The Plymouth Whalers are a junior ice hockey team in the Ontario Hockey League ( OHL ). The team was founded in 1990 in Detroit and has been since 1997 in Plymouth, Michigan resident.
The mid-seventies was the Detroit Compuware hockey organization founded by Compuware founder and President Peter Karmanos and his business partner Thomas Thewes, which consisted of all age classes in junior hockey. The team of the highest age group played in the North American Hockey League. The team included future NHL stars as Eric Lindros, Derian Hatcher, Pat LaFontaine, David Legwand and Doug Weight. The program was so successful that they decided to go into a higher league.
Karmanos had previous experience in the OHL, he was owner of the Windsor Spitfires for several years. Karmanos was awarded the contract to build a franchise in Detroit and called the Detroit Compuware Ambassadors. It became the first team in the league that his home had been in the United States. The first year in the OHL was less positive. You lost the most games and finished the season as last. For the season 1991/92 they moved to the Joe Louis Arena, which also includes the NHL's Detroit Red Wings is located. The regular season was better than last year and they reached the playoffs, however, different from the first round.
After the season the team was renamed the Detroit Junior Red Wings. The team was finally able to really take root in the OHL and played a very good season in 1992/93 and drew one to the semi-finals of the OHL playoffs. There, they had to admit defeat, however. 1993/94, the team was able to increase again. Having them in the regular season at No. 1 of their division were, they moved into the final of the J. Ross Robertson Cup, the championship trophy of the OHL, one, but were defeated there by the North Bay Centennials.
In autumn 1994, there was a labor dispute in the NHL and it found until January 1995 no games instead. Advantage of this situation were the Detroit Junior Red Wings, who showed an outstanding season and the people attracted to the Joe Louis Arena. They set up an attendance record for the OHL, which still is still valid today. The Junior Red Wings moved again to the OHL final and this time were able to emerge victorious. So the team had qualified for the final round of the Memorial Cup. The Memorial Cup is the championship trophy of the Canadian Hockey League, which supervises the QMJHL, the Western Hockey League and the OHL. The master of the three leagues, as well as the host of the final round are qualified. The Junior Red Wings fought their way to the finals and lost there against the Kamloops Blazers.
After Peter Karmanos did not manage to buy the NHL team the Detroit Red Wings ended the relationship between the two teams and it changed its name to Detroit Whalers, based on the NHL's Hartford Whalers that Karmanos a year earlier instead the Detroit Red Wings had bought. Connected with the name change was the move to a different ice rink. There you could tie in the regular season 1995/ 96 on the achievements of the previous year, but in the semifinals of the playoffs was the last stop. 1996 covered the Whalers in their newly Compuware Sports Arena in Plymouth a. In a restructuring team, which is why the sporting success in 1996/97 failed to began. In the first round of the playoffs, the team was eliminated.
In the summer of 1997 we made the last step away from Detroit and named by Plymouth Whalers. After the restructuring, it was back uphill athletic and you could make it to the playoff semifinals. 1999/ 00 could again reach the finals of the OHL for the first time, however, it lost to the Barrie Colts. The following year, it was again in the finals, but this time it failed because of the Ottawa 67 's.
2007 was the Whalers win the championship for the first time the OHL with 4-2 win over the Sudbury Wolves. Since 1997, the Whalers have thus always a positive winning record.
Wayne Gretzky Trophy Western Conference Playoff Champion
Hamilton Spectator Trophy Season Champion