NHL Las Vegas team chooses name, owner denies floating fakes

LAS VEGAS, NV - JUNE 22: Owner Bill Foley of the new Las Vegas NHL franchise attends the 2016 NHL Awards at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino on June 22, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Owner Bill Foley of the new Las Vegas NHL franchise. (Getty Images)

Las Vegas NHL owner Bill Foley has decided on a team name.

“We have registered the three names related to Knights,” Foley said. “(They’re) Desert Knights, Silver Knights and Golden Knights and we have clearance on those names and we picked one of them.”

When asked to give some clues on which one of those three he picked, Foley chuckled and said, “I can tell you it’s going to be one of those three names.”

The holdup now has to do with the team’s color scheme and how Foley’s vision will look on a jersey. Foley hopes that the team will have an announcement in early-to-mid November.

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“We settled on the name about 45 days ago, maybe even a bit more than that. So then it was just refining the logo and refining the color scheme that goes around that logo. We’ve had five different webinars with Adidas and the League, kind of looking at the colors and how they work together,” Foley said. “I’m really trying to develop a powerful color scheme that our guys will feel great about wearing and they’ll feel strong. I just want it to reflect kind of the culture of the team and that’s probably why it’s taking longer. I’m probably the hang-up. Just trying to get it as close to perfect as I can.”

Foley wouldn’t give further details on the colors, other than saying he wants them to “signify strength, the strength of character, power and colors we can build a culture of ‘never give up, never give in, always go forward, always advance.’”

Added Foley, “We also want to get some colors that have a relationship to Las Vegas so we’re trying to work that in, so it has been a process. It has been interesting but it has been a real process.”

The naming process has involved several different reported possibilities from variations on the word ‘Hawk’ to the ‘Knights’ template. The billionaire businessman said that he had not pushed fake names as a misdirection ploy. In an early September piece, he was quoted as saying he had floated false name possibilities.

“I’ve had fun on the name, but I never floated a fake name,” Foley said. “I don’t know where that came from. What we did is we registered a number of different names. We registered some names dealing with ‘Hawk’ because for a period of time I thought, ‘Boy, Nighthawks that sounds kind of interesting’ and Desert Hawks. Then we started moving on to a name associated with Knights so we kind of went beyond the Hawks names.”

Foley pointed out he has needed to be more careful as this journey to name the team has reached a critical point.

“It’s really getting the names trademarked and trade named and getting them trademarked and trade named not just for hockey but also for apparel. That’s been the big thing we’ve been working on. That’s what we’ve been trying to be very closed-mouthed about what the name is going to be because as soon as I kind of indicated it might be X, Y or Z everyone went out and was trying to register the names, register the domain names, they were trying to come up with color schemes and register them. I just learned I had to be careful. I just underestimated how many people are out there watching this and trying to grab the name.”

Originally, the hope was that the Las Vegas franchise could unveil the name in early October, but Foley is OK with the delay. For him, getting the name, colors and logo right is more important than getting them done as quickly as possible.

“I want this to be serious,” Foley said. “I want to build a culture around this name.”

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Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!