Toledo, Ohio, was a long-time IHL city and had a number of teams throughout the years. After the Toledo Mercurys went out of business in 1962, the city would go without the IHL for a year before the Blades came onto the scene for the 1963-64 season. The Blades originally started as the IHL's iteration of the Omaha Knights, but the Knights moved across the country from Nebraska to northern Ohio.
The Knights had always fielded a pretty good for their four years on the plains, but they had their best season when they became the Blades in 1963-64. Under the helm of player-coach Moe Benoit, the team won 41 of 70 games during the regular season and followed that up with an IHL title win over Fort Wayne in six games. The team was led by career IHLers Chick Chalmers, Greg Jablonski, and Mauril Morrissette, who played a combined 1,089 games for the Knights/Blades/Hornets franchise. After a couple of tough years, the Blades would win the IHL again in 1966-67, defeating Fort Wayne again in six games. The team would have continued success on the ice for the next few seasons including another 41 win campaign in 1968-69. The franchise re-branded as the Toledo Hornets for the 1970-71 season.