The NHL is founded and elects Frank Calder as its first president. The League’s charter members are the Montreal Canadiens, Montreal Wanderers, Ottawa Senators, Toronto Arenas, and Quebec Bulldogs.
The new league emerges from the ashes of the National Hockey Association, which suspends operations a few weeks earlier. After three days of meetings among directors of NHA franchises, the NHL is formed, with play to begin on Dec. 19, 1917.
The four-team league (Quebec elects not to field a team until 1919-20), plays a 24-game schedule, with the champion to face the winner of the Pacific Coast Hockey Association for the Stanley Cup.
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