The Origins of the NHL

The NHL Hockey History actually begins with the NHA's beginning in 1910 based in Canada. The Eastern Canada Hockey Association dated back from 1906 and from the first recognized hockey league called the AHAC (Amateur Hockey Association of Canada).Wanting to get the Montreal Wanderers out of the picture, the ECHA dissolved formed the CHA (Canadian Hockey Association) Ambrose O'Brien and his father, countered by making a league of their own, the National Hockey Association. The O'Briens sponsored 4 teams: Vancouver Millionaires, Cobalt, Haileybury and Les Canadiens of Montreal. These teams and players even went into the History of NHL players later on due to their success in the game.

For more information about the Eastern Canada Hockey Association visit: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eastern_Canada_Hockey_Association

The First Bidding War

The first bidding war in the history of NHL player started soon after the formation of the NHA. Frank and Lester Patrick were signed at $3,000 apiece to the Millionaires. History of NHL players shows that player unrest was ever prevalent during the 1910-11 season due to the unfit salaries. The NHA's championship trophy was the O'Brien Trophy, which was also used as the championship trophy in NHL hockey history. The Stanley Cup was brought into the fold when the Ottawa Senators joined the NHA. The Cup then was awarded to the champions from then on.

The NHA births the NHL

The 1916-17 season birthed the 228th Battalion (Northern Fusiliers), team and consisted of players that had enlisted in WW I. The team wore traditional khaki uniforms and was the most popular team until called to battle in February of 1917. The history of NHL players states that a scandal to place that said many players were promised commissions if they played. This brought about the last season of the NHA. Hockey would not be stopped there; November 1917, the NHL was born.

The first meeting in the NHL hockey history would bring the former tycoon of the NHA, Robert Livingstone, to his knees and without a voice. September 20th of 1918, a vote was caste and Livingstone would not be able to join the league or share in its profits. This was finalized on December 11 of the same year.

Without the formation of the NHA, the NHL would have never taken place. Also, without the sheer hatred toward Livingstone from the other teams, the world probably would have never seen the NHL take place. Ironically though, Livingstone is considered to be the man who made the NHL a league, even after all the attempts and scandals on his record.

First NHL Season

The 1917-18 season was the first in NHL Hockey history. The NHL began its first season with very few teams. In the history of NHL players, five teams began the season, but the "Montreal Wanderers" backed out in January of 1918 after their Montreal rink was burned down. With these humble beginnings, the NHL that we enjoy today stumbled its way onto the scene.

What The First NHL Season was like?

The O'Brien Trophy, was the league's championship trophy, which came from the defunct National Hockey Association. It would be awarded to the winner of the NHL playoffs. The winner of the O'Brien Trophy would then go on to play for the Stanley Cup. This cup has been known throughout the NHL hockey history and will forever be a part of the game. Even in the history of NHL players, the Stanley Cup has been the most sought after item. In order to get the cup, the team that won the O'Brien Trophy played in a series of games against other rival leagues. The Toronto Arenas can boast forever that they won the first Stanley Cup in NHL hockey history by winning three games out of five against the Vancouver Millionaires.

Who Started the NHL and why?

The 1917-1918 NHL season had a rough start. Right off the bat a team called the "Bulldogs" backed out, followed by the Montreal Wanderers in January of 1918. Being only a tiny part of what they once were, the Wanderers ended in one of the most memorable way a franchise could back then.

There was another problem facing the newly formed NHL. The league was formed as a result of a split of the NHA. Owners of the teams in this league were not happy with Eddie Livingstone who owned the Toronto Blue Shirts. They did not invite Livingstone to join the NHL, and this led to years and years of fighting and bickering. The NHL leased Livingstone's team, which played in the Toronto Arena. When they won the Stanley Cup, Livingstone was not given the spoils of the victory. Instead, his team was incorporated into a new club and named the Toronto Arenas. As a result, Livingstone sued the league. In spite of this turmoil and confusion, the NHL rose out of these humble beginnings to make their presence known in the world of professional hockey. The history of the NHL had turmoil at the beginning, but, like the game of hockey itself, the NHL rose out of the struggle to prevail.

Modern NHL Hockey

Today hockey is a major sport in some ways rivaling the popularity of baseball or football. It season only slightly overlaps these giants, giving fans something to watch when it's too cold for open field games. There are now 30 teams that play in the national hockey league with 6 being from Canada and the other 24 being situated here in America. Being the top hockey league in the world, the National Hockey League draws players from all around the world, with some 20 countries currently being represented in the starting lineups.

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