The Hartford-based American Hockey League team has decided to return to their roots and re-introduce a name with history and meaning to hockey fans in Connecticut.
That introductory paragraph could have been written three years ago, could have been written today.
A mere three seasons after ditching the Hartford Wolf Pack name in favour of the Connecticut Whale, in an effort to bring back some sense of their dear, departed NHL Hartford Whalers, the franchise yesterday announced that they will be ditching the Whale and returning to the Wolf Pack name.
“The return to the Hartford Wolf Pack name signifies a return to the roots of this franchise, emphasizing the ties that this team has to the Hartford community” – NY Rangers assistant GM Jim Schoenfeld
Part of the reason for the name change was a switch in ownership, taking over is Global Spectrum – the Philadelphia based arena operations company.
“There is a rich hockey history here in Hartford, Our primary goals are to revitalize hockey in the Hartford market, enhance the experience for the fans and bring a high-level of customer service to the venues in which we manage.” – New Wolf Pack GM Chris Lawrence.
Yeah, I’m pretty sure similar quotes to those above were also used when announcing the switch from Wolf Pack to Whale three years ago.
While bringing back the old identity of the Hartford Whalers for this team may have been a good idea in theory, in reality it just didn’t work out. Legal issues prevented the team from using the actual “Whalers” name or any logo that would have been anything similar to the original. When encountered with those obstacles the club should have just stopped and retained the Wolf Pack name or find some other avenue to go down instead of trotting out the fan revolting (yet legally acceptable) identity which they did.
Regardless a silly mistake has been corrected. Welcome back, Hartford Wolf Pack.