Seven on a Sunday: Franchise Identity

Welcome to a summer series on Red Wings franchise history compiled every Sunday night 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:

The Basics: Franchise Identity

1. The current Detroit hockey team was born on May 15, 1926 when the NHL awarded Detroit a franchise.

2. The former Victoria Cougars of the Western (Canada) Hockey League* (WHL) dissolved after the 1926 Stanley Cup Final. Detroit investors bought their contracts and effectively transferred the Victoria team to Detroit. The Detroit "Cougars" became the homage to the former WHL team.

3. Having no arena ready for their inaugural season, the Cougars played in Windsor's Border Cities Arena. Beginning with their second season, they would have a permanent home in Olympia Stadium.

4. The franchise's first win was a 1-0 shutout of the Chicago Blackhawks. It was their third game overall.

5. The Cougars' name changed to the Detroit Falcons in 1930. (Your guess is as good as mine as to why the name changed, since I can't find much of anything about the new name.)

6. In 1932, James Norris Sr. purchased the Detroit franchise which had been struggling mightily financially. Upon purchase, he changed the logo and team name. A former product of the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association, Norris took the Winged Wheel logo and appropriated it to the Detroit nickname "Motor City." The team name "Red Wings" was born.

7. On December 27, 1979, the Red Wings welcomed the St. Louis Blues to their new home at Joe Louis Arena. Like the Blues usually do, they spoiled everything and won the first game 3-2.

Other links and sources:

Historical Moments

Red Wings History

Official Red Wings site Written History

Next week: You always remember your first: The Red Wings' first Stanley Cup championship.

EDIT: *I completely forgot to explain the asterisk on the WHL. In its final year of existence, the Victoria Cougars were a member of the WHL, but in previous seasons, the league was known as the WCHL. Especially noteworthy is that the Cougars defeated the Montreal Canadiens 3 games to 1 in the 1925 Stanley Cup Final.

This is a fanpost written by a WIIM community member. The views and opinions expressed here are that member's and do not necessarily reflect the views of the site itself.

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