It’s probably time to accept that the name of the Las Vegas expansion NHL team will not be good. It will be boring, which at least is not actively bad, and then, within a few decades (if the team is still there), it will have the power of inertia behind it and you won’t even think about it anymore. Don’t get your hopes up, is what I’m trying to say.
Owner Bill Foley wanted “Black Knights” for this team, as a tribute to his alma mater at West Point (he named his company Black Knight Financial Services), but that’s apparently out thanks to “pushback” from the military academy and others. So Foley’s got some backup ideas. Behind curtain number one, we have a bunch of “Hawk” names, none of which, it turns out, are actual hawks.
Behind curtain number two we have Foley desperately clinging to “Knights” of some sort. Via DetroitHockey.net, we learn that Foley has registered trademarks and/or domains for at least four potential team names:
Las Vegas Desert Knights
Las Vegas Golden Knights
Las Vegas Silver Knights
Las Vegas Sand Knights
Give it a rest with Knights, already, Bill!
My suspicion is that he’ll go with “Nighthawks,” which satisfies both categories. It’s got a few meanings: it’s a bird (though not a hawk), it’s a military aircraft (once based at nearby Tonopah Test Range), and it’s a nickname for people who stay up late (as fitting a tribute to Las Vegas as may be possible, considering gambling references aren’t allowed).
That said, I still think the best formula for naming a team is to pick an animal that’s not an apex predator (too obvious) from a list of native species. “Las Vegas Jackrabbits” remains my sincere hope.