Mon, October 4, 2004
Countdown to Opening Night
The Cleveland Barons won their ninth Calder Cup championship in 1964.
Nine days remain until the puck drops on the American Hockey League's
69th regular season, with two games scheduled for Wednesday night,
October 13. Nine is also the number of Calder Cup championships won
by the original Cleveland Barons franchise, the most in AHL history.
The city of Cleveland was one of the original members of the AHL when
play began in 1936. The Barons were considered one of the premier
franchises in all of professional hockey, prospering in the AHL in an
era when just six teams competed in the NHL.
The Barons' first titles came in 1939 and 1941, both with Bill Cook
at the helm. Cleveland would secure five more titles in a 10-year
span (1944-45 to 1953-54) under Bill's brother and fellow Hall of
Famer Fred "Bun" Cook. Jack Gordon was behind the bench for the 1957
championship, and legendary Barons forward Fred Glover oversaw the
1964 title team as a player/coach.
Cleveland appeared in a total of 14 Calder Cup Finals in 28 seasons
from 1938-39 to 1965-66, and was home to some of the greatest players
in AHL history, including Glover, Johnny Bower, Les Cunningham and
The original Barons moved to Jacksonville during the 1972-73 season,
but AHL hockey returned to Cleveland in 2001 when the San Jose Sharks
began icing their top affiliate at Gund Arena. The new version of the
Barons returned to the Calder Cup Playoffs in 2004, and continues to
carry on the tradition established by their predecessors, winners of
a record nine league championships.