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Minnesota Amateur Hockey League - 1929 Finals

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A while ago, I was thinking about Minnesota's hockey history and it got me thinking. What if there was an amateur hockey league in the state that started when the game first began to get popular in the state? A league made up of everyday people who just love the game. Any city can have a team as long as they have a minimum of 10 skaters and 2 goalies, all players must be over the age of 18 and can not have played for money at any point in the past. This is a contact league, but fighting is not allowed. Some teams are actual teams from the past or fictional teams from movies and such. Some cities will be better at different points in history, depending on events that take place in that time and population rises and falls. 

 

This is going to be the largest project I have ever worked on and it will take a long time to complete, I will simulate seasons using a random generator. I will be designing logos and uniforms for teams that are accurate to the time period. Ideas for teams, logos, and uniforms will be welcomed.

 

The league is made up of smaller leagues that play each other in the regular season, the top teams from each league after the regular season move on to the playoffs where they can play teams from other leagues and play for the Kellogg Cup.

 

Current Year: 1928/29

 

Current Team Logos:

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Maps of Team Locations:

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Kellogg Cup: The trophy teams compete for in the MAHL playoffs, donated to the league by Frank B. Kellogg after becoming a Senator for the state of Minnesota in 1916. Winning teams names are permanently etched into the cup next to the year they won.

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List Of Champions:

1916 - St. Paul Victorias

1917 - Eveleth Rangers

1918 - Ely Hockey Club

1919 - Ely Black Bears

1920 - Twin Cities Vulcans

1921 - Duluth Hornets

1922 - South St. Paul Mavericks

1923 - Minneapolis Millers

1924 - Virginia Royals

1925 - Ely Black Bears

 

1926 - Cloquet Broncos

1927 - Virginia Royals

1928 - Duluth Voyageurs

1929 - Duluth Voyageurs

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The first year of the Minnesota Amateur Hockey league only has 2 leagues, the Iron Range Hockey league in the north east part of the state and is based in Eveleth, and the twin cities hockey league which is based out of St. Paul. Each league is made up of 5 teams. Here are the uniforms for the 1915/16 season.

 

Iron Range Hockey League:

 

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Twin Cities Hockey League:

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Just now, TheHealthiestScratch said:

Is this about a step above what we would refer to as a beer league now? Just with contact. I like the logos and jerseys a lot! Good start.

 

A step above beer league is a good way to put it, I picture it as a competitive league made up of everyday people who just aren't at the skill level to play professional or are using this as a way to get noticed and maybe make that jump.

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I wish Minneapolis and South St. Paul looked more distinguishable, but I like where this is going.

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4 minutes ago, NicDB said:

I wish Minneapolis and South St. Paul looked more distinguishable, but I like where this is going.

 

In not too long one or both will be adjusting their identity quite a bit.

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After the first season of the MAHL, there weren't many surprises in the final standings with the 2 oldest teams in both leagues getting the top two spots and therefore playoff births. here are the standings after the 1915/16 regular season.

 

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Highlights from the regular season:

- Eveleth Rangers speed couldn't be stopped.

- New teams couldn't keep up (Eveleth Reds, Ely, South St. Paul, St. Paul AC)

- Soudan's goalie Mikael Heikkinen steals the second place position for the Miners.

- Victorias dominate the cities.

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The playoffs consist of the top 2 teams from each league playing one another in a best of 3 series, the winners advance and play a one game, winner takes all, final. The winning team gets to take home the Kellogg cup for the next year, until the next playoffs. The numbers next to the first games are for the series, not goals.

 

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Highlights from the playoffs:

- Soudan's goalie Mikael Heikkinen stands on his head and the Miners upset Eveleth and advance to the finals.

- Victorias continue to dominate and win the first ever Kellogg Cup.

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The 1916/17 regular season concluded without many surprises. The Rangers stayed on top of the Iron Range and the Victorias and Mpls HC in the Twin Cities. The biggest surprise by far was the collapse of the Soudan Miners. After their star goalie Mikael Heikkinen got injured in a work related incident and missed the entire season, the teams just couldn't compete with the rest of the pack.

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The playoffs came along and there is only one new face, the Duluth Hornets. They don't have the best showing and lose both games to a dominant Rangers team. Minneapolis HC gets its revenge on the Victorias after last year and advance to the finals. The finals come and the Eveleth Rangers win in decisive matter to become the second Kellogg Cup Champions!

 

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*Sidenote* things will go pretty quickly at the beginning of this but will begin to slow down when more teams are added

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Prior to the 1918 season a couple teams decided to adjust their looks. In the Iron Range, Duluth and the Rangers added light jerseys. In the Cities, the Victorias adjusted their jersey slightly, Stillwater AC simplified their uniforms and have a light and dark option now, and the Minneapolis Hockey Club rebranded to the Minneapolis Millers and got a new logo and color scheme, the name was chosen due to the cities milling industry.

 

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The 1918 regular season came and went without many changes in the Cities, the Victorias and Millers finished at the top of the league once again. In the Iron Range things got shaken up a bit with 2 new teams at the top of the league, the Reds finally surpassed their big brothers and Ely squeaked into the second position in a one game playoff against the Rangers. Soudan was without their star goalie again this year and will be without him from now on after he moved out of state thus dropping the Miners to last in the league 2 years in a row.

 

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Feedback and ideas are welcome!

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The playoffs came along and the Cinderella story that is the Ely Hockey Club continued, after beating the Eveleth Reds 2 games to 1 in the semi finals they beat the mighty Millers to claim their first Kellogg Cup, after being in the bottom of the league the previous 2 years. Players claim to have gotten good luck from a local Black bear. They say that on their way to the 1 game playoff against the Rangers the team bus had to stop as a Black Bear crossed the road in front of them, they went on to win the game. Then, when the team was on their way to the Kellogg cup Championship game they saw another black bear at the edge of town. The team has decided from now on they will be referred to as the Ely Black Bears to honor the Bears that they claim gave them good luck. Meanwhile, the Millers are still without a championship after making the playoffs the last 3 years and the finals the last 2.

 

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Feedback and ideas are welcome!

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The 1919 season came along and a couple teams made changes. Ely adopted the nickname "Black Bears" after their Kellogg cup run last year. The St. Paul Athletic Club changed their name to the St. Paul Saints and changed their logo to a script St. Paul. With the name change, the saints also adjusted their uniforms by adding more cream. . And we have the first expansion team to join the MAHL, the Virginia Royals. The Royals join the Iron Range Hockey League and are located just north of Eveleth, they are named after the cities nickname "the Queen City of the North" and their logo is a crown in the team colors of royal blue and gold.

 

Here are the new uniforms for the 1918/19 season!

 

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*sidenote*

I update the logos in the original post, I also added a map of MN with pins where teams are located, the different colored pins are for the different leagues. Below the map of MN is a close up map of each league with team logos in the general area they play (I say general because if there are multiple in a city like St. Paul or Eveleth I can't put them both in the same spot) I hope this will help people following that might not know where the teams are located. If anyone has any other ideas or comments it would be appreciated!

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The Minnesota Amateur Hockey League - the Iron Range Hockey League reminds me of a country Australian rules football league. Will the Minnesota Amateur Hockey League eventually expand outside of the state and turn professional? And possibly evolve/assimilate into a national competition (much like the AFL and NRL in Australia)?

 

The designs are awesome - I love the Ely one! Go Black Bears!

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20 minutes ago, Goran The Man said:

The Minnesota Amateur Hockey League - the Iron Range Hockey League reminds me of a country Australian rules football league. Will the Minnesota Amateur Hockey League eventually expand outside of the state and turn professional? And possibly evolve/assimilate into a national competition (much like the AFL and NRL in Australia)?

 

The designs are awesome - I love the Ely one! Go Black Bears!

 

The league will eventually get some teams from bordering states, but I don't think it will expand to a professional league as it would no longer be an amateur league then. And thank you for the feedback it is appreciated!

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After the regular season, the Iron Range remained mainly the same with Ely really becoming a dominant force in the league, Soudan continues to struggle, and the Rangers seem to be falling off compared to their rivals, the Reds. Down in the Twin Cities the Millers continued to dominate, making the playoffs for the fourth straight year, the newly named Saints finally passed their big brothers, the Victorias.
 

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Will the Black Bears go back to back? Will the Reds become the second team from Eveleth to win the cup? Will the Millers finally win the big game? Or will the Saints have god on their side? We'll find out in the playoffs!

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The playoffs came and Ely's dominance continued as they swept the Reds in the semi finals. Minneapolis also advanced to the finals for the third straight year after beating the Saints 2 games to one. In a rematch of last years finals, the Black Bears defeated the Millers for the second straight year, becoming the first team to win multiple Kellogg Cups, and doing so in back to back years.

 

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Before the 1919/20 season, two new teams joined, one from either league. In the Iron Range, the Cloquet Broncos join and are the first team outside of St. Louis County, but they are much closer to Duluth than any other team in the league. Down in the cities, the Twin City Vulcans joined. The story of the Vulcans coming to be is actually very interesting. Lou Tschida had been a member of the St. Paul AC/Saints ever since the team was founded in 1915. He had many issues with some of his teammates, especially star center Maurice Martin. The two would often get into yelling matches and even fights. After the Saints lost in the semi finals last year, Martin blamed the loss on Tschida. That was the last straw for Lou, as he gathered many of his teammates as well as co workers from Minneapolis, and he formed the Vulcans. The team is called Twin Cities due to having a fairly split team with many living in either Minneapolis or St. Paul, the name Vulcans was picked to be a direct attack on Tchida's former team, the Saints. It's safe to say that games between these teams will be rough to say the least.

 

Here are the uniforms for the new teams:

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After the regular season there were a couple surprises, the Royals finished first in the Iron Range advancing to the playoffs for the first time. But nothing was as surprising as the Vulcans, finishing first in the Cities in their first season. Some dominant teams from the past really fell off this year, in particular the Rangers and Victorias, who both recently won the Kellogg cup and are now dead last in their leagues.

 

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