Chicago Blackhawks Commit to Keeping Their Name

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The Chicago Blackhawks have again committed to keeping their more than 60-year-old name despite pressure from activists to make a change.

The pro hockey team put out a statement on Friday confirming that they are sticking with their name.

According to Sports Business Journal’s Mark J. Burns, the team said:

“We continue to deepen our commitment to upholding our namesake and our brand. The work we’ve been doing over the last several months in expanding and deepening conversations and partnerships within the native community, we continue to feel really positive about the types of works we can do, the way which we can be better stewards of the namesake and the history, and to use our platforms to be educators, not only for our fans, but for our internal teams and making sure that we provide that reverence and respect that we talk about that we want to see come to life in everything we do across so many dimensions, both from a marketing standpoint, for a learning and education standpoint and by all means a community standpoint, in the ways on which we integrated native voices onto the lot of those efforts, We’re going to continue down this path and continue to hold our brand up in the highest levels of honor.”

The Blackhawks have been under some pressure to change their name but have steadfastly refused to do so. The team notes that it was originally named after its founder’s World War I Army unit, and only tangentially named after the Indian chief made famous in the 1830s with his brief war against the states of Illinois and Wisconsin. The team also said that the name honors Native Americans.

Still, the Blackhawks did recently put out an “indigenous land” statement in November that essentially claimed that the team is playing on “stolen” land.

“The Chicago Blackhawks acknowledge that the team, its foundation, and the spaces we maintain, work, and compete within, stand upon the traditional homelands of the Miami, Sauk, Fox, Ho-Chunk, Menominee, and the council of the Three Fires,” the team said in its statement.

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