Deep Blue Sea: Sharks already living rent-free in Kraken’s head

The team couldn’t come up with a name without keeping the Sharks in mind.

It’s good to know that despite finishing at the bottom of the Western Conference, the San Jose Sharks can still instill fear into an NHL front office. In this case, that fear isn’t so much on the ice as it is in marketing, but a win is a win, right?

In this week’s 31 Thoughts blog, Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman focuses on three major topics: the NHL’s Return to Play, John Chayka and the Seattle Kraken.

When it came to picking a name for the Seattle NHL team, it turns out that the front office had the Sharks in mind the whole time — specifically, they wanted to make sure whatever they chose wouldn’t be easy prey for their new division.

“This was not going to be a joke, not a cartoon to laugh at,” [Dan Near, Adidas’ Global Head of Hockey & Lacrosse] said. “They discussed how, when you skated on the ice, players were going to be proud to wear it.”

“We couldn’t have anything that looked like it could be eaten by … a shark,” laughed Katie Townsend, Seattle’s Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications, with a nod to the team’s soon-to-be rival from San Jose.

Of all the teams in the Pacific Division, it makes sense to find the Sharks the most intimidating (I mean, what even is a Canuck?). I remember memes about how the Sharks’ logo ate the Pittsburgh Penguins’ logo during the 2016 Stanley Cup Final. Sure, the Penguins won the Cup that year, but they also got roasted pretty hard on Twitter, so who’s the real winner now?

I would say it comes down to how the mascot looks, but then again, this is Sharkie, supposed predator of the sea:

Friedman puts out spectacular work every week, but I think this week’s 31 Thoughts column was especially good. It’s been an interesting week to cover hockey. Give that (and more) and read below:

News & Notes

  • Why true change for hockey depends on listening to Black women [Sportsnet]
  • 31 Thoughts: What’s next for Coyotes, Chayka after split? [Sportsnet]
  • Sharks Forward Evander Kane Nominated for 2020 King Clancy Trophy []
  • Sharks’ Evander Kane discusses NHL’s ‘Hockey is for Everyone’ movement [NBC Sports Bay Area]
  • Ryan Reaves wears muffin mask in nod to Evander Kane, Sharks rivalry [NBC Sports Bay Area]
  • NHL Power Rankings: Stanley Cup-less veterans to root for [NBC Sports]
  • NHL Bubble Wrap: Life during Return to Play; Updates on Crosby, others [NBC Sports]
  • NHL return-to-play update: Game schedule, injury news, lingering ‘bubble’ questions [ESPN]
  • NHL announces no positive coronavirus tests over last week [ESPN]
  • Poulsbo family featured in Seattle Kraken teaser trailer []
  • Oh, and the NHL’s Twitter account posted this and I can’t stop thinking about it. You’re welcome?/

On the Schedule

  • Pittsburgh Penguins at Philadelphia Flyers, 1 p.m. PT/4 p.m. ET on NBCSN
  • Toronto Maple Leafs at Montreal Canadiens, 5 p.m. PT/8 p.m. ET on NHLN, SN & TVAS
  • Edmonton Oilers at Calgary Flames, 7:30 p.m. PT/10:30 p.m. ET on NHLN & SN/

We’ll have a single game thread for all of today’s games go live at 11 a.m. PT/2 p.m. ET, so if you tune in, swing by!