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History of Hockey: An Ancient Sport That Has Triumphed Through Years of Fine Tuning
The history of hockey dates back to the era of early civilizations. Studies have found hints of the origin of this sport as much as four thousand years ago. This sport commonly referred to as “ball and stick” was played in the ancient civilizations of Rome, Egypt, and Scotland under various names. The general playing of the game between all civilizations was similar. The Irish called the game “Hockie.” This term has reached the present day and is now the common name for this historic game. Back in these times it was not played on ice but rather on a field. Modern hockey rules and game play began in Canada with the help of JG Creighton. His special game play rules were used in the first ice hockey game played in 1875. Two frozen stones at each end of the ice were used as goals in the early days of hockey. In 1879, the official rules for the game were drafted. It wasn’t until 1893 that hockey became a well-known sport in the United States. In the 1900s the sport grew in popularity throughout Europe.
In Canada and other countries hockey was played most extensively until the early 1900s. Montreal, Canada is the true parent of modern ice hockey. This is where the first organized play in hockey history began. The first official NHL season took place between 1917 and 1918 in Montreal. Only five teams were part of the league in the beginning. One had to give up because their rink was burning down. There were many obstacles in the early development stage of the NHL and slowed down the development of this sport that so many people love today. The O’Brien trophy was the original league championship trophy awarded for the championship game. As the popularity of the games increased so did the number of teams in the league.
Professional hockey began in the early twentieth century. The Western Pennsylvania Hockey League began openly paying players for the sport. This particular league joined teams from Michigan and Ontario to form the first professional international league in the year 1904. Many players were openly paid by this league which later ended in 1907. By this time, there were many major hockey leagues running in Canada. The National Hockey Association or NHA was formed in the year 1910 in Montreal, Canada and was followed by the reorganization of 1917 which created the National Hockey League (NHL). The expansion of the league to the United States began in 1924. Many rules were set throughout this period including twenty minute periods and various penalties.
Currently, professional hockey is played in various countries around the world. This is Canada’s defining sport and is a famous game in the United States and other countries. Fans love the roughness of the game. They gather in the stands every season to watch their favorite team fight for the ultimate victory and the ever so famous Stanley Cup. This championship trophy has been a symbol of hard work and perseverance for years and is every team’s desired end result.
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