Saturday, 25 July 2020

Day Of The Tentacle

The name that the vast majority of social media wanted was the name they revealed on Thursday, and Tom Leiweke's announcement made it official as the Seattle Kraken rose from the depths on July 23, 2020. While there were other names in contention as the potential team name - "over 1,200 names" as Amazon Web Services CEO Andy Jassy noted to ESPN - the imagery that this team chose to use in its look is fantastic and what it could potentially use in marketing ideas could be pretty epic. While I wasn't against the "Sockeyes" or other fishing imagery due to Seattle's history with the ocean, I have a feeling that the Kraken will make Seattle proud with their look and their new team once they hit the ice.

There were reports that the ownership group had considered "Metropolitans" as the name for the team, but NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman reportedly threw water on that idea because he didn't want to have to rename an NHL Division. Honestly, if this is the reason for not using the "Metropolitans" name when the city has a history with that name thanks to their early-20th century Stanley Cup-winning squad, that says a lot about the pride of Gary Bettman when one considers that the Metropolitan Division might be the dumbest name in all of sports. I know I'll never be the Commissioner of the NHL in this life, but I assure you that, if it ever were to happen, we'd be going back to the Smythe, Norris, Adams, and Patrick Divisions in a heartbeat.

In any case, as Emily Kaplan wrote in the linked ESPN piece above, "[a]round Christmas 2019, the group was all but settled on" the Kraken name for the team, and the team went ahead and did everything they could to prevent anyone from mentioning the name and "Seattle" in the same sentence until Thursday. I'd say that despite the online chatter about the name, the group did a phenomenal job in keeping this from hitting any sort of message board, forum, or social media site for that long!

When you see the logo at first, the stylized "S" looks pretty good in contrast to the dark blue background, but it's the little things that make this logo great. Clearly, the "S" is for Seattle, but it also harkens back to the Metropolitans logo as seen above as the new Seattle NHL team will stand at center ice with an S upon their chests just as the Metropolitans did. While the marketing material talked about the bevel in the "S" being about how boats were carved for sea life, I look at how the bevels create a look like the segments in the "S" are waves in the water. Combined with the tentacle down the middle, it looks like the kraken is lurking beneath the water, waiting to strike with that powerful arm. Adding in the red eye of the beast only serves to make this leviathan below the surface look more dangerous. I'm not sure about you, but I like this idea of the waves more than the boat explanation, but to each their own. Either way, I like the logo.

I know the Islanders wear a lighthouse on their shoulders, but this secondary logo that the Kraken rolled out that will on their shoulders might be the best in the league. Incorporating the Seattle Space Needle into the anchor image to tie the Seattle metropolis to the maritime history of the city has to rank up there as one of the best logos - primary or secondary - of all-time. While some Seattle logos have used the Space Needle and others have used marine imagery, the Kraken combining the two seems so easy to do that it makes me wonder how it wasn't done before. Regardless, this secondary logo needs to be used in a lot of their marketing because it's that darn good in this writer's eyes.

Speaking of marketing, there's already one Kraken superfan who decided that the logos can be improved if they were put together! Check out the tattoo that Redditor "Seaside_Suicide" went out and got after the new Kraken logos were released! Honestly, the primary and secondary logos look even better when put together, and perhaps this could be a design for a future alternate jersey logo? I'd hope so!

Speaking of jerseys, here's what the Squid Squad will be wearing on the ice, and they look sharp. While they won't top the Best Jersey lists, the contrasts in the colours when placed on a white background as one will see on the ice allow the jerseys to pop. The red accents on the jersey give that little bit of colour needed to let the blues do their thing, and that logo really stands out on the dark blue colour. These are gonna look good flying around the ice next year!

Full marks to the Seattle NHL team on their introduction on Thursday as the Kraken. Yes, there are all sorts of jokes one can make about "Krakheads" regarding the drug references, but we're more mature than that, right? We can use "Squid Squad" as I did above or "Team Tentacle" if you want to get creative. If you're gonna follow the Team Tentacle idea, the new arena being built in Seattle can even take on the name of "Maniac Mansion". There are so many fun ways to spin the names for this team's fans that we can have some real fun with this if we apply ourselves, so let's do that. All drug jokes will cease here and now on this blog because I'm down with Team Tentacle moving forward!

As a final note, the HBIC banner at the top has been updated with the new Seattle colours along with placing them with the rest of the Pacific Division. In doing so, the Coyotes moved to join the Central Division to balance out the divisions once more. I'm not saying this prediction will be accurate, but it seems logical. Perhaps I've gotten a jump on an NHL announcement? We shall see!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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