Lake Erie Warriors’ rebrand, become Gulls after racist logo causes uproar

Jared Clinton
Lake Erie Gulls temporary logo (via NCPHL/Lake Erie Gulls)

The National College Prospects Hockey League’s Lake Erie franchise are rebranding after their racist logo drew the ire of many across the hockey and sports world.

Lake Erie’s team, which was originally called the Warriors, will now be known as the Gulls after images of the team’s original logo, which was unveiled in May, began circulating. Uni-Watch’s Paul Lukas was among the first to put the logo out for a widespread audience to see, and it didn’t take long for the logo to cause an uproar.

The original logo features a red-skinned Native American with a mohawk, screaming into the distance. The logo also had a tomahawk and a feather. It’s hard to imagine how anyone believed the logo would be well-received. Read more

Las Vegas’ next step is choosing name and logo, but trademark issues slowing process

Jared Clinton
Bill Foley (left) and Gary Bettman (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

By the sounds of things, were it up to Las Vegas expansion franchise owner Bill Foley, the NHL’s 31st club would already have a name and logo, but the process has proven to be much more difficult than Foley could have imagined.

During Wednesday’s press conference to announce George McPhee as the franchise’s first GM, Foley was asked about naming the team and when fans in Las Vegas could expect to learn the identity of the expansion club. Foley said the plan is to have the logo in place as soon as possible.

“I didn’t realize how complicated it was, and it is complicated,” Foley said Wednesday. “We are working our way through the process right now, as we speak…We have a lot names in mind, but a lot of the ones I really liked are trademarked, so that is a little bit of an issue.” Read more

Coyotes bring back Roadrunners name, unveil logo for AHL team

Jared Clinton
(via Arizona Coyotes/NHL)

The Coyotes’ purchase and subsequent relocation of the Springfield Falcons to Tucson brought Arizona’s AHL affiliate closer to home, and it has also brought a longtime minor league moniker back from the grave.

Tucson’s new AHL club was officially dubbed the Roadrunners, harkening back to the minor league teams that have used the name over the past 50 years.

“We are very proud to name our AHL affiliate the Tucson Roadrunners,” Coyotes president Anthony LeBlanc said in a release. “The Tucson Roadrunners will build on the great traditions of hockey in Arizona dating back to 1967. Roadrunners was the overwhelming fan favorite during our ‘Name the Team’ contest, and we thank the thousands of fans who helped us select a great name that creates a strong connection to the City of Tucson, reflects our state pride, and extends the reach of the Coyotes brand.” Read more

The Springfield Thunderbirds are the newest AHL team, unveil sharp logo

Jared Clinton
Springfield Thunderbirds logo (via YouTube)

The off-season AHL shuffle began in April when the Springfield Falcons were purchased by the Arizona Coyotes, their parent club, and relocated to Tucson. One month later, Springfield once again had AHL hockey when the Portland Pirates were sold and subsequent moved to Massachusetts. And less than one month after the Pirates relocation was announced, the new Springfield franchise has a name.

It was formally announced Wednesday that Springfield’s AHL club will be called the Thunderbirds and fans were given a first glimpse at the logo in a short video that displayed the rich AHL history in Springfield, which dates back to the league’s first season in 1936. The Springfield Indians, Kings and Falcons have all been part of the city’s AHL history, the latter of which played in the city for the past 22 seasons. Read more

The KHL’s Chinese expansion team looks like it will have awesome logo

Jared Clinton
Red Star Kunlun's reported logo (via Twitter)

Red Star Kunlun is set to become the first Chinese team in a major professional league when they begin play in the KHL next season, but little is known about the club.

The roster, coaching staff and even the import rules are seemingly still in the stage of being worked out, and the same can be said for what the team will look like, aesthetically, when they take the ice. Though it may be one of the least important aspects of, you know, actually running a successful team, Red Star is starting to cut it close with the KHL campaign slated to begin in roughly two and a half months.

According to a leaked logo, though, Kunlun may have their logo and team colors in place, and if the reported emblem does happen to be the franchise’s actual mark, it could stand as one of the league’s best. Read more

SPHL’s Cottonmouths unveil great new logo after two decades with old mark

Jared Clinton
Columbus Cottonmouths new logo (via SPHL)

The Columbus Cottonmouths have had a successful 20 seasons on and off the ice, including three championships and 16 playoff appearances spread across the Central League, ECHL and SPHL. And the Cottonmouths have achieved all of that while playing under the same crest as the one the franchise debuted in 1996. That’s about to change.

The Cottonmouths officially unveiled their new primary logo Tuesday, which is the first rebranding the team has undergone in its two decades of existence. The new mark, which is a profile of a venomous cottonmouth snake’s head, is the Georgia-based team’s way of sticking with the traditional snakehead logo while giving it a much-needed update.

There’s a little bit of a Detroit Vipers feel to the new mark, but the three-color palette, which includes Chattahoochee Royal Blue, Victory Gold and black with “a hint of scarlet,” really pops and feels like a big-league mark for the minor-league club. Read more

Panthers unveil new logo and jerseys to signal ‘new tradition of winning’

Jared Clinton
Reilly Smith and Aaron Ekblad (via NHL.com)

The Florida Panthers unveiled a brand new look — jerseys, colors and logo — Thursday evening for what the team hopes will be the beginning a brand new era of Panthers hockey, one the franchise hopes can build off of the success of the 2015-16 campaign.

The jersey and logo reveal took place at a special event at Florida’s BB&T Center, with a number of current and former Panthers on hand, including Aaron Ekblad, Vincent Trocheck, Ed Jovanovski and Olli Jokinen.

The new mark features a “stoic panther” inside a shield, with bot the home and away uniforms bearing distinct text. The home jersey boasts a red base with a white bar dividing the upper and lower halves and gold piping along the bar, and the logo reads “Panthers.” The away uniform is the inverse: white base, red bar and the same gold piping, with the in-logo text reading “Florida.”

Both jerseys feature a blue collar, and the lettering and numbering of both uniforms has gold piping. The away jersey numbers and letters are blue, the home jersey’s red. The numbers will rest atop the shoulders of the jerseys rather than on the sleeves.

“I think the logo harkens to the vanguard of courage; the idea that you put a shield on the hockey uniform,” Panthers owner Vincent Viola said of the new logo. “It’s something to protect, but you also protect it. We wanted something that began a new tradition of winning and demonstrated courage and selfless dedication to a team pursuit of victory.” Read more

Hamilton Bulldogs unveil black and gold jerseys to honor city’s hockey history

Jared Clinton
(via Hamilton Bulldogs/YouTube)

The Hamilton Bulldogs have nearly completed their inaugural OHL campaign, but the team will truly look the part of a Hamilton-based sports franchise come 2016-17.

As part of a jersey redesign, the Bulldogs are going to a black and gold color scheme from the next campaign and will say goodbye to the current red, blue and white scheme that was brought over from the team’s AHL days as the affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens. The updated scheme isn’t simply an eye-catching new look, though. It ties into the city’s sports history, dating all the way back to the Hamilton Tigers, one of the original NHL clubs during that played its first games in 1920.

In a video that was paired with the jersey’s release, the Bulldogs debuted the jerseys and talked briefly about Hamilton’s sporting history and the meaning of black and gold: Read more