Victoria Senators (1911-1913), Victoria Aristocrats (1913-1916), Spokane Canaries (1916-1917), Victoria Aristocrats (1918-1922), Victoria Cougars (1922-1926)
Located: Victoria, British Columbia Canada
Arena: Patrick Arena
Owner: Lester Patrick (also the coach)
Stanley Cup Appearances: 3 (1914, 1925, 1926)
Stanley Cup(s): 1 (1925)
PCHA Championship(s): 2
WCHL/WHL Championship(s): 2
Hall of Famers: Jack Walker, Hap Holmes, Frank Foyston, Hec Fowler, Frank Fredrickson, Harry Meeking, Clem Loughlin
Major Contribution to Hockey: Along with the New Westminster Royals, they played in the first game on an artificial ice surface in Canada on January 2nd, 1912. The Victoria Cougars of the WCHL were the first and the last team (since the birth of the NHL in 1917) to win the Stanley Cup and not be the NHL Champion.
NHL Heritage: Detroit Red Wings
What you may or may not know is that a little over one hundred years ago the seed of all things universally despised by Avalanche fans was sewn. The team innocently established as the Victoria Senators in 1911 would eventually evolve into the Detroit Red Wings we love to hate today.
The Victoria Cougars were by far the second-most successful franchise in the long history of professional hockey in British Columbia. With three Stanley Cup appearances (1914, 1925, and 1926) and a Stanley Cup win in 1925; the Cougars franchise was behind only the Vancouver Millionaires in overall success.
Though the franchise wasn’t known as the Cougars until they joined the WCHL/WHL after the PCHA folded; the franchises’ history started in 1911 when they were established as the Victoria Senators. The team played on one of the first artificial ice surfaces in Canada which was Patrick Arena located in the Victoria suburb of Oak Bay. Along with the New Westminster Royals, they played in the first game on an artificial ice surface in Canada on January 2nd, 1912. The team changed its name to the Victoria Aristocrats in 1913 and appeared in the 1914 Stanley Cup which it lost to the Toronto Blueshirts of the NHA. The Aristocrats were forced to relocate to Spokane for the 1916 season after Patrick Arena was commandeered by the military due to World War I. The team became known as the Spokane Canaries which subsequently folded after one unsuccessful year in Washington. The second incarnation of the Victoria Aristocrats formed as a new team for the 1918 season and remained that way until the PCHA merged with the WCHL in 1922. The team was renamed the Victoria Cougars where they found great success. The Cougars won the 1925 Stanley Cup by defeating the Montreal Canadiens making them the first and the last team (since the birth of the NHL in 1917) to win the Stanley Cup and not be the NHL Champion. The team nearly repeated as Stanley Cup champions by challenging for the trophy in the 1926 finals but lost to the Montreal Maroons 3-games-to-1. After the 1926 season the WHL folded making the Stanley Cup exclusively awarded to the NHL champion. The team itself was sold to Detroit and carried on as the Detroit Cougars and later as the Detroit Falcons. The Falcons became the Detroit Red Wings which became one of the Original Six franchises of the NHL where they continue to play today as one of the NHL’s more successful teams.