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1974-75 NHL season

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The 1974-75 NHL season was the 58th season of the National Hockey League. Eighteen teams each played 80 games. With the addition of two new teams, the Washington Capitals and Kansas City Scouts, the NHL bumped up the number of games from 78 to 80 and split the previously two-division league into four divisions and two conferences.

Because the new conferences and divisions had little to do with North American geography, geographical references were also removed. The East Division became the Prince of Wales Conference and consisted of the Adams Division and Norris Division and the West Division became the Clarence Campbell Conference and consisted of the Patrick Division and Smythe Division. The Patrick and Norris Divisions would change conferences with one another following the 1980-81 season. This further expansion was considered by many ill-fated, and with the World Hockey Association continuing to drain talent away, the Capitals had the worst season ever recorded in the history of major professional hockey, and the third worst in the postwar era the following season, while the Scouts the following season would have the fifth worst record of the postwar era.

Regular seasonEdit

For the first time ever in the National Hockey League, there was a three-way tie for first place overall. The respective divisional leaders of the Norris, Patrick, and Adams all had 113 points. The Vancouver Canucks, which had been playing in the original East Division since they debuted in the league were moved over to the Campbell Conference and lead the way in the Smythe Division with a comparatively meager 86 points.

Final standingsEdit

Note: GP = Games played, W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, Pts = Points, GF = Goals for, GA = Goals against, PIM = Penalties in minutes
Note: Teams that qualified for the playoffs are highlighted in bold

Prince of Wales ConferenceEdit

Adams Division GP W L T Pts GF GA PIM
Buffalo Sabres 80 49 16 15 113 354 240 1229
Boston Bruins 80 40 26 14 94 345 245 1153
Toronto Maple Leafs 80 31 33 16 78 280 309 1079
California Golden Seals 80 19 48 13 51 212 316 1101
Norris Division GP W L T Pts GF GA PIM
Montreal Canadiens 80 47 14 19 113 374 225 1155
Los Angeles Kings 80 42 17 21 105 269 185 1185
Pittsburgh Penguins 80 37 28 15 89 326 289 1119
Detroit Red Wings 80 23 45 12 58 259 335 1078
Washington Capitals 80 8 67 5 21 181 446 1085

Clarence Campbell ConferenceEdit

Patrick Division GP W L T Pts GF GA PIM
Philadelphia Flyers 80 51 18 11 113 293 181 1969
New York Rangers 80 37 29 14 88 319 276 1053
New York Islanders 80 33 25 22 88 264 221 1118
Atlanta Flames 80 34 31 15 83 243 233 915
Smythe Division GP W L T Pts GF GA PIM
Vancouver Canucks 80 38 32 10 86 271 254 965
St. Louis Blues 80 35 31 14 84 269 267 1275
Chicago Black Hawks 80 37 35 8 82 268 241 1112
Minnesota North Stars 80 23 50 7 53 221 341 1106
Kansas City Scouts 80 15 54 11 41 184 328 744

Scoring leadersEdit

Note: GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points

Player Team GP G A Pts PIM
Bobby Orr Boston Bruins 80 46 89 135 101
Phil Esposito Boston Bruins 79 61 66 127 62
Marcel Dionne Detroit Red Wings 80 47 74 121 14
Guy Lafleur Montreal Canadiens 70 53 66 119 37
Pete Mahovlich Montreal Canadiens 80 35 82 117 64
Bobby Clarke Philadelphia Flyers 80 27 89 116 125
Rene Robert Buffalo Sabres 74 40 60 100 75
Rod Gilbert New York Rangers 76 36 61 97 22
Gilbert Perreault Buffalo Sabres 68 39 57 96 36
Rick Martin Buffalo Sabres 68 52 43 95 72

Leading goaltendersEdit

Stanley Cup playoffsEdit

All dates in 1975

The playoffs were expanded from 8 to 12 teams with the top 3 teams in each division qualifying for the playoffs. The first place teams in each division earned a first round bye, while the 2nd and 3rd place teams were seeded 1-8 based on their regular season record and played a best 2 out of 3 "mini-series." The four division winners then joined the 4 mini series winners in the quarter finals, and they were again re-seeded 1-8 based on regular season record. This re-seeding would take place again in the semi finals, and continues to this day in the current playoff format. Proponents of this re-seeding state that it makes the regular season more important by rewarding teams with better records with potentially easier matchups. In addition, it avoids the potential issue of two lower seeded teams (who may have pulled early round upsets)playing each other in the next round while two higher seeeded teams are playing each other (as is possible in a "bracketed" playoff format like in the National Basketball Association.

With the new conference and division structure, the 1975 Stanley Cup playoffs used a new format. Twelve teams qualified for the post-season. The four division winners from the regular season received byes to the quarterfinal round. The next two teams in each division (eight teams total) were ranked according to their regular season point totals, with the highest ranked team playing against the lowest ranked team, and so on, in a best-of-three preliminary round. The four preliminary round winners and four division winners were re-ranked for the subsequent round. The biggest beneficiary of this format was the Vancouver Canucks, who were 9th in the regular season but received a first-round bye for winning the relatively weak Smythe Division.

FinalsEdit

The Philadelphia Flyers beat the Buffalo Sabres four games to two for their second consecutive Stanley Cup.

Playoff bracketEdit

  Preliminary Round Quarterfinals Semifinals Finals
                                     
        
  1  Philadelphia Flyers 4  
    12  Toronto Maple Leafs 0  
4  Los Angeles Kings 1
12  Toronto Maple Leafs 2  
  1  Philadelphia Flyers 4  
  8  New York Islanders 3  
6  Pittsburgh Penguins 2  
10  St. Louis Blues 0  
  6  Pittsburgh Penguins 3
    8  New York Islanders 4  
7  New York Rangers 1
8  New York Islanders 2  
  1  Philadelphia Flyers 4
  2  Buffalo Sabres 2
        
        
  2  Buffalo Sabres 4
    11  Chicago Black Hawks 1  
5  Boston Bruins 1
11  Chicago Black Hawks 2  
  2  Buffalo Sabres 4
  3  Montreal Canadiens 2  
        
        
  3  Montreal Canadiens 4
    9  Vancouver Canucks 1  
      
      

NHL awardsEdit

Prince of Wales Trophy: Buffalo Sabres
Clarence S. Campbell Bowl: Philadelphia Flyers
Art Ross Memorial Trophy: Bobby Orr, Boston Bruins
Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy: Don Luce, Buffalo Sabres
Calder Memorial Trophy: Eric Vail, Atlanta Flames
Conn Smythe Trophy: Bernie Parent, Philadelphia Flyers
Hart Memorial Trophy: Bobby Clarke, Philadelphia Flyers
Jack Adams Award: Bob Pulford, Los Angeles Kings
James Norris Memorial Trophy: Bobby Orr, Boston Bruins
Lady Byng Memorial Trophy: Marcel Dionne, Detroit Red Wings
Lester B. Pearson Award: Bobby Orr, Boston Bruins
NHL Plus/Minus Award: Bobby Orr, Boston Bruins
Vezina Trophy: Bernie Parent, Philadelphia Flyers
Lester Patrick Trophy: Donald M. Clark, William L. Chadwick, Thomas N. Ivan

All-Star teamsEdit

First Team   Position   Second Team
Bernie Parent, Philadelphia Flyers G Rogie Vachon, Los Angeles Kings
Bobby Orr, Boston Bruins D Guy Lapointe, Montreal Canadiens
Denis Potvin, New York Islanders D Borje Salming, Toronto Maple Leafs
Bobby Clarke, Philadelphia Flyers C Phil Esposito, Boston Bruins
Guy Lafleur, Montreal Canadiens RW Rene Robert, Buffalo Sabres
Rick Martin, Buffalo Sabres LW Steve Vickers, New York Rangers

DebutsEdit

The following is a list of players of note who played their first NHL game in 1974-75 (listed with their first team):

Last gamesEdit

The following is a list of players of note that played their last game in the NHL in 1974-75 (listed with their last team):

74-75NHLHNICSked

Television schedule in Windsor, Ontario


See also Edit

ReferencesEdit


NHL seasons

1970-71 | 1971-72 | 1972-73 | 1973-74 | 1974-75 | 1975-76 | 1976-77 | 1977-78 | 1978-79

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