December 10, 1992 – The NHL Awards a Franchise to the Walt Disney Company
“The Walt Disney Co. is betting that the NHL has recovered from a period of spotty popularity to emerge as the professional sport with the best investment potential, especially in regards to international expansion.”
On December 10, 1992, the NHL officially awarded a new franchise to the Walt Disney Company, which was part of a larger expansion detail that also gave a team to South Florida (which would become the Florida Panthers). The team awarded to Disney became the Mighty Ducks, named after the surprise hit film The Mighty Ducks. The team began to play during the 1993-1994 season. The team played their first game on September 18, 1993. Disney would end up selling the Mighty Ducks in 2005, with the sale final on June 20, 2005.