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The National Hockey League was organized on November 26, 1917, at the Windsor Hotel in Montreal after the suspension of operations of its predecessor organization, the National Hockey Association (NHA), which had been founded in 1909 in Renfrew, Ontario. The NHL immediately took the NHA's place as one of the leagues that contested for the Stanley Cup in an annual interleague competition before a series of league mergers and foldings left the NHL as the only league left competing for the Stanley Cup in 1926.
At its inception, the NHL had four teams—all in Canada, thus the adjective "National" in the league's name. The league expanded to the United States in 1924, when the Boston Bruins joined, and has since consisted of American and Canadian teams. From 1942 to 1967, the league had only six teams, collectively (if not contemporaneously) nicknamed the "Original Six". The NHL added six new teams to double its size at the 1967 NHL expansion. The league then increased to 18 teams by 1974 and 21 teams in 1979. Between 1991 and 2000, the NHL further expanded to 30 teams. It added its 31st team in 2017 and has approved the addition of a 32nd team in 2021.
Even though Hockey isn't an American sport there is no shortage of hockey-loving fans in the United States. Some of the southern teams in the United States have actually become os some of the most followed. The Tampa Bay Lightning have been making history in the NHL since their inception. They were the first major sports franchise to have a woman playing for them. Manon Rhéaume made history as a goaltender in 1992. The Carolina Hurricanes and Phoenix Coyotes have also enjoyed a great deal of success. The only recent expansion team by the NHL that did not make it was the Atlanta Thrashers. Many more places have hockey arenas now so more kids are playing and it is becoming more of an American game.
One of the more unique aspects of the NHL is that it is generally played indoors. This is because the season has been expanded to accommodate more games and the advent of more arenas that can make ice. Since 2008 the NHL has hosted a Winter Classic game which is played outdoors. This is created one of the hottest tickets in sports to enjoy a neutral site NHL game in the actual weather that hockey was meant to play in.
No matter who your favorite team is TicketsOnSale.com has a great selection of tickets for each game at good prices. If you want to sit center ice, on the blue line, behind the goalie, or up top we have you covered. The annual race for Lord Stanley's cup is great to watch on tv and even better to experience live and in-person.