Los Angeles Sharks

Last updated
Los Angeles Sharks
Los Angeles Sharks logo.svg
City Los Angeles, California
League World Hockey Association
Home arena L.A. Sports Arena
Long Beach Sports Arena
Media KTTV
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.


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

See also

Related Research Articles

Winnipeg Jets (1972–96) former hockey team of the National Hockey League

The Winnipeg Jets were a professional ice hockey team based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. They began play in the World Hockey Association (WHA) in 1972. The club joined the National Hockey League (NHL) in 1979 after the NHL merged with the WHA. Due to mounting financial troubles, in 1996 the franchise moved to Phoenix, Arizona and became the Phoenix Coyotes. In 2011 the Atlanta Thrashers franchise relocated to Winnipeg and restored the Jets name, although the prior Jets club history is retained by the Arizona club.

Minnesota Fighting Saints ice hockey team

The Minnesota Fighting Saints was the name of two professional ice hockey teams based in Saint Paul, Minnesota that played in the World Hockey Association. The first team was one of the WHA's original twelve franchises, playing from 1972–76. The second team was relocated from Cleveland, Ohio, and played for part of the 1976–77 season. Neither edition of the franchise completed its final season of play.

Chicago Cougars

The Chicago Cougars were a franchise in the World Hockey Association from 1972 to 1975. The Cougars played their home games in the International Amphitheatre. During the 1974 Avco Cup Finals against Gordie Howe and the Houston Aeros, the team's two home games were played at the Randhurst Twin Ice Arena in suburban Mount Prospect. This was because a presentation of Peter Pan starring gymnast Cathy Rigby was booked into the Amphitheatre and thus made the arena unavailable for the playoffs.

The 1979–80 NHL season was the 63rd season of the National Hockey League. This season saw the addition of four teams from the disbanded World Hockey Association as expansion franchises. The Edmonton Oilers, Winnipeg Jets, New England Whalers, and Quebec Nordiques joined the NHL, bringing the total to 21 teams. The other two WHA teams were paid to disband.

The 1972–73 WHA season was the first season of the World Hockey Association (WHA). Twelve teams played 78 games each. The league was officially incorporated in June of 1971 by Garry L. Davidson and Dennis A. Murphy and promised to ice twelve teams in various markets around Canada and the United States. The league championship trophy, the Avco World Trophy, was donated by AVCO Financial Services Corporation along with $500,000. The New England Whalers won the first Avco World Trophy.

The 1974–75 WHA season was the third season of the World Hockey Association. Fourteen teams each played 78 games.

Baltimore Clippers ice hockey team

The Baltimore Clippers were a minor league professional ice hockey team from in Baltimore, Maryland, playing in the Baltimore Civic Center. The Clippers were members of the American Hockey League from 1962 to 1976, and then played one season in the Southern Hockey League. The team was managed by Terry Reardon for its first fourteen seasons, and won three division titles, but were unable to capture a Calder Cup title. Baltimore began as a farm team for the New York Rangers, and helped develop Hall of Fame players including, Eddie Giacomin, Doug Harvey, Jacques Plante and Jean Ratelle. The Clippers also featured eight alumni, who are now members of the AHL Hall of Fame. The team name "Clippers", was used by two previous professional hockey teams in Baltimore, and paid homage to local history in the Baltimore Clipper, and the Port of Baltimore.

2002 Stanley Cup playoffs ice hockey playoffs

The 2002 Stanley Cup playoffs, the championships of the National Hockey League began on April 17, 2002.

Bryan Joseph Watson is a Canadian retired ice hockey defenceman. He played 16 seasons in the National Hockey League with the Montreal Canadiens, Detroit Red Wings, Oakland Seals, Pittsburgh Penguins, St. Louis Blues and Washington Capitals, and briefly in the World Hockey Association with the Cincinnati Stingers. Watson also served as head coach and an assistant coach with the Edmonton Oilers in the 1980-81 NHL season.

The 2006–07 Vancouver Canucks season was the Canucks' 37th NHL season.

The 1994–95 Chicago Blackhawks season was the Hawks' 69th season. The Hawks ended the regular season on a high note, winning their final five games. They tied the Detroit Red Wings for most power play goals (52) and had the best power play in the league (24.53%). They also allowed the fewest goals (115) and the fewest even-strength goals (76) during the regular season. It was an inconsistent season for the team, as they had three 5-game winning streaks and one 13-game winless streak from March 29 to April 23. Within their winless streak, they lost 8 games in a row. Points-leader Bernie Nicholls had 3 hat tricks, including two four-goal games. Nicholls' three-goal game came on March 21 in a 7-3 Blackhawks' win at San Jose.

The 1973–74 Los Angeles Sharks season was the Los Angeles Sharks' second and final season in Los Angeles in the World Hockey Association. The club finished last in the WHA Western Division and missed the playoffs. They moved to Detroit, MI after the season and became the Michigan Stags.

The 1974–75 Michigan Stags/Baltimore Blades season was the third season of the former Los Angeles Sharks franchise. Prior to the season, the team relocated to Detroit, and then relocated to Baltimore partway through the season. The team finished fifth in the Western Division and did not qualify for the playoffs.

The 2011–12 Detroit Red Wings season was the 86th season for the National Hockey League franchise that was established on September 25, 1926. The Red Wings finished the season with a 48–28–6 record and for the first time since 1990–91 season, the Red Wings did not finish first or second in the division, finishing third. Also, the Red Wings had their earliest playoff exit since 2006 against the Edmonton Oilers, losing to the Nashville Predators in five games.