My last blog told the story of how Independence Pro Hockey became the Missouri Mavericks.
What about other teams that have called the Independence-Kansas City area home?
Due to a late completion in their home barn the first area professional hockey team played several away games before entertaining the home crowd in the 1927-28 season. Yes, they started the trend.
During this road trip the Kansas City Star referred to this team as the Blues. Why not?.......Kansas City had the Blues baseball team and a few years earlier had the Blues of the NFL.
By the time this team made its home debut locals knew it would be known as the Pla Mors after their home rink, the Pla Mor Arena. The Independence Events Center is the best arena in the CHL (just ask Brahmas or Cutthroats fans) but it would be difficult for the fans to yell “go IECs.”
Prior to the 1933-34 season the team honored one of their sponsors and changed their name to the Kansas City Greyhounds. The Mavericks have several outstanding sponsors but which would they name the team after? Would they call the local sextet the Missouri Dog Obedience Groups, the Independence Gray Chiropractics or the Midwest Gastros…..not to be confused with the Houston Astros?
During the last two years of the American Hockey Association everyone knew it was a matter of time until the United States would enter World War II. Amidst the patriotic feelings the KC team changed its name to the Americans. The Americans actually had a home game the day Japan attacked Pearl Harbor.
World War II brought an end to the AHA but when the war ended six of their cities iced teams in the newly formed United States (professional) Hockey League. The KC team once again became known as the Pla Mors.
During year five in the six season history of the USHL the local team became known as the Mo Hawks.
In their final campaign Kansas City first took the ice as the Cowboys. Our area has also had professional football and baseball teams which went by this moniker.
However, hockey fans rejected this handle and management decided three weeks into the season to have a Re-name the team Contest. The new name would be announced during the first intermission of a game at the Pla Mor Arena. Royals was chosen from options that included nicknames such as Mo Hawks and Rockets.
In 1950 and 1951 Kansas City had a hockey team called the Royals and a baseball team called the Blues. Twenty years later it was reversed.
In 1967, after a sixteen year absence, hockey returned to the local area when the St. Louis Blues, in their first NHL season, placed their top development club at the American Royal Arena in Kansas City…..the Kansas City Blues. The name fit with the local Blues and Jazz heritage.
When KC was granted an NHL team in 1974 Scouts was chosen following a name the team contest. The logo featured the Scout statue in Penn Valley Park. Like Nicole Kidman the team has undergone several name changes becoming the Colorado Rockies and New Jersey Devils.
The Scouts were followed by the second Kansas City Blues for one season and the Kansas City Red Wings for two with both teams taking names from their NHL parent clubs.
In 1990 the Kansas City Blades were born and had eleven wonderful seasons at Kemper Arena.
Three years after the Blades last season the Kansas City Outlaws came into existence. Unfortunately for local hockey fans local citizens were as eager to see the Outlaws as they are to see their in-laws and the team lasted just one season.
Local hockey fans are grateful the Mavericks have established a foothold so they no longer have to purchase new cars based on color, change their email addresses or have their tattoos removed.