Happy birthday ice hockey!

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Happy birthday ice hockey!

Put 140 candles on that cake.

It was on March 3, 1875 that the first organized ice hockey game was played. That means the game was pre-announced, included a set of rules and a referee, the two teams played on a confined ice surface, the names of the 18 players were recorded, the score was kept, and the game was played with a “flat circular piece of wood”, now known as a puck.


McGill defeated Victoria 2-1 at the Victoria Skating Rink in Montreal, a 60-minute game that the IIHF formally recognized for its historic nature in 2002. The indoor rink was 200 feet long and 80 feet wide, virtually the same dimensions as a modern NHL ice surface.

Happy birthday ice hockey! First organized game was played exactly 140 years ago in Montreal. http://t.co/GnHHCunS5vpic.twitter.com/vJlwNxgqTE

— IIHF (@IIHFHockey) March 3, 2015

Without that historic first game, Canada would have missed out on some of this country’s greatest sporting moments, which includes 13 Olympic gold medals (nine by the men and four by the women), the most by any nation.

Sochi 2014: The post, followed by Marie-Philip Poulin’s game-tying and overtime heroics

Vancouver 2010: “Sidney Crosby, the Golden Goal!”

1987 Canada Cup: “Lemieux ahead to Gretzky…”

1972 Summit Series: “Henderson has scored for Canada!”

See also: The greatest Hockey Canada goals of all time

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