Welcome to an offseason series on Red Wings franchise history compiled every Sunday by WIIM commenter uvgt2bkdnme. Seven facts will center around a theme, whether it's an era of Red Wings hockey, a certain player or group of players, or Red Wings trivia.
I originally conceived of these posts as longform pieces, but multiple factors pushed the idea in this direction, and I think it'll better serve the community to be written this way. Where possible, links to further information or sources will be posted; otherwise, if the information came from any books, those will be cited separately.
No matter what level of fan you consider yourself, everyone can benefit from further enlightenment by learning the history of the franchise if you didn't know it before; if you already did know it, there's also a benefit to reflecting on the knowledge you have. Without further ado:
2. The Red Wings opened the 1935-36 season with 3 ties and a loss, needing its fifth regular season game (out of 48 . . . hmm, that number feels very familiar) to get its first win. The team started with 3 ties in 3 games, 4 ties in 6 games, and 5 in the first 10. After 10 games, their record was 3-2-5.
3. Goaltender Normie Smith led the league with a 24-16-8 record, helping the Red Wings to the best regular season in the league with 56 points. For those of you keeping score at home, Smith played in all 48 regular season games for the Red Wings.
4. Center Marty Barry led the team in goal-scoring and overall scoring with a 21-19-40 line, good for third in the league in goal-scoring and second in overall scoring.
5. The Red Wings bypassed the quarterfinal round* by taking the first seed in the American Division.† They began the playoffs against the Canadian Division first seed Montreal Maroons.
6. The playoffs began quite infamously for Detroit. Game 1 of the semifinal round against the Maroons became and still is the longest hockey game ever played. At 16:30 of the sixth overtime, Mud Bruneteau scored the only goal of the game to give the Red Wings a 1-0 victory and a 1-0 series lead in the best-of-five semifinal. The Red Wings would lose the only other overtime game of this playoff run, Game 3 against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the Stanley Cup Final.
7. After sweeping the Maroons in the semifinals, the Red Wings won the franchise's first Stanley Cup by defeating the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-1 in the best-of-five Final.
*The quarterfinal round under this playoff format was a two-game goal-aggregate series. Six teams made the playoffs, the top three in each division. Corresponding four lower seeded teams played in the quarterfinals: Canadian second seeded Toronto defeated American second seeded Boston 8-6 on aggregate; Canadian third seeded New York (Americans) defeated American third seeded Chicago 7-5.
†I find it quite hilarious that the NEW YORK AMERICANS were in the Canadian division.
No additional sources. Everything should be hyperlinked in the text.
Next Week (Special Paragraph Edition): It just kept going and going and going and going: Red Wings defeat Maroons in 6OT.