The Seattle NHL expansion franchise has launched an interactive fan portal, allowing for suggestions on a team name and other elements.
Approved as the NHL’s 32nd franchise in December, the Seattle team will begin play in fall of 2021 and is backed by an ownership group that includes billionaire David Bonderman and film producer Jerry Bruckheimer. Its home facility is taking shape right now, as Oak View Group is leading and financing a $900 million-plus project at KeyArena that calls for leaving the venue’s distinguished roof line intact as construction crews dig down 15 feet to create more interior space and modern facilities.
The franchise has created an online fan portal, which debuted Thursday. Through this website, fans can weigh in on a variety of factors that will be part of the arena experience–such as favorites for music and food–along with team branding elements, including the prospective name and color scheme. Now that the portal is live, the franchise plans to keep it active before the team’s launch to maintain a platform for fan engagement. More from the Seattle Times:
On the naming thing — seemingly the most popular question local fans have — the website FAQ does hedge somewhat with the word “potentially’’ ahead of the Fall 2019 date, though the team adds, “We can’t wait either.’’
A poll section within the portal asks fans the type of team name they prefer and provides a choice of mythical creatures, sea animals, historical references and “Anything that Eats Canucks.” There’s also a comment section where fans can suggest a name.
NHL Seattle president and CEO Tod Leiweke has long said the team will consult with fans on the name. And when the portal idea was revealed in January, he said fans will be able to use it to deliver opinions on the name and a variety of other issues before the team’s planned October 2021 launch.
“We’re going to have them weigh in on all sorts of things,” Leiweke said at the time. “If I have my way, their fingerprints are going to be all over this franchise. Certainly team name, but they’re going to help us build this up.”
Construction at KeyArena is slated to conclude ahead of the 2021-22 NHL season, with project officials targeting a completion by that summer.
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