Las Vegas NHL team closes in on a name

The new NHL franchise in Las Vegas is creeping closer to having a nickname. According to’s Chris Creamer, Desert Hawks, Red Hawks and Nighthawks (or Night Hawks) are among the finalists.

The three “hawk” variants were confirmed by Bill Foley, with the Vegas owner adding there are two other names under consideration, which he chose not to reveal.

Hopefully, those two additional names are better than the three revealed by Creamer. That trio is pretty generic sounding and are all too close for comfort to Blackhawks in my opinion, with Red Hawks being very similar to Detroit Red Wings as well.

Out of the three, Nighthawks is the best choice of the bunch. That nickname was once used by an AHL franchise that played in New Haven from 1972 to 1992, so it has some hockey history to it.

Speaking of the Blackhawks, back in the early 1970s, they objected to Kansas City’s expansion franchise being called the Mohawks (they ended up being the Scouts), so I am not sure how Desert Hawks, Red Hawks or Nighthawks is going to fly with Chicago brass. But, then again, the NHL is making things easier for Las Vegas than any other expansion franchise thanks to that $500M entrance fee, so...

If Las Vegas is set on going the bird route, I would offer up Night Owls as an alternative. If fits the city’s image better and is much more original than a name that immediately conjures up the bigger, better “Hawk” team in Chicago.