1975–76 WHA season

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1975–76 WHA season
League World Hockey Association
Sport Ice hockey
Regular season
Top scorer Marc Tardif (Quebec)
Avco World Trophy
Finals champions Winnipeg Jets
  Runners-up Houston Aeros
WHA seasons

The 1975–76 WHA season was the fourth season of the World Hockey Association. After the Baltimore Blades and Chicago Cougars folded, the league stayed at 14 teams by adding the Cincinnati Stingers and Denver Spurs. In addition, the Vancouver Blazers franchise moved to Calgary and became the Cowboys. Midway through the season, the Spurs moved to Ottawa and became the Civics, though the team folded shortly thereafter when the sale of the franchise fell through. The Minnesota Fighting Saints became the second team to fold mid-season when the franchise could not make ends meet, despite having a winning record at the time. Theoretically, fourteen teams would play 80 games each, but only twelve teams finished the season, with cancelled games involving the Civics or Saints being rescheduled on the fly, and four of five Canadian Division teams played 81 games, due to the WHA's tiebreaker.

Regular season[edit]

Final standings[edit]

Canadian Division GP W L T Pts GF GA PIM
Winnipeg Jets 81 52 27 2 106 345 254 940
Quebec Nordiques 81 50 27 4 104 371 316 1654
Calgary Cowboys 80 41 35 4 86 307 282 1064
Edmonton Oilers 81 27 49 5 59 268 345 991
Toronto Toros 81 24 52 5 53 335 398 1099
Denver Spurs / Ottawa Civics+ 41 14 26 1 29 134 172 536

+team started season in Western Division when playing in Denver; transferred by league to Canadian Division shortly after moving to Ottawa.

Eastern Division GP W L T Pts GF GA PIM
Indianapolis Racers 80 35 39 6 76 245 247 1301
Cleveland Crusaders 80 35 40 5 75 273 279 1356
New England Whalers 80 33 40 7 73 255 290 1012
Cincinnati Stingers 80 35 44 1 71 285 340 1344
Western Division GP W L T Pts GF GA PIM
Houston Aeros 80 53 27 0 106 341 263 1093
Phoenix Roadrunners 80 39 35 6 84 302 287 1292
San Diego Mariners 80 36 38 6 78 303 290 716
Minnesota Fighting Saints 59 30 25 4 64 211 212 1354

Player stats[edit]

Scoring leaders[edit]

GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; PIM = Penalty minutes

Player Team GP G A Pts PIM
Marc Tardif Quebec Nordiques 81 71 77 148 79
Bobby Hull Winnipeg Jets 80 53 70 123 30
Real Cloutier Quebec Nordiques 80 60 54 114 27
Ulf Nilsson Winnipeg Jets 78 38 76 114 54
Robbie Ftorek Phoenix Roadrunners 80 41 72 113 109
Chris Bordeleau Quebec Nordiques 74 37 72 109 42
Anders Hedberg Winnipeg Jets 76 50 55 105 48
Rejean Houle Quebec Nordiques 81 51 52 103 61
Serge Bernier Quebec Nordiques 70 34 68 102 91
Gordie Howe Houston Aeros 78 32 70 102 76

Leading goaltenders[edit]

Bolded numbers indicate season leaders

GP = Games played; Min = Minutes played; W = Wins; L = Losses; T = Ties, GA = Goals against; GA = Goals against; SO = Shutouts; SV% = Save percentage; GAA = Goals against average

Player Team GP Min W L T GA SO SV% GAA
Michel Dion Indianapolis Racers 31 1860 14 15 1 85 0 91.0 2.74
Joe Daley Winnipeg Jets 62 3612 41 17 1 171 5 90.3 2.84
Wayne Rutledge Houston Aeros 25 1456 14 10 0 77 1 90.1 3.17
Jack Norris Phoenix Roadrunners 41 2412 21 14 4 128 1 89.1 3.18
Ernie Wakely San Diego Mariners 67 3824 35 27 4 208 3 89.5 3.25

All-Star game[edit]

Canadian based team all stars 6 U.S. based team all stars 1 at Cleveland, Ohio.

Avco World Trophy playoffs[edit]

Preliminary round[edit]

  • New England 3 Cleveland 0
  • San Diego 3 Phoenix 2

Quarterfinals[edit]

  • Winnipeg 4 Edmonton 0
  • Calgary 4 Quebec 1
  • New England 4 Indianapolis 3
  • Houston 4 San Diego 2

Semifinals[edit]

  • Winnipeg 4 Calgary 1
  • Houston 4 New England 3

Avco World Trophy finals[edit]

  • Winnipeg 4 Houston 0

WHA awards[edit]

Trophies[edit]

Avco World Trophy: Winnipeg Jets
Gordie Howe Trophy: Marc Tardif
Bill Hunter Trophy: Marc Tardif
Lou Kaplan Trophy: Mark Napier
Ben Hatskin Trophy: Michel Dion
Dennis A. Murphy Trophy: Paul Shmyr
Paul Deneau Trophy: Vaclav Nedomansky
Howard Baldwin Trophy: Bobby Kromm
WHA Playoff MVP: Ulf Nilsson

All-Star Team[edit]

Position First Team Second Team
Centre Ulf Nilsson, Winnipeg Robbie Ftorek, Phoenix
Right Wing Anders Hedberg, Winnipeg Real Cloutier, Quebec
Left Wing Marc Tardif, Quebec Bobby Hull, Winnipeg
Defence Paul Shmyr, Cleveland Kevin Morrison, San Diego
Defence J. C. Tremblay, Quebec Pat Stapleton, Indianapolis
Goaltender Joe Daley, Winnipeg Ron Grahame, Houston

See also[edit]

References[edit]