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 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
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
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
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
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
The Toronto Maple Leafs officially unveiled their new logo Tuesday evening following their overtime victory over the Boston Bruins.
The new logo, which was unveiled as part of the Maple Leafs’ series The Leaf: Blueprint, isn’t so much a new design as it is a throwback to the previous designs during Toronto’s most successful seasons.
“As an organization, we wanted to get back to our roots, when Conn Smythe first changed the team logo to the Maple Leaf in 1927,” said Maple Leafs president Brendan Shanahan said in a statement. “Inspired by the badge that he and his fellow Canadian soldiers wore during World War I, Smythe wanted his team to wear the badge with ‘honour, pride and courage. This is our goal for the next chapter in Leafs history.” Read more
The Toronto Maple Leafs are getting set to celebrate their centennial in 2016-17, and part of doing so will be revealing a new logo to commemorate the franchise’s 100th anniversary. The logo has yet to be made public, but the Maple Leafs announced they would be showing it off for the first time during a brand new episode of The Leaf: Blueprint, which is set to air Tuesday.
Before the episode airs, however, IceThetics.co’s Chris Smith was able to get access to the logo early. And while Smith doesn’t have photos of the exact logo, he was able to provide information on what fans should expect of the new crest when it’s made public Tuesday.
Smith said the new logo is in fact a brand new design — it’s not simply a throwback — but it’s “heavily inspired by the past.” According to Smith, the template for the new logo is closest to the primary mark the Maple Leafs first used in the 1938-39 season. Fans unfamiliar with that logo may recognize it from the Maple Leafs third jersey which was used from 2001 to 2011. Read more