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NHL Seattle puts team name on ice until ‘early 2020’

The NHL Seattle franchise will begin play during the 2021-22 season. (AP)

NHL Seattle announced Wednesday that it would be delaying its announcement of the team’s name until “early 2020.”

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CEO Tod Leiweke stated back in May he had hoped to unveil the name, logo, and official colors for Seattle’s NHL team by the end of 2019, and make limited merchandise available at that time. Before that, the announcement was slated for spring 2019.

Despite the delays, NHL Seattle categorized its process for choosing the name as proceeding on schedule.

“Those who think we are sitting on a predetermined name, nope,” Leiweke told NHL.com. “We work on this every day. We are right on time with the naming process. We are still on a journey of self-identity but also on a journey to understand not just what we are but what we aren’t. Names that might have made sense a year ago, today don’t make as much sense.”

The project to name the team is being supported by Seattle brand advisory firm Perch Partners, which is “working closely” with NHL Seattle throughout the process.

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The group is using “objective scoring tools” to whittle down the list of finalists. Those factors include a potential logo’s presence on broadcast programming, merchandise, sales, and “community outreach.”

“We want to represent the ambition of the fans,” said Leiweke. “We have listened. Fans want us to represent Seattle but also a brand that stands the test of time, a brand that’s recognizable not only in hockey but perhaps even globally. They want it to be a name that players are proud to wear it across their chests. A name that looks great on the sweater.”

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