History of Hockey in Springfield

History of Hockey in Springfield

I'm sure just about everyone knows that before the being known as the Springfield Falcons, the hockey team in Springfield was known as the Springfield Indians? And I'm sure that most know that before that, they were known as the Springfield Kings. Generally everyone knows that before the Kings, the team was also known as the Springfield Indians.

But how many people know the complete history of hockey in Springfield, going back to 1926? I'm guessing very few. Even the current General Manager of the team keeps saying "1936", which is the year the team entered the International-American Hockey League, the original name of the current-day American Hockey League.

The first professional hockey game was played in Springfield on December 1, 1926. Legendary promoter Tex Rickard, of Madison Square Garden fame, sponsored a team named the Springfield Indians. According to an interview with Abbie Cox, a player on that team, the name was due to Springfield being known as the home of the Indian Motorcycle.

The Indians were the farm team of the New York Rangers, a franchise that Rickard had been granted just a year earlier. Springfield was a growing city with a significant French-Canadian population, an easy train ride from the Big Apple, so it was a natural fit, especially since New Haven had already been locked up by the New York Americans.

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