Why they're the Chicago Blackhawks, not 'Black Hawks'

A lot of times, I feel a little strange writing “Chicago Blackhawks.” Something doesn’t seem quite right about it. It’s sort of like spelling an old junior high favorite band, Soundgarden. Is it Soundgarden or “Sound Garden”? It boggles the mind, really. (It’s Soundgarden, though.)

Joe Pelletier of Greatest Hockey Legends shares a history lesson on the subject. Apparently it’s been a question for the franchise since the team came into the NHL.

It was a question, at least, until the team officially decided to be the Blackhawks in 1986, according to Pelletier. He brings up the idea that maybe they made that decision for reasons beyond proper spelling.

The decision in 1986 to rechristen the team with the original one word spelling may have been a pre-emptive move to ward off future litigation. Over the years Native American groups have increasingly shown their objection the use of Indian names and logos for professional and college sports, such as the Blackhawks, Atlanta Braves, Cleveland Indians and University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux. By reverting to the one word spelling I suppose the Chicago hockey team could argue their name actually honours a piece of military history, and therefor would not need to change their name or compensate any Native group.

You know, aside from that big Indian head they use as their logo.

Taking a cue from recent news, like the fact that North Dakota will no longer be the Fighting Sioux, it might be true that the organization is smart to cover their backs. Political correctness aside, mascots like the Blackhawks (and the more questionably named Washington Redskins) have deep roots in sports history. That makes them big-time brand names worth a lot of money.

So, if you’ve ever wondered, the proper way to spell the team’s name really is Blackhawks.

Torres suspended pending hearing

Raffi Torres, Cory Schneider
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According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, Raffi Torres has been suspended pending his disciplinary hearing with the league for his hit on Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.

Torres was assessed a match penalty for targeting Silfverberg’s head on Saturday night.

The 33-year-old missed all of last season with a knee injury, and it looks like the start of his regular season will be delayed once again.

Head coach Bruce Boudreau said that Silfverberg could have come back into the game, but he was held out for precautionary reasons.

Ducks center Ryan Kesler didn’t hide his feelings after the contest.

“(Torres) is the same player every year,” Kesler told reporters. “He needs to learn how to hit. That has no part in our game anymore.”

Oilers place Scrivens on waivers

Jordan Martinook, Ben Scrivens
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The Edmonton Oilers placed Ben Scrivens on waivers on Sunday.

Should he go unclaimed, the 29-year-old will be sent to the American Hockey League.

It looks like Edmonton will enter the regular season with Cam Talbot and Anders Nilsson as their goaltenders.

Scrivens was the team’s number one goalie last year, but his overall numbers were among the worst for starting goaltenders in the NHL.

He had a 15-26-11 record with a 3.16 goals-against-average and a .890 save percentage in 57 games last season.

Scrivens is scheduled to make $2.3 million in the final year of his contract.

If he does end up in the AHL, the Oilers will carry $1.35 million of dead money on the salary cap.

The move comes one day after Edmonton placed Nikita Nikitin on waivers.

The 29-year-old officially cleared on Sunday afternoon.