1923–24 NHL season
|League||National Hockey League|
|Duration||December 15, 1923 - March 11, 1924|
|Number of games||24|
|Number of teams||4|
|Season champions||Ottawa Senators|
|Season MVP||Frank Nighbor (Ottawa)|
|Top scorer||Cy Denneny (Ottawa)|
|O'Brien Cup champions||Montreal Canadiens|
The 1923–24 NHL season was the seventh season of the National Hockey League. Four teams each played 24 games. The league champions were the Montreal Canadiens, who defeated the first-place Ottawa Senators in the league playoff. The Canadiens then defeated the Calgary Tigers of the Western Canada Hockey League (WCHL) and Vancouver Maroons of the Pacific Coast Hockey Association (PCHA) to win their second Stanley Cup championship.
- 1 League business
- 2 Regular season
- 3 Playoffs
- 4 Awards
- 5 Player statistics
- 6 Debuts
- 7 Last games
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
At the NHL meeting of February 9, 1924, the NHL discussed plans for expansion into the United States. The same meeting saw the introduction of the new Hart Trophy, to be awarded to the player judged most valuable to his team.
After the suspensions of their own players by the Canadiens, in 1922-23. The NHL decided to take a further role in discipline, as it redefined match fouls, changed fines and adds presidential review for possible further punishment.
A newcomer that would become the NHL's first drawing card, Howie Morenz, started his career with the Montreal Canadiens this year. Morenz scored the first goal of his career on December 27, 1923 in the inaugural NHL game at the new Ottawa Auditorium. It was the first of a career 270 goals.
The Hamilton Tigers added Billy Burch and the Green brothers, Shorty and Redvers (nicknamed Red) and now they had a team that could compete nicely with the rest of the league. On December 28, Shorty Green scored at 12:22 of overtime to give Hamilton its first ever road victory over the Ottawa Senators in Ottawa. However, the changes did not pay off this season. The Hamilton Tigers finished last for the fifth season in a row (counting one season as the Quebec Athletics).
The NHL held a mid-season meeting to consider Sprague Cleghorn's suspension. Ottawa claimed he was deliberately injuring opponents, citing a spearing incident against Cy Denneny. The league rejected the charges, and in a game against Ottawa shortly thereafter, Cleghorn charged Lionel Hitchman into the boards and earned a one game suspension.
A game between Ottawa and the Canadiens was postponed due to a bizarre incident near the end of the season. On their way to Montreal, the Ottawa's train got snowbound near Hawkesbury, Ontario. The team was stuck all night and so Cy Denneny decided to scrounge around for some food, and somehow fell down a well. Fortunately, he escaped injury. The game was postponed until the next night and Georges Vezina shut out the Senators 3–0.
|Toronto St. Patricks||24||10||14||0||20||59||85|
 Note: W = Wins, L = Losses, T = Ties, GF = Goals For, GA = Goals Against, Pts = Points
Teams that qualified for the playoffs are highlighted in bold.
This was the last season that three leagues competed for the Stanley Cup as, after the season, the PCHA folded. Two of its teams, the Vancouver Maroons and Victoria Cougars, joined the WCHL for the 1924–25 WCHL season.
All dates 1924
The Montreal Canadiens had finished second overall in the NHL regular season standings but in the playoffs, they would upset the first-place Ottawa Senators.
Montreal Canadiens vs. Ottawa Senators
|March 8||Montreal Canadiens||1||Ottawa Senators||0|
|March 11||Montreal Canadiens||4||Ottawa Senators||2|
Montreal wins two-game total-goals series five goals to two to win the O'Brien Cup.
Stanley Cup playoffs
The second place Vancouver Maroons of the PCHA once again faced the first place Seattle Metropolitans and once again, Vancouver would come out on top winning the PCHA league championship. Meanwhile, in the Western Canada Hockey League, the Calgary Tigers won the regular season and the playoffs. The Canadiens owner, Leo Dandurand, wanted Calgary and Vancouver to face off against each other and then have the Canadiens play the winner for the Stanley Cup. Frank Patrick, the president of the PCHA, refused to go along with that idea.
Since Leo Dandurand's request to have Vancouver and Calgary face off first was denied, the first round match-up was the Montreal Canadiens and Vancouver Maroons. The Canadiens swept the best-of-three series two games to none.
Vancouver Maroons vs. Montreal Canadiens
|March 18||Vancouver Maroons||2||Montreal Canadiens||3|
|March 20||Vancouver Maroons||1||Montreal Canadiens||2|
Montreal wins best-of-three series two games to none.
After sweeping Vancouver, Montreal's next opponent was the Calgary Tigers. Montreal swept them too in a best-of-three series. Howie Morenz was the star, scoring a hat trick in the first game, then another goal in the next game, which was transferred to Ottawa because of the slushy ice at Mount Royal Arena. Morenz was levelled by Cully Wilson of Calgary and suffered a chipped collarbone, but it was all in vain as Montreal won. The Canadiens swept all three teams they faced during the playoffs en route to their first Stanley Cup since their 1916 Cup win as a member of the NHA.
Calgary Tigers vs. Montreal Canadiens
|March 22||Calgary Tigers||1||Montreal Canadiens||6|
|March 25||Calgary Tigers||0||Montreal Canadiens||3||in Ottawa|
Montreal wins best-of-three series two games to none for the Stanley Cup.
Playoff scoring leader
Note: GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points
|Howie Morenz||Montreal Canadiens||6||7||3||10|
The league introduced its first individual award, the Hart Trophy, to the player judged to be "the most valuable player" to their team.
|1923–24 NHL awards|
(Most valuable player)
|Frank Nighbor, Ottawa Senators|
|Prince of Wales Trophy:
Note: GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points
|Cy Denneny||Ottawa Senators||21||22||2||24|
|Billy Boucher||Montreal Canadiens||23||16||6||22|
|Aurel Joliat||Montreal Canadiens||24||15||5||20|
|Babe Dye||Toronto St. Patricks||19||17||2||19|
|George Boucher||Ottawa Senators||21||14||5||19|
|Billy Burch||Hamilton Tigers||24||16||2||18|
|Jack Adams||Toronto St. Patricks||22||13||3||16|
|Howie Morenz||Montreal Canadiens||24||13||3||16|
|King Clancy||Ottawa Senators||24||8||8||16|
|Reg Noble||Toronto St. Patricks||23||12||3||14|
|Georges Vezina||Montreal Canadiens||24||1459||13||11||0||48||3||1.97|
|Clint Benedict||Ottawa Senators||22||1356||15||7||0||45||3||1.99|
|Jake Forbes||Hamilton Tigers||24||1483||9||15||0||68||1||2.75|
|John Ross Roach||Toronto St. Patricks||23||1380||10||13||0||80||1||3.48|
|Sammy Hebert||Ottawa Senators||2||120||1||1||0||9||0||4.5|
The following is a list of players of note who played their first NHL game in 1923–24 (listed with their first team, asterisk(*) marks debut in playoffs):
- Red Green, Hamilton Tigers
- Shorty Green, Hamilton Tigers
- Howie Morenz, Montreal Canadiens
- Sylvio Mantha, Montreal Canadiens
- Frank Finnigan, Ottawa Senators
The following is a list of players of note that played their last game in the NHL in 1923–24 (listed with their last team):
- List of Stanley Cup champions
- Pacific Coast Hockey Association
- Western Canada Hockey League
- List of pre-NHL seasons
- Ice hockey at the 1924 Winter Olympics
- 1923 in sports
- 1924 in sports
- Coleman, Charles L. (1966). The Trail of the Stanley Cup, vol.1 1893–1926 inc. National Hockey League. pp. 441–464.
- Diamond, Dan, ed. (2000). Total Hockey. Total Sports. ISBN 1-892129-85-X.
- Dinger, Ralph, ed. (2011). The National Hockey League Official Guide & Record Book 2012. Dan Diamond & Associates. ISBN 978-1-894801-22-5.
- Dryden, Steve, ed. (2000). Century of hockey. Toronto, ON: McClelland & Stewart Ltd. ISBN 0-7710-4179-9.
- Fischler, Stan; Fischler, Shirley; Hughes, Morgan; Romain, Joseph; Duplacey, James (2003). The Hockey Chronicle: Year-by-Year History of the National Hockey League. Publications International Inc. ISBN 0-7853-9624-1.
- McFarlane, Brian (1973). The Story of the National Hockey League. New York, NY: Pagurian Press. ISBN 0-684-13424-1.
- McFarlane 1973, p. 34.
- Coleman 1966, pp. 443–444.
- Fischler 2003, p. 54.
- Fischler 2003, p. 55.
- Standings: NHL Public Relations Department (2008). Dave McCarthy et al, ed. THE NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE Official Guide & Record Book/2009. National Hockey League. p. 145. ISBN 978-1-894801-14-0.
- McCarthy, Dave, ed. (2008). The National Hockey League Official Guide and Record Book 2009. Dan Diamond & Associates. p. 241. ISBN 978-1-894801-14-0.
- Dinger 2011, p. 146.
- "1923-24 Regular Season - Goalie Season Stats Leaders". NHL. Retrieved December 4, 2011.