When NBA teams, like the Jazz, switch cities, do the nicknames make sense?

Back on Jan. 23, 2017, Utah Jazz owner Gail Miller announced that team ownership would be transferred into a legacy trust, assuring the Jazz never leave the Beehive State, according to the Deseret News.

“We’ve been clear from the beginning that our mission is to make sure that the Jazz stay in Utah,” Miller said. She added later: “Our goal is and has always been to win an NBA championship. Utah would not be the same without the Utah Jazz.”

Utah’s NBA team isn’t a home-grown product, though, moving from New Orleans to the Beehive State in 1979. The Millers purchased the team in 1985.

While the Jazz’s old home of New Orleans is also the home of modern jazz music and holds a jazz festival every year to pay homage to the culture, Utah is more well known for its religious makeup, the Great Salt Lake and pioneers. (Incidentally, we almost had a “pioneer” soccer team. Real Salt Lake nearly took on the name Pioneers or Highlanders before Real Salt Lake won out.)

Plenty of teams from throughout the NBA’s history, however, have moved from one spot to another and kept their names, even when they’re not a perfect fit.

Others have taken the extra step to change their names, for better or for worse.

Here’s a breakdown of those names with a few exceptions to the rule.

Atlanta Hawks

Players with the Atlanta Hawks are seen on the court during player introductions before an NBA basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies Saturday, March 11, 2017, in Memphis, Tenn.
(Brandon Dill, Associated Press)

Transition path: Tri-Cities Blackhawks to Milwaukee Hawks to St. Louis Hawks to Atlanta Hawks

It took some time, but the Hawks eventually landed in Atlanta. Does the move make sense? Hawks are fairly common in Atlanta, though they’re also popular throughout much of North America, according to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

Atlanta is home to both broad-winged and red-tailed hawks. The former are often seen in the fall and spring,…

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