to-one series lead from New York, but the Rangers recovered to win three-straight games, defeating the first-place Bruins four games to two.
The Rangers' first round victory gave them a bye until the finals. The Detroit Red Wings defeated the New York Americans in their first round best-of-three series two games to one (even as the Americans had analytical a
Los Angeles Kings
The Los Angeles Kings are a professional ice hockey team based in Los Angeles. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League; the team was founded on June 5, 1967, after Jack Kent Cooke was awarded an NHL expansion franchise for Los Angeles on February 9, 1966, becoming one of the six teams that began play as part of the 1967 NHL expansion. The Kings played their home games at The Forum in Inglewood, California, a suburb of Los Angeles, for thirty-two years, until they moved to the Staples Center in Downtown Los Angeles at the start of the 1999–2000 season. During the 1970s and early 1980s, the Kings had many years marked by impressive play in the regular season only to be washed out by early playoff exits, their highlights in those years included the strong goaltending of Rogie Vachon, the "Triple Crown Line" of Charlie Simmer, Dave Taylor and Hall of Fame player Marcel Dionne, who had a famous upset of the uprising Edmonton Oilers in a 1982 playoff game known as the Miracle on Manchester.
In 1988, the Kings traded with the Oilers to get their captain Wayne Gretzky, leading to a successful phase of the franchise that raised hockey's popularity in Los Angeles, helped raise the sport's profile in the American Sun Belt region. Gretzky, fellow Hall of Famer Luc Robitaille and defenseman Rob Blake led the Kings to the franchise's sole division title in 1990–91, the Kings' first Stanley Cup Final appearance in 1993. After the 1993 Finals, the Kings entered financial problems, with a bankruptcy in 1995, which led to the franchise being acquired by Philip Anschutz and Edward P. Roski. A period of mediocrity ensued, with the Kings only resurging as they broke a six-year playoff drought in the 2009–10 season, with a team that included goaltender Jonathan Quick, defenseman Drew Doughty, forwards Dustin Brown, Anze Kopitar and Justin Williams. Under coach Darryl Sutter, hired early in the 2011–12 season, the Kings won two Stanley Cups in three years: 2012, over the New Jersey Devils, 2014, against the New York Rangers while Quick and Williams won the Conn Smythe Trophy.
When the NHL decided to expand for the 1967–68 season amid rumblings that the Western Hockey League was proposing to turn itself into a major league and compete for the Stanley Cup, Canadian entrepreneur Jack Kent Cooke paid the NHL $2 million to place one of the six expansion teams in Los Angeles. Following a fan contest to name the team, Cooke chose the name Kings because he wanted his club to take on "an air of royalty," and picked the original team colors of purple and gold because they were colors traditionally associated with royalty; the same color scheme was worn by the Los Angeles Lakers of the National Basketball Association, which Cooke owned. Cooke wanted his new NHL team to play in the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena, home of the Lakers, but the Los Angeles Coliseum Commission, which manages the Sports Arena and the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum to the present day, had entered into an agreement with the WHL's Los Angeles Blades to play their games at the Sports Arena. Frustrated by his dealings with the Coliseum Commission, Cooke said, "I am going to build my own arena...
I've had enough of this balderdash."Construction on Cooke's new arena, the Forum, was not yet complete when the 1967–68 season began, so the Kings opened their first season at the Long Beach Arena in the neighboring city of Long Beach on October 14, 1967, defeating another expansion team, the Philadelphia Flyers, 4–2. The "Fabulous Forum" opened its doors on December 30, 1967, with the Kings being shut out by the Flyers, 2–0. While the first two seasons had the Kings qualifying for the playoffs, afterwards poor management led the Kings into hard times; the general managers established a history of trading away first-round draft picks for veteran players, attendance suffered during this time. The Kings made a few key acquisitions to resurge as a contender. By acquiring Toronto Maple Leafs winger Bob Pulford, who would become the Kings' head coach, in 1970, Finnish center Juha Widing in a trade from the New York Rangers, Montreal Canadiens goaltender Rogie Vachon in 1971, the Kings went from being one of the worst defensive teams in the league to one of the best, in 1974 they returned to the playoffs.
After being eliminated in the first round of the playoffs in both 1973–74 and 1974–75, the Kings moved to upgrade their offensive firepower when they acquired center Marcel Dionne from the Detroit Red Wings. Behind Dionne's offensive prowess, the strong goaltending of Rogie Vachon, the speed and scoring touch of forward Butch Goring, the Kings played two of their most thrilling seasons yet, with playoff match ups against the then-Atlanta Flames in the first round, the Boston Bruins in the second round, both times being eliminated by Boston. Bob Pulford left the Kings after the 1976–77 season after constant feuding with owner Jack Kent Cooke, General Manager Jake Milford decided to leave as well; this led to struggles in the 1977–78 season, where the Kings finished below.500 and were swept out of the first round by the Maple Leafs. Afterwards Vachon would sign with the Detroit Red Wings; the following season, Kings coach Bob Berry tried juggling line combinations, Dionne found himself on a new line with two young unknown players: second-year right winger Dave Taylor and left winger Charlie Simmer, a career minor-leaguer.
Each player benefited from each other, with Simmer being the gritty player who battled
The Colorado Avalanche are a professional ice hockey team based in Denver, Colorado. They are members of the Central Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League; the Avalanche are the only team in their division not based in the Central Time Zone. Their home arena is Pepsi Center, their general manager is Joe Sakic. The Avalanche were founded in 1972 as the Quebec Nordiques and were 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 were sold to the COMSAT Entertainment Group and relocated to Denver. In the club's first season in Denver, the Avalanche won the Pacific Division and went on to sweep the Florida Panthers in the 1996 Stanley Cup Finals, becoming the first NHL team to win the Stanley Cup in the season following a relocation. Among teams in the major North American professional sports leagues, only the National Football League's Washington Redskins have accomplished the feat.
This was the first major professional sports championship a Denver-based team would bring to the city. In the 2001 Stanley Cup Finals, the Avalanche defeated the New Jersey Devils 4–3 to win their second and most recent championship; as a result, they are the only active NHL team that has won all of its Stanley Cup Final appearances. The Avalanche have won nine division titles and qualified for the playoffs in each of their first ten seasons in Denver; the Quebec Nordiques were one of the World Hockey Association's original teams when the league began play in 1972. Though first awarded to a group in San Francisco, the team moved to Quebec City when the California deal soured because of financial and arena problems. During their seven WHA seasons, the Nordiques won the Avco World Trophy once, in 1977 and lost the finals once, in 1975. In 1979, the franchise entered the NHL, along with the WHA's Edmonton Oilers, Hartford Whalers and Winnipeg Jets. After making the postseason for seven consecutive years, from 1981 to 1987, the Nordiques started to decine.
From 1987–88 to 1991–92, the team finished last in their division every season, three of those times they finished last in the league. This included a dreadful 12-win season in 1989–90, still the worst in franchise history; as a result, the team earned three consecutive first overall draft picks, used to select Mats Sundin, Owen Nolan and Eric Lindros. Lindros made it clear he did not wish to play for the Nordiques, to the extent he did not wear the team's jersey for the press photographs, only holding it when it was presented to him. On advice from his mother, he refused to sign a contract and began a holdout that lasted over a year. On June 30, 1992, he was traded to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for five players, the rights to Swedish prospect Peter Forsberg, two first-round draft picks and US$15 million; the Eric Lindros trade turned the moribund Nordiques into a Stanley Cup contender overnight, in hindsight is seen as one of the most one-sided deals in sports history. In the first season after the trade, 1992–93, the Nordiques reached the playoffs for the first time in six years.
Two years they won the Northeast Division and had the second best regular-season record during the lockout-shortened season. While the team experienced on-ice success, it spent most of its first 23 years struggling financially. Quebec City was by far the smallest market in the NHL, the second-smallest to host a team in the four major sports; the changing financial environment in the NHL made things more difficult. In 1995, team owner Marcel Aubut asked for a bailout from Quebec's provincial government as well as a new publicly funded arena; the bailout fell through, Aubut subsequently began talks with COMSAT Entertainment Group in Denver, which owned the National Basketball Association's Denver Nuggets. In May 1995, COMSAT announced an agreement in principle to purchase the team; the deal became official on July 1, 1995, 12,000 season tickets were sold in the 37 days after the announcement of the move to Denver. Though the team was losing money, it was sold so that outgoing owner Marcel Aubut could make a profit off the franchise.
COMSAT considered several names for the team, including Extreme and Black Bears. It debated whether to brand the team as a Denver team or as a regional franchise representing either Colorado or the entire Rocky Mountain region. COMSAT filed copyright protection for "Black Bears", but decided to name the team Rocky Mountain Extreme. However, when The Denver Post leaked the new name, fan reaction was so negative that COMSAT reversed course and decided to name the team the "Colorado Avalanche." The new name was revealed on August 10, 1995. With the move, the newly relocated team transferred to the Pacific Division of the Western Conference. After buying the team, COMSAT organized its Denver sports franchises under a separate subsidiary, Ascent Entertainment Group Inc. which went public in 1995, with 80% of its stock bought by COMSAT and the other 20% available on NASDAQ. The Avalanche played their first game in the McNichols Sports Arena in Denver on October 6, 1995, winning 3–2 against the Detroit Red Wings.
It marked a return of the NHL to Denver after an absence of 13 years, when the Colorado Rockies moved to New Jersey to become the New Jersey Devils. Valeri Kamensky scored the first goal as the Avalanche. Led by captain Joe Sakic, forward Peter Forsberg and defenseman Adam Foote on t
The Rochester Americans are a professional ice hockey team in the American Hockey League. The team plays its home games in New York, at the Blue Cross Arena at the War Memorial; the Americans are the fourth-oldest franchise in the AHL, have the second-longest continuous tenure among AHL teams in their current locations after the Hershey Bears. They celebrated their 60th anniversary in the 2015–16 season. Rochester was awarded a new franchise in June 1956, when the Pittsburgh Hornets were forced to suspend operations after their arena, the Duquesne Gardens was razed in an urban renewal project. With the Hornets franchise in limbo until a new arena could be built, there was room in the league for a team in Rochester; the Americans' team colors are red and blue. The logo is a patriotic badge with "Americans" written in cursive script; the Americans have played for the Calder Cup 16 times. They have won six Cups: in 1965, 1966, 1968, 1983, 1987 and 1996, they have lost in the finals ten times: in 1957, 1960, 1967, 1977, 1984, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1999 and 2000.
Hockey was popular in a city known for its cold weather, as far back as the 1920s. Professional hockey arrived in 1935 in the form of the Rochester Cardinals, a member of the International Hockey League; the Cardinals, who played at Edgerton Park Arena, lasted only one season, compiling a 15–29–3 record and a host of financial difficulties. In the early 1950s, with the Rochester Community War Memorial under construction, Montreal Canadiens manager Frank Selke promised an American Hockey League team to Rochester at some point in the future, with 1956 one target year, mentioned. Demonstrative of the support for hockey in Rochester, 7,092 fans turned out for a game between the AHL Buffalo Bisons and the NHL Montreal Canadiens on November 21, 1955; when 60-year-old Duquesne Gardens in Pittsburgh was scheduled for demolition in 1956, it left the Pittsburgh Hornets without an arena and forced them to go idle, freeing up room in the AHL for a Rochester team. Prior to the AHL franchise, the Arpeako Packers played before thousands at the new Rochester War Memorial.
Center Sam Toth and Left Wing Ed House started the original group tasked to bring professional hockey to Rochester. The Central Hockey League was sold on Rochester as its next expansion city; the CHL told Toth and House the CHL was a league that promised more fans than the AHL due to the rougher, more violent product on the ice. Toth and House ended up losing out to the group backed by Canadians; the AHL granted a group which included Rochesterians Sam Toth and Ed House a conditional franchise for Rochester that June. The terms required that the group raise $150,000 of capital, two thirds of, to be raised by the sale of stock in less than two weeks; when their effort to secure the funds failed to reach its goal, a new group, backed by Selke of the Canadiens and Conn Smythe of the Toronto Maple Leafs, was awarded the franchise. The Leafs and Canadiens each owned 27.5% of the team, with the balance sold to Rochester interests. The team was named the "Americans". Upon entering the league for the 1956–57 season the Americans became a joint affiliate of both the Montreal Canadiens and the Toronto Maple Leafs of the National Hockey League, though the club was operated by the Canadiens.
Under Coach Billy Reay the team finished in third place in the AHL standings and played the defending champion Providence Reds in the opening round of the Calder Cup playoffs. With Bobby Perreault in goal, the Americans defeated Providence and goaltender Johnny Bower in five games. Rochester was defeated in a five-game final by the Cleveland Barons, who won the Calder Cup; the Americans reached the playoffs in 1959. The 1959 Americans were led by the "WHAM" line of center Rudy Migay, left wing Gary Aldcorn and right wing Billy Hicke. Migay and Hicke were named co-MVP for the AHL that season and Hicke was chosen league rookie of the year. In the summer of 1959, the Maple Leafs bought out the Canadiens ownership share of the club, giving them a 55% controlling interest, due to concerns that with Montreal operating the club they were giving their prospects priority over those of the Leafs, they purchased most of the remaining 45% in 1963, boosting their ownership share to 98% by November 1964. In 1959–60 the Americans became the first team in American Hockey League history to win a playoff series after trailing three-games-to-none.
The Amerks' comeback against the Cleveland Barons included the efforts of the veteran Migay, right wing Pat Hannigan and league-leading goaltender Ed Chadwick. A crowd of 7,762 at the War Memorial witnessed a 4-1 triumph in game seven. Rochester went on to lose the Calder Cup finals in five games to Eddie Shore's Springfield Indians. Following the 1960–61 season, in which the Americans failed to qualify for the playoffs, the Montreal Canadiens transferred their working agreement to the Quebec Aces of the American Hockey League and sent Rochester players Guy Rousseau and Claude Labrosse to Quebec; as the exclusive affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs, the Americans made the playoffs the next two seasons but never contended for the Calder Cup championship. Beginning in 1963–64 former Americans defenseman Joe Crozier became the team's coach and general manager. Under Crozier, the Americans won the Calder Cup in 1965, 1966 and 1968 and were finalists in 1967.
The Anaheim Ducks are a professional ice hockey team based in Anaheim, California. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League. Since their inception, the Ducks have played their home games at the Honda Center; the club was founded in 1993 by The Walt Disney Company as the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, a name based on the 1992 film The Mighty Ducks. Disney sold the franchise in 2005 to Henry and Susan Samueli, who along with then-general manager Brian Burke changed the name of the team to the Anaheim Ducks before the 2006–07 season; the Ducks have made the playoffs 14 times and won six Pacific Division titles, two Western Conference championships and one Stanley Cup. The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim were founded in 1993 by The Walt Disney Company; the franchise was awarded by the NHL in December 1992, along with the rights to a Miami team that would become the Florida Panthers. An entrance fee of $50 million was required, half of which Disney would pay directly to the Los Angeles Kings in order to "share" Southern California.
On March 1, 1993, at the brand-new Anaheim Arena – located a short distance east of Disneyland and across the Orange Freeway from Angel Stadium – the team got its name, inspired by the 1992 Disney movie The Mighty Ducks, based on a group of misfit kids who turn their losing youth hockey team into a winning team. Philadelphia-arena management specialist Tony Tavares was chosen to be team president, Jack Ferreira, who helped create the San Jose Sharks, became the Ducks' general manager; the Ducks selected Ron Wilson to be the first head coach in team history. The Ducks and the expansion Florida Panthers team filled out their rosters in the 1993 NHL Expansion Draft and the 1993 NHL Entry Draft. In the former, a focus on defense led to goaltenders Guy Hebert and Glenn Healy being the first picks, followed by Alexei Kasatonov and Steven King. In the latter, the Ducks selected as the fourth overall pick Paul Kariya, who only began play in 1994 but would turn out to be the face of the franchise for many years.
The resulting roster had the lowest payroll of the NHL at only $7.9 million. Led by captain Troy Loney, the Ducks' finished the season 33–46–5, a record-breaking number of wins for an expansion team, which the Florida Panthers achieved; the Ducks sold out 27 of 41 home games, including the last 25, filled the Arrowhead Pond to 98.9% of its season capacity. Ducks licensed merchandise shot to number one in sales among NHL clubs, helped by their presence in Disney's theme parks and Disney Stores; the lockout-shortened 1994–95 NHL season saw the debut of Paul Kariya, who would play 47 of the team's 48 games that year, scoring 18 goals and 21 assists for 39 points. The Ducks had another respectable season, going 16–27–5. 1995–96 would mark a big change for the team for second-year superstar Paul Kariya. During the season, he was chosen to play for the Western Conference in the 1996 NHL All-Star Game as the lone Ducks representative. At the time of his selection, Kariya was ranked 14th in league scoring with 51 points over 42 games, although the Ducks were overall a low-scoring team.
A mid-season blockbuster deal with the Winnipeg Jets improved the franchise. The Ducks sent Chad Kilger, Oleg Tverdovsky and a third-round pick to the Jets in return for Marc Chouinard, a fourth-round draft pick and right winger Teemu Selanne. Following the trade, Ducks center Steve Rucchin commented, "Paul had a lot of pressure on him... He singlehandedly won some games for us this year... Now that we have Teemu, there's no way everybody can just key on Paul." These three players formed one of the most potent lines of their time. Although the trade proved to be an important effort in the team, they still finished short of the playoffs, losing the eight spot in the Western Conference to the Winnipeg Jets based on the number of wins. During the 1996–97 season, Kariya became team captain following Randy Ladouceur's retirement in the off-season, led the Ducks to their first post-season appearance after recording the franchise's first winning record of 36–33–13, good enough for home ice in the first round as the fourth seed against the Phoenix Coyotes.
The Ducks trailed 3–2 going into Phoenix for Game 6. Kariya scored in overtime to force the franchise's first Game 7. However, in the second round, they lost to the eventual Stanley Cup champions the Detroit Red Wings in a four-game sweep. After the season, Ron Wilson was fired after saying. Pierre Page succeeded him; the Ducks started out in 1997–98, in part because Kariya missed the first 32 games of the season in a contract dispute. He came back in December, but on February 1, he suffered a season-ending concussion when the Chicago Blackhawks' Gary Suter cross-checked him in the face. With Kariya playing only a total of 22 games that season, the Ducks missed the playoffs and fired Page; the Ducks followed that season up by finishing sixth in the Western Conference in 1998–99 with new head coach Craig Hartsburg. However, they were swept by Detroit again, this time in the first round. In the 1999–2000 season, the Ducks finished with the same amount of points as the previous season, but a much more competitive Western Conference had them miss the playoffs by four points behind rival San Jose Sharks.
Despite this, the Mighty Ducks scored more goals than the conference champion Dallas Stars. In the following season, 2000–01, the Ducks ended up performing worse, as Paul Kariya and Teemu Selanne's point production declined from the previous season – Kariya went from 86 points to 67 points and Selanne went fr
The Boston Bruins are a professional ice hockey team based in Boston. They are members of the Atlantic Division of the Eastern Conference of the National Hockey League; the team has been in existence since 1924, is the league's third-oldest team overall and the oldest in the United States. It is an Original Six franchise, along with the Chicago Blackhawks, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers and Toronto Maple Leafs; the Bruins have won six Stanley Cup championships, tied for fourth most of all-time with the Blackhawks and tied second-most of any American NHL team with the Blackhawks. The first facility to host the Bruins was the Boston Arena – the world's oldest indoor ice hockey facility still in use for the sport at any level of competition – and following the Bruins' departure from the Boston Arena, the team played its home games at the Boston Garden for 67 seasons, beginning in 1928 and concluding in 1995, when they moved to the TD Garden. In 1924, at the convincing of Boston grocery magnate Charles Adams, the National Hockey League decided to expand to the United States.
Adams had come to enjoy ice hockey while watching the 1924 Stanley Cup Finals between the NHL champion Montreal Canadiens and the WCHL champion Calgary Tigers. The previous year in 1923, Thomas Duggan received options on three NHL franchises for the United States, he sold one to Charles Adams, who in turn, persuaded the NHL to grant him a franchise for the city of Boston, which occurred on November 1, 1924. With the Montreal Maroons, the team was one of the NHL's first expansion teams, the first NHL team to be based in the United States. Adams' first act was to hire a former star player and innovator, as general manager. Ross was the face of the franchise for the next thirty years, including four separate stints as coach. Adams directed Ross to come up with a nickname that would portray an untamed animal displaying speed and cunning. Ross came up with "Bruins", an Old English word used for brown bears in classic folk tales; the team's bearlike nickname went along with the team's original uniform colors of brown and yellow, which came from Adams' grocery chain, First National Stores.
On December 1, 1924, the new Bruins team played their first NHL game against their expansion cousins the Maroons, at Boston Arena, with Canadian skater Smokey Harris scoring the first-ever Bruins goal, spurring the Bruins to a 2–1 win. This would be one of the few high points of the season, as the Bruins proved to be no match for the established NHL teams. At the time, the NHL did not conduct an expansion draft for new teams, there were few American-born hockey players and many Canadian players were skeptical of hockey's long-term prospects in the Eastern United States. Boston was therefore left with a team full of NHL castaways unable to land a spot on the roster of the more established Canadian teams; the Bruins only managed a 6–24–0 record and finished in last place in its first season – within this timeframe, only one week on December 8, 1924, what would become one of the NHL's all-time fiercest rivalries was initiated, as the Montreal Canadiens were the visiting team at the Boston Arena that night, defeating the hometown Bruins by a 4–3 score.
The Bruins played three more seasons at the Arena, after which they became the main tenant of the famous Boston Garden, while the old Boston Arena facility – the world's oldest existing indoor ice hockey venue still used for the sport at any level of competition, the only surviving rink where an Original Six NHL team began their career in the league – was taken over by Northeastern University, renamed Matthews Arena when the university renovated it in 1979. The Bruins' managed to improve in their second season to a winning record due to the presence of two more expansion teams. For Boston, the NHL did not expand the playoffs for the 1925–26 season and the Bruins missed out on the third and final playoff berth by one point to the expansion Pittsburgh Pirates. In their third season, 1926 -- 27, the organization made. Ross took advantage of the collapse of the Western Hockey League to purchase several western stars, including the team's first great star, a defenseman from Fort Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan named Eddie Shore.
The Bruins' moves were counterbalanced by WHL player acquisitions on other NHL teams, the team's record was slightly worse than the previous season, but Boston qualified for the then-expanded playoffs by a comfortable margin. In their first-ever playoff run, the Bruins reached the Stanley Cup Final where they lost to the Ottawa Senators in the first Cup Final to be between NHL teams. In 1929 the Bruins defeated the New York Rangers to win their first Stanley Cup. Standout players on the first championship team included Shore, Harry Oliver, Dit Clapper, Dutch Gainor and goaltender Tiny Thompson; the 1928–29 season was the first played at Boston Garden, which Adams had built after guaranteeing his backers $500,000 in gate receipts over the next five years. The season after that, 1929–30, the Bruins posted the best-ever regular season winning percentage in the NHL and shattered numerous team scoring records, but lost to the Montreal Canadiens in the Cup Final; the 1930s Bruins teams included Shore, Clapper, Babe Siebert and Cooney Weiland.
The team led the league's standings five times in the decade. In 1939, the team changed its uniform colors from brown an