Wings to Pick Fourth After Draft Lottery

For the fourth straight season, the Detroit Red Wings fell back in the NHL Entry Draft due to the Draft Lottery.

Despite having the best odds at picking first-overall in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft by virtue of their 31st-place finish during the 2019-20 season, the Red Wings were passed by three teams to drop to the fourth spot.  The Ottawa Senators will pick third, the Los Angeles Kings will pick second, and a placeholder team representing one of the losers of the league’s qualifying playoff round won the right to pick first.


What do you want me to say? The odds were always on the Wings picking fourth. Of course, the odds were also such that only Ottawa could be expected to pass Detroit, yet here we are. Again.

There will be good players available at fourth overall. But the Wings really need one of these to hit eventually.

AHL Palm Springs Update: Firebirds Back in Play

With the American Hockey League’s Henderson Silver Knights officially unveiling their name and logo last week and no announcement in sight for the National Hockey League’s Seattle expansion franchise (though I’d be shocked if it wasn’t some form of “Seattle Kraken” at this point), I decided to dig a little further into Seattle’s farm team in Palm Springs, CA, and see if there was anything new.

Somewhat surprisingly, there was, with “Palm Springs Firebirds” having been saved from the trademark trash heap.

After a flurry of domain registrations and trademark filings last August, Firebirds seemed like the front-runner for the new AHL team’s name, over options such as Eagles, Hawks, Sun, Dragons, and Falcons.  The team’s temporary web site ran with the slogan “We’ve got the fire, now bring on the ice.”

However, on November 12, 2019, the trademark filing for Palm Springs Firebirds was rejected by the US Patent and Trademark Office, due to the name’s similarity to that of the Ontario Hockey League’s Flint Firebirds.  Overnight, the slogan became “We’ve got the heat, now bring on the ice,” and the team’s direction seemed to have changed.  The trademark for Palm Springs Hawks was abandoned but the remaining four all made it through the registration process (though, in a league with the Colorado Eagles, Palm Springs Eagles would never actually be an option).

On May 11, 2020, one day before the six month limit on responding to the rejection of their Firebirds application, the Palm Springs organization did file a response.  Included was permission from the Flint Firebirds to use the name.  This update was accepted by the USPTO a day later and approved to be published for opposition (the final step in a trademark filing and likely a rubber stamp with the Flint Firebirds on board) on June 2.

With Firebirds an option once again, and given the effort that went into making it such, I think we might just be seeing the Palm Springs Firebirds in the AHL’s 2021-22 season.