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Houston Aeros

The Aeros franchise was originally slated for Dayton, Ohio, but was moved to Houston in April 1972. The Aeros finished second in the Western Division in their first season and were bounced from the playoffs in the second round by the Winnipeg Jets, but the next year, they enticed former Detroit Red Wings legend Gordie Howe out of retirement to play with his sons Mark and Marty. The new and improved Aeros captured their first AVCO Cup championship that season and they repeated as champions the following year. In 1975-1976, the Aeros finished first in the Western Division for the third consecutive year and tied with the Jets for the best regular season record, but were swept in the finals by the Jets. The Aeros duplicated their outstanding regular season once again, only to again fall victim to the Jets in the second round of the playoffs. That summer, the Howes left for New England, but with the addition Andre Lacroix from the San Diego Mariners, the Aeros still finished with the third best record in the league before losing to the defending champion Quebec Nordiques in the first round of the playoffs.

The Aeros tried to gain entry into the NHL that summer, but when those hopes were dashed, the team folded and the Jets purchased the remaining players under contract.

Led by many of the former Aeros, the Jets went on to capture the AVCO Cup in 1979.
Season Team GP W L T Pts Pct. GF GA Finish
1972-1973 Houston Aeros 78 39 35 4 82 0.526 284 269 2nd place, Western Division
1973-1974 Houston Aeros 78 48 25 5 101 0.647 318 219 1st place, Western Division
1974-1975 Houston Aeros 78 53 25 0 106 0.679 369 247 1st place, Western Division
1975-1976 Houston Aeros 80 53 27 0 106 0.662 341 263 1st place, Western Division
1976-1977 Houston Aeros 80 50 24 6 106 0.662 320 241 1st place, Western Division
1977-1978 Houston Aeros 80 42 34 4 88 0.550 296 302 3rd place, League
Totals   474 285 170 19 589 0.621 1928 1541  
All-Time Franchise Records

Games Played

Player GP
Poul Popiel467
Larry Lund459
Ted Taylor424
Larry Hale413
John Schella385

Goals

Player G
Larry Lund149
Frank Hughes149
Mark Howe136
Ted Taylor123
Gordie Howe121

Assists

Player A
Larry Lund277
Poul Popiel265
Gordie Howe248
Terry Ruskowski188
Mark Howe170

Points

Player Pts
Larry Lund426
Gordie Howe369
Poul Popiel327
Mark Howe306
Frank Hughes300

Penalty Minutes

Player PIM
John Schella844
Poul Popiel618
Ted Taylor600
Terry Ruskowski550
Cam Connor441

Games Played - Goaltender

Player GP
Wayne Rutledge175
Ron Grahame143
Don McLeod90
Ernie Wakely51
Lynn Zimmerman20

Wins

Player W
Ron Grahame102
Wayne Rutledge93
Don McLeod52
Ernie Wakely28
Lynn Zimmerman10

Shutouts

Player SO
Ron Grahame12
Wayne Rutledge6
Don McLeod4
Ernie Wakely2
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