Montreal Winter Carnival, 1885

In 1885, the first ever hockey tournament that debuted at the 1883 Montreal Winter Carnival returned for a third year. MAAA iced a hockey team that was the class of the tournament. In addition to MAAA’s Montreal Hockey Club, other teams that competed was McGill University, Montreal Crystals, Montreal Football Club, and Ottawa Hockey Club. The five-team tournament took place at the Crystals hockey rink.

The 1885 tournament (played from January 27 to January 31) saw The Montreal Hockey Club win the challenge Tournament.

Championships to 1885 Montreal Winter Carnival Tournament
Team # of Premier Championships Premier Championship Points
Montreal Hockey Club 1 (1885) 4 (+4)
Montreal Victorias 1 (1884) 4
McGill University 1 (1883) 2

Starting in 1883 with only three teams playing three games over two days, the humble beginnings of the MWC Hockey Tournament lead to the creation of the first persistent league. Four Montreal-based teams plus one team from Ottawa played in the MWC and also formed the AHAC in 1887. It is because of this direct linkage the MWC Hockey Tournament is considered to be the direct predecessor to the AHAC for historical and statistical purposes.

Al Young
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