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New hockey franchise unveils logo

This is the new logo of the New Mexico Ice Wolves, who will begin play this fall in the North American Hockey League at the Icepost Ice Arenas in Albuquerque. (New Mexico Ice Wolves)

The state’s fledgling North American Hockey League team is starting to take shape as the New Mexico Ice Wolves unveiled their logo with distinctive ties to Albuquerque and the state.

“We didn’t want to have a wolf or an ice wolf,” said team owner Stan Hubbard. “We we wanted to have our own wolf, we wanted to have a New Mexico ice wolf. We wanted to make it feel like New Mexico. We wanted it so that when it’s standing alone on a jersey or a cap, you know what it is.”

Designed by graphic artist Jim Bergquist, a man Hubbard had gotten to know through another project, the design was carefully crafted “to make sure it was unique and special and means something,” Hubbard said.

The color scheme of yellow and red reflects to state’s heritage and mirrors the state flag.

Since turquoise is the state stone, that was used in the eyes, which Hubbard particularly likes, especially with the hint at the Zia symbol

“When we introduced turquoise to the eyes, they became steely, icy,” he said.

There are some subtleties to the design, the division between the colors along the face.

“Originally, the division coming down the face was even, but it felt like we were missing something,” Hubbard said. “The artist looked at various photographs, and found some views of Sandia Mountain. It’s not the view we see, but if you look at the views the north of the mountain, the jagged edges that come down face, it look like the Sandia Mountain.”

That same scheme is mirrored in the wolf’s mouth, which is framed against New Mexico’s crystal clear skies as represented by the moon and stars.

The nose also is symbolic with a third set of Zia lines, as well as it fitting into the shape of a hot-air balloon, “because what is one of the things that Albuquerque is most famous for? The hot air balloon,” Hubbard said.

The team will begin NAHL play in the fall at the Icepost Ice Arenas, and a 33-foot rendition of the logo will gleam out at skaters when the remodeled facility reopens May 18.

“Our Ice Wolf is going to be there with its icy eyes and full of resolve for anybody that walks into the building,” Hubbard said. “I think he’s our own Ice Wolf, and a tremendous reflection of our wonderful Land of Enchantment of New Mexico.”