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Hockey's soul in Original Six

Updated: March 8, 2004, 6:19 PM ET
By John Buccigross | Special to ESPN.com

The NHL is a young league.

I'm not talking in terms of the average age of the players. I'm talking about the league itself. Just think, in 1966-67 there were FOUR NHL teams in the United States. FOUR!! The population in the U.S. was 196,560,338 and there were FOUR NHL teams. In comparison, there were 24 NFL teams, 20 MLB teams, and 10 NBA teams. So, there were SIX times as many NFL teams, FIVE times as many MLB teams and more than double the amount of NBA teams. The NHL was severely shorthanded ...

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