calebblade158

the World Hockey League: 1949-50 Season

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First time posting anything on this website but have been an on-looker for quite some time. I've always wanted to make a fictional sports league and settled on a hockey league. I came up with team names and had a general idea of how I wanted the league to progress. For the longest times I never knew how to make logos and uniforms and didn't even know if people did this kind of thing, and I eventually ran across this website. After a few years of on-looking I decided to try to create my own league again, and with learning how to do logos and uniforms from this website, I was finally able to create the first season of the WHL. Thought I would post the first season and background information and see how well received it is before I post more. I already have a general idea of a few future teams to be introduced. Would appreciate any criticism and critique. This is in no way to rival any other fictional hockey league already on this website! Thank you in advance for any comments, if there is any comments this may suck like an open chest wound. Let's hope not.

 

Pre-1948

            In 1918, Sir Harold L. Douglas (a prominent banker in Quebec City) had a burning desire to get into the ever-popular sports scene. The most followed sport in Quebec, and all of Canada for that matter, was ice hockey. Douglas was an avid fan of the sport and even played center for the Quebec City Aces for two seasons. Sir Douglas convinced the four largest leagues in North America, the Quebec Professional Hockey Association, the North East Hockey League, the Hockey League of Central Canada, and the Great Lakes Hockey Association, to send their league champion to the Quebec City Arena to play one another for a new, magnificent trophy. The trophy was dubbed the Sir Douglas Cup in honor of the man who not only paid for the trophy, but also was the mastermind behind the tournament.

            The tournament became an instant fan favorite with the QCA being packed with fans from each league. Though the NEHL and GLHA would send terrific teams to the tournament, it was usually a battle between whatever teams the QPHA and HLCC sent. In fact it took ten years for a team from the GLHA to get to the final round and fifteen years for the NEHL. The tournament would become more rounded with the two American leagues sending higher quality teams than ever before, but neither league would produce a tournament champion. The HLCC’s Winnipeg Mountains were consistently the best team in the tournament, winning eleven tournaments. They were actually the first and last winners of the tournament.

            The tournament became such a loved event that it even became broadcasted in the U.S. in the 1930’s for Americans to enjoy a few days later. Unfortunately, due to the second world war many teams were forced to fold and/or combine with others. There was a large fear that that because the teams became so few and far between and the leagues were starting to unravel, that the sports’ world would lose the Sir Douglas Cup and the excitement that the tournament brought. However, grandson of Sir Douglas (who tragically passed away in the winter of ’29 due to a massive heart attack), T.D. McGuire proposed an idea to the better teams of the leagues to start a new “super league” that would play each other in the season and then the best teams would play in The Tournament for the Sir Douglas Cup. The new league would cover more than 1,800 miles of and consist of ten teams. The teams being: the Montreal Badgers, the Toronto Huskies, the Winnipeg Mountains, the Windsor Otters, the Ottawa Owls, the Boston Admirals, the Chicago Crusaders, the Minnesota Moose, the New York Beavers, and the Wisconsin Bulldogs. The new league would be called the World Hockey League and in a quote from newly voted league president T.D. McGuire “the World Hockey League brings the best hockey, night in and night out with an exciting forty-five game schedule AND an even more exciting version of ‘the Tournament’ to determine the winner of the Sir Douglas Cup”.

            The WHL would play a forty-five-game schedule with each team playing the other teams five times throughout the season. The Tournament would be the same format as before with the top four teams playing a best of five series with the top seed playing the last, and the second and third playing. The WHL would begin play in October of 1948.

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1948-49 Season

Standings

1.      Winnipeg Mountains

2.      Minnesota Moose

3.      Toronto Huskies

4.      Montreal Badgers

5.      Boston Admirals

6.      New York Beavers

7.      Chicago Crusaders

8.      Ottawa Owls

9.      Wisconsin Bulldogs

10.  Windsor Otters

 

    At the start of the1948 season, it was wildly expected for the Winnipeg Mountains to be sitting atop the standings at the conclusion of the season and they did just that. The Mountains actually had the honor of playing in the first ever game against the Boston Admirals in the Winnipeg Municipal Arena (the teams home venue was considered the best throughout the League) on October 20, 1948. The Mountains won the game 2-0 against a very solid Boston team. The Mountains relied solely on defensive talent, and that was partly because that was the only talent head coach Ron McAvoy wanted on his team. He preached “Offense will win you a game or two, but defense will win you championships” and “Only those who put in the effort in the areas of the game that don’t show up on the stat sheet will ever be truly great. Do you want to be great or do you want to be ordinary?”. His coaching style must have had some truth to it as he’s won eight Sir Douglas Cup Trophies in his twenty-year coaching career. It also didn’t hurt that he had one of the League’s most respected manning his blue line. Twenty-five-year old captain Don Bradford was by far the best defensive player in the game. He led the WHL in plus/minus with a +68, the next best plus/minus was +57, which belonged to his partner Al Shaw. With the combo of Bradford and Shaw, the job of goaltender Maurice Whitehead, 36, was quite simple. There wouldn’t be many shots that those two would let in. Whitehead would post thirty-four of the teams forty wins. The other six wins came from seventeen-year-old Earl Dawkins. Dawkins was a Canadian sensation at the age of sixteen when he led his junior team to forty wins and no losses. To go along with his 6-0-1 record, he posted four shutouts. Manning the middle of the ice was center Harvey Ingle, who would lead the team in points with 54. He recorded 20 goals and 34 assists. His faceoff percentage was tremendous with an 89%-win percentage.

   The second-place team was the Minnesota Moose. The Moose were the surprise of the season, as their last season in GLHA they finished in last place. They finished in last place largely due to injuries to their star players defenseman Zach Cunningham and center Caleb Kaur. Kaur was a nineteen-year-old phenom who would finish in second place in goals scored with 41. He would also have 32 assists to combine for 73 points (also good for second place in points scored). Cunningham was the team’s captain, and did he ever wear that “C” with pride. He would put his body on the line night in and night out blocking shots and doing all the dirty work the team needed him to do. This aspect of his game was why coach Troy Finch named him the captain for their inaugural WHL season. In net for the Moose was thirty-year-old Dylan Cooper. Cooper wasn’t the most talented of goalies but would provide moments of former greatness he once had in the GLHA. Cooper was in the final year of his contract and if he didn’t perform up to the standards set by Finch, this could very well be his last season in a Minnesota uniform.

   The other two teams to make up The Tournament were the Toronto Huskies and the Montreal Badgers. Toronto was led by thirty-year-old defenseman Arlin Miller and twenty-six-year-old winger Liam James. Miller had been the captain of Toronto since he was a young eighteen-year old from Windsor. He was sought after by many teams in his teens, including his hometown team the Windsor Otters. But it was head coach Gene Gibbins who convinced Miller to sign with Toronto. After two seasons with the team, he was named the captain. James was another player brought in by coach Gibbins. James was the team’s leading scorer in just about every season. In the 1948-49 season he scored 34 goals to go along with 31 assists for 65 points. In Montreal, the Locke brothers were undeniably two of the best players in the entire WHL. The Badgers were captained by the elder brother, Jean-Pierre Locke. J.P. Locke was thirty-year-old center who really put the team before himself, finishing every season with more assists than goals amassing a league leading 40. His twenty-one-year-old brother, Mathieu Locke, was the opposite of his brother. He would lead the WHL in goals scored with forty-eight, and would assist with another twenty-seven for seventy-five points, another league leading statistic. In net for the Badgers was thirty-one-year-old Marc Benoit, who would backstop the Badgers to their thirty-four wins. Benoit had been the netminder for the team for the last thirteen years.

   In last place was the Windsor Otters. The Otters were terribly over matched against all other teams. All though it didn’t look that way at the beginning on the season. They started the season at a remarkable 10-0-0, but over the next thirty-five games they wouldn’t win a single game. At the start of the season, Patrice Beauregard, the thirty-nine-year-old journeyman, looked as if he was as young and fresh as ever. He would score twelve goals and thirteen assists, matching his season total from a year ago. However, he would falter after the tenth game when he took a puck to knee and missed three weeks. Once Beauregard went down there was no longer any motivation on the team. Try as he might, captain Nathan Gribelin, could spark no effort from anyone on the roster besides seventeen-year-old defenseman Zachary “Tree” Howard. He was referred to as “Tree” due to his large size, standing at 6’9 and 240 pounds, he was easily the largest man in the WHL. With his large stature, Howard became one of the most feared players in the game. He would lead the WHL in penalties in minutes with 235. He would also be involved in multiple fights, twenty-six to be exact, and would prove victorious in all of them. Though his point totals were dismal (2 goals and 14 assists) “Tree” Howard was a fan favorite to the people of Windsor.

 

Season Statistics Leaders

1.      Goals- Matthieu Locke MON 48

2.      Assists- Jean-Pierre Locke MON 40

3.      Points- Mathieu Locke MON 75

4.      PIMs- Zachary Howard WND 235

5.      Wins- Marc Benoit MON & Maurice Whitehead WNP 34

6.      Shutouts- Earl Dawkins WNP 4

The Tournament for the Sir Douglas Cup

Round One

1.      Winnipeg Mountains vs Montreal Badgers

Results- MON wins 3-1

Highlights- Montreal came out firing on all cylinders, lead by none other than Matthieu Locke who would find twine six times in the first two games. The third game saw the Mountains barely squeak a puck by Benoit, but that one bounce proved to be the difference maker as the Mountains won 1-0. The next game, the Mountains’ top defenders were locked in on the Locke brothers and forgot about center Victor St. Clair who would score one goal and assists on M. Locke’s series clinching goal.

2.      Minnesota Moose vs Toronto Huskies

Results- MIN wins 3-1

Highlights- The two teams proved to be evenly matched as they split the first two games in Minnesota, with Toronto edging the Moose out in a combined score of 5-4. The next two games in Toronto would show who the better team was. And led by Caleb Kaur, the Moose proved that they were the better team, outscoring the Huskies 12-2.

 

Sir Douglas Cup Finale

1.      Minnesota Moose vs Montreal Badgers

Results- MON wins 3-2

Highlights- This was perhaps the most even series in the history of The Tournament, with neither team winning a game back-to-back. Montreal and would come out on top, but not after a very bloody war between the two teams. In game two Moose forward Kyle Harrison hip checked J.P. Locke into the Minnesota bench where the Moose players would aggressively toss Locke back onto the ice, causing M. Locke to charge Harrison. When these two started chucking nucks’, as the Minnesotians would refer to it, the rest of the teams joined in resulting in 106 penalty minutes being assessed by the referees. The rest of the series was very much similar to game two, with more and more fisticuffs breaking out. In game three, the mayor of Montreal Jean Richard was in attendance and was quoted saying “This is an outrage, this is not how hockey is played. This American team could use some time up in Quebec to learn how to actually play hockey.” In game five the Badgers won by a score of 4-2, and J.P. Locke was handed the Cup to an almost empty arena, as many of the Moose faithful had already left the building not wanting to see another team hoist the Cup in their house.

 

                                                                   

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Will this league truly live up to its name as world hockey league?

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1 minute ago, iCriEvryTiem said:

Will this league truly live up to its name as world hockey league?

That's the plan. To have teams where there's never been teams before. Obviously those teams will come much later on, due to trying to make this seem as real as possible, and it would be near impossible to have a team say in England in the 50s' due to travel. Also as I figure out how to post images I'll be putting up all the logos and uniforms!

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3 minutes ago, calebblade158 said:

Also as I figure out how to post images I'll be putting up all the logos and uniforms!

 

You'll have to upload them to a third-party hosting site like Imgur and then copy and paste the URLs here on the boards. Do so soon -- this is a graphic design message board first and foremost, after all. If your thread is all text and no designs, it will be shut down.

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Make sure the file you're linking to has a raster file extension on the end of it. i.e. .PNG, .JPG, etc.

 

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1948 Team Logos and Uniforms

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Also here is the Sir Douglas Cup

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And here is the WHL Logo

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interesting.... this looks promising and reminds me of the PHL, but maybe you'll do something different with it later down the line. I do have a few pieces of constructive criticism for you though.

 

1 while you posted league standings you didn't have the games W-L on their, which is can be hard to do those sometimes, it helps the reader see just how good or bad their team was, while just saying "my team was 7th and yours was 4th" could mean anything from a few wins to 20 wins. 

 

2 Why Winnipeg Mountains? While my geography skills are lacking, I believe Winnipeg is on the Canadian Prairie region, which is notably flat. Also in the 1910s Winnipegs population was in the very low 100,000s. Though I like the city of Winnipeg and think they deserve a hockey team, it might be a little early. 

 

Other than some of those smaller things, call me a Minnesota Moose fan, and lets gooooo

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23 minutes ago, CodeG said:

interesting.... this looks promising and reminds me of the PHL, but maybe you'll do something different with it later down the line. I do have a few pieces of constructive criticism for you though.

 

1 while you posted league standings you didn't have the games W-L on their, which is can be hard to do those sometimes, it helps the reader see just how good or bad their team was, while just saying "my team was 7th and yours was 4th" could mean anything from a few wins to 20 wins. 

 

2 Why Winnipeg Mountains? While my geography skills are lacking, I believe Winnipeg is on the Canadian Prairie region, which is notably flat. Also in the 1910s Winnipegs population was in the very low 100,000s. Though I like the city of Winnipeg and think they deserve a hockey team, it might be a little early. 

 

Other than some of those smaller things, call me a Minnesota Moose fan, and lets gooooo

A little backstory for the Winnipeg Mountains: the Mountains were originally the Vancouver Mountains. Owner Conner Harris named the team for his late brother George who enjoyed outdoor activities and died after falling off Mount Robson while climbing. In 1930 the team moved from Vancouver to Winnipeg due to attendance being low, and after already winning four Douglas Cups, he didn't want to change anything about the team so he kept the name the Mountains, in hopes they would continue their winning ways. The reason for choosing Winnipeg was simply because the Mountains' head coach Ron McAvoy had grown up in Manitoba and insisted that the people there would fill the arena night in and night out. So far he's been correct as the Winnipeg Municipal Arena was sold out almost every night.

 

Thanks for the tip about the win/loss record, I'll keep that in mind for the remainder!

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1949 Offseason

Retirements

1.      Ian Smith C WND

Smith was a gritty center throughout most of his hockey career and had never been recognized for doing a whole lot. The one quality Smith had was he had a tremendous amount of loyalty. He spent his entire twenty-one-year career all with the Windsor Otters through mostly bad years. In his last season, he only played in eight games and informed the team that he would be stepping away from hockey at the conclusion of the season.

 

Trades

 

1.      Minnesota trades D Walter Roy to New York in exchange for G Hector Boswell. This trade was made in part so that the Moose would have a veteran goaltender on the roster after the release of Dylan Cooper, and it also helps New York’s terrible blue line.

2.      Windsor trades LW Jacob Bentley to Boston in exchange for C Nelson Simpson. After finishing in last place, the Otters were open to trading anyone not named Zachary Howard. Boston put up Nelson Simpson, a veteran, who could easily fill a number one center spot in Windsor’s lineup, while Boston was receiving a 19-year old winger to with a large upside to compliment captain Bill Ikard on the other side.

3.      Chicago trades G Henry Calhoun and C Owen Porter to Wisconsin for LW Barry van Boesch. Wisconsin fills a giant hole by acquiring Calhoun, who hasn’t seen much action in his first three seasons but was a wall in net when he was in the juniors. Barry van Boesch looked to be a top six forward, but was often overlooked in Wisconsin due to his small stature.

 

Signings

 

1.      Windsor signed former Minnesota goaltender Dylan Cooper to a two year deal the day after it was announced the Moose wouldn’t be retaining him. With a Douglas Cup caliber goalie, the Otters expect to be competing for a Tournament spot next season.

2.      Minnesota signs 22-year-old goalie Matthew Applegate from the University of Minnesota to a six-year deal. In college, Applegate was consistently in the conversation for top goaltender, after winning two back-to-back national championships.

3.      Montreal signs former Chicago captain Vincent Knowles to a one-year deal. The forty-year-old would be a bottom six player and just there to provide depth on the outside.

4.      Ottawa signs winger Colt Caldwell out of the juniors. Caldwell, while not the most feared shooter in the juniors had a knack for finding the back of the net.

5.      Montreal also signs former Toronto defenseman Rodger Everett to a one-year contract. Everett would start out as a top d-man and if his play improved from last years the team would give him an extension, if not he would be dropped.

6.      Winnipeg signs winger Danny Palmer to a six-year contract right out of the juniors. Palmer had everything Winnipeg wanted in a forward: grit, selflessness, and defensive prowess.

 

Other News

 

1.      The Chicago Crusaders relieve head coach Don Braston of coaching duties and promote assistant coach Kenneth Simmons as his replacement.

2.      WHL President T.D. McGuire announces he has reached a deal with local tv providers in each market to broadcast all home games.

3.      After Vincent Knowles left to go chase a Douglas Cup, Chicago announces center Edwin Herbert as the new captain.

4.      Owner of the New York Beavers, Walter Woods, has made public his plans to build an entirely new arena for the Beavers to play in. Construction would begin in the spring of 1950 and be completed by the beginning of the 1951-52 season.

5.      Montreal decides to forgo the tradition of keeping the Sir Douglas Cup until they lose it, with Owner Maurice Bullion saying “The Sir Douglas Cup does not belong to the Montreal Badgers, nor to any other team for that matter. Not only that I feel that having the cup in the arena is a distraction to the players and the Cup will no longer be the illustrious prize that it is. I urge President McGuire to make it mandatory for the winning team only be allowed a month with the Cup.” After a meeting with all the team owners, it was decided that it would be best for the Cup to reside in WHL Headquarters in Quebec City throughout the season, and that the winning team is allowed to keep the Cup in their possession until the beginning of the next season. In the first game of the season, the captain of the reigning Cup champion will skate out to center ice and present the Cup back to President McGuire as he had done at the conclusion of the tournament.

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The story is great, but when it comes to design I have a few things to say. When it comes to logos, try to make them a little simpler to match the time period. Also, the socks are a little off when it comes to the stripes. Currently your stripes are way too high, they would be covered by the pants. Maybe try dropping them down lower, between bottom 1/4 to half, unless that was the look you were going for. Other than that the quality is kinda rough and hard to see, try posting one look at a time?

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32 minutes ago, TheHealthiestScratch said:

The story is great, but when it comes to design I have a few things to say. When it comes to logos, try to make them a little simpler to match the time period. Also, the socks are a little off when it comes to the stripes. Currently your stripes are way too high, they would be covered by the pants. Maybe try dropping them down lower, between bottom 1/4 to half, unless that was the look you were going for. Other than that the quality is kinda rough and hard to see, try posting one look at a time?

Thanks for the tip on the socks. But what logos in particular are you thinking are too complex? To me they all seem simple and seem like they could come from this time period, but of course I'm probably a little biased and fresh eyes always seem to know best.

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1 hour ago, calebblade158 said:

Thanks for the tip on the socks. But what logos in particular are you thinking are too complex? To me they all seem simple and seem like they could come from this time period, but of course I'm probably a little biased and fresh eyes always seem to know best.

I was thinking Wisconsin and Montréal, maybe? Or maybe they just seem a little more modern next to the others.

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I would add (About the uniforms) Maybe upload them one at a time. so they can be larger to view. This is a design forum so seeing what you come up with is a big part of the league.

 

But good start so far

 

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As requested here are the team uniforms up close along with a little extra information.

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The Boston Admirals

Arena: Harbor Arena (13,000)

Owner: Martin Foster

General Manager: Julian Whitney

Coach: Homer Cooke

Captain: LW Bill Ikard 5

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The Chicago Crusaders

Arena: the Chicago Center (12,850)

Owner: Morris Sharpe

General Manager: Otis Ball

Coach: Don Braston

Captain: RW Vincent Knowles 13

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the Minnesota Moose

Arena: Polestar Bank Arena (13,000)

Owner: Sam Pierce

General Manager: Arnold Terrell

Coach: Troy Finch

Captain: 2 Zach Cunningham D

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Arena: Albert Brasseur Forum (13,000)

Owner: Albert Brasseur Jr.

General Manager: Victor Baudet

Coach: Phil Colbert

Captain: 5 Jean-Pierre Locke C

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Arena: Hudson River Arena (11,550)

Owner: Walter Woods Sr.

General Manager: Lyle Kent

Coach: Gilbert McFadden

Captain: 7 Nicholas Ball C

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Arena: 1st Bank of Ottawa Arena (12,500)

Owner: Sam Cooley

General Manager: Irvin Hickman

Coach: Mark Brown

Captain: 62 Hank LaFlamme D

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