Vegas Golden Knights 2018 NHL Playoffs.

Golden Knights – Greatest Inaugural Season in Sports History

Usually when a professional sports league decides to expand and add a new team, early results are not great for the franchise. An expansion draft takes place, where the newly-added team gets to pick from a handful of players that the rest of league did not want to keep. This means low talent, which translates to low success. This has been true for virtually every single expansion team in any league in North America, with even average performances being triumphs.

However, that changed when the Vegas Golden Knights went to the NHL Stanley Cup in what would be the greatest inaugural season in sports history.

In March of 2017, the Vegas Golden Knights completed their expansion and began operations as an official NHL team. The Golden Knights began to fill their roster in the expansion draft, taking notable players in former Pittsburgh Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury and Nashville Predators James Neal. Vegas was also given the first pick in the 2017 NHL Draft, taking Cody Glass as their first official draft pick ever.

Hopes were high for the Vegas Golden Knights, but no one could have seen what was coming as the 2017 – 2018 season began. Despite it being their first game ever as a team, the Golden Knights came away with a win behind expansion draftee James Neal’s first two goals in franchise history.

While that was great feat, the Vegas Golden Knights historic season would not stop there. The Golden Knights wound up 8-1 to start the season off, giving them the best start in NHL history for an expansion team through their first nine games. Accomplishments like this would continue to be set all season, and in December set the expansion team record for fastest to winning six straight games.

As their first regular season as a team came to a close, the Las Vegas Golden Knights found themselves with the best regular season record of any expansion team in the league’s history. Their 51-win season made them the top team in the Western Conference’s Pacific Division, and made them the first expansion team to make the playoffs since both the Edmonton Oilers and the former Hartford Whalers did it in 1980. Also, by leading it since Christmas and clinching the Pacific Division title at the end of March, the Golden Knights became the first expansion team to win their division in all of the four major North American sports.

Entering the 2018 NHL playoffs, Vegas was tasked with taking on divisional foe the Los Angeles Kings. The Golden Knights got their first playoff win in franchise history with a 1-0 victory. They went on to sweep the Kings in the series, reaching yet again another feat no one thought was possible, becoming the first team in league history to sweep any playoff series in their first season as a team.

The historic season would not stop there, and the team faced off with the San Jose Sharks in the second round of the playoffs. Defeating the Sharks four games to two, the Golden Knights became just the third team to ever win multiple playoff series in their inaugural season. This success continued into the Western Conference Finals, when the Golden Knights beat the Winnipeg Jets in five games to become only the third team in their inaugural season to make it to the Stanley Cup Finals.

The Vegas Golden Knights headed in the finals looking to be the first expansion team to win the Stanley Cup in their first season as a team since the Toronto Arenas did it in 1918, just the second year of the NHL’s existence. Facing the Washington Capitals, the Golden Knights took a 1-0 lead and only needed three more wins to win the whole thing. However, the Capitals would lead a furious comeback, taking the next four games to defeat Vegas for the Stanley Cup Finals 4-1.

Despite the Stanley Cup loss, the Vegas Golden Knights inaugural season can be chalked up as a massive success. Along with the numerous accomplishments already mentioned, the Golden Knights also had several players and personnel be named to their own accomplishments. Both Marc-Andre Fleury and James Neal were selected to represent the Golden Knights as players in the 63rd NHL All-Star Game, while Vegas head coach Gerald Gallant was picked to coach the Pacific Division of All-Stars.

The Vegas Golden Knights inaugural season was nothing less than spectacular. While it was unknown how their first season in the NHL would play out, no one could have expected a Western Conference title and a Stanley Cup appearance. As the Golden Knights begin their second season, their expectations will be great as they build off their success their inaugural season success and accomplishments.

Bud Adams - Tennessee Titans Owner

Bud Adams Contribution to Professional Football

Kenneth Stanley “Bud” Adams Jr. made many contributions to professional football as an owner and literally changed the landscape of the National Football League forever. At the time of his death in 2013 at age 90 he led all active owners with 409 wins. His long life of dedication to football and footballs fans led to many accomplishments.

The Beginnings of the AFL

Wildly successful financially in the oil industry, Bud Adams had the capital to invest in a professional football team. Early on, he partnered with later Kansas City Chiefs owner Lamar Hunt to try and buy the struggling Chicago Cardinals of the NFL with the intent of then moving them to Texas.

The duo would be denied that opportunity. But that disappointment would set a course for a journey that almost everyone else who tried, failed at. This monumental task was to start a viable professional football league to compete with the NFL. They would go on to found the American Football League (AFL) with Bud Adams starting the Houston Oilers franchise, and Hunt starting the Dallas Texans (now Kansas City Chiefs) in Dallas to fuel a Texas regional rivalry that would go on to thrill fans.

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ABA Teams Map 800 x 500

ABA and USFL Teams Map

Two historical professional leagues that have a huge place in sports history is the ABA – American Basketball Association and USFL – United State Football League. These two leagues have left a mark in both professional basketball and football. While one league ABA was able to accomplish their goal of merging with stronger NBA and the other USFL was not able to merge with the NFL only to receive a $1 payment from their lawsuit with the NFL. Sports Logo History and Sports Team History has embraced both leagues by showcasing both the team history and logo history.

Click to enlarge to 800 x 500!

The ABA started with the original 11 teams of Anaheim Amigos, Dallas Chaparrals, Houston Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Denver Rockets, Kentucky Colonels, Minnesota Muskies, New Orleans Buccaneers, New Jersey Americans, Oakland Oaks, Pittsburgh Pipers. The league had a total 31 teams during the 10 year period from 1967 to 1976. The ABA distinguished itself from its older NBA with a more wide-open, flashy style of offensive play, as well as differences in rules a 30-second shot clock as opposed to the NBA’s 24-second clock and use of a three-point field goal arc. Also, the ABA used a colorful red, white and blue ball, instead of the NBA’s traditional orange ball. In addition, the ABA pioneered the now-popular slam dunk contest at its all-star game.

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The USFL played for three seasons, 1983 through 1985. The league played a spring/summer in each of its active seasons, however in the 1986 season they were scheduled to be played in the autumn/winter, in direct competition against the long-established NFL, this was done at the urging of New Jersey Generals majority owner Donald Trump and a handful of other owners as a way to force a merger between the leagues. As part of this strategy, the USFL filed an anti-trust lawsuit against the National Football League in 1986, and a jury ruled that the NFL had violated anti-monopoly laws. However, in a victory in name only, the USFL was awarded a judgment of just $1, which under anti-trust laws, was tripled to $3. This court decision effectively ended the USFL’s existence. The league never played the 1986 season, and by the time it folded, it had lost over US$163 million. However, the USFL ceased operations before its fourth season was scheduled to begin.

Please check out the new state maps of both ABA and USFL with every team’s location within the USA.

Atlanta Falcons Primary Logo 2003 - Present

Mercedes-Benz Stadium Set To Open

Video by Atlanta Falcons Rise Up

Construction of the Atlanta Falcons‘ new-state-of-the-art Mercedes-Benz Stadium is getting closer to completion.

Atlanta Falcons Primary Logo 2003 - Present

The $1.5 billion facility is the new home venue for the Falcons and Major League Soccer’s Atlanta United, and is expected to open August 26, for the Falcons first preseason home game against the Arizona Cardinals.

The Falcons and its fan base desperately need something to help wash the bitter taste of defeat out of their mouths, after suffering what some consider the worst choke in Super Bowl history, when the dirty birds blew a 28-3 lead at halftime and lost 34-28 in overtime to Tom Brady and the New England Patriots.

What better way to cope with defeat other than moving into a new home? And a lovely home it is.

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