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10-21-2013, 08:42 PM
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The Montreal Canadiens indirectly stood in the way of the 67 expansion.

Not many know that in order for the NHL to expand in 67 the NHL had to end the monopoly on the pipeline to top French jr talent the Habs had.
The prospective and established owners of the incoming teams saw how unfair the access was to top French jr age talent and demanded change.

If it was up to the Habs the NHL would still be 6 teams so they didn't have to give up owning most of the top end French jr talent pipeline teams and league(s).

source below.
Cruise, David and Griffiths, Alison (1991). Net Worth: Exploding The Myths of Pro Hockey. Stoddart Publishing

A large group of the Cups that the Habs won were due to them owning jr teams/leagues in the prime hockey enrollment areas. I AM NOT TALKING ABOUT THE TERRITORIAL RULE. It would be like the Leafs owning the OMHA and the GTHL and being able to snag any player they wanted prior to the draft.

I wish people would stop saying that the territorial rule is the reason the Habs had such an advantage, it wasn't and it only applied to any player who didn't all ready have a c-form. Back then most top players had a c-form by the age of 14-16 some as young as 12. It was 1st and foremost that most of the top talent back then was French and most French players wanted to play for the Habs. The 2nd reason was that the Habs were 1st to set up jr teams and leagues in areas that had high rates of hockey enrollment. Back then if a player played on/in a team/league that was owned by the Habs then the Habs owned the player as well. By the time the other teams got wind of what the Habs were doing it was too late to be competitive as far as jr development because the Habs had allready laid claim to the best areas. What really blows me away is that the NHL actually allowed that to happen.

most info from <<great read a lot of info about how he implemented his jr talent monopoly. only up to 62 tho

Look at total # of C-forms each NHL team signed and the Habs had more than any other NHL team had combined, not just the other 5 but any other NHL team that existed prior to the 67 expansion. Ya see other teams would scout individuals but the Habs would basically sign everything they could and keep the best. By doing that they made thousands of NHL caliber players unavailable to the other teams. Its sad really.


As an additional point go look at the NHL draft page and look at the drafts up till 69. You will notice that pretty much all the top guys are from Ontario teams/leagues then look in 69 once the Habs stranglehold is broken at how many Que players are now in the top part of the draft.

Also the political climate in Que was such that the Habs were a beacon to the French and it was of upmost importance to the province that the Habs remained dominant. Believe it or not the province of Que actually helped the Montreal Canadians pay to implement their jr farm teams.

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