Did you know Oregon was home to the first American team to have its name engraved on the Stanley Cup?
That’s right! Back in the 1910s, the Portland Rosebuds competed within the Pacific Coast Hockey Association (PCHA). In 1916, the team faced off against the Montreal Canadiens during the Stanley Cup Final. While the Rosebuds lost to the Canadiens in the Stanley Cup Final, they did get to engrave their names on the cup for winning the PCHA championship.
While the Rosebuds folded in 1918 to become the Chicago Blackhawks of the NHL, there’s a rich history of professional hockey in the Beaver State.
In this article, I’ll show you what hockey teams are in Oregon, what college and junior teams compete in the state, and what pro teams they’ve had over the years.
Pssssst! Are you curious about hockey teams in other U.S. states? You can learn more by checking out our other posts: What Hockey Team Is in Florida, What Hockey Team Is in Maryland, and What Hockey Team Is in Pennsylvania.
Let’s dive in.
Here’s What Hockey Teams Are In Oregon:
While Oregon doesn’t have an NHL team, its top hockey team is the Portland Winterhawks: a major junior hockey team in the Western Hockey League (WHL). The top college hockey team in Oregon is the University of Oregon (ACHA Men’s D1).
Does Oregon Have a Hockey Team?
So, what is Oregon’s top hockey team?
Oregon only has a few high-level ice hockey teams. However, the state doesn’t have an NHL team as it’s a small to mid-size U.S. state (4.2 million people).
The top hockey team in Oregon is the Portland Winterhawks – a major junior team that competes within the Western Hockey League (WHL). The top college hockey team in Oregon is the University of Oregon (D1 American Collegiate Hockey Association).
Does Oregon Have an NHL Team?
Wondering if you’ll find an NHL hockey team in Oregon?
Unfortunately, no. Oregon’s population is about 4.2 million people which is a bit too small for an NHL team at this point in time.
However, it wouldn’t be out of the question for Oregon to get its own NHL team at some point in the future. There have certainly been talks about Portland getting its own NHL team. But, if this was to happen, it won’t be for years as Seattle just got its own NHL team. Houston, Texas, or Quebec City, Canada would likely get an NHL team before Portland.
What NHL Team Does Oregon Root For?
Oregon is a small to midsize state in terms of population, so it’s still a way off from having its own NHL team. However, The Beaver State still has a very active NHL fanbase.
Historically, the most popular NHL team for Oregonians is the Vancouver Canucks. This is primarily because the Canucks (in Vancouver, BC) are the closest NHL team geographically to the state’s capital—Portland.
The “runner-up” team would likely be the Seattle Kraken as they’re now the closest franchise to Oregon (and are an American team).
What Hockey Teams Are in Oregon?
So, what hockey teams are in Oregon? The Beaver State has a few high-level hockey teams as seen below:
Oregon doesn’t have a team in the National Hockey League (NHL). However, they did have a professional team back in the 1910s that competed for the Stanley Cup within the Pacific Coast Hockey Association (PCHA).
Oregon doesn’t currently have a team in the American Hockey League (AHL).
Oregon doesn’t currently have a team in the East Coast Hockey League (ECHL).
D1 College Hockey
Oregon has one high-level varsity college hockey team: The University of Oregon. They compete as a D1 college hockey team within the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA).
Oregon has one major junior hockey team: the Portland Winterhawks.
The Winterhawks are a major junior hockey team that competes within the Western Hockey League (WHL)—one of three leagues within the Canadian Hockey League (CHL). The team has been active since 1976 after it moved from Edmonton (previously the Edmonton Oil Kings).
The Winterhawks are one of the most successful junior hockey teams in hockey history. Some notable former Winterhawks players include:
- Mark Messier
- Cam Neely
- Marian Hossa
- Dave Babych
- Sven Baertschi
- Oliver Bjorkstrand
- Matt Dumba
- Ray Ferraro
- Joel Hofer
- Seth Jarvis
- Cody Glass
- Ryan Johansen
- Seth Jones
- Brenden Morrow
- Nino Niederreiter
The second junior hockey team is the Rogue Valley Royals. They play within the United States Premier Hockey League which is a Tier III junior hockey league.
Oregon used to have another junior hockey team within the USPHL—the Southern Oregon Spartans. The Spartans started playing in 2007 and joined the USPHL in 2020-21 but had to withdraw early on due to COVID-19 restrictions. The team opted out of playing in the 2021-22 season as well.
Another Oregon junior hockey team is currently inactive: The Eugene Generals. They’re a USA Hockey-sanctioned Tier III junior ice hockey team that began playing in 2005. The team announced they would be taking a hiatus in the 2019-20 season and has yet to return to play.
Is There High School Hockey in Oregon?
Yes, there is high school hockey in Oregon. While the Beaver State doesn’t have a single governing body for all high school hockey, the top high school hockey teams are the Junior Hawks and the Oregon High School Hockey League.
These two high school hockey programs are run under The Les Schwab Winterhawks Varsity Hockey League—sanctioned by USA Hockey.
Oregon used to have a centralized high school hockey body called the Oregon High School Hockey League (OHSHL) but it was disbanded in 2012.
Are you curious to know more about hockey in other states across the U.S.? Don’t forget to check out our other full guide: Hockey Teams in Every U.S. State: Complete NHL & College List (2023).