MAY 2, 1967: THE LAST DAY OF THE “ORIGINAL SIX”

Did you know that on May 2, 1967 the National Hockey League, hereafter referred to as the NHL was comprised of only six teams?  The New York Rangers, Boston Bruins, Detroit Red Wings, and the Chicago Blackhawks, Toronto Maple Leafs and the Montreal Canadians.

When the Maple Leafs beat the Canadians in six games to capture the Stanley Cup on May 2, 1967 – it represented the end of Original Six era, as expansion would double the size of the NHL to start the 1967-68 campaign. 

PHILADELPHIA FLYERS, PITTSBURGH PENGUINS, ST. LOUIS BLUES, AND LOS ANGELES KINGS

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The Flyers, Blues, Penguins, and Kings played their initial season in 1967-68 as part of the expansion which doubled the size of the NHL.  All four of these teams have remained in their original cities, and their names have not changed since their inception.

DALLAS STARS

Even though the team has played in Dallas since the start of the 1993-94 seasons, their history is extremely complicated.

The Dallas Stars started out as the Minnesota North Stars.  They were one of the six teams in the 1967-68 expansion draft, as were the Oakland Seals.

So why am I mentioning the Oakland Seals?  The Oakland Seals moved to Cleveland and were renamed the Cleveland Barons to open up the 1976-77 season, but after two seasons in Cleveland the team folded.

At the same time, the North Stars were also struggling.  In an unprecedented move, the NHL merged the now-defunct Cleveland Barons with the then-Minnesota North Stars – retaining the Minnesota North Stars name and location until the end of the 1992-93.  Any further discussion of the arrangement is well beyond the scope of this article.

VANCOUVER CANUCKS AND BUFFALO SABRES

These teams are expansion franchises which began in 1970-71, and have remained in their original cities with their names unchanged since their inception.

CALGARY FLAMES

The Calgary Flames originated as the Atlanta Flames as an expansion franchise which began in 1972-73.   The Flames played in Atlanta for eight seasons before “flaming out.”  They subsequently moved to Calgary to open up the 1980-81 campaign.

NEW YORK ISLANDERS

The Islanders are an expansion franchise which began in 1972-73.  Even though they are moving to the Barclay’s Center for the start of the 2015-16 NHL campaign, they have remained in the New York area with their name unchanged since their inception.

WASHINGTON CAPITALS

The Capitals are an expansion franchise which began in 1974-75.  In an era where a game was considered a tie after regulation, they finished with a record of 8-67-5 for a total of 21 points – a record-low point total for an entire season.

NEW JERSEY DEVILS

The Devils started out as an expansion franchise named the Kansas City Scouts to start the 1974-75.  The Scouts played three seasons in Kansas City, and then moved to Denver and were renamed the Colorado Rockies.  The Rockies played five seasons in Denver, and were renamed the Devils upon their move to New Jersey to open up the 1982-83 season.

THE WORLD HOCKEY ASSOCIATION (WHA) MERGER

The NHL agreed to take four teams from the now-defunct WHA for the start of the 1979-80 season.  The WHA was a rival hockey league to the NHL which lasted from 1971 until 1979.   The WHA caused problems for the NHL because it was able to attract many players that would have otherwise have played in the NHL.

The four teams that entered the league are as follows:

EDMONTON OILERS

The Edmonton Oilers are the only one of these teams to remain in their original location. 

COLORADO AVALANCHE

The Colorado Avalanche entered the league as the Quebec Nordiques.  The Nordiques last season in Quebec was 1994-95.  They moved to Denver and were renamed the Colorado Avalanche to start the 1995-96 season.

ARIZONA COYOTES

The Arizona Coyotes entered the league as the Winnipeg Jets.  This team is not to be confused with the Winnipeg Jets team that is playing currently in the NHL.  The then-Jets played their last season in Winnipeg in 1998-99.  They moved to Phoenix and were renamed the Phoenix Coyotes to start the 1999-2000 season.

WINNIPEG JETS

The origin of the current Winnipeg Jets starts at the beginning of the 1997-98 seasons when the NHL awarded a second expansion franchise to Atlanta to start the 1997-98 season.  The team was given the name of the Thrashers.  The Thrashers ended their tenure in Atlanta upon the conclusion of the 2010-11 season, relocating to Winnipeg the following year (2011-12).

CAROLINA HURRICANES

The Carolina Hurricanes entered the league as the Hartford Whalers.  The Whalers played in Hartford until the end of the 1996-97.  They moved to North Carolina and were renamed the Carolina Hurricanes to start the 1997-98 season.

CONCLUSION

The other teams that were not mentioned all entered the league as expansion teams starting with the 1991-92 season – bringing the total number of teams currently to thirty, quintupling the size of the league in almost 50 years.

 Greg Heim has been a lifelong, Central NJ resident, and a resident of South Plainfield for over 13 years.  Greg’s wife Lisa has almost 20 years of full-time experience as a high school science teacher, and has worked at South Plainfield High School since 2005.  Greg and Lisa’s daughters Rosalind, 17, and Stephanie (“Steffi”), 16, also attend SPHS.  Their 10-year-old son Michael (“Mikey”) has special needs as a high-functioning autistic student.  He attends Kennedy Elementary School where he has made tremendous progress.

Autism is something that Greg Heim knows a lot about.  Even though he was not diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome until the age of 40 in 2006, Greg and pretty much anyone who has ever met or corresponded with him, even remotely knew that he was very different. The “label” proved to be a positive, life-changing event not only for him, but for his family and close friends as well.

Providing discussions and presentations about Asperger’s is only one area that Greg offers our communities free of charge.  Greg is also a well-known and respected numismatic researcher with over 40 years of experience.  His interest in coin collecting began in second grade after carefully examining a large bag of Lincoln “Wheat Ear” Cents coined from 1909-1958.  In addition to his scholarly contributions in the numismatic community, Greg’s involvement in the governance of numismatic clubs on the local, state, and national levels began and has continued since his junior year of high school in 1982.  Greg’s numismatic presentations are applicable for those with or without numismatic experience.  His most popular programs geared towards non-numismatists come in the areas of selling a collection and avoiding fraud when purchasing precious metals for investment.

Greg received his Bachelor’s in mathematical sciences from then-Kean College in 1996.  Greg’s specialties lay in the areas of reinforcing the importance of basic, arithmetic operations, and out-of-the-box thinking that goes beyond standardized tests – especially when it comes to the mathematics and psychology related to games of chance.   Greg’s career as a professional poker and video poker player and author for more than a decade is something that he enjoys sharing with others, especially high school students as an educational primer. When Greg was asked why his passion to lecture on this subject was so high, he stated “because there is an incredulous lack of knowledge and misinformation about the reality of gambling to which race, gender, education level, income level, geography, and any other societal dynamic one can think of have little or zero influence. “

Greg is also an avid sports historian and enthusiast in the areas of football, basketball (college and professional), baseball, hockey, and boxing to a lesser extent.  Greg is a lifelong New York Yankee fan, and spent over eight years in the sports card and memorabilia business from 1986-1993, and he has been a stalwart fan of Nebraska Cornhuskers football since 1982.  His most popular sports programs come from zeal as a diehard, New Jersey Husker fan.

Greg’s approach to providing presentations usually relies on a cooperative effort with the person who has the most contact with his potential audience in order to optimize the number of people in said audience while providing them with the presentation that they most likely want to hear.

But sometimes it does not even have to be all that complicated.  Greg loves to be grilled and put on the spot for 60-90 minutes with a basic “Q&A” format, or one to which he just sits in a chair and plays the role of a raconteur.

For more information, please go to Greg’s community Facebook page “Gregory S. Heim.”  He can also be reached via e-mail at gynandroidhead@yahoo.com, or on his cell at 908-405-6408.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer. 

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

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