On June 21st, 2006, one of my NHL dreams will officially be dead. The Stanley Cup will not be tainted.
On June 21st, the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim will officially die, and the Anaheim Ducks, complete with a new logo and color scheme, will begin. The Arrowhead Pond will simultaneously have its contract expire at the end of September that will probably remove both 'Arrowhead' and 'Pond' from its moniker.
These moves further distance us from Disney and its silly trilogy, and cements us as a 'respectable' member of the NHL (well, I'll believe that when I see it).
5 reason's I'm against changing the name/logo/colors:
- The new colors, supposedly, will involve orange and black. Orange kinda makes sense because of Orange County, but it is quite a clash with the ol' teal and purple. If we want an 'orange-out' or something it will look pretty awkward with a lot of people in the old gear, and I'll probably be one of them. It could be the perfect color scheme to alienate 'old' from 'new', and I'm not confident that's going to be a smashing success.
- The Mighty Ducks teams have played some great hockey of late to give Anaheim fans the right to wear the jersey proudly. The logo means something way different now, especially with recent success, so who cares what the non-fans think? Judging a hockey team by their jersey is not 'hockey purism', it's 'hockey racism'. Whatever fans we are losing with the old name, quite frankly, I don't want them.
- If Disney disrespect is such a concern, then why take this middle ground? Will people forget that this "Ducks" name came from a movie called The Mighty Ducks? Are we hoping for the generation of kids someday who will assume that Anaheim was once ridden with ducks, sort of a local symbol? There are some ducks in OC, but not enough to warrant a franchise. I don't really see how this distances us very far.
- Umm, money? Yeah, reinventing the team and slaying the Disney dragon is cool, I guess, but let's not pretend some Robin Hood came in and did it just in the name of corporate justice. Tell me the story any way you want to, but this is a fast way to generate revenue. Like in the case of gasoline, profitability doesn't always work out for everyone, no matter how we're spinning it these days.
- It's sort of a bad precedent for sport, particularly one like the NHL. To pull this on a fanbase might work a couple times in a couple of markets, and might do things like artificially inflate revenues and thus salaries. But this could be another case of expansion fees, where once-and-done income sources allow the league to inflate expenses to a tough-to-sustain level. That wouldn't be so troubling, except we have also now put a precedent in place that the league can take a year off to solve its stupidity, and its fans (myself dutifully included) will storm the gates upon its return.
And probably the more important lesson--a LOT of business has been put around this sport of hockey. Let's not lose sight of what the real product is.