Los Angeles Sharks

Last updated
Los Angeles Sharks
Los Angeles Sharks logo.svg
City Los Angeles, California
League World Hockey Association
Operated1972–1974
Home arena L.A. Sports Arena
Long Beach Sports Arena
Media KTTV
KNX
Franchise history
1972–1974Los Angeles Sharks
1974–1975 Michigan Stags
1975Baltimore Blades

The Los Angeles Sharks were an ice hockey team that played in the World Hockey Association from 1972 to 1974. Their primary home arena was the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena but they sometimes played at the Long Beach Sports Arena when the Sports Arena had other contractual obligations. After the 1973–74 season, the franchise moved to Detroit to become the Michigan Stags and again mid-season to Baltimore to become the Baltimore Blades.

Ice hockey team sport played on ice using sticks, skates, and a puck

Ice hockey is a contact team sport played on ice, usually in a rink, in which two teams of skaters use their sticks to shoot a vulcanized rubber puck into their opponent's net to score points. The sport is known to be fast-paced and physical, with teams usually consisting of six players each: one goaltender, and five players who skate up and down the ice trying to take the puck and score a goal against the opposing team.

World Hockey Association defunct ice hockey major league from 1972 to 1979

The World Hockey Association was a professional ice hockey major league that operated in North America from 1972 to 1979. It was the first major league to compete with the National Hockey League (NHL) since the collapse of the Western Hockey League in 1926. Although the WHA was not the first league since that time to attempt to challenge the NHL's supremacy, it was by far the most successful in the modern era.

Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena former indoor arena in Los Angeles

The Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena was a multi-purpose arena at Exposition Park, in the University Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. It was located next to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and just south of the campus of the University of Southern California, which managed and operated both venues under a master lease agreement with the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Commission. The arena was demolished in 2016 and replaced with Banc of California Stadium, home of Major League Soccer's Los Angeles FC which opened in 2018.

Contents

The franchise was originally meant to be called the Los Angeles Aces, but took the "Sharks" name after the proposed San Francisco Sharks franchise (not to be confused with the current NHL San Jose Sharks) was transferred to Quebec and became the Nordiques before the WHA began play. They kept the original colors from the name Aces; red and black being the colors of the suits in a deck of cards.

San Jose Sharks hockey team of the National Hockey League

The San Jose Sharks are a professional ice hockey team based in San Jose, California. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The franchise is owned by San Jose Sports & Entertainment Enterprises. Beginning play in the 1991–92 season, the Sharks initially played their home games at the Cow Palace, before they moved to their present home, the SAP Center at San Jose in 1993. The SAP Center is known locally as the Shark Tank.

1972-73 Season

The Sharks' first season was moderately successful on and off the ice as they finished 3rd in the Western Division (losing in the first round of the playoffs to the Houston Aeros in six games) and attendance was respectable. Gary Veneruzzo led the team with 43 goals, although nobody else had more than 20. The Sharks made up for lack of offensive depth with solid defense and goaltending as they allowed the 3rd fewest goals in the league. The Sharks were also a physical team and led the WHA in penalty minutes. However, their penalty killing was among the league's best.

Houston Aeros (WHA) ice hockey team in Houston, Texas

The Houston Aeros were a professional ice hockey team in the World Hockey Association (WHA) from 1972 to 1978.

Gary Raymond Veneruzzo is a retired professional ice hockey player who played seven games in the National Hockey League and 348 games in the World Hockey Association. Veneruzzo played for with the St. Louis Blues, Los Angeles Sharks, Michigan Stags, Baltimore Blades, Cincinnati Stingers, Phoenix Roadrunners, and San Diego Mariners. Veneruzzo was born in Fort William, Ontario.

1973-74 Season

The Sharks could not capitalize on their successful first season and sank to last place in their second year. They had the league's worst record, scored the fewest goals, and allowed the second most goals. This drop off coincided with a resurgence across town by the NHL's Los Angeles Kings, who qualified for the playoffs in the 1973-74 season for the first time in five years. Thus, attendance dropped considerably, and after season's end it was announced that the Sharks would relocate to Detroit and become the Michigan Stags. The 1973-74 Sharks are notable for one thing - they were the first team (NHL or WHA) to go an entire season without playing a single tie game. (Note that WHA rules provided for a 10-minute sudden death overtime; if no team scored after 10 minutes, the game was a tie. This resulted in much fewer tie games than in the NHL but even so, the Sharks were the only team to go an entire season with 0 ties).

Los Angeles Kings hockey team of the National Hockey League

The Los Angeles Kings are a professional ice hockey team based in Los Angeles. They are members of the Pacific Division of the Western Conference of the National Hockey League (NHL). The team was founded on June 5, 1967, after Jack Kent Cooke was awarded an NHL expansion franchise for Los Angeles on February 9, 1966, becoming one of the six teams that began play as part of the 1967 NHL expansion. The Kings played their home games at The Forum in Inglewood, California, a suburb of Los Angeles, for thirty-two years, until they moved to the Staples Center in Downtown Los Angeles at the start of the 1999–2000 season.

Michigan Stags

The Michigan Stags were a professional ice hockey team based in Detroit, Michigan that played a portion of the 1974–75 season in the World Hockey Association. On January 18, 1975, the franchise was moved to Baltimore, Maryland where it was known as the Baltimore Blades. The Stags originated as the Los Angeles Sharks, one of the WHA's original twelve teams. The Stags played at Cobo Arena, and the Blades at the Baltimore Civic Center.

Season-by-season record

Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against, PIM = Penalties in minutes

Season GPWLTPtsGFGAPIMFinish Playoffs
1972–73 78373568025925014773rd, WesternLost Quarterfinals 4–2 (Aeros)
1973–74 78255305023933910866th, WesternDid not qualify
Totals156628861304985892563

See also

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