In the history of minor league sports, particularly in the lower leagues that are barely a notch above a “beer” connotation, there have been countless teams that have folded their tent and closed up shop in the middle of the season. But have you ever heard of one changing its name mid-stream, without changing its league, home city or arena? We sure hadn’t, until today.
According to the Hartford Courant, the AHL’s very own Hartford Wolf Pack will change their name to the Connecticut Whale, in a nod to the NHL’s old Hartford Whalers. While the announcement of the impending change was expected to happen today, the change may not officially take place until perhaps February.
The impetus behind the new moniker is Howard Baldwin, founder of the Whalers and now better known as a producer of movies such as Days of Thunder, Ray, and Mystery Alaska. His company assumed control of the Wolf Pack’s business operations today, and the goal is to re-ignite a spark in what has been one of the AHL’s most successful markets over the last decade.