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The early history of the National Hockey League
(NHL) began in 1917 when it was founded by a majority of the franchises in the National Hockey Association
(the Montreal Canadiens
, Montreal Wanderers
, Ottawa Senators
and Quebec Bulldogs
). The NHL's first quarter-century saw the league compete against two rival major leagues, the Pacific Coast Hockey Association
and Western Canada Hockey League
, for players and the Stanley Cup
. The NHL first expanded into the United States in 1924 with the founding of the Boston Bruins
, and by 1926 consisted of ten teams in Ontario
, the Great Lakes region
, and the Northeastern United States
. At the same time, the NHL emerged as the only major league and the sole competitor for the Stanley Cup. Numerous innovations to the rules and equipment were put forward as the NHL sought to improve the flow of the game and make the sport more fan-friendly. Foster Hewitt
's radio broadcasts were heard coast-to-coast across Canada starting in 1933. The Great Depression
and World War II
reduced the league to six teams by 1942, known as the "Original Six
". (Full article...
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