Posts Tagged ‘Team Name’

Seattle’s NHL franchise won’t get a name in the near future, the organization confirmed Thursday.

“We will wait to begin general seat selection and we look for the right time to reveal our team name and brand,” CEO Tod Leiweke said in a statement. “We recognize the excitement around this, and we appreciate your patience.”

Leiweke added, “We are deferring payments due in April, May, and June for those who purchased premium seating.”

The league’s 32nd team reportedly hoped to unveil its nickname in Q1, which ends March 31, according to the Sports Business Journal’s Mark J. Burns.

Seattle will join the league ahead of the 2021-22 season and will play home games at the renovated KeyArena (now called the New Arena at Seattle Center).

The NHL put its season on hold March 12 amid the coronavirus outbreak. The spread of the virus has resulted in the cancellations and suspensions of leagues and tournaments across major and amateur sports worldwide.

On Tuesday, the Ottawa Senators confirmed that an unnamed player tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, marking the first case in the NHL.

There will be no teams named the Astros in two Southern California Little Leagues this season.

In response to the Houston Astros‘ illegal sign-stealing scheme, the Long Beach Little League and East Fullerton Little League have banned the Astros name, according to Keith Sharon of The Orange County Register.

“Parents are disgusted,” said Long Beach Little League president Steve Klaus. “They are disgusted with the Astros and their lack of ownership and accountability. We know there’s more to this scandal. What’s coming tomorrow? With the Astros, you’ve got premeditated cheating.”

The Long Beach Little League, which consists of 48 teams and 560 players, previously stopped using Braves and Indians team names because it didn’t want children wearing images of Native Americans on their jerseys.

Greg Taylor, president of the East Fullerton Little League, said his league banned the name after it “received negative feedback from parents who felt Astros name was equated with impropriety.”

Families from the East Fullerton league are scheduled to attend a game between the Astros and Los Angeles Angels in April, which has also prompted some pushback.

“Ironically, our district chose Astros vs. Angels game on April 5 for our annual event at Anaheim Stadium in our October planning meeting,” Taylor said. “We have heard from several anxious parents about players being exposed to inappropriate or unruly behavior.”

The Edmonton Eskimos of the Canadian Football League have decided to keep their team name despite concerns from some Inuit leaders.

The club said consultations in the North provided no agreement on whether the name should be changed.

“We heard a wide range of views, ranging from individuals within the Inuit community who were very supportive of the name, and some [who] weren’t as supportive,” Janice Agrios, chairwoman of the team’s board, said Friday.

“What we did consistently hear was a desire for more engagement with the club.”

Concerns were raised in 2015 by Nathan Obed, head of Canada’s national Inuit organization, days before the team played the Ottawa Redblacks for the Grey Cup. Obed has said that Inuit people are not mascots.

Similar concerns have been raised about other professional sports teams using Indigenous names or references.

Justice Murray Sinclair, head of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, has said that it’s time to get rid of Indigenous mascots, which would never be tolerated if they targeted any other cultural group.

The Eskimos team met with Inuit leaders and people in the northern communities of Iqaluit in Nunavut, and Inuvik, Yellowknife and Tuktoyaktuk in the Northwest Territories. The team also hired a research firm to do a telephone survey among Inuit, reaching as far eastward as Labrador.

Research results under wraps

Agrios declined to release the research results.

She said support varied geographically. Respondents in the western Arctic were almost as supportive of the name as the team’s season ticket-holders. In the eastern Arctic, where most Inuit people live, support fell off.

“There would be more fans of our club in the western Arctic and so that’s where we found a very high level of support for the name,” Agrios said.

Those communities were most eager to see more visits from the team.

“They’ve asked us to participate in youth events, they’ve asked us to participate in community events,” she said. “That’s what we’ve been doing and that’s what we intend to continue to do.”

A national survey conducted in 2017 found 57 per cent of Canadians found the CFL team’s current name acceptable.

Matter settled for now

Agrios said the issue is settled unless something changes.

“The plan is to continue to listen to all views. If circumstances change, we’ll evaluate.”

Although American Inuit continue to use the word Eskimo, Canada’s northern people left that name behind at about the same time they began negotiating their land claim in the 1970s.

Many historians believe the origin of Eskimo comes from an Algonquin term meaning “eaters of raw meat.”

Others believe it actually comes from another aboriginal term that refers to people wearing snowshoes.

The people themselves have used the word Inuit for centuries. It means “the people” in Inuktut.

Ron Francis is shedding some light on how soon Seattle’s NHL team is expected to choose a name.

“It’s my understanding we’ll hopefully get a name out the first part of 2020, and hopefully with that will be some colors as well,” the club’s general manager said, according to’s Nick Cotsonika.

Francis was named the expansion franchise’s first GM earlier this month. He has yet to hire a head coach.

The team won’t begin play until the fall of 2021, following that year’s NHL draft and expansion draft.

Halifax’s proposed CFL franchise now has a name — the Atlantic Schooners.

“I’m happy to announce that the 10th team in the CFL will be known as the Atlantic Schooners,” John Ryerson announced to thunderous cheers from hundreds of fans Friday night.

Ryerson spoke at the annual Grey Cup East Coast Kitchen Party. He is the organizer of this longtime Grey Cup social, designed to bring an East Coast flavour to Canada’s big game.

Schooners beat out other suggestions such as Atlantic Convoy, Storm, and Admirals.

It was picked in a contest and already has a history. The Schooners was to be the name for a proposed CFL team in the 1980s, but that dream never materialized.

Fans at the Kitchen Party said it was the right choice.

“I love the name. I was hoping it was going to stay Schooners,” said Daryl Shipman from Winnipeg, clad in a blue Schooners jersey.

“It epitomizes the East Coast, sailing ships, and the Maritime aspect of it.”

Leslie-Anne McKenzie of Calgary, also in Schooner Blue, agreed

“(It’s) absolutely the right name. This is excellent news for the league,” she said.

“The Schooners only makes sense because it’s history.”

Next up is getting a place to play.

The Maritime Football Partnership, which is pursuing the bid, is eyeing a parcel of land on the east side of Halifax harbour for a 24,000-seat facility. The cost is estimated at $170 million to $190 million and the group has said it will need public help with the financing.

So far more than 5,000 fans have put down season ticket deposits.

CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie says the CFL is keen to have Halifax become its 10th franchise.

Earlier Friday, speaking to reporters, Ambrosie said the league has signed a step-by-step agreement of what needs to be accomplished to get the franchise launched.

“Ultimately, the big hurdle is the stadium,” said Ambrosie.

But he stressed the willingness is there.

“We’re totally committed to their efforts get that 10th team,” he said.

“For many of us, that’s been a dream now for decades the idea of this truly coast to coast Canadian football league.”

Storied Halifax nevertheless will likely send CFL players running to their atlases, according to a random, unscientific poll of Grey Cup participants in Edmonton.

“(It’s the) first time I heard about Halifax to be honest with you,” said Ottawa Redlbacks receiver R.J. Harris.

“I don’t know anything about it.”

Ottawa slotback Dominique Rhymes, from Miami, had heard good things about the entertainment scene.

“I heard the night life is pretty good,” he said. “I’ve never been, but I think I might go in the coming months.”

Calgary Stampeders linebacker Jamar Wall, from Texas, said “I don’t know anything about Halifax.

“I’ll probably be long gone before that (franchise) happens, but good luck to the guys who could potentially be there.”

The U.S. Army is renewing its battle with the Vegas Golden Knights over their team name, but the club insists it’s done nothing wrong.

On Wednesday, the Department of the Army filed a notice of opposition against Black Knight Sports and Entertainment – the company that owns and operates the NHL expansion franchise – with the U.S. Trademark and Patent Office over the use of the club’s moniker, as obtained by’s Chris Creamer.

The team fired back Thursday.

“We strongly dispute the Army’s allegations that confusion is likely between the Army Golden Knights parachute team and the Vegas Golden Knights major-league hockey team,” the NHL squad said in a statement, via Sports Illustrated’s Alex Prewitt.

“Indeed, the two entities have been coexisting without any issues for over a year (along with several other Golden Knights trademark owners) and we are not aware of a single complaint from anyone attending our games that they were expecting to see the parachute team and not a professional hockey game,” the Golden Knights added.

“That said, in light of the pending trademark opposition proceedings, we will have no further comment at this time and will address the Army’s opposition in the relevant legal forums.”

Golden Knights owner Bill Foley, a U.S. Military Academy graduate, said in the past that he initially wanted to call the team the Black Knights, the name used by Army’s athletic program, but settled on Golden Knights because that’s the name of the school’s parachute team.

The NHL club has until Feb. 19 to respond to the notice of opposition.