We know very little about the NHL's 32nd franchise, which will begin play in Seattle starting in 2021. But soon the team will begin to materialize, starting with a name announcement in next few months. 

The ownership group for the Seattle franchise is in the process of finalizing their decision on a name and will reveal the choice prior to the NHL's All-Star break in January, according to Sportsnet's Chris Johnston.

"It sounds as though they're very, very close behind the scenes on finalizing that name and they intend to release that name to the public before the all-star break," Johnston said on Hockey Night in Canada. "So we'll start to get a little bit of personality to go with that team."

Last year, the Seattle Times polled fans over the course of a month asking what their vote would be regarding the team name. Over 140,000 votes were cast and a number of popular options emerged, but the Seattle Sockeyes won the vote with over 37,500 total votes.

Other popular options that finished behind the Sockeyes included:

  • The Seattle Totems
  • Seattle Metropolitans
  • Seattle Steelheads
  • Seattle Kraken

The sockeye salmon is a popular fish found throughout Washington that clearly holds a favorable place in the region. The Metropolitans was the name of a prior Seattle franchise that played in the Pacific Coast Hockey Association from 1915-1924 and became the first American team to ever win the Stanley Cup. 

Among the team names that have been officially registered by the Oak View Group, which is handling renovations of KeyArena in downtown Seattle: Rainiers, Kraken, Evergreens, Seals, Emeralds, Sea Lions, Sockeyes, Whales, Eagles, Totems, Cougars, Firebirds and Renegades.