1931–32 NHL Season - League Business

League Business

At the September 26, 1931, NHL meeting, the requests of the Philadelphia Quakers and the Ottawa Senators to suspend their franchises for the season were granted. The eight remaining teams divided up the Ottawa and Philadelphia players, whose contracts were leased from Ottawa and Philadelphia. (The Quakers would not return) The players went to other teams, but their contracts were intended to revert to the original clubs. Ottawa received an offer of $300,000 for the team, on the condition that it could move to Chicago and play in the new Chicago Stadium but the owners of the Chicago Blackhawks refused to allow the new team within their territory. The Detroit Falcons were bankrupt and went into receivership.

Meanwhile, the American Hockey Association, which had become the American Hockey League (AHL) in 1930–31 and declared itself a major league, was condemned as an outlaw league by NHL president Frank Calder. Among the reasons Calder cited for his actions was that the AHL had put a franchise in Chicago, which had an NHL franchise, and a franchise in Buffalo where the NHL had a minor league affiliate. The AHL proposed as Stanley Cup challenge, and the Stanley Cup trustees ordered the NHL to play off. However, the Buffalo team collapsed and Calder entered into negotiations to merge the Chicago Shamrocks, owned by James Norris, with the Detroit Falcons, now bankrupt. The AHL signed an agreement with the NHL to become its minor league affiliate.

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