Typically reserved for NHL expansion and NHL relocation, seven cities (Toronto, Detroit, New York, Oakland, Chicago, Anaheim, Phoenix) have assigned eleven new names for their NHL team absent a move, since the league's inaugural season in 1917.
The chart below shows each instance of a renaming absent expansion or relocation, sorted by year, old team name and new team name.
|Year||Old Team Name||New Team Name|
|1918||Toronto Blueshirts||Toronto Arenas|
|1919||Toronto Arenas||Toronto St. Patricks|
|1927||Toronto St. Patricks||Toronto Maple Leafs|
|1930||Detroit Cougars||Detroit Falcons|
|1932||Detroit Falcons||Detroit Red Wings|
|1941||New York Americans||Brooklyn Americans|
|1967||California Seals||Oakland Seals|
|1970||Oakland Seals||California Golden Seals|
|1986||Chicago Black Hawks||Chicago Blackhawks|
|2006||Mighty Ducks of Anaheim||Anaheim Ducks|
|2014||Phoenix Coyotes||Arizona Coyotes|
The most recent team renaming came in June 2014 as part of a last ditch effort to avoid relocation and keep the Coyotes in Phoenix under new ownership after years of financial distress and league ownership.
Of the eleven newly named teams, five have won the Stanley Cup under their new namesake (Toronto St. Patricks, Toronto Maple Leafs, Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks, Anaheim Ducks) including one in the inaugural year of their name change (Anaheim Ducks 2007), one relocated (California Golden Seals to Cleveland Barons), and two fell prey to NHL contraction (Brooklyn Americans, Cleveland Barons).
Here's hoping the desert dogs enjoy more success on and off the ice with their new name. They're due some good fortune in the Sonoran.
* See also History of NHL Expansion.