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They made the playoffs the first year but troubles with crowds mounted. They decided to play their playoffs matchup in Toronto, where they went up against the New England Whalers in the first round. On paper, the Whalers were vastly superior, and proved it in the post season. 20 points better during the regular season, the Whalers dispatched of Ottawa 4 games to 1, eventually winning the inaugural Avco Cup. A bright spot though was the number of people who showed up to support the team, as the Maple Leafs were mediocre at best at the time and had missed the playoffs again. The response given the 'alternative Nationals' set the wheels in motion for one of the league's first moves (after play actually began that is). But that summer owner Doug Michel fell into financial problems and sold the team to John Bassett. Under the new ownership, the Nationals moved down the highway and set up shop as the Toronto Toros, where they played for 3 seasons before moving to Birmingham. After 3 years in Dixie, they applied for admission into the NHL but along with Cincinnati, were turned down.
|1972-1973||35||39||4||74||279||301||1067||ROUND 1: lost to Whalers in 5 games|