Seattle Kraken will take the ice in the 2021-22 NHL season

The Kraken has been released.

The Seattle NHL team, which will debut in the 2021-22 season, has finally announced its name, the Kraken, as well as a color scheme: ice blue and navy blue with red accents.

The NHL officially named Seattle as its 32nd team in 2018 for an expansion rate of $ 650 million.

“It is a unique and unusual name in sports because almost all sports franchises end with an ‘S’,” Andy Jassy, ​​co-owner of the team, told ESPN. “There are many obvious connections to Seattle, in part because of our maritime history; in part because we have a lot of water around us, but there is ancient folklore in Seattle and the Pacific Northwest of this mystical Kraken creature that lives only below the surface from the sea, which really captivated people for many years.

“That mystique, that intensity, and that power that people have long talked about with the Kraken is what we expect our NHL team to play with.”

Jassy said the team examined more than 1,200 names and did a “real scan” on more than 100. The franchise was decided by five finalists, who were sealed in an envelope and placed in a time capsule at the Seattle Space Needle. , along with Nirvana. discs, a Twinkie and a part from Amazon, to be revealed in 2062, on Needle’s centenary.

Kraken President Tod Leiweke has focused on serving the community first, so the team launched an interactive portal in May 2019 where fans could offer suggestions. The team leaders also organized informal focus groups and monitored social media to see “how often potential names were mentioned, what was the sentiment, the reactions,” Kraken vice president of marketing Heidi Dettmer told ESPN.

According to Dettmer, Kraken, and specifically the slogan “Release the Kraken”, kept popping up.

“Throughout this process, it has been a rallying cry for fans,” Dettmar said. “We hear it everywhere. It’s what kept popping up over and over again.”

The logo features an ‘S’ as the primary brand – a tribute to original Seattle Metropolitan uniforms. The Metropolitans were the original professional hockey team for the Pacific Coast Hockey Association, which became the first American team to win the Stanley Cup in 1917. Kraken’s twisted blue ‘S’ also invokes its mythical namesake. of sea creature.

“As you look at the ‘S’, and you think about the Metropolitans, you think about the colors, that negative space tentacle hides there, wraps around your ankles, ready to pull down,” says Matty Merrill, Design Director at Adidas who worked on the logo. “We had to make sure it wasn’t a cartoon character or something silly.”

Seattle had considered naming the team as the Metropolitans, but according to Jassy that choice was received “reluctantly” by NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, who did not want to change the name of one of the NHL’s four divisions, the Metropolitan Division.

Of the 31 existing NHL teams, 16 have a blue hue on the logo. Adidas, however, felt that the combination of the Kraken, as well as the red accents, make it unique among NHL teams and other blue-focused teams in the Seattle market.

“It’s actually pretty bright, almost a neon blue that looks like the ice caps at the Olympics and the white caps on the Puget Sound,” said Merrill. “So the navy is so dark it is almost black. We call it deep sea. The whole uniform has no white, there is no white, and in reality it is just these complementary blues. The way they present their brand will be like this: – these two blue and not white. There is no surrender at all. “

Seattle general manager Ron Francis, who had a 23-year career playing primarily with the Whalers / Hurricanes organization, was part of the brand committee.

“His opinion carried a lot of weight in this process from a hockey point of view,” Dettmar said.

Francis offered this advice to designers: “This must be a sweater, which when players wear it, they feel really proud. It has to be iconic. It has to be noble.”

The news comes a month after Amazon obtained the naming rights for the downtown Seattle arena that will house the Kraken, as well as the WNBA Storm. However, the company name will not appear on the building. Instead, the arena will be called the Climate Pledge Arena and will feature several green initiatives. Climate Pledge Arena is seeking to become the first arena in the world to obtain net zero carbon certification by the International Living Future Institute.

The cost of the building has been estimated at more than $ 900 million. The 18,100-seat venue is expected to host 200 events each year, including concerts and the NHL and WNBA games. The building is under construction on the Seattle Center campus on the site of the former KeyArena that was the primary home of the Seattle SuperSonics.