Since the NHL awarded the city of Seattle the league’s 32nd franchise, the internet has been rampant with speculation on what they’d be called. The Sockeyes was a front runner that suffered from the problem of already being used by a series of hockey-themed romance novels. Another rumor that seemingly refused to die was the takeover of the Thunderbirds name from the Western Hockey League franchise. However, all that speculation has been put to rest.
Ladies, gentlemen, and variations thereupon: Please welcome YOUR Seattle Kraken.
The brand was revealed during a virtual event streamed from the team’s website and other social media outlets. As the presentation continued, the recurring message was that the loud voice of fans really drove the choice of Kraken.
“The Kraken is a name born of the fans. It was suggested and championed by the fans,” said Tod Leiweke, CEO of the Seattle Kraken. “We embarked on one of the most thorough naming processes in sports to make sure we got it right, to find the name that rings true. We wanted the name to connect to the powerful pull of nature here in the Pacific Northwest and resonate with the fervor for hockey in our city and region. And I promise we are going to deliver the most compelling, entertaining and unifying game experience for every fan who enters Climate Pledge Arena.”
A minisite was set up for a deep dive (get it?) into the brand at seattlekrakenhockey.com. The site describes the logo as including a nod to the original Metropolitans logo, a hidden tentacle, and the red eye of the great beast. It’s not just a mythical beast either.
“The largest octopus on planet Earth lives right here in Puget Sound. The Giant Pacific Octopus lurks in the deep around Seattle. According to Tacoma legend, they inhabit the ruins of collapsed bridge “Galloping Gertie” with the infamous “King Octopus.” National Geographic notes the biggest on record at 30 ft wide and over 600 lbs. If you encountered that in the depths of our Sound, you’d tell tales of one thing…You just saw the Kraken.” – seattlekrakenhockey.com
It only took five months for the Vegas Golden Knights to announce the team name after their franchise was awarded. Compare that to the 20 months it took the Oak View Group to finally christen Seattle’s NHL team, and you start to get an idea why fans have been so impatient. Originally, the team looked to make an announcement in April, but the COVID-19 pandemic forced them to delay the reveal. In June, OVG announced they had made a deal with Amazon for the arena naming rights, which gave the former Key Arena the new moniker of Climate Pledge Arena. This did little to quell the hunger of the fans, who were underwhelmed by the announcement.
Awesome… Now about that team name?
— Crooked Re-moos 🐄 (@crookedreviews) June 25, 2020
Still no name. This is beyond ridiculous at this point.
— Craig Foltz (@CraigFoltz) June 25, 2020
NAME YOUR TEAM
— Luke Campbell (@LukeCam80109424) June 25, 2020
Another surprise was the jersey also being somewhat revealed during the presentation. It fits the Adidas design, but keeps it classic as the stripes and logos don’t have any extra embellishment. A subdued, but striking design that complements the aspects of the large S logo on the front. Yes, that S is an homage to the old Metropolitans logo from 1915. Jerseys are expected to be available for purchase closer to the draft next year.
Reader, I must tell you, I was not a fan of the Kraken going into this announcement. However, seeing the logo, the sweater, and the full brand, I’m sold. A name as unusual as this had the potential to be hokey or too much like a minor league mascot. However, their diligent work with Adidas and the near constant input from fans has seemingly paid off. With the brand established, the real work of actually building a team can begin. See you at the draft.