New Westminster Bruins
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New Westminster Bruins
New Westminster Bruins
NWBruins.png
CityNew Westminster, British Columbia
LeagueWestern Hockey League
Operated1971 (1971)-81 and 1983-88
Home arenaQueen's Park Arena
ColoursBlack, white & gold
Championships1977 & 1978 Memorial Cup Champions
Franchise history
1966-67Calgary Buffaloes
1967-77Calgary Centennials
1977-82Billings Bighorns
1982-83Nanaimo Islanders
1983-88New Westminster Bruins
1988-PresentTri-City Americans
Previous franchise history
1966-71Estevan Bruins
1971-81New Westminster Bruins
1981-84Kamloops Junior Oilers
1984-PresentKamloops Blazers

The New Westminster Bruins were a major junior ice hockey team in the Western Hockey League. There were two franchises that carried this name:

Both incarnations of the franchise played at Queen's Park Arena in the Vancouver suburb of New Westminster, British Columbia.

History

First Bruins

The franchise began in 1946 as the Humboldt Indians of the original version of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (1948-1966), moving to Estevan to become the Bruins in 1957. They were a founding member of the Western Canada-based Canadian Major Junior Hockey League (later renamed the Western Canada Hockey League) in 1966. The Estevan Bruins had been a successful franchise, including a loss in the 1968 Memorial Cup national championship, when team owner and coach Punch McLean moved the team to New Westminister for the 1971-72 WCHL season.

New Westminster Bruins logo used by the second incarnation of the franchise.

Once the team arrived in New Westminster, the success continued throughout much of the decade. The Bruins won the President's Cup four times in a row between 1975 and 1978. They made it to the Memorial Cup finals four years in a row as well, losing in 1975 and 1976 before winning it in 1977 and 1978. The WCHL was renamed the Western Hockey League for the 1978-79 WHL season; that season, after a brawl at the end of a game against Portland in March 1979 at Queens Park Arena, some local hockey fans started to look with disfavour upon the Bruins' rough tactics, and the team's popularity began to wane. The Bruins moved to Kamloops, British Columbia, for the 1980-81 WHL season, where they would become first the Kamloops Junior Oilers and, from the 1984-85 WHL season, the Kamloops Blazers.

Second Bruins

The second incarnation of the Bruins arrived in New Westminster in 1983 from Nanaimo, British Columbia, where they had previously been known as the Nanaimo Islanders. The team originated in Calgary in 1966-67 with a stop as the Billings Bighorns. The team only played one season in Nanaimo before moving. The new Bruins did not enjoy the same level of success, and lasted only five seasons in New Westminster before moving to Kennewick, Washington, to become the Tri-City Americans. This franchise has never won the WHL championship in any of its incarnations.

Season-by-season records

First Bruins (1971-81)

Note: GP = games played, W = wins, L = losses, T = ties Pts = points, GF = goals for, GA = goals against

Season GP W L T GF GA Points Finish Playoffs
1971-72 68 40 27 1 285 240 81 3rd West Lost quarter-final
1972-73 68 31 22 15 283 264 77 4th West Lost quarter-final
1973-74 68 36 21 11 284 250 83 2nd West Lost semi-final
1974-75 70 37 22 11 319 260 85 3rd West Won championship
1975-76 72 54 14 4 463 247 112 1st West Won championship
1976-77 72 47 14 11 363 216 105 1st West Won championship and Memorial Cup
1977-78 72 33 28 11 345 310 77 3rd West Won championship and Memorial Cup
1978-79 72 34 32 6 310 301 74 3rd West Eliminated in round robin
1979-80 72 10 61 1 244 443 21 4th West Out of playoffs
1980-81 72 17 54 1 306 512 35 5th West Out of playoffs

Second Bruins (1983-88)

Season GP W L T GF GA Points Finish Playoffs
1983-84 72 34 36 2 304 348 70 2nd West Lost West Division semi-final
1984-85 72 41 29 2 379 302 84 2nd West Lost West Division final
1985-86 72 25 45 2 276 373 52 5th West Out of playoffs
1986-87 72 18 50 4 300 432 40 6th West Out of playoffs
1987-88 72 33 34 5 339 358 71 4th West Lost West Division semi-final

NHL alumni

Totals include both incarnations of the Bruins

See also

References


  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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