The 32nd NHL franchise will be called the Seattle Kraken, team owners announced Thursday morning.
The professional hockey team, led by majority owner David Bonderman, spent 18 months researching and considering more than 215,000 fan votes and 1,200 suggested team names.
“We know that the past few months have posed an unprecedented change in all our lives with many interesting moments,” said David Bonderman. “Through it all, we have been on a long journey to name our team and design the logo with input from our fans, our leadership team and partners. We already have strong ties to hockey with Ron Francis, our general manager, Tod Leiweke, our CEO, and the backgrounds of many of our senior team and ownership group. We have listened to our community and our fans to create a brand that is the image of who we want to be as an organization.”
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said the franchise worked "diligently" to pick a name, colors, and logo.
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“Seattle has a long and devoted hockey history that includes the distinction of becoming the first American city to serve as home for a Stanley Cup-winning team, the 1917 Seattle Metropolitans," he said. "The jersey design is terrific, and I can’t wait to see NHL Players wear the unique and distinctive ‘S’ on their chests on Opening Night; it will have special meaning for Seattle hockey fans. I’m thrilled to welcome the Seattle Kraken into the National Hockey League.”
The Kraken, a legendary sea creature, has "natural ties" to Seattle and the Pacific Northwest's maritime history.
“The Kraken is a name born of the fans. It was suggested and championed by the fans,” said Tod Leiweke, CEO of the Seattle Kraken. “We embarked on one of the most thorough naming processes in sports to make sure we got it right, to find the name that rings true. We wanted the name to connect to the powerful pull of nature here in the Pacific Northwest and resonate with the fervor for hockey in our city and region. And I promise we are going to deliver the most compelling, entertaining and unifying game experience for every fan who enters Climate Pledge Arena.”
The team's new logo, an "S" that includes an ode to the eye and tentacles of the Kraken, was inspired by the city's first professional hockey team - the Metropolitans.
The team will donate all proceeds from net sales of merchandise through August 21 to nonprofits YouthCare, Community Passageways, and the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle, which work to end youth homelessness and create opportunities for BIPOC youth.
The Kraken will play beginning with the 2021-22 season.