Phoenix Coyotes Getting New Name

Arena deal requires team to be called 'Arizona Coyotes'

The Phoenix Coyotes — who haven't played in the city of Phoenix since leaving the America West Arena in 2003 — will have a new name in 2013. The city of Glendale, Ariz. approved an arena management deal on Tuesday that should help keep the team in town for the foreseeable future. Among other things, that deal requires the team to be renamed the Arizona Coyotes.

At the moment, the name change is not quite official. The sale to Greg Jamison still has to be completed and there are plenty of questions surrounding that these days. But assuming that all goes through as planned, I would expect the name changed to be announced as the same press conference as the sale.

Here's the exact wording from the arena agreement (page 40):

The Team Owner shall use commercially reasonable efforts to have the name of the Team changed to the “Arizona Coyotes” as soon as is commercially feasible.

New owner has planned for name change all along

The Coyotes' coming name change isn't hot off the presses or anything. It's been talked about for years (though I haven't really gotten it on the record here until now). In fact — more recently — Jamison has been talking about changing the name to Arizona Coyotes since at least June.

According to a report from CBS Sports:

It looks as if the Phoenix Coyotes will change their name although they will have to wait a year. Jamison wants to call the team the Arizona Coyotes, joining the NHL's Arizona Cardinals and baseball's Arizona Diamondbacks as professional sports teams seeking a statewide appeal.

Could they change more than just the name?

The logical next question I have to ask is whether Jamison would take this opportunity to change more than just the name. Could the team's whole image use a makeover considering the drama it's been forced to endure in recent years?

Franchise logo history: Winnipeg Jets 1979–90 | 1990–96 | Phoenix Coyotes 1996–2003

If so, it would be the franchise's fifth logo in 34 years (not including the WHA). The Winnipeg Jets joined the NHL in 1979 and changed logos 11 years later in 1990. The team then relocated to Arizona in 1996, a move which required a new logo to go with a new name. The Coyotes' current look was introduced in 2003, just seven years after that relocation.

What do you think? Keep the logos and swap out Phoenix for Arizona? Or go back to the drawing board and hopefully find something that could stick for decades to come?

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Reader Comments (30)

I think they should rebrand, yes.

I don't understand why the Jamison deal is even going to get done. It screams bad investment. They're playing in a city that the NHL shouldn't even be in, first and foremost, as much as Gary Bettman wants to be. Then, the NHL is in the midst of a very damaging labor dispute. Every bit of gains the NHL has seen since the last lockout is being destroyed right now. A lot of people might not even come back to the game once it does. Then, the Coyotes franchise itself is financially weak - Why would people want to invest in that, in a city in the middle of the desert where you need to play on ice? It would make a lot more sense if they were in Quebec City or Seattle, even Kansas City. But Arizona?

They'd have to make the case that a serious rebrand is going to sell new jerseys and that they're going to have a damn good program on the ice so they can fill the seats. That's the only way they're going to succeed in Arizona.

Nov 29 · 1:50 AM PST | Unregistered Commenterhmich176

I know it would be logic to have a new branding, but I like their current look. I railly think it can stick through the decades. Clean and simple! But at the end, it's a nonsense keeping'em in the desert.

Nov 29 · 5:58 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterKevin

The Coyotes have one of the best logos and brand packages in all of pro sport - a great mix of a clean, modern feeling that avoids doodads and pointless stripes (see: Flames, Calgary; Blues, St. Louis; or even Cardinals, Arizona for reference), and a classic throwback feel.
Just change it to Arizona and be done with it.

Nov 29 · 7:13 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterNoah

I think Phoenix Coyotes sounds better than Arizona Coyotes. But it doesn't matter that much, as I don't think it will be a long time before their eventual move to Quebec City.

Nov 29 · 7:55 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterBrian Brideau

I think the current logo and brand are quite solid, and I wouldn't want to see them rebrand and end up with something that isn't as good. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Calling them Phoenix is broken, but not the logos.

Nov 29 · 8:12 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterJonsey

I don't know that there's a better name for a team located in Arizona without calling them some form of a rattle snake. I think Arizona Coyotes works fine. I'm always interested in seeing new teams or new names, but not here. They really should be moving from Arizona to Quebec or Seattle. But since that isn't happening currently, then Coyotes should remain the name. Perhaps change the uniform a little bit but other than that it's fine.

Nov 29 · 9:15 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterSteve

I hope they don't rebrand. I don't mind the name change from Phoenix to Arizona, but I love the current logo, it is probably one of the best in the league in my opinion.

Nov 29 · 10:41 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterDave

Go back to the old green/black color, and bring back that epic 3rd jersey they used to have.

Nov 29 · 10:51 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterLucaslee

I think the current logo looks good, and I really love the current home and away jerseys, so I hope there won't be an excessive rebranding. And if they change the logo, keep the colours and jerseys intact (wouldn't mind a different 3rd though).

Nov 29 · 11:32 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterSimon

Name change makes sense -- Phoenix traditionally expected to rise from the ashes, which is an unrealistic expectation for this franchise

Nov 29 · 11:43 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterCharlesofCamden

Just wanted to say the new site update looks great. :)

Nov 29 · 1:38 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterBatman

They are going to be moved eventually anyways, you might as well do it now and save yourself hundreds of millions of dollars. If they brought back the Jets name, they can definitely bring back the Nordiques name in Quebec.

Nov 29 · 2:11 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterChad L

I say just call em the desert dogs

Nov 29 · 2:13 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterLou

I think they have a good logo and sweater, and branded well overall. But I would rather see the team rebranded to either Quebec Nordiques or Seattle Totems than Arizona Coyotes.

Nov 29 · 2:29 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterStephen Trinder

keep the logo and jerseys as they are, just add a new shoulder patch, with 'AC' as part of it or maybe the arizona state flag.
or even better, move the team to quebec or seattle where they actually stand a chance of making a profit!!!

Nov 29 · 2:45 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterJerseyman

They should change the name to the Phoenix Phoenix.

In all seriousness, I like the name Phoenix Coyotes more but I understand the reasoning behind the change. Though their current look does stand out in the NHL, I can't say Im a particularly big fan of it.

Nov 29 · 5:50 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterA

Phoenix had amazing jersey and one of the best logos ever in the late 1990s and early 2000s. Then they messed it up. Wish they'd go "retro", maybe slightly updated.

Nov 29 · 5:55 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterPablo

Wish they would call themselves the "Howlers". Much smoother off the tongue, relates to the current coyote name and logo, and vaguely harkens back to the Jet days (e.g. howling jet engine).

Just my two cents that really has no real value to anybody...

Nov 29 · 9:09 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterRyan J

IMO the Arizona Coyotes name dosn't have as nice a ring to it as the current Phoenix Coyotes name. But really? Do they really have to change the city name to Arizona? The Arena is located only a half hour drive out of Phoenix. I don't see why the city name would be a big deal. It'll take me quite a bit of time (as I'm sure it will for many Coyotes and hockey fans) to get used to that new name. I don't like it.

Nov 29 · 9:29 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterMatt Marczel

Their third jersey is one of my favorites in the history of hockey, and I'd love to see that become their home with an away version made, but that's unlikely. Instead, I say keep the logo. It's great. Simple, but fresh. In addition, I like their away jersey, and the home is good but a little bland. All in all, I say stay the same, just make an updated shoulder patch since the PHX one is no longer applicable.

Nov 29 · 9:55 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterAndrew O.

Setting aside the franchise's monetary troubles and the suitability of Arizona as a site for NHL hockey for a moment, its branding following the move from Winnipeg got one major thing right: the name. A non-plural moniker like "Avalanche" or "Lightning" was thankfully not chosen. Secondly, as a blank slate upon which to create a look, one could hardly come up with a better name than "Coyotes". This is where the new Phoenix franchise made a bold, yet unfortunately tragic decision with their desert landscape mural jerseys and anthropomorphized coyote logo. Their clean, classic sweaters they sport now was the right way to go. The current colour scheme and striping would be difficult to improve on. Still, with all the potential that the Coyotes name carries for a logo and youth-oriented branding, it is hard to claim that the logo they use now is a true home run. Call it competently done. There is nothing outright wrong with it, but count me as one who would like to see some truly talented artists take a shot at redoing it.

Nov 30 · 5:20 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterC. Armstrong

does anybody else think that A-RI-ZO-NA CO-YO-TES is just way too many syllables? sounds kinda awkward to me. especially when there isn't exactly an easy way to shorthand it (i.e. the d'backs). the arizona yotes just sounds strange. doesnt exactly roll off the tongue...

but as has been previously mentioned, the rebrand should be happening in Seattle or Quebec, not Arizona. sorry yotes fans, you've had plenty of time to prove you're deserving of an NHL franchise. the fact that during the playoffs last year it wouldve been cheaper for a kings fan to fly round trip to phoenix, stay overnight in a hotel and buy tickets to the kings-yotes game in phoenix than to buy the same ticket at the staples center is absolutely ridiculous....

Nov 30 · 1:39 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterGrant

And queue all other hockey fans and there argument that the Phoenix, or Glendale, Peoria, or arizona coyotes... whatever... how they dont deserve a team, our attendance and how the only thing we use " arena" for is the air conditioning... But lets exclude the fact even with the lockout season tickets sales our at a record high, (I got mine!), that they have made the playoffs the past 3 years and even won the division last year... whens the last time you can say that Toronto? or my personal favorite to taunt, Quebec... go nordiques right?? (smh)... how about the numerous trophies we have won in our short life span... 2 Jack Adams awards and Shane Doan Grabbing 2 as well Mark Messier, and King Clancy Memorial Trophy... I am perfectly fine calling them whatever they want as long as it keeps hockey in my city... I realize that this is not prime real estate for hockey... trust me I get it... but GASP!! there is hockey fans in Phoenix... Greg Jamison took the San Jose Sharks from a money pit and turned it into one of the top producing hockey clubs in the NHL... So please spare me your tireless move here move there bullshit... Arizona hockey is here to stay!

Nov 30 · 2:51 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterRhyan

I think everyone who says the coyotes should move should go to hell

Nov 30 · 4:02 PM PST | Unregistered Commenteriihfjerseycollector

I don't know if it makes sense locally - considering the heavy use in youth hockey. The current logo is used at rinks and in Coyotes sponsored youth programs all over the Phoenix-metro area (yes, we have a lot of ice rinks in Arizona), from Gilbert and Chandler in the Southeast to Peoria in the Northwest, I think after the success they had last season, any major logo change would be a bit of a step back"brand -recognition" wise.

I think an alternate logo change along with a new third jersey is not out of the question though.

I also happen to also agree the IIHFJerseyCollector. Go bother another fan base. It's awesome you want to hog the game all to yourselves, but quite frankly you're being dicks. The fans here love the game and so do the players, so get of our backs about where the team "deserves" to be, because it's right where it belongs, and now that we will soon have an owner who finally cares as much as we do to make the team successful on and off the ice. Take Off.

Dec 2 · 1:00 AM PST | Unregistered Commenterrobbievgb

The current Coyotes identity is a decent enough look for them, but it's going to forever be associated with the current mess that they're in. If they're going to change the name they really ought to get themselves a new logo.

Dec 3 · 8:45 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterWildwing64

I say they keep the same look (although they should add a waist stripe on at least the red jersey), but they have to do something with the shoulder logo that says PHX if they're not going to be called Phoenix.

Dec 3 · 10:16 AM PST | Unregistered CommenterWingnut

As a Kings fan (and season ticket holder when the NHL actually plays games) I’ve gotta say from a completely unbiased perspective (I hate the Coyotes!), the Coyotes jersey is one of the most underrated ones in the league. I absolutely love their home and away jerseys. It’s simple, timeless, not boring, and the Coyote logo really is iconic. Moreoever it fits the key for any logo: “will we look at this uniform in 10 years and be embarrassed?” Nope. It’s great.

In an alternative universe if I wasn’t a Kings fan I would’ve probably bought one of their kits. I hope they don’t get rid of it. I think a re-naming while they’re in Arizona isn’t necessary… Coyotes seems representative of the area.

FINALLY, the number 1 reason they shouldn’t change their name: they really have had some loyal fans over the years and after watching the team make a long playoff run last season, it would stink if they suddenly changed everything around. The issue with the team isn’t a bad name or bad team (that’s the irony), it’s the fact that the arena happens to be far away from where the hockey fans live. A new name won’t suddenly boost interest. If anything it will alienate those who like the team.

Dec 3 · 12:00 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterShekhar

Even coming from a Jets fan. I think they should go back to the late '90s look, from when the team actually was in Phoenix. Those were some great sweaters.

Dec 3 · 5:26 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterCole

Short n' Sweet... IMO, The Coyotes, have one of the best logos and jerseys in the NHL. Leave it alone. <NHL, What's That?>

Dec 5 · 1:55 PM PST | Unregistered CommenterJuston

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