Sunday, April 8, 2012

Four Word Team Names

Earlier this year we wrote about defenseman Bill Speer, who played for both the WHL's Salt Lake Golden Eagles and the WHA's New York Golden Blades, who we pointed out were among the unusual "Four Word Team Names", a group of clubs often from locations such as Los Angeles, Las Vegas or New York, who were christened with descriptive names, such as Fighting Saints, Golden Eagles or River Hawks.

Of note, we came across several teams which would have been four word teams in days gone by, but current naming trends have frequently combined two words into one, such as the St. John's IceCaps and the Winston-Salem IceHawks for example.

Additionally, when it came to college teams, we eliminated the words "University", "Institute" and "College", shortening the "University of Minnesota Golden Gophers" to the "Minnesota Golden Gophers" for the purposes of this list.

Leagues considered were North American professional and minor league teams active since 1970, Canadian Junior and American College leagues.

One final parameter, the word "of" was disregarded, particularly if used to create a team name that was a sentence, such as the "Mighty Ducks of Anaheim" or the "Beast of New Haven", which normally would have been the Anaheim Mighty Ducks or New Haven Beast if it weren't for some overly clever attempt at branding, which we are having no part of.

Now, onto the list of Four Word Team Names we were able to compile, but certainly invite you to submit any we may have missed.


New York Golden Blades

Sheehan Golden Blades, Sheehan Golden Blades

Bobby Sheehan of the short-lived Golden Blades


Prince Edward Island Senators
St. John's Maple Leafs
Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins

Fleury WBS Penguins, Fleury WBS Penguins

Marc-Andre Fleury while with the WBS Penguins


Des Moines Oak Leafs

Salt Lake Golden Eagles

Long Beach Ice Dogs

Khabibulin Ice Dogs, Khabibulin Ice Dogs

Nikolai Khabibulin looking particularly thrilled to be

a member of the Long Beach Ice Dogs


St. Catharines Black Hawks

Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds
Detroit Jr. Red Wings
Toronto St. Michael’s Majors

Gretzky Greyhounds, Gretzky Greyhounds

The Greyhounds most famous alumnus, Wayne Gretzky


Montreal Bleu Blanc Rouge

Cape Breton Screaming Eagles

St. John’s Fog Devils

Saint John Sea Dogs


Atlantic City Boardwalk Bullies


Thunder Bay Thunder Cats

Thunder Bay Thunder Hawks

Port Huron Border Cats


American International Yellow Jackets


Bowling Green State Falcons

Lake Superior State Lakers

Notre Dame Fighting Irish

Rolston Lakers, Rolston Lakers

Lake Superior State's Brian Rolston


Massachusetts Lowell River Hawks


North Dakota Fighting Sioux

St. Cloud State Huskies

Belfour Fighting Sioux, Belfour Fighting Sioux

Goaltender Ed Belfour of the endangered Fighting Sioux

Seven of our 26 are thanks to the word "Saint" in the location of the club and five are due to a three word "location" combined with a singular team name. Only one club had a three word team name, the Bleu Blanc Rouge.

Finally, we came across one five word team, the Central Hockey League's overly long named Rio Grande Valley Killer Bees! We're not 100% certain, but we think their name contains an adjective, a conjunction, an interjection, a pronoun and even a gerund.

David Marshall Killer Bees, David Marshall Killer Bees
David Marshall of the Killer Bees

This is certainly not meant to be an all-encompassing list, and we certainly invite you to submit any foreign, lower level or overlooked names we have not included in the comments section below and we look forward to seeing your submissions!


  1. The early-communist era Czechoslovakian teams had some awkward and lengthy names. My favorite is the appellation that Plzen had briefly in the early 1950s -- Sokol Závody Vladimíra Iljiče Lenina Plzeň. Newspapers shortened it to S. ZVIL Plzeň and I can't imagine anyone really called it by its full name. A year or two on the winds shifted again and they changed to the much simpler Spartak Plzeň.

  2. NCAA: Air Force Academy Eagles
    Arizona State Sun Devils
    Bowling Green State Falcons
    QMJHL:Cape Breton Screaming Eagles (
    CANADA JR A: Ajax Knob Hill Farms
    INTL: Auronzo di Cadore HC (Italy)
    Canadian Ukranian Athletic Club Blues (MB)

  3. Actually, Air Force is the Falcons and we are going to leave them out because of the word "Academy" falling under the same rule as not counting "University" or "Institute".

    Honestly, we don't ever recall hearing anything other than "Bowling Green Falcons" without "State", so you're right on that one and we'll add it to the list.

    We did have Cape Breton already listed too.

    Thanks for the contributions and thanks for reading.

  4. The St. Bonaventure Bonnies used to be called the Brown Indians. Back in the '80s, the hockey team still went by that name. What's more is the hockey team wore black and gold with a "B" prominent in their logo, which gave them sort of a Bruins look - which was strange, because the school colors are brown and white.

    Sorry - I couldn't find a photo.

    Anyway: St. Bonaventure Brown Indians!


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