So It’s The Kraken – Don’t Get It Twisted

Seattle’s nascent NHL squad has a name, and it’s the Kraken.

It’s easily the goofiest of the 13 names reported to have been under consideration, so I’m glad the brain trust in charge of this decision tempered it with a relatively restrained logo and color palette:

Kraken logo (artist’s rendition)

You can hear a couple Adidas bigwigs gab about their design process here:

In my friend group, “the Seattle Freeze”* and “the Seattle Grunge” were popular joke guesses before the real list of candidate names came to light. Aside from how obviously dumb they both are, one would have hoped the singular-noun team name trend had run its course in the NHL. Any euro-football-style coolness the convention might’ve seemed to have in its heyday has faded by now, right? Name another ’90s fashion that’s aged well; I’ll wait.

But hold on, isn’t “the Kraken” also a singular noun? Maybe. How German are you?

The English word kraken is taken from the modern Scandinavian languages, originating from the Old Norse word kraki. In both Norwegian and Swedish Kraken is the definite form of krake, a word designating an unhealthy animal or something twisted (cognate with the English crook and crank). In modern German, Krake (plural and declined singular: Kraken) means octopus, but can also refer to the legendary kraken. Kraken is also an old Norwegian word for octopus and an old euphemism in Swedish for whales, used when the original word became taboo as it was believed it could summon the creatures.

Either way, it’s an exciting day to be a hockey fan in Bezosopolis. Welcome back to the NHL, Seattle!

* For non-Seattleites, the “Seattle freeze” is a term for the supposedly uncommon antisocial vibe of the people here, as described by transplants who find their new neighbors insufficiently effusive in welcoming them. Like the Kraken, it’s entirely mythological.

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