London Knights

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
London Knights
LondonKnights13.png
City London, Ontario
League Ontario Hockey League
Conference Western
Division Midwest
Founded 1965 (1965)
Home arena Budweiser Gardens
Colours Green, gold, black, and white
                   
General manager Canada Mark Hunter
Head coach Canada Dale Hunter
Captain Canada Chris Tierney
Affiliate(s) Lambton Shores Predators
Championships

Memorial Cup Championships (1): 2005

OHL Championships (3): 2005, 2012, 2013

Website
www.londonknights.com
Franchise history
1965–68 London Nationals
1968–present London Knights

The London Knights are a junior ice hockey team from London, Ontario, Canada, playing in the Ontario Hockey League, one of the leagues of the Canadian Hockey League. The Knights started out in 1965 as the London Nationals but changed to their current name in 1968.

History[edit]

Early days–1968[edit]

London Nationals logo.

The London Nationals were granted a franchise in the OHA for the 1965–66 season under the ownership of the London Gardens arena, with the Toronto Maple Leafs controlling the team's players.[1] Upon the collapse of the Metro Junior A League in 1963, the Leafs were left with only one sponsored OHA team, the Toronto Marlboros, with which to place their prospects. The team in London replaced the old Toronto St. Michael's Majors, who had folded a couple of years earlier. The Leafs originally wanted the Nationals to begin play in 1963–64, but it wasn't until a year later that the Nats became the Leafs' second team.

The Nationals were named for their sponsor, the Canadian National Recreation Association, an organization of Canadian National Railways employees, and took their uniforms as copies of those of the Maple Leafs, except for the words "London Nationals" spelled out on the Leaf instead of the familiar Toronto Maple Leafs script.

Brian Murphy played the most games for the Nationals, 98 in total over three seasons. Garry Unger lead the team in career goals with 42 in only 50 games. Walt McKechnie was their all-time point leader with 26 goals, and 74 assists, totalling 100 points.

After three seasons, direct NHL sponsorship of junior teams ended. The team and Gardens was sold to businessman Howard Darwin for $500,000, who renamed the team to the Knights and changed the colours to green and gold.[2]

The Darwin Era, 1968–86[edit]

London Knights logo, 1968–86 (this particular version is from the 1981/82 - 1985/86 seasons.)

In 1968, businessman Howard Darwin bought the London Nationals (he also owned the Ottawa 67's) as the era of NHL sponsorship of junior hockey ended. Darwin wanted to give a fresh look to the team, and so held a contest to rename the team. Londoner Nawaal Salat suggested the name Knights, and the team's colours were changed to green, white and gold. In 1970 the team also hired trainer Don Brankley, who stayed with the team until retiring at the end of the 2007–08 season. The team grew from a chronic also-ran in the late 1960s and early 1970s to a contender near the end of the decade. The highlight of the Darwin era came in 1976–77, when a powerful Knights team led by future NHLers Rob Ramage, Brad Marsh and Dino Ciccarelli defeated the St. Catharines Fincups in the conference final on an overtime goal by Dan Eastman to advance to the OHL final against the 67's. However, the 67's were triumphant in six games in the league final. In the early 1980s the Knights descended to a nadir in franchise history, with small crowds and a poor record. However, right winger Brendan Shanahan would soon rise to prominence and help to draw larger crowds.

New Owners, New Dawn, 1986–94[edit]

London Knights logo, 1986–94.

In 1986 Howard Darwin sold the Knights and the arena to Paris, Ontario businessmen Jack Robillard, Al Martin and Bob Willson. The trio also owned the Hamilton Steelhawks. The Knights were sold for a dollar but the London Gardens was sold at market value. The new ownership group modernized the team's logo and renovated the Gardens. Under their stewardship the Knights would go on a run of success. Between 1987 and 1993 the team would finish no lower than third in the Emms Division, including a division title in 1989–90. However, regular season success did not translate into playoff success, as the Knights would never make the league final in these years.

Knightmare and Redemption 1994–2000[edit]

In 1994 the Knights were sold to St. Thomas, Ontario, real estate developer Doug Tarry, Sr.. He died before the team had played a game under his ownership, and the team was inherited by his son, Doug Tarry, Jr.. Upon taking command, Tarry carried out further renovations on the Gardens including a name change to the "London Ice House." He also alienated a fair portion of the team's fan base by changing the team's uniforms from traditional green and gold to eggplant and teal, and changing the logo to a cartoon logo instantly and derisively nicknamed "Spiderknight"[1] by the faithful.

The 1995–96 OHL season went down in history as the worst in the history of the Canadian Hockey League. The Knights set a new record for futility by finishing with nine points and a 3–60–3 record. The years following the so-called "Knightmare" season were improved, but the team was still a long way from the league's upper echelon. Meanwhile, the Ice House was falling apart as the Tarry family had stopped putting money into it as a part of their lobbying the city of London for a new arena. However, the re-signing of former Head Coach Gary Agnew, and the signing of future NHLers Rico Fata and Tom Kostopoulos heralded a marked turnaround for the team's fortunes. In 1999, the Knights went on an unexpected playoff run, in which they defeated the number-one-in-the-CHL Plymouth Whalers in seven games in the quarterfinals and ultimately went all the way to the OHL championship, which they lost in seven games to the Belleville Bulls.

The Hunter Era, 2000–present[edit]

Alternate London Knights logo, 2002/03-Pres.

In 2000, former NHL players Dale Hunter and Mark Hunter bought the Knights from Doug Tarry Jr. brokered by George Georgopoulos who was negotiating with the City of London for the development of a state of the art multi-purpose entertainment centre and arena – Budweiser Gardens (formerly the John Labatt Centre (The JLC)). The Hunters began the process of rebuilding by firstly joining in the lobbying for a new 9,900 seat arena in Downtown London and putting together a smart scouting network. The Ice House was scheduled to be sold and close at the conclusion of the 2001–02 OHL season, and as a treat for their fans, the Knights changed back to their 1986–94 green and gold uniforms in February 2002. In October that year the Budweiser Gardens opened, and new, modernized versions of the old green and gold uniforms debuted. The 2003–04 OHL season would mark the beginning of a remarkable dynasty. The Knights had the best record in the CHL after the regular season, also setting an OHL record with 110 points, but they lost to the Guelph Storm in the OHL Western Conference final. In the 2004–05 season, the Knights broke a CHL record, going 31 games in a row without a loss (29–0–2).[2] The previous record of 29 games, held by the 1978–79 Brandon Wheat Kings (who went 25–0–4 during their streak), was broken with a 0–0 tie against the Guelph Storm on December 10, 2004. The streak ended at 31 games after a 5–2 loss to the Sudbury Wolves on December 17. The Knights finished the season with 120 points (59 wins, 7 losses, 2 ties), breaking their own OHL record set the previous season. In the playoffs, the Knights started by sweeping two best-of-seven series against the Guelph Storm and Windsor Spitfires. In the Western Conference final, the Knights defeated the Kitchener Rangers 4–1 to win the Wayne Gretzky Trophy. In the OHL finals against the Ottawa 67's, the Knights won the series 4–1 to win their first J. Ross Robertson Cup, and in so doing, ended the longest championship drought in the CHL. That same year, the London Knights and the Budweiser Gardens were awarded the right to host 2005 Memorial Cup Tournament, which was played from May 21 to May 29. In the tournament, they defeated the Rimouski Océanic 4–3 on May 21, the Kelowna Rockets 4–2 on May 23, and the Ottawa 67's 5–2 on May 26. This earned the Knights a bye into the championship game. On May 29, the Knights defeated Rimouski 4–0 to win their first Memorial Cup. In 2005–06, the team won their third consecutive Hamilton Spectator Trophy for winning the regular season title, but their run into the playoffs ended with a loss to Peterborough in the OHL final. In 2006–07 the Knights continued their run of success, winning their fourth consecutive Hamilton Spectator Trophy as regular season champions. However, they lost the Western Conference Championship to the Plymouth Whalers.

On January 9, 2009, the London Knights made a blockbuster trade. They acquired hockey phenom and future number one pick in the 2009 NHL draft, John Tavares from the Oshawa Generals. The Knights also received defenceman Michael Del Zotto and goaltender Darryl Borden. In return, the Generals got defenceman Scott Valentine, forward Christian Thomas, goaltender Michael Zador, four second-round draft picks (2009–12) and two third-round picks (2010–11). After a strong 2009–10 season, the Knights decided to turn to young players for the 2010–11 season. They traded several veterans for future draft picks throughout the season, and at the deadline in hopes of re-building another contender.

On November 28, 2011 Dale Hunter resigned as head coach to take head coaching position with his former team, the Washington Capitals. Brother Mark Hunter assumed the coaching helm. Under Mark's guidance, the Knights won their second OHL title in 2011–12, defeating the Niagara IceDogs four games to one in the league final and advancing to the 2012 Memorial Cup. The Knights finished the round robin in first place, but lost in the championship final 2–1 in overtime to the host Shawinigan Cataractes.

On December 29, 2013, the Knights and the Plymouth Whalers broke the newly set Canadian Hockey League attendance record. The Knights and Whalers, playing in the second OHL game of the evening outdoors at Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan (also the second outdoor game ever played in the OHL), played in front of 26,384 spectators. The Whalers won the game 2-1 in a shootout.[3]

Championships[edit]

Memorial Cup
CHL Champions

J. Ross Robertson Cup
OHL Champions

Hamilton Spectator Trophy
Most Points in Regular Season

  • 2003–04 – 110 points – 53–11–2–2
  • 2004–05 – 120 points – 59–7–2–0
  • 2005–06 – 102 points – 49–15–1–3
  • 2006–07 – 104 points – 50–14–1–3
  • 2011–12 – 99 points – 49–18–0–1
  • 2012–13 – 105 points – 50–13–2–3

Wayne Gretzky Trophy
Western Conference Champions

  • 1998–99
  • 2004–05
  • 2005–06
  • 2011–12
  • 2012–13

Division trophies

Awards[edit]

Canadian Hockey League[edit]

CHL Player of the Year

George Parsons Trophy
Most Sportsmanlike Player at the Memorial Cup

Hap Emms Memorial Trophy
Outstanding Goaltender at the Memorial Cup

Stafford Smythe Memorial Trophy
Most Valuable Player at the Memorial Cup

Brian Kilrea Coach of the Year Award

CHL Executive of the Year

CHL Defenceman of the Year

CHL Goaltender of the Year

CHL Humanitarian of the Year

  • 1997–98 – Jason Metcalfe

CHL Rookie of the Year

CHL Top Draft Prospect Award

CHL Top Scorer Award

Ontario Hockey League[edit]

Bobby Smith Trophy
Scholastic Player of the Year

Dan Snyder Memorial Trophy
Humanitarian of the Year

  • 1998 – Jason Metcalfe

Dave Pinkney Trophy
Lowest Team G.A.A.

Eddie Powers Memorial Trophy
Top Scorer

Emms Family Award
Rookie of the Year

F.W. "Dinty" Moore Trophy
Lowest G.A.A. among Rookie Goaltenders

  • 1976–77 – Barry Heard
  • 1989–90 – Sean Basilio
  • 2003–04 – Ryan MacDonald

Jack Ferguson Award
Top Draft Pick

Jim Mahon Memorial Trophy
Highest Scoring Right Winger

Matt Leyden Trophy
Coach of the Year

Max Kaminsky Trophy
Most Outstanding Defenseman

OHL Executive of the Year

OHL Goaltender of the Year

Red Tilson Trophy
Most Outstanding Player

Roger Neilson Memorial Award
Top Academic College/University Player

  • 2007–08 – Scott Aarssen

Wayne Gretzky 99 Award
Playoffs MVP

William Hanley Trophy
Most Sportsmanlike Player

Coaches[edit]

The London Nationals were coached by Jack McIntyre for the 1965–66 season. For their second and third seasons from 1966–68, the Nationals were coached by Hockey Hall of Fame goaltender Turk Broda.

London Knights coaches have won the Matt Leyden Trophy, emblematic of the OHL's Coach of the Year, five times. Bill Long won it once, in 1976–77, Gary Agnew twice, in 1992–93 and in 1997–98, and Dale Hunter twice, in 2003–04 and 2004–05. Dale Hunter also won the Brian Kilrea Coach of the Year Award, emblematic of CHL Coach of the Year honours, in 2003–04. Former NHLer, Dave Gagner left the team during the summer of 2008 to accept a position with the Vancouver Canucks of the NHL.

As London Nationals:

As London Knights:

Notes: Mike Fedorko was entering his second season as Knights' coach and GM in the autumn of 1995. He was fired in October 1995 when the Knights began the season with a 13-game losing streak. Assistant Murray Nystrom took over coaching duties temporarily. Tom Barrett, who had led the Kitchener Rangers to the 1984 Memorial Cup, was named head coach in December. Barrett died of cancer in April 1996, shortly after the conclusion of the season. Moe Mantha was originally named the head coach to take over from Barrett, but left to coach the Baltimore Bandits of the American Hockey League before coaching a game. Brad Selwood was ultimately named Barrett's replacement for 1996–97 but was fired mid-season and GM Paul McIntosh took over on an interim basis for the rest of the season. Gary Agnew was rehired at the start of 1997–98. [3]

Players[edit]

Current roster[edit]

Goaltenders
Number Player Catches Position Acquired NHL rights Place of birth
35 Canada Jake Patterson L G Traded From Plymouth (2011) Undrafted Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario
43 United States Anthony Stolarz L G Free Agent 2013 PHI 2012 Jackson, New Jersey
Defencemen
Number Player Shoots Position Acquired NHL rights Place of birth
7 Canada Zach Bell R D Traded from North Bay (2013) Undrafted St. John's, Newfoundland
44 United States Dakota Mermis L D 2010 OHL Priority Selection Undrafted Alton, Illinois
52 Canada Alex Basso R D Traded from Sarnia (2013) Undrafted Toronto, Ontario
55 Germany Tim Bender L D 2013 CHL Import Draft Undrafted Mannheim, Germany
57 Canada Brady Austin L D Traded from Belleville (2013) BUF 2012 Peterborough, Ontario
65 Russia Nikita Zadorov L D 2012 CHL Import Draft BUF 2013 Moscow, Russia
74 Canada Aiden Jamieson R D 2013 OHL Priority Selection Eligible 2014 Lindsay, Ontario
Forwards
Number Player Shoots Position Acquired NHL rights Place of birth
10 United States Christian Dvorak L LW 2012 OHL Priority Selection Eligible 2014 Frankfort, Illinois
11 Canada Owen MacDonald R RW 2012 OHL Priority Selection Eligible 2014 Elora, Ontario
14 Canada Gemel Smith R C Traded from Owen Sound (2014) DAL 2012 Toronto, Ontario
16 Canada Max Domi L C Traded From Kingston (2011) PHO 2013 Toronto, Ontario
21 United States C.J. Yakimowicz R LW Free Agent 2013 Eligible 2014 Kingston, Pennsylvania
24 United States Michael McCarron R RW Traded from Belleville (2012) MTL 2013 Macomb, Michigan
26 Canada Tait Seguin R LW 2011 OHL Priority Selection Undrafted North Bay, Ontario
27 Canada Brett Welychka R C 2010 OHL Priority Selection Undrafted London, Ontario
46 Canada Matt Rupert L LW 2010 OHL Priority Selection Undrafted Grand Bend, Ontario
53 Canada Bo Horvat L C 2011 OHL Priority Selection VAN 2013 Rodney, Ontario
64 Canada Ryan Rupert L C 2010 OHL Priority Selection TOR 2012 Grand Bend, Ontario
71 Canada Chris Tierney L C 2010 OHL Priority Selection SJ 2012 Keswick, Ontario
77 Canada Josh Anderson L LW Free Agent 2011 CLB 2012 Burlington, Ontario
93 Canada Mitchell Marner R C 2013 OHL Priority Selection Eligible 2015 Thornhill, Ontario

NHL/WHA alumni[edit]

The following is a complete list of London Knights who later played in the National Hockey League or World Hockey Association.

London Nationals
London Knights
  • Italics denote current NHL player

First-rounders in NHL/WHA entry draft[edit]

The London Knights have produced more first overall selections in the NHL Entry Draft (5) than any other team in the world. The Knights also produced one first overall selection in the 1977 WHA Amateur Draft. London is also ranked third (behind Peterborough and Oshawa) on the all-time list of number of players drafted by the NHL, with 142 as of 2007.1

The following players were selected in the first round of the NHL entry draft:
Darryl Sittler 1970 8th overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs
Dan Maloney 1970 14th overall by the Chicago Blackhawks
Dennis Ververgaert 1973 3rd overall by the Vancouver Canucks
Rick Green 1976 1st overall by the Washington Capitals
Scott Campbell 1977 9th overall by the St. Louis Blues
Brad Marsh 1978 11th overall by the Calgary Flames
Rob Ramage 1979 1st overall by the Colorado Rockies
Jim Sandlak 1985 4th overall by the Vancouver Canucks
Brendan Shanahan 1987 2nd overall by the New Jersey Devils
Nick Stajduhar 1993 16th overall by the Edmonton Oilers
Jason Allison 1993 17th overall by the Washington Capitals
Rico Fata 1998 6th overall by the Calgary Flames
Rick Nash 2002 1st overall by the Columbus Blue Jackets
Corey Perry 2003 28th overall by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim
Rob Schremp 2004 25th overall by the Edmonton Oilers
Patrick Kane 2007 1st overall by the Chicago Blackhawks
Sam Gagner 2007 6th overall by the Edmonton Oilers
John Tavares 2009 1st overall by the New York Islanders
Nazem Kadri 2009 7th overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs
Vladislav Namestnikov 2011 27th overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning
Olli Maatta 2012 22nd overall by the Pittsburgh Penguins
Bo Horvat 2013 9th overall by the Vancouver Canucks
Max Domi 2013 12th overall by the Phoenix Coyotes
Nikita Zadorov 2013 16th overall by the Buffalo Sabres

The following players were selected in the first round of the WHA amateur draft:
Reg Thomas 1973 8th overall by the Los Angeles Sharks
Rick Green 1976 10th overall by the Quebec Nordiques
Scott Campbell 1977 1st overall by the Houston Aeros

Retired numbers[edit]

5 – Rob Ramage
8 – Dino Ciccarelli
9 – Darryl Sittler
19 – Brendan Shanahan
22 – Brad Marsh
61 – Rick Nash
94 – Corey Perry

Hall of Famers[edit]

300 point club[edit]

The following players recorded a minimum of 300 career points in a Knights' uniform:
Note: GP = Games Played, G = Goals, A = Assists, Pts = Points

Player POS GP G A Pts Seasons NHL
Corey Perry RW 253 140 240 380 2001–05 ANH
Chris Taylor C 259 150 228 378 1988–92 NYI, BOS, BUF
Brian Bradley C 210 138 235 373 1981–85 CGY, VAN, TOR, TB
Dennis Maruk F 193 159 211 370 1972–75 CAL, CLE, MIN, WAS
Dylan Hunter LW 315 106 263 369 2001–06 None
Dennis Ververgaert F 187 141 210 351 1970–73 VAN, PHI, WAS
Dino Ciccarelli RW 226 169 177 346 1976–80 MIN, WAS, DET, TB, FLA
Jason Allison C 202 123 202 325 1991–95 WAS, BOS, LA, TOR
Dave Simpson F 204 130 189 3191 1977–82 None
Scott Morrison F 203 116 200 316 1981–84 None
Reg Thomas C 180 136 173 309 1970–73 QUE; LA, MICH, IND, CIN (WHA)
Rob Schremp C 179 126 178 304 2003–06 EDM, NYI, ATL
1 Dave Simpson recorded the best single season in Knights' history, when he scored 155 points in 1981–82.

Team records[edit]

Team records for a single season
Statistic Total Season
Most points 120 2004–05
Most wins 59 2004–05
Most goals for 380 1983–84
Least goals for 179 1995–96
Least goals against 125 2004–05
Most goals against 435 1995–96
Individual player records for a single season
Statistic Player Total Season
Most goals Dino Ciccarelli 72 1977–78
Most assists Sergei Kostitsyn 91 2006–07
Most points Dave Simpson 155 1981–82
Most points, rookie Patrick Kane 145 2006–07
Most points, defenseman Chris McCauley 114 1981–82
Best GAA (goalie) Gerald Coleman 1.70 2004–05
Goalies = minimum 1500 minutes played

Season-by-season results[edit]

Regular season[edit]

  • 1965 to 1968 as London Nationals
  • 1968 to present as London Knights

Legend: OTL = Overtime loss, SL = Shoot Out Loss

Season Games Won Lost Tied OTL SL Points Pct % Goals
for
Goals
against
Standing
1965–66 48 12 29 7 - - 31 0.323 149 235 9th OHA
1966–67 48 18 21 9 - - 45 0.469 185 214 6th OHA
1967–68 54 17 31 6 - - 40 0.370 177 262 7th OHA
1968–69 54 19 26 9 - - 47 0.435 242 258 7th OHA
1969–70 54 22 25 7 - - 51 0.472 209 238 6th OHA
1970–71 62 19 35 8 - - 46 0.371 232 281 8th OHA
1971–72 63 23 31 9 - - 55 0.437 253 285 8th OHA
1972–73 63 33 22 8 - - 74 0.587 334 246 4th OHA
1973–74 70 36 27 7 - - 79 0.564 282 250 4th OHA
1974–75 70 26 37 7 - - 59 0.421 296 368 9th OHA
1975–76 66 31 26 9 - - 71 0.538 317 256 2nd Emms
1976–77 66 51 13 2 - - 104 0.788 379 203 2nd Emms
1977–78 68 35 22 11 - - 81 0.596 333 251 1st Emms
1978–79 68 37 29 2 - - 76 0.559 310 287 2nd Emms
1979–80 68 26 38 4 - - 56 0.412 328 334 5th Emms
1980–81 68 20 48 0 - - 40 0.294 300 388 6th Emms
1981–82 68 35 30 3 - - 73 0.537 359 328 3rd Emms
1982–83 70 32 37 1 - - 65 0.464 336 339 5th Emms
1983–84 70 32 37 1 - - 65 0.464 288 319 4th Emms
1984–85 66 43 22 1 - - 87 0.659 340 276 2nd Emms
1985–86 66 28 33 5 - - 61 0.462 271 292 6th Emms
1986–87 66 25 39 2 - - 52 0.394 259 329 7th Emms
1987–88 66 40 22 4 - - 84 0.636 309 273 2nd Emms
1988–89 66 37 25 4 - - 78 0.591 311 264 3rd Emms
1989–90 66 41 19 6 - - 88 0.667 313 246 1st Emms
1990–91 66 38 25 3 - - 79 0.598 301 270 3rd Emms
1991–92 66 37 25 4 - - 78 0.591 310 260 3rd Emms
1992–93 66 32 27 7 - - 71 0.538 323 292 3rd Emms
1993–94 66 32 30 4 - - 68 0.515 293 279 5th Emms
1994–95 66 18 44 4 - - 40 0.303 210 309 4th Western
1995–96 66 3 60 3 - - 9 0.068 179 435 5th Western
1996–97 66 13 51 2 - - 28 0.212 215 365 5th Western
1997–98 66 40 21 5 - - 85 0.644 301 238 1st Western
1998–99 68 34 30 4 - - 72 0.529 260 217 3rd West
1999–2000 68 22 36 7 3 - 54 0.397 186 250 5th West
2000–01 68 26 34 5 3 - 60 0.441 222 263 4th West
2001–02 68 24 27 10 7 - 65 0.478 210 249 5th West
2002–03 68 31 27 7 3 - 72 0.529 220 205 2nd Midwest
2003–04 68 53 11 2 2 - 110 0.809 300 147 1st Midwest
2004–05 68 59 7 2 0 - 120 0.882 310 125 1st Midwest
2005–06 68 49 15 - 1 3 102 0.750 304 211 1st Midwest
2006–07 68 50 14 - 1 3 104 0.765 311 231 1st Midwest
2007–08 68 38 24 - 4 2 82 0.603 250 230 2nd Midwest
2008–09 68 49 16 - 1 2 101 0.743 287 194 1st Midwest
2009–10 68 49 16 - 1 2 101 0.743 273 208 1st Midwest
2010–11 68 34 29 - 4 1 73 0.537 230 253 5th Midwest
2011–12 68 49 18 - 0 1 99 0.728 277 178 1st Midwest
2012–13 68 50 13 - 2 3 105 0.772 279 180 1st Midwest
2013–14 68 49 14 - 1 4 103 0.757 316 203 3rd Midwest

Playoffs[edit]

  • 1965–66 Out of playoffs.
  • 1966–67 Lost to Niagara Falls Flyers 8 points to 4 in quarterfinals.
  • 1967–68 Lost to Hamilton Red Wings 8 points to 2 in quarterfinals.
  • 1968–69 Lost to Peterborough Petes 8 points to 4 in quarterfinals.
  • 1969–70 Defeated Peterborough Petes 8 points to 4 in quarterfinals.
    Lost to Toronto Marlboros 9 points to 3 in semifinals.
  • 1970–71 Lost to Montreal Junior Canadiens 8 points to 0 in quarterfinals.
  • 1971–72 Lost to Ottawa 67's 8 points to 6 in quarterfinals.
  • 1972–73 Defeated Kitchener Rangers 8 points to 0 in quarterfinals.
    Lost to Peterborough Petes 9 points to 5 in semifinals.
  • 1973–74 Lost to Toronto Marlboros 9 points to 1 in quarterfinals.
  • 1974–75 Out of playoffs.
  • 1975–76 Lost to Toronto Marlboros 8 points to 2 in quarterfinals.
  • 1976–77 Defeated Toronto Marlboros 9 points to 3 in quarterfinals.
    Defeated St. Catharines Fincups 9 points to 7 in semifinals.
    Lost to Ottawa 67's 8 points to 4 in finals.
  • 1977–78 Defeated Kitchener Rangers 8 points to 0 in quarterfinals.
    Lost to Hamilton Fincups 9 points to 5 in semifinals.
  • 1978–79 Defeated Windsor Spitfires in first round – series protested.
    Lost to Niagara Falls Flyers in round-robin.
  • 1979–80 Lost to Niagara Falls Flyers 6 points to 4 in first round.
  • 1980–81 Out of playoffs.
  • 1981–82 Lost to Brantford Alexanders 6 points to 2 in first round.
  • 1982–83 Lost to Brantford Alexanders 6 points to 0 in first round.
  • 1983–84 Defeated North Bay Centennials 6 points to 2 in first round.
    Lost to Kitchener Rangers 8 points to 0 in quarterfinals.
  • 1984–85 Defeated Windsor Spitfires 8 points to 0 in first round.
    Lost to Hamilton Steelhawks 6 points to 2 in quarterfinals.
  • 1985–86 Lost to North Bay Centennials 9 points to 1 in first round.
  • 1986–87 Out of playoffs.
  • 1987–88 Defeated Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 games to 2 in first round.
    Lost to Hamilton Steelhawks 4 games to 2 in quarterfinals.
  • 1988–89 Defeated Guelph Platers 4 games to 3 in first round.
    Defeated North Bay Centennials 4 games to 3 in quarterfinals.
    Lost to Niagara Falls Thunder 4 games to 3 in semifinals.
  • 1989–90 Lost to Niagara Falls Thunder 4 games to 2 in first round.
  • 1990–91 Lost to Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 3 in first round.
  • 1991–92 Defeated Owen Sound Platers 4 games to 1 in first round.
    Lost to Niagara Falls Thunder 4 games to 1 in quarterfinals.
  • 1992–93 Defeated Kitchener Rangers 4 games to 3 in first round.
    Lost to Detroit Jr. Red Wings 4 games to 1 in quarterfinals.
  • 1993–94 Lost to Guelph Storm 4 games to 1 in first round.
  • 1994–95 Lost to Detroit Jr. Red Wings 4 games to 0 in first round.
  • 1995–96 Out of playoffs.
  • 1996–97 Out of playoffs.
  • 1997–98 Defeated Erie Otters 4 games to 3 in first round.
    Defeated Kingston Frontenacs 4 games to 1 in quarterfinals.
    Lost to Ottawa 67's 4 games to 0 in semifinals.
  • 1998–99 Defeated Sarnia Sting 4 games to 2 in first round.
    Defeated Plymouth Whalers 4 games to 3 in quarterfinals.
    Defeated Owen Sound Platers 4 games to 1 in semifinals.
    Lost to Belleville Bulls 4 games to 3 in finals.
  • 1999–2000 Out of playoffs.
  • 2000–01 Lost to Erie Otters 4 games to 1 in first round.
  • 2001–02 Defeated Plymouth Whalers 4 games to 2 in first round.
    Lost to Erie Otters 4 games to 2 in quarterfinals.
  • 2002–03 Defeated Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 3 in first round.
    Lost to Plymouth Whalers 4 games to 2 in quarterfinals.
  • 2003–04 Defeated Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 0 in first round.
    Defeated Erie Otters 4 games to 0 in quarterfinals.
    Lost to Guelph Storm 4 games to 3 in semifinals.
  • 2004–05 Defeated Guelph Storm 4 games to 0 in first round.
    Defeated Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 0 in quarterfinals.
    Defeated Kitchener Rangers 4 games to 1 in semifinals.
    Defeated Ottawa 67's 4 games to 1 in finals. OHL CHAMPIONS
    Finished Memorial Cup round-robin in first place.
    Defeated Rimouski Océanic 4–0 in the championship game. MEMORIAL CUP CHAMPIONS
  • 2005–06 Defeated Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 games to 0 in first round.
    Defeated Owen Sound Attack 4 games to 2 in quarterfinals.
    Defeated Guelph Storm 4 games to 1 in semifinals.
    Lost to Peterborough Petes 4 games to 0 in finals.
  • 2006–07 Defeated Owen Sound Attack 4 games to 0 in first round.
    Defeated Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds 4 games to 3 in quarterfinals.
    Lost to Plymouth Whalers 4 games to 1 in semifinals.
  • 2007–08 Lost to Guelph Storm 4 games to 1 in first round.
  • 2008–09 Defeated Erie Otters 4 games to 1 in first round.
    Defeated Saginaw Spirit 4 games to 0 in quarterfinals.
    Lost to Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 1 in semifinals.
  • 2009–10 Defeated Guelph Storm 4 games to 1 in first round.
    Lost to Kitchener Rangers 4 games to 3 in quarterfinals.
  • 2010–11 Lost to Owen Sound Attack 4 games to 2 in first round.
  • 2011–12 Defeated Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 0 in first round.
    Defeated Saginaw Spirit 4 games to 2 in quarterfinals.
    Defeated Kitchener Rangers 4 games to 0 in semifinals.
    Defeated Niagara IceDogs 4 games to 1 in finals. OHL CHAMPIONS
    Finished Memorial Cup round-robin in first place.
    Lost to Shawinigan Cataractes 2–1 (OT) in the championship game.
  • 2012–13 Defeated Saginaw Spirit 4 games to 0 in first round.
    Defeated Kitchener Rangers 4 games to 1 in quarterfinals.
    Defeated Plymouth Whalers 4 games to 1 in semifinals.
    Defeated Barrie Colts 4 games to 3 in finals. OHL CHAMPIONS
    Finished Memorial Cup round-robin in third place.
    Defeated Saskatoon Blades 6-1 in the tiebreaker game.
    Lost to Portland Winterhawks 2-1 in the semifinal game.
  • 2013-14 Defeated Windsor Spitfires 4 games to 0 in first round.
    Lost to Guelph Storm 4-1 in quarterfinals.
    Gain entrance to 2014 Memorial Cup as host team.

Uniforms and logos[edit]

"Knightro", 1994–2002.

As the London Nationals, the Knights originally played in the blue and white of the Toronto Maple Leafs. The team's logo was the same Leaf as used by the parent club at the time, except with the words "London Nationals" written out across the leaf instead of "Toronto Maple Leafs". After 1968, the colours changed to green, gold and white, and the logo to a classically-inspired Knight's head with an Old English "K" on the helmet. In 1980 the striping changed slightly, from classical horizontal stripes around the sleeves and bottom of the sweater to large arm stripes and a bare sweater bottom. In 1985–86 the green on the uniforms was darkened and the arm stripes were deleted in favour of broad swathes of secondary colour across the shoulders and down the arms. 1986 saw a total re-design of sweater and logo. Black was added as a secondary colour and the striping returned to a more pedestrian design. The logo was also changed, from a classical Knight's head to a more modernized version on a gold circle with the letter "L". These uniforms were used until 1994. In 1994 the green and gold were disposed of completely in favour of the eggplant and teal used by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. The logo was changed to "Spiderknight", with normal horizontal striping and pointed shoulder stripes. There was also a teal shoulder patch bearing the word "London" and a hockey stick. In February 2002, the Knights reverted to their 1986–94 uniforms as a commemoration of the closing of the London Gardens. The special uniforms were identical except for two shoulder patches, one bearing the 1968–86 logo and the other bearing the 1994–2002 logo. These uniforms were also used for the 2002–03 preseason. For the opening of the John Labatt Centre in October 2002, the Knights debuted new uniforms with the 1986–94 logo, minus the "L" and the gold circle. These were drawn on a home white uniform and a road uniform that, for the first time in team history, bore black as its primary colour. Each uniform also bore a new "shield" shoulder patch. The team also debuted green third jerseys, which featured the word "KNIGHTS" printed diagonally across the front of the sweater.

Arenas[edit]

London Gardens/London Ice House, 1965–2002[edit]

  • Built : 1963
  • Capacity : 5,075 including standing room.
  • Ice Size : 190' x 85'

The London Gardens (see article) was built in 1963 and served as the home of the Knights from the team's inception in 1965 to its closing in 2002. The building was renamed London Ice House in 1994. The last meaningful game played at the arena was in the 2002 playoffs, where the Knights lost in overtime in the sixth game of the second round to the eventual OHL Champion Erie Otters. The last goal in the building was scored by Carlo Colaiacovo. The Knights used the Ice House for their training camp and exhibition schedule for the 2002–03 season and moved out permanently in October 2002. The arena is currently home to the Forest City Velodrome.

The John Labatt Centre.

The OHL Arena & Travel Guide – London Gardens

Budweiser Gardens, 2002–present[edit]

  • Built : 2002
  • Capacity : 9,046 including standing room.
  • Ice Size : 200' x 85'

The Budweiser Gardens (see article) opened on October 11, 2002 as the Knights played host to the Plymouth Whalers. The first goal in the building was scored by Dylan Hunter. The arena, located in downtown London, is the largest in Western Ontario. Tickets for the 2005–06 season in the building sold out in one day, and there is currently a cap on season tickets due to the team's popularity

The OHL Arena & Travel Guide – Budweiser Gardense

References[edit]

  1. ^ MacLeod, Rex (1966-02-05). "Nats' inexperience evident, but club directors optimistic". Globe and Mail. 
  2. ^ "Howard Darwin founded Knights". Toronto Sun. 2009-10-23. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  3. ^ http://blogs.windsorstar.com/2013/12/29/spits-top-spirit-6-5-at-comerica-park/

See also[edit]

External links[edit]