- From a historical point of view does the National Post have a valid claim here?
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- In a word "no".first of all as the article points out the Cup was signed
over to the league in 1947.
Two the Board is all ex NHL men. They name their known successors and if
they don't the Hockey Hall of Fame Committee does (as of 1961), you guessed
it they are NHL guys.
Three.is it legal? There is no reason why they couldn't. The original
charter only says that the Cup shall not remain the property of ONE TEAM it
says NOTHING of league. It also states that the trustees have ABSOLUTE
authority over arbitrating all situations and disputes over the
championship. There is nothing to say that they could NOT say "the champ of
this league as it is the BEST". Indeed in 1893 they specified that the
winner of the previous champs league has the title. They then had
prerequisites for other challengers and standards. The current rules fit the
original content in that no one club maintains ownership, it is a challenge
cup as 30 teams of the NHL challenge for it every year and the champion need
not be beaten in an actual series as provided for in 1893."the Cup is
automatically awarded to the team that wins the title of the previous Cup
champions league champion of the without the needed for any other special
contest.". Thus the current scenario actually does not contradict anything.
It is pure myth that anyone who challenged for the Stanley Cup got a shot at
it.it ALWAYS had to go through the Board! And the Board originally said you
:have to the champion of a senior association" for example.In 1908 the Allan
Cup took over for the seniors and the Stanley Cup became the domain of the
pros and as of 1912 there could no longer be mid season challenges. In 1914
they allowed the three top pro leagues to begin to arrange the challenge.
Thus in any legal challenge one could state back.well what do the Allan Cup
and Memorial Cup exist for? And indeed if anyone won the Cup from the nHL
they could challenge immediately to win it back.even in September or
July.silly? YOU BET!
Four.the Cup has changed over the years, again with the Board approving of
all changes. It became a trophy for first the SENIOR then PRO hockey. The
system for accepted series has changed. The fact that US teams were allowed
to challenge changed. It is NOT a trophy that was not supposed to evolve
with hockey. One can argue that Canada was only specified at the time and
the game was simply not really played much anywhere else. Lord Stanley was
not even a Canadian, he was English and soon went home after donating the
trophy. He created trustees who are actually never even specified as "must
be Canadian". And again they were never dictated to outside of the very
BASIC 5 rules as to what they must do..
1-the Cup must be returned in good condition.
2-Each winning team may pay to have its name engraved.
3-The cup will not become the property of one team.
4-The part about the trustees having absolute authority.
5-Trustees appoint their successor when they drop out.
One can argue it was for the amateur champion of Canada but one can also
argue back that pro hockey did not yet exist thus Lord Stanley could not
have foreseen. Once more I his original proposal the word was the "best
hockey club" not specifying amateur or pro. Furthermore as the NHL was
originally a CANADIAN league who deemed to accept US applicants (as the
western league did too) there was no technical reason that US based teams
need to be out ruled. Again there is NO specific provision against this. In
fact in 1914 the trustees stated that it was no longer just a Canadian
Trophy but for the best team in the world.
Five.courts often tend to look at practices that are long standing that do
not specifically violate laws as being in perpetuity. In this case given
that the NHL has been given rights and trademarks the Cup etc there is a
STRONG argument that over half century this is just the way it is..a classic
example was the courts refusing to overturn baseball's reserve system and
anti trust shielding. They ALL said the SAME thing.."we think it is wrong
but it ahs existed this way so long and the business has developed with it
that we will not over turn it as it would also open a Pandora's box of
retroactive cases..if this is going to be changed it is up to
Congress." Now in this case no government even has that right! Remember anti
trust is US law. The Cup was never given to the Dominion as property, it is
technically the property of the trustees to do what they want with it. And
again, logically it has already become a North American Trophy for some 90
years.Parliament has no RIGHT to claim the Cup. Once more it would be
hypocritical of people to even suggest this if they are some of the ones who
also 'say "let our team move to the US.we don't want to help to pay for anew
Six it would just be silly to do this. The Stanley Cup has become synonymous
with the NHL to about every hockey fan in the world. Sure you could have
some crap teams play for it but what MEANIMNG would it have? None!
Seven, the trustees were never not allowed to be people who had been with a
league. And once more they are following the original intent. The BEST
hockey teams in Canada ARE the Canadian NHL franchises. NO ONE at least in
their right mind disputes that. The NHL is the game's premier league again
NO ONE, not even the KHL disputes this. Again NO ONE , unless they are in a
padded cell someplace using a crayon between their toes claims any league is
really at the same level. So even if you argue that they had no right to
sign the trophy over to the NHL you still have no real basis for argument
against the trustees who have been appointed by the due process that was
laid out over 100 years ago and that they are properly awarding the trophy
to the only teams who have a rightful claim by caliber as specified by the
standards that the trustees laid out over generations including years prior
to the NHL as we now know it. Nor does it violate the original intent of
naming the best hockey team in Canada, the seven best challenge for it each
year. Indeed even if we were to be literal by the original intent, "the best
hockey team in Canada" it would STILL be an exclusively NHL prize only we
would only have those seven teams vying for it!
Eight. Why are we having this silly discussion? Simple there may be no Cup
this year again. Ahhh but we had no Cup WAY before lock outs due to a flu
epidemic back in 1919 thus there is NOTHING that actually states that you
MUST have a champion determined each year. That precedent was set over 90
From: Craig Wallace [mailto:craigw@...]
Sent: Monday, October 08, 2012 7:51 AM
Cc: William Underwood; R Bendell
Subject: Stanley Cup?
From a historical point of view does the National Post have a valid claim
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