When you think of hockey’s history in the United States your mind automatically conjures up images of Bobby Hull charging down the ice in a Chicago Blackhawks jersey or the famous flying Bobby Orr in the Boston Bruins Stanley Cup winning goal against the St. Louis Blues. You think of places like the frozen lakes of Minnesota, the gritty rinks like Joe Louis Arena in Detroit or the glittery Madison Square Garden in New York City. But do you think of a place like rainy Seattle, Washington?
The Seattle Metropolitans were the first team from the United States to win the Stanley Cup back in 1917 when they defeated the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens 3 games to 1. At the time, the Pacific Coast Hockey Associations’ Metropolitans talent was on par with their more famous counterparts from the north like the Montreal Canadiens (NHL), Vancouver Millionaires (PCHA), Ottawa Senators (NHL), and the Toronto St. Pats (NHL). They hosted a variety of famous hockey players like Lester Patrick, Hap Holmes and Jack Walker. During their nine year history (1915-1924) they won five regular season titles, appeared in three Stanley Cup finals and won the Stanley Cup once. This is a team that could be considered a dynasty by today’s standards.
If the NHL sets up shop in Seattle (through expansion or relocation) there should only be one name the team should consider adopting: The Metropolitans. Recently interest in bringing an NHL team to Seattle has been expressed by both Don Levin (Chicago Wolves owner) and hedge-fund manager Christopher Hansen. It was even announced in the Seattle Times on January 13th, 2012 that an investment group led by Hansen was interested in building an arena to be located in the SoDo part of Seattle. When the city of Ottawa was awarded a NHL franchise in 1990, the town affectionately chose the Senators as their nickname. This harkened back to the days when the original hard-hitting Ottawa Senators franchise also known as the "Silver Seven" were a dominant force in professional hockey; a history that included 11 Stanley Cup championships. Bringing back the Senators moniker was not only a restoration of hockey pride to the city of Ottawa, but it also shed light on hockey history that was largely forgotten (even by some Ottawans).
So why should an owner of a recently relocated/expansion team to the Seattle area consider naming their team the Seattle Metropolitans? It honors tradition and reestablishes a long lost hockey pedigree; a neglected history of a team that accomplished something that was never done before by an American team: Win the Stanley Cup. And as a hockey fan, how can you ignore that?