International Hockey League (1945–2001)

The International Hockey League ( IHL short ) was a professional ice hockey league in the United States and Canada. It existed from 1945 to 2001. A Senior League, which was also named International Hockey League, existed from 1929 until 1936. Moreover, existed from 2007 to 2010, a further League under the name. The winners of the play-offs were awarded the Turner Cup as a trophy.


The IHL was established on December 15, 1945 and was originally a semi-professional league in the vicinity of the Great Lakes, their clubs were located mainly in smaller cities such as Fort Wayne, Grand Rapids, Flint, Toledo or Muskegon. The founding members of the League were the clubs Detroit Auto Club, Detroit Bright's Goodyears, Windsor and Windsor Spitfires Gotfredsons. In 1947, the Toledo Mercurys of IHL joined. Then the league began to expand and always took on more teams. This expansion, however, was only temporary and by 1949 the IHL was almost shrunk back to its founding members. A year later left the Windsor Ryancretes the league. Then the IHL expanded again and it created new clubs in Grand Rapids, Troy, Cincinnati, Fort Wayne and Milwaukee. The Chatham Maroons left in 1952, the last franchise from Canada, the International Hockey League.

It was not until 1963, after eleven seasons in which only clubs from the United States were represented in the IHL, Canadian teams were authorized in the IHL again. The Windsor Bulldogs and again the Chatham Maroons were now playing in the league with. Both teams were excluded only one season later by the League. In the 1970s, more and more IHL teams went into cooperation with NHL franchises and in the 1980s expanded the league to the big cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco or Denver. Due to the rapid development away from the small towns to the clubs closed more and more the lower leagues, such as the East Coast Hockey League, at. Thus, the IHL developed to a significant counterweight to the NHL, because at that time anwuchsen their problems.

To counteract this, gave many NHL clubs for their co-operation with the clubs of IHL and sought their partner again multiplied in the American Hockey League. In addition, more and more NHL teams settled in the cities of the IHL. Interest in the IHL adopted so again. The absence of support for salary payments and rising travel costs, the financial position of the League and its member clubs worse. 2001, the League was disbanded and its members were added or dissolved in the AHL and other minor leagues.

Awards and Trophies

Overall, the IHL awarded during the period of its existence, 13 trophies, including two for men and eleven for players and coaches.

  • Best team point of the regular season
  • Cincinnati Mohawks ( 5)
  • Best Yield: Muskegon Lumberjacks (1988 ) with 126 points
  • Best coach of the regular season
  • Top scorer of the regular season
  • Rob Brown ( 3)
  • Gary Ford ( 3)
  • Len Thornson ( 3)
  • Best player of the regular season
  • Len Thornson (6 )
  • Most valuable player of the Turner Cup Playoffs
  • Stan Drulia ( 2)
  • Trophy can be obtained more than once in the career
  • Best American rookie season
  • Trophy can be obtained more than once in the career
  • Best defender
  • Several players won the trophy twice
  • Goalkeeper with the lowest Gegentorschnitt
  • Glenn Ramsay (6 )
  • Player who fought his way back after a long injury
  • Player, who played all the games a season and exceptionally contributed to the success of the team
  • Dave Michayluk ( 2)
  • Specific social commitment


  • Michigan K- Wings (1995-2000)
  • Milwaukee Admirals (1977-2001 and since 2001 is in the AHL )
  • Milwaukee Chiefs (1952-1954)
  • Milwaukee Clarks (1948-1949)
  • Milwaukee Falcons (1959-1960)
  • Minneapolis Millers (1960-1963)
  • Minnesota Moose (1994-1996; were Manitoba Moose )
  • Muncie Flyers (1948-1949)
  • Muskegon Lumberjacks (1984-1992; were Cleveland Lumberjacks )
  • Muskegon Mohawks (1965-1984; Muskegon Lumberjacks were )
  • Muskegon Zephyrs (1960-1965; were Muskegon Mohawks )
  • Omaha Knights (1959-1963, were transferred to the CPhl, their license was awarded to the Toledo Blade )
  • Orlando Solar Bears (1995-2001)
  • Peoria Prancer (1982-1984; were Peoria Rivermen )
  • Peoria Rivermen (1984-1996; were San Antonio Dragons )
  • Phoenix Roadrunners (1989-1997)
  • Port Huron Flags (1962-1971; were Port Huron Wings )
  • Port Huron Flags (1974-1981)
  • Port Huron Wings (1971-1974; were Port Huron Wings )
  • Quebec Rafales (1996-1998)
  • Russian Penguins (1993-1994)
  • Saginaw Gears (1972-1983)
  • Saginaw General (1985-1987; were Saginaw Hawks )
  • Saginaw Hawks (1987-1989)
  • Salt Lake Golden Eagles (1984-1994; were Detroit Vipers )
  • San Antonio Dragons (1996-1998)
  • San Diego Gulls (1990-1995; were Los Angeles Ice Dogs )
  • San Francisco Spiders (1995-1996)
  • Sarnia Sailors (1949-1951)
  • St. Paul Saints (1959-1963)
  • Toledo Blades (1963-1970; were Toledo Hornets )
  • Toledo Goal Diggers (1974-1986)
  • Toledo Hornets (1970-1974; were Toledo Goal Diggers )
  • Toledo Mercury (1947-1949)
  • Toledo Mercury (1950-1955; were Toledo - Marion Mercurys )
  • Toledo Mercury (1956-1959; were Toledo -St Louis Mercury. )
  • Toledo Mercury (1960-1962)
  • Toledo - Marion Mercurys (1955-1956; were Toledo Mercury )
  • Toledo -St. Louis Mercury (1959-1960; were Toledo Mercury )
  • Troy Bruins (1951-1959)
  • Utah Grizzlies (1995-2001 and since 2001 is in the AHL, ECHL since 2005 )
  • Windsor Bulldogs (1963-1964)
  • Windsor Gotfredsons (1945-1946)
  • Windsor Spitfires Hettche (1947-1949; were Detroit Hettche )
  • Ryan Windsor Cretes (1948-1950)
  • Windsor Spitfires (1945-1947; were Windsor Spitfires Hettche )
  • Windsor Stafford (1946-1948; were Windsor Ryan Cretes )