13 NHL Teams That No Longer Exist

It seems like most NHL fans are happy to see a team back in Winnipeg this season. I know I am. Still, it’s always a shame when one town’s gain has to be another’s loss. In an ideal world, teams would just stay in one damn place. You wouldn’t have teams leaving hockey-mad towns to go play in a desert suburb. But that’s the way it is in all pro sports. Just ask football fans in Baltimore and Cleveland.

The NHL, however, likes to talk about “the Original Six” as though they come from some magical era of franchise stability. This gives fans the wrong impression. The Blackhawks, Bruins, Canadiens, Maples Leafs, Rangers, and Red Wings were not the first six franchises in the NHL. The league began in 1917 and had four teams. Only two of those—the Canadiens and Maple Leafs—are still around. The other four “Original Six” didn’t come around until 1927.

The point is, teams always have come and gone in the NHL, and they always will. So today, in honor of the dearly departed Atlanta Thrashers and whoever the next bygone team will be, we present to you a list of 13 NHL Teams That No Longer Exist.

Tags: hockey, NHL, Quebec Nordiques, relocation, winnipeg jets,