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National Hockey League

The modernized NHL shield logo debuted in 2005, replacing the orange and black shield, which had been used since the league's inception. The silver color is a homage to the Stanley Cup, the trophy awarded to the NHL champion.

The National Hockey League (NHL) is a professional sports organization composed of hockey teams in the United States and Canada, where it is also known by its French name, Ligue Nationale de Hockey (LNH). It is generally regarded as the premier professional ice hockey league in the world. The NHL is one of the major professional sports leagues of North America.

History

The beginnings to The Original Six

The National Hockey League was founded in 1917 in Montreal after a series of disputes within the (Canadian) National Hockey Association (NHA) between the Toronto Blueshirts' owner Edward J. Livingstone and the owners of the other teams. The owners met in Montreal's Windsor Hotel to consider the league's future on February 11, 1917. Livingstone, unable to attend the meeting because of illness, was shocked to learn that owners had chosen to effectively eject him and the Blueshirts from the NHA. Arguments and discussions ensued which eventually led to the formation of the National Hockey League at on November 26, 1917, with the Montreal Canadiens, Montreal Wanderers, Ottawa Senators, Quebec Bulldogs and newly-renamed Toronto Arenas as founding members.

The classic NHL shield logo, used until the end of the 2004 lockout.

The NHL endured a rocky inaugural season in 1917-18, starting with the temporary shuttering of the Bulldogs. On January 2, 1918, the Westmount Arena in Montreal, home to the Wanderers and Canadiens, was destroyed in a fire. The Wanderers, already a shadow of its former self, folded in the wake of the fire, ending one of the most storied franchises in the early years of Canadian professional hockey. With the Bulldogs and Wanderers out, the NHL operated with just three teams for the remainder of its opening year, and through the second season.

Though the league struggled to stay in business during its first decade, NHL teams were quite successful on the ice, winning the Stanley Cup seven out of its first nine years. (The 1918-19 competition was cancelled because of the Spanish Flu epidemic that had hit Seattle). By 1926, having increased player salaries to a level that couldn't be matched by other Canadian leagues, the NHL was alone in Stanley Cup competition. The league had also expanded into the United States, with the Boston Bruins in 1924, the New York Americans and the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1925 and the New York Rangers, Detroit Cougars (later to become the Red Wings), and Chicago Blackhawks in 1926. Canadian additions included the Montreal Maroons and Hamilton Tigers. By the end of the 1930-31 season, the NHL featured a total of 10 teams. However, the Great Depression took a toll on the league; teams such as the Pirates, Americans and Ottawa Senators folded. With these developments and the onset of World War II, the NHL was reduced to six teams during its 25th anniversary year of (1942) – six teams still known today, if somewhat inaccurately, as the Original Six: The Canadiens, Maple Leafs, Red Wings, Bruins, Rangers, and Blackhawks.

Expansion: 1967 and beyond

The rise of the Western Hockey League, which many pundits thought planned to transform into a major league and challenge for the Stanley Cup, spurred the NHL in 1967 to undertake its first expansion since the 1920s. Six new teams were added to the NHL roster, and placed in their own newly-created division. They were the Philadelphia Flyers, St. Louis Blues, Minnesota North Stars, Los Angeles Kings, Oakland Seals, and Pittsburgh Penguins. Three years later, the NHL added the Vancouver Canucks and Buffalo Sabres as franchises.

In 1972, the World Hockey Association (WHA) was formed. Though it never challenged for the Stanley Cup, its status as a viable NHL rival was unquestionable. In response to that, the NHL decided to rush its own expansion plans by adding the New York Islanders and Atlanta Flames that year, along with the Kansas City Scouts and Washington Capitals two years later. The dilution of the talent pool, however, caused the overall quality of play to suffer. The two leagues fought for the services of hockey players and fans until the WHA folded in 1979. Four of the remaining six WHA teams merged with the NHL: The Hartford Whalers, Québec Nordiques, Edmonton Oilers, and Winnipeg Jets. As of 2005, the Oilers are the last remaining original WHA franchise still playing in the city where they began in the NHL.

In the early 90's the NHL expanded further with five new franchises. The San Jose Sharks debuted in 1991, a season later the Ottawa Senators would join the NHL along with the Tampa Bay Lightning. In 1993, the NHL added an additional two teams, the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and the Florida Panthers. Approaching the new millennium, the NHL added another four teams; the Nashville Predators (1998), the Atlanta Thrashers (1999), the Minnesota Wild and the Columbus Blue Jackets (both added in 2000) bringing the total to 30 teams.

Labour Issues

There have been three work stoppages in NHL history, all happening between 1992 and 2005.

The first was a strike by the National Hockey League Players Association in April 1992 which lasted for 10 days, but the strike was settled quickly and all affected games were rescheduled.

A lockout at the start of the 1994-95 forced the league to reduce the schedule from 84 games to just 48, with the teams playing only intra-conference games during the reduced season. The resulting collective bargaining agreement was set for renegotiation in 1998 and extended to September 15, 2004.

Negotiations to replace the contract that expired in 2004 turned into one of the most contentious collective bargaining sessions in the history of professional sports. The league vowed to install what it dubbed "cost certainty" for its teams, but the National Hockey League Players Association countered that the move was little more than a euphemism for a salary cap, which the union initially said it would not accept. With no new agreement in hand when the existing contract expired on September 15, 2004, league commissioner Gary Bettman announced a lockout of the players union and cessation of operations by the NHL head office, causing the NHL to lose an entire season.

A new collective bargaining agreement was ratified in July 2005 with a term of six years with an option of extending the collective bargaining agreement for an additional year at the end of the term, allowing the NHL to resume as of the 2005-06 season.

Post Lockout

On October 5, 2005, the first post-lockout NHL season got under way with 15 games. Of those 15 games, 11 were in front of sell out crowds. The NHL, despite negative press generated during the lockout, has success attracting fans to the initial games of the season and extends fan bases into non-traditional markets in the US such as Nashville, Atlanta, and the Carolinas.

Current organization

The National Hockey League currently has 30 teams divided into two conferences, and 6 divisions, an organization that started in the year 2000. Over the years many different organizations have existed. For a list of previous teams see List of defunct NHL teams.

Eastern Conference

Western Conference

Season structure

Regular season

Each team in the NHL plays 82 regular season games, 41 games at home and 41 on the road. Teams play 32 games within their division (8 games against four other teams), 40 games against non-divisional, conference opponents (4 games against 10 other teams) and 10 interconference games, 1 game against each team in two of the three divisions in the opposite conference. The two divisions from the opposite conference which each team plays against will be rotated every year, much like interleague play in baseball.

Points are awarded for each game as follows:

  • Two points are awarded for a win
  • One point for losing in overtime or a shootout
  • Zero points for a loss in regulation time.

At the end of the regular season, the team that finishes with the most points in each division is crowned the division champion.

Stanley Cup playoffs

At the end of the regular season, the three division champions and the five other teams in each conference with the highest number of points, 8 teams in each conference, qualify for the Stanley Cup playoffs. The division winners are seeded one through three, and the next five teams with the best records in the conference are seeded four through eight.

The Stanley Cup Playoffs is an elimination tournament, where two teams battle to win a best-of-seven series in order to advance to the next round. The first round of the playoffs, or conference quarterfinals, consists of the first seed playing the eighth seed, the second playing the seventh, third playing the sixth, and the fourth playing the fifth. In the second round, or conference semifinals, the NHL re-seeds (unlike the NBA) the teams, with the top remaining conference seed playing against the lowest remaining seed, and the other two remaining conference teams pairing off. In the third round, the conference finals, the two remaining teams in each conference play each other, with the conference champions proceeding to the Stanley Cup Finals.

In each round the higher-ranked team is said to be the team with the home-ice advantage. Four of the seven games are played at this team's home venue - the first and second, and, where necessary, the fifth and seventh, with the other games played at the lower-ranked team's home venue.

During playoff games if the score is tied at the end of the third period an overtime period is played. If the score is tied at the end of an overtime period, additional overtime periods are played until a winner is determined. Overtimes are also full periods of twenty minutes (of five-on-five hockey), rather than the five minutes (of four-on-four hockey, followed by a shootout) in the regular season. The overtime is sudden death with the game ending when either team scores a goal.

Rules

While the National Hockey League follows the general rules of Ice hockey, it differs slightly from those used in international games organized by the International Ice Hockey Federation such as the Olympics.

Game timing

Each game is 60 minutes composed of three 20 minute periods. Between each period there is a 15 minute intermission. Between stoppages of play, teams have 25 seconds before substituting their players except for referee stoppages for TV commercials.

Each team may also take one 30 second time-out which may only be taken during a normal stoppage of play.

Hockey rink

The hockey rink is an ice rink which is rectangular with rounded corners and surrounded by a wall . The red line divides the ice in half lengthwise. The red line is used to judge icing violations. There are two blue lines that divide the rink roughly into thirds. They divide the ice into zones. Near each end of the rink, there is a thin red goal line spanning the width of the ice. It is used to judge goals and icing calls.

Scoring and winning

A goal is scored when the puck passes the goal line and enters the net. The team that has the most goals at the end of 60 minutes wins the game. If the game is tied at the end of regulation time, a 5 minute, 4-on-4 sudden death overtime period is played, where the first team that scores a goal wins the game. If the game is still tied at the end of overtime, the game enters a shootout. Three players for each team in turn perform a penalty shot. The team with the most goals during this shootout wins the game. If the game is still tied after the three shootout rounds, the shootout continues, but becomes sudden death.

Offside

In ice hockey, play is said to be offside if a player on the attacking team enters the attacking zone before the puck. When an offside violation occurs, the linesman blows play dead, and a faceoff is conducted in the neutral zone.

The NHL in 2006 removed the offside pass or two-line pass which was a pass from inside a team's defending zone that crosses the red line.

Icing

Icing occurs when a player shoots the puck across both the red line and the opposing team's goal line without the puck going into the net. When icing occurs, a linesman stops play. Play is resumed with a faceoff in the defending zone of the team that committed the infraction. A short handed team is not penalized for clearing the puck out of its zone during a powerplay. If the goalie on the side of the ice where the puck is being sent touches the puck, the icing is waved off.

Under the rules following the 2004-2005 lockout, if a team ices the puck under five-on-five conditions, they are not allowed to make a line change for the following faceoff.

Penalties

A penalty is a punishment for inappropriate behaviour. A referee makes all penalty calls. A linesman may call only obvious technical infractions such as too many men on the ice. In the NHL, the Linesman may call major intent-to-injure penalties that the referee may have missed.

During a penalty, the player who committed the infraction is sent to the penalty box. In most cases, the penalized team cannot replace that player and is thus shorthanded for the duration of the penalty. Normally, hockey teams have five skaters (excluding the goaltender), so if one penalty is called, play becomes five-on-four.

This is called a power play for the attackers and a penalty kill for the defenders. A team is far more likely to score on a power play than during normal play. If the penalized team is scored on during a minor penalty, the penalty immediately ends.

Trophies and awards

Stanley Cup on display at the Hockey Hall of Fame

The National Hockey League presents numerous trophies per year; some are given to teams, and other are given to players.

Trophies awarded to teams

  • Stanley Cup -- overall playoff champion.
  • Clarence S. Campbell Bowl -- Western conference playoff champion.
  • Prince of Wales Trophy -- Eastern conference playoff champion.
  • Presidents' Trophy (1986 - present) - best regular season by a team
  • The O'Brien Trophy was awarded in the NHL before it was retired following the 1949-50 NHL season.

Trophies awarded to individuals

  • Art Ross Memorial Trophy (1948 - present) -- regular season league scoring champion
  • Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy (1968 - present) -- perseverance and sportsmanship
  • Calder Memorial Trophy (1933 - present) -- rookie of the year
  • Conn Smythe Trophy (1965 - present) -- most valuable player during the playoffs
  • Frank J. Selke Trophy (1978 - present) -- top defensive forward
  • Hart Memorial Trophy (1924 - present) -- most valuable player during the regular season
  • Jack Adams Award (1974 - present) -- coach of the year
  • James Norris Memorial Trophy (1954 - present)-- most outstanding defenceman
  • King Clancy Memorial Trophy (1988 - present) -- leadership and humanitarian contribution
  • Lady Byng Memorial Trophy (1925 - present) -- player combining ability and sportsmanship
  • Lester B. Pearson Award (1971 - present) -- most outstanding player as selected by peers
  • Maurice 'Rocket' Richard Trophy (1999 - present) -- to the goal-scoring leader during the regular season
  • NHL Plus/Minus Award (1968 - present) -- highest plus/minus statistic
  • Roger Crozier Saving Grace Award (2000 - present) -- best save percentage by a goalkeeper
  • Vezina Trophy (1927 - present) -- voted to be the most outstanding goaltender
  • William M. Jennings Trophy (1982 - present) -- goalkeeper(s) for the team with the fewest goals against them
  • The Lester Patrick Trophy has been presented by the National Hockey League since 1966 to honour a recipient's contribution to hockey in the United States.

Three years after retirement, players are eligible to be voted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. In the past, if a player was deemed significant enough, the pending period would be waived. However, only 10 individual have been honoured in this manner. In 1999 Wayne Gretzky became the last player to have the three years waived. After Gretzky's induction, the NHL declared that he would be the last one to have the waiting period omitted.

NHL: An International League

NHL is very proud of its players coming from all around the world. Since the 1990s, the league has tried to promote itself throughout Europe with ads, media, and magazines. The league also voluntarily stops its season so that its players can play in the Winter Olympics to have the players represent their own country. While the league has always had a strong Canadian majority, the percentage of Canadian players has gone down slowly in the past 20 years since the arrival of European players.


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While the league has always had a strong Canadian majority, the percentage of Canadian players has gone down slowly in the past 20 years since the arrival of European players. Immigrants by country (2004). The league also voluntarily stops its season so that its players can play in the Winter Olympics to have the players represent their own country. [2]. Since the 1990s, the league has tried to promote itself throughout Europe with ads, media, and magazines. But there has been a sharp increase of immigrants mostly from South America, Eastern Europe, and a very meagre number from Asia. NHL is very proud of its players coming from all around the world. An estimated 95.3% of the population is of Italian origin.

After Gretzky's induction, the NHL declared that he would be the last one to have the waiting period omitted. Southern and northern Italians alike have flocked to the city during the late 1900's. In 1999 Wayne Gretzky became the last player to have the three years waived. The population is quite homogenous Italian. However, only 10 individual have been honoured in this manner. Famous Genoese include Cristoforo Colombo (Christopher Columbus), Admiral Andrea Doria, composers Niccolò Paganini and Michele Novaro, painter Domenico Piola, Italian patriots Giuseppe Mazzini and Gerolamo Nino Bixio, writer and translator Fernanda Pivano, poet Edoardo Sanguineti, architect Renzo Piano, Physics 2002 Nobel Prize winner Riccardo Giacconi, Literature 1975 Nobel Prize winner Eugenio Montale, artist Vanessa Beecroft, comedians Gilberto Govi and Paolo Villaggio, folk singers Fabrizio de André and Ivano Fossati. In the past, if a player was deemed significant enough, the pending period would be waived. In 1860, Giuseppe Garibaldi set out from Genoa with over a thousand volunteers to begin the campaign.

Three years after retirement, players are eligible to be voted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. With the growth of the Risorgimento movement, the Genoese turned their struggles from Giuseppe Mazzini's vision of a local republic into a struggle for a unified Italy under a liberalized Savoy monarchy. The National Hockey League presents numerous trophies per year; some are given to teams, and other are given to players. The city soon gained a reputation as a hotbed of anti-Savoy republican agitation, although the union with Savoy was economically very beneficial. If the penalized team is scored on during a minor penalty, the penalty immediately ends. Although the Genoese revolted against France in 1814 and liberated the city on their own, delegates at the Congress of Vienna sanctioned its incorporation into Piedmont (Kingdom of Sardinia), thus ending the three century old struggle by the House of Savoy to acquire the city. A team is far more likely to score on a power play than during normal play. In 1797, under pressure from Napoleon, Genoa became a French protectorate called the Ligurian Republic, which was annexed by France in 1805.

This is called a power play for the attackers and a penalty kill for the defenders. However, with the shift in world economy and trade routes to the New World and away from the Mediterranean, Genoa's political and economic power went into steady decline. Normally, hockey teams have five skaters (excluding the goaltender), so if one penalty is called, play becomes five-on-four. In 1768, Genoa was forced to cede Corsica to France. In most cases, the penalized team cannot replace that player and is thus shorthanded for the duration of the penalty. Genoa suffered from French bombardment in 1684, and was occupied by Austria in 1746 during the War of the Austrian Succession. During a penalty, the player who committed the infraction is sent to the penalty box. The famed architect Galeazzo Alessi (1512-1572) designed many of the city’s splendid palazzo.

In the NHL, the Linesman may call major intent-to-injure penalties that the referee may have missed. At the time of Genoa’s peak in the 16th century, the city attracted many artists, including Rubens, Caravaggio, and Van Dyke. A linesman may call only obvious technical infractions such as too many men on the ice. Under the ensuing economic recovery, many Genoese family amassed tremendous fortunes. A referee makes all penalty calls. The Spanish connection was reinforced by Andrea Doria, who established a new constitution in 1528, making Genoa a satellite of the Spanish Empire. A penalty is a punishment for inappropriate behaviour. Christopher Columbus, a native of Genoa, donated one-tenth of his income from the discovery of the Americas for Spain to the Bank of San Giorgio in Genoa for the relief of taxation on foods.

Under the rules following the 2004-2005 lockout, if a team ices the puck under five-on-five conditions, they are not allowed to make a line change for the following faceoff. Genoa lost Sardinia to Aragon, Corsica to internal revolt and its Middle Eastern colonies to the Ottoman Empire and the Arabs. If the goalie on the side of the ice where the puck is being sent touches the puck, the icing is waved off. After a period of French domination from 1394-1409, Genoa came under rule by the Visconti of Milan. A short handed team is not penalized for clearing the puck out of its zone during a powerplay. The wars with Venice continued, and the War of Chioggia (1378-1381), ended with a victory for Venice. Play is resumed with a faceoff in the defending zone of the team that committed the infraction. Following the economic and population collapse, Genoa adopted the Venetian model of government, and was presided over by a doge (see Doges of Genoa).

When icing occurs, a linesman stops play. The Black Death was imported into Europe in 1349 from the Genoese trading post at Kaffa (Feodosiya) in the Crimea, on the Black Sea. Icing occurs when a player shoots the puck across both the red line and the opposing team's goal line without the puck going into the net. However, this prosperity did not last. The NHL in 2006 removed the offside pass or two-line pass which was a pass from inside a team's defending zone that crosses the red line. Genoa's political zenith came with its victory over Pisa in 1284, and its persistent rival, Venice, in 1298. When an offside violation occurs, the linesman blows play dead, and a faceoff is conducted in the neutral zone. Internal feuds between the powerful families, the Grimaldi, Doria, Spinola, and others caused much disruption, but in general the republic was run much as a business affair.

In ice hockey, play is said to be offside if a player on the attacking team enters the attacking zone before the puck. The collapse of the Crusader States was offset by Genoa’s alliance with the Byzantine Empire, which opened opportunities of expansion into the Black Sea and Crimea. If the game is still tied after the three shootout rounds, the shootout continues, but becomes sudden death. Genoese Crusaders brought home a green glass goblet from the Levant, which Genoese long regarded as the Holy Grail. The team with the most goals during this shootout wins the game. Through Genoese participation on the Crusades, colonies were established in the Mideast, in the Aegean in Sicily and Northern Africa. Three players for each team in turn perform a penalty shot. The Republic of Genoa extended over modern Liguria and Piedmont, Sardinia, Corsica and had practically complete control of the Tyrrhenian Sea.

If the game is still tied at the end of overtime, the game enters a shootout. Genoa was one of the so-called "Maritime Republics" (Repubbliche Marinare), along with Venice, Pisa, and Amalfi) and trade, shipbuilding and banking helped support one of the largest and most powerful navies in the Mediterranean. If the game is tied at the end of regulation time, a 5 minute, 4-on-4 sudden death overtime period is played, where the first team that scores a goal wins the game. Nominally, the Holy Roman Emperor was overlord and the Bishop of Genoa was president of the city; however, actual power was wielded by a number of "consuls" annually elected by popular assembly. The team that has the most goals at the end of 60 minutes wins the game. Before 1100, Genoa emerged as an independent city-state. A goal is scored when the puck passes the goal line and enters the net. The town was sacked and burned in 934 by arab pirates but this didn't stop for long the city's progress.

It is used to judge goals and icing calls. For the following several centuries, Genoa was little more than a small, obscure fishing center, slowly building its merchant fleet which was to became the leading commercial carrier of the Mediterranean Sea. Near each end of the rink, there is a thin red goal line spanning the width of the ice. After the fall of the Roman Empire, Genoa was occupied by the Ostrogoths , then by the Lombards. They divide the ice into zones. Although remaining faithful to Rome while other Ligurian and Celtic peoples of northern Italy stood by Carthaginians in the Second Punic War, its importance as a Roman port city was eclipsed by the rise of Vada Sabatia, near modern Savona. There are two blue lines that divide the rink roughly into thirds. Destroyed by the Carthaginians in 209 BC, the town was rebuilt by Rome, under which the city enjoyed municipal rights and exported skins, wood, and honey.

The red line is used to judge icing violations. A city cemetery, dating from the 6th and 5th centuries B.C., testifies to the occupation of the site by the Greeks, but the fine harbor probably was in use much earlier, perhaps by the Etruscans. The red line divides the ice in half lengthwise. Genoa's history goes back to ancient times. The hockey rink is an ice rink which is rectangular with rounded corners and surrounded by a wall . . Each team may also take one 30 second time-out which may only be taken during a normal stoppage of play. Alternatively, the name has been claimed to derive from Latin Janua ("gate"), the two-headed god Janus, or an ancient word that means "foreigners", as the early settlers were considered foreign by the neighbouring population.

Between stoppages of play, teams have 25 seconds before substituting their players except for referee stoppages for TV commercials. "angle", from its geographical position, thus akin to the name of Geneva. Between each period there is a 15 minute intermission. Its name is probably Ligurian, meaning "knee" (from Proto-Indo-European *genu 'knee'), i.e. Each game is 60 minutes composed of three 20 minute periods. Genua was a city of the ancient Ligurians. While the National Hockey League follows the general rules of Ice hockey, it differs slightly from those used in international games organized by the International Ice Hockey Federation such as the Olympics. 871,733.

The overtime is sudden death with the game ending when either team scores a goal. 601,338, the metropolitan area has a population of ca. Overtimes are also full periods of twenty minutes (of five-on-five hockey), rather than the five minutes (of four-on-four hockey, followed by a shootout) in the regular season. The city has a population of ca. If the score is tied at the end of an overtime period, additional overtime periods are played until a winner is determined. Genoa (Italian Genova, Genoese Zena, French Gênes, German Genua, Spanish Génova,Galician Xénova) is a city and a seaport in northern Italy, the capital of the Province of Genoa and of the region of Liguria. During playoff games if the score is tied at the end of the third period an overtime period is played. It is the oldest working lighthouse in the world, one of the five tallest ones, and the tallest brick one.

Four of the seven games are played at this team's home venue - the first and second, and, where necessary, the fifth and seventh, with the other games played at the lower-ranked team's home venue. The port of Genoa is home to an ancient Lighthouse: "La Lanterna" ("the lantern"). In each round the higher-ranked team is said to be the team with the home-ice advantage. In 1922 the Genoa Conference was the first economic conference that included a representitative from the newly-communist Soviet Socialist Republics. In the third round, the conference finals, the two remaining teams in each conference play each other, with the conference champions proceeding to the Stanley Cup Finals. For 2004, the European Union designated Genoa as European Capital of Culture, along with the French City of Lille. In the second round, or conference semifinals, the NHL re-seeds (unlike the NBA) the teams, with the top remaining conference seed playing against the lowest remaining seed, and the other two remaining conference teams pairing off. The 27th G8 summit took place in Genoa in July 2001, resulting in riots and the shooting of a protestor and a violent crackdown by the police.

The first round of the playoffs, or conference quarterfinals, consists of the first seed playing the eighth seed, the second playing the seventh, third playing the sixth, and the fourth playing the fifth. UC Sampdoria, football club founded in 1946. The Stanley Cup Playoffs is an elimination tournament, where two teams battle to win a best-of-seven series in order to advance to the next round. Genoa Cricket & Football Club founded in 1893. The division winners are seeded one through three, and the next five teams with the best records in the conference are seeded four through eight. The University of Genoa, with 40,000 students (one of the larger universities in Italy,) was founded in 1481. At the end of the regular season, the three division champions and the five other teams in each conference with the highest number of points, 8 teams in each conference, qualify for the Stanley Cup playoffs. The Museo d'Arte Orientale is one of the largest collections of Oriental art in Europe.

At the end of the regular season, the team that finishes with the most points in each division is crowned the division champion. Lawrence Cathedral (Cattedrale di San Lorenzo), The Old Harbor (Porto Antico), transformed into a mall by architect Renzo Piano, Via Garibaldi with its superb palaces and the monumental cemetery on Staglieno's hill. Points are awarded for each game as follows:. Other landmarks of the city are the Palazzo Ducale (Doge's Palace), St. The two divisions from the opposite conference which each team plays against will be rotated every year, much like interleague play in baseball. The Aquarium of Genoa is the largest in Europe. Teams play 32 games within their division (8 games against four other teams), 40 games against non-divisional, conference opponents (4 games against 10 other teams) and 10 interconference games, 1 game against each team in two of the three divisions in the opposite conference. It ranks second in the Mediterranean after neighbouring Marseille, France.

Each team in the NHL plays 82 regular season games, 41 games at home and 41 on the road. The port of Genoa is the first in Italy. For a list of previous teams see List of defunct NHL teams. Romanians - 746. Over the years many different organizations have existed. Chinese - 910. The National Hockey League currently has 30 teams divided into two conferences, and 6 divisions, an organization that started in the year 2000. Peruvians - 1,795.

The NHL, despite negative press generated during the lockout, has success attracting fans to the initial games of the season and extends fan bases into non-traditional markets in the US such as Nashville, Atlanta, and the Carolinas. Moroccans - 2,189. Of those 15 games, 11 were in front of sell out crowds. Albanians - 2,781. On October 5, 2005, the first post-lockout NHL season got under way with 15 games. Ecuadorians - 10,169. A new collective bargaining agreement was ratified in July 2005 with a term of six years with an option of extending the collective bargaining agreement for an additional year at the end of the term, allowing the NHL to resume as of the 2005-06 season.

With no new agreement in hand when the existing contract expired on September 15, 2004, league commissioner Gary Bettman announced a lockout of the players union and cessation of operations by the NHL head office, causing the NHL to lose an entire season. The league vowed to install what it dubbed "cost certainty" for its teams, but the National Hockey League Players Association countered that the move was little more than a euphemism for a salary cap, which the union initially said it would not accept. Negotiations to replace the contract that expired in 2004 turned into one of the most contentious collective bargaining sessions in the history of professional sports. The resulting collective bargaining agreement was set for renegotiation in 1998 and extended to September 15, 2004.

A lockout at the start of the 1994-95 forced the league to reduce the schedule from 84 games to just 48, with the teams playing only intra-conference games during the reduced season. The first was a strike by the National Hockey League Players Association in April 1992 which lasted for 10 days, but the strike was settled quickly and all affected games were rescheduled. There have been three work stoppages in NHL history, all happening between 1992 and 2005. Approaching the new millennium, the NHL added another four teams; the Nashville Predators (1998), the Atlanta Thrashers (1999), the Minnesota Wild and the Columbus Blue Jackets (both added in 2000) bringing the total to 30 teams.

In 1993, the NHL added an additional two teams, the Anaheim Mighty Ducks and the Florida Panthers. The San Jose Sharks debuted in 1991, a season later the Ottawa Senators would join the NHL along with the Tampa Bay Lightning. In the early 90's the NHL expanded further with five new franchises. As of 2005, the Oilers are the last remaining original WHA franchise still playing in the city where they began in the NHL.

Four of the remaining six WHA teams merged with the NHL: The Hartford Whalers, Québec Nordiques, Edmonton Oilers, and Winnipeg Jets. The two leagues fought for the services of hockey players and fans until the WHA folded in 1979. The dilution of the talent pool, however, caused the overall quality of play to suffer. In response to that, the NHL decided to rush its own expansion plans by adding the New York Islanders and Atlanta Flames that year, along with the Kansas City Scouts and Washington Capitals two years later.

Though it never challenged for the Stanley Cup, its status as a viable NHL rival was unquestionable. In 1972, the World Hockey Association (WHA) was formed. Three years later, the NHL added the Vancouver Canucks and Buffalo Sabres as franchises. Louis Blues, Minnesota North Stars, Los Angeles Kings, Oakland Seals, and Pittsburgh Penguins.

They were the Philadelphia Flyers, St. Six new teams were added to the NHL roster, and placed in their own newly-created division. The rise of the Western Hockey League, which many pundits thought planned to transform into a major league and challenge for the Stanley Cup, spurred the NHL in 1967 to undertake its first expansion since the 1920s. With these developments and the onset of World War II, the NHL was reduced to six teams during its 25th anniversary year of (1942) – six teams still known today, if somewhat inaccurately, as the Original Six: The Canadiens, Maple Leafs, Red Wings, Bruins, Rangers, and Blackhawks.

However, the Great Depression took a toll on the league; teams such as the Pirates, Americans and Ottawa Senators folded. By the end of the 1930-31 season, the NHL featured a total of 10 teams. Canadian additions included the Montreal Maroons and Hamilton Tigers. The league had also expanded into the United States, with the Boston Bruins in 1924, the New York Americans and the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1925 and the New York Rangers, Detroit Cougars (later to become the Red Wings), and Chicago Blackhawks in 1926.

By 1926, having increased player salaries to a level that couldn't be matched by other Canadian leagues, the NHL was alone in Stanley Cup competition. (The 1918-19 competition was cancelled because of the Spanish Flu epidemic that had hit Seattle). Though the league struggled to stay in business during its first decade, NHL teams were quite successful on the ice, winning the Stanley Cup seven out of its first nine years. With the Bulldogs and Wanderers out, the NHL operated with just three teams for the remainder of its opening year, and through the second season.

The Wanderers, already a shadow of its former self, folded in the wake of the fire, ending one of the most storied franchises in the early years of Canadian professional hockey. On January 2, 1918, the Westmount Arena in Montreal, home to the Wanderers and Canadiens, was destroyed in a fire. The NHL endured a rocky inaugural season in 1917-18, starting with the temporary shuttering of the Bulldogs. Arguments and discussions ensued which eventually led to the formation of the National Hockey League at on November 26, 1917, with the Montreal Canadiens, Montreal Wanderers, Ottawa Senators, Quebec Bulldogs and newly-renamed Toronto Arenas as founding members.

Livingstone, unable to attend the meeting because of illness, was shocked to learn that owners had chosen to effectively eject him and the Blueshirts from the NHA. The owners met in Montreal's Windsor Hotel to consider the league's future on February 11, 1917. Livingstone and the owners of the other teams. The National Hockey League was founded in 1917 in Montreal after a series of disputes within the (Canadian) National Hockey Association (NHA) between the Toronto Blueshirts' owner Edward J.

. The NHL is one of the major professional sports leagues of North America.

. It is generally regarded as the premier professional ice hockey league in the world. The National Hockey League (NHL) is a professional sports organization composed of hockey teams in the United States and Canada, where it is also known by its French name, Ligue Nationale de Hockey (LNH).

The Lester Patrick Trophy has been presented by the National Hockey League since 1966 to honour a recipient's contribution to hockey in the United States. Jennings Trophy (1982 - present) -- goalkeeper(s) for the team with the fewest goals against them. William M. Vezina Trophy (1927 - present) -- voted to be the most outstanding goaltender.

Roger Crozier Saving Grace Award (2000 - present) -- best save percentage by a goalkeeper. NHL Plus/Minus Award (1968 - present) -- highest plus/minus statistic. Maurice 'Rocket' Richard Trophy (1999 - present) -- to the goal-scoring leader during the regular season. Pearson Award (1971 - present) -- most outstanding player as selected by peers.

Lester B. Lady Byng Memorial Trophy (1925 - present) -- player combining ability and sportsmanship. King Clancy Memorial Trophy (1988 - present) -- leadership and humanitarian contribution. James Norris Memorial Trophy (1954 - present)-- most outstanding defenceman.

Jack Adams Award (1974 - present) -- coach of the year. Hart Memorial Trophy (1924 - present) -- most valuable player during the regular season. Selke Trophy (1978 - present) -- top defensive forward. Frank J.

Conn Smythe Trophy (1965 - present) -- most valuable player during the playoffs. Calder Memorial Trophy (1933 - present) -- rookie of the year. Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy (1968 - present) -- perseverance and sportsmanship. Art Ross Memorial Trophy (1948 - present) -- regular season league scoring champion.

The O'Brien Trophy was awarded in the NHL before it was retired following the 1949-50 NHL season. Presidents' Trophy (1986 - present) - best regular season by a team. Prince of Wales Trophy -- Eastern conference playoff champion. Campbell Bowl -- Western conference playoff champion.

Clarence S. Stanley Cup -- overall playoff champion. Zero points for a loss in regulation time. One point for losing in overtime or a shootout.

Two points are awarded for a win.

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