When it was announced Anaheim’s AHL team was moving from Norfolk, Va., to San Diego, Calif., talk immediately began about what the club would be named. Sunday afternoon, it appears San Diego hockey fans have gotten their answer: the relocated team will take on the Gulls name, paying tribute to the longstanding tradition of area hockey teams being given that moniker.
The name was unintentionally leaked and picked up on by
SportsLogos.net’s Chris Creamer. San Diego’s AHL website featured the logo as part of the header along with a registration for merchandise. San Diego’s history with the Gulls goes all the way back to 1966, when they joined the WHL. The team played eight seasons in the WHL, but stopped operating in 1974 when the WHA relocated the Jersey Knights from Cherry Hill, N.J., to San Diego. The WHA’s San Diego Mariners replaced the original Gulls at the San Diego Sports Arena. The team came back to life in 1990, however, when San Diego landed a franchise in the IHL. In 1992-93, the Gulls were one of the best teams in all of minor professional hockey, winning 62 of 82 games. By season’s end, the team captured the Fred A. Huber Trophy for the best record in the IHL, but the season ended rather unceremoniously with the team falling in four straight games in the Turner Cup finals. Two season later, the team relocated to Los Angeles and became the Ice Dogs. Shortly after relocation plans were announced for the IHL club, the Gulls popped up once again, this time in the WCHL. In eight WCHL seasons, the Gulls won five league championships and were the regular season champions four times. In 2003-04, the team joined the ECHL, playing in the league until 2006. The present day Gulls are a Jr. A team in the Western States Hockey League. When the team begins play in the AHL, it appears the logo will be very close to the Gulls of the WSHL. The image above is the logo that appears on the
San Diego AHL team website, and below you can find the WSHL’s Gulls logo. The only real difference is the styling of the text and placement of ‘San Diego.’
The Gulls will begin play in San Diego in 2015-16 as part of the AHL's Pacific Division.