My social media was full of some new announcement.  Apparently, the XFL was announcing team names.  Since I knew St. Louis had a team, I was pretty interested in learning the team name.  I figured that it would be something related to the river, or The Arch, or something that forever tied the team to St. Louis.  We got the St. Louis BattleHawks.  I don’t really see the natural connection to St. Louis there.

Since I wasn’t really feeling the St. Louis Battlehawks, I decided to look at the other team names and see if maybe we were the only ones where the name didn’t exactly fit.   Here are the other names.

The Dallas Renegades….Ok, that makes some sense.

Houston Roughnecks…..Not sure about this one.  I’ve never once said, “you know, those fellows from Houston sure do have rough necks.”  It sounds like a medical issue.  Perhaps they just need some sort of lotion and that will get it cleared up in a week.

Los Angeles Wildcats…I think a lot of things when I think about Las Angeles.  Not once have I ever thought about wildcats.  If you wanted to go with animals in your name, why not the Los Angeles TarPits?  Lots of animals in that muck….

The New York Guardians….What are they guarding?  Do cities elsewhere need guards?  Will the team forever be talked about as being built on a great defense?

Seattle Dragons….Yep, first thing I think of when I think of Seattle is dragons. Was Fishmarket unavailable?

The Tampa Bay Vipers…..So, when I was like 8 we had the St. Louis Vipers of the roller hockey league…They folded.  We could have brought back the St. Louis Vipers, and it would have made just as much sense as a “battlehawk”

The Washington D.C. Defenders….When the New York Guardians and The Washington Defenders meet on the field, will no points be scored?

In The End There Can Be Only One.

So, when these teams play against each other, who wins on name alone?  A sort of rock, paper, and scissors match.  I don’t even know where to begin.  It seems like pretty much every other team could just avoid the Tampa Bay Vipers.  They’re snakes after all.  Not real fast, maybe a little sneaky, but any sort of pest control company could take care of them well before the need for an actual football team to play a match against them….Purple Cobras on the other hand….

Our mighty St. Louis Battlehawks would really only be a problem if you had to go outside.  If you’re working in an office, or home with your family, that BattleHawk can just fly around and you’d be none the wiser.  I think angry birds are overrated.

Team Names And Relevance

When you think about iconic team names and how they relate to the cities they are currently in, things get a bit murky.  For example, I suspect there are no longer any miners in San Francisco.  By the time you got the permits to dig in California, you’d be dead.

How many meat packers are there in Green Bay Wisconsin compared to Chicago?  And, for that matter, how many Bears are in Chicago?  Lions in Detroit?  Ravens in Baltimore?  Rams in St…wait, Los Angeles?

Brands Aren’t Necessarily About Making Sense

You remember the brands in the NFL because they market them well.  And, they’ve been doing it for a very long time.   The same thing can be said in real estate.  When you think about Keller Williams, that’s a brand.  Keller Williams doesn’t make any sense as a sports team, but for some reason, names work very well for real estate agencies.  Coldwell Banker, Corcoran, etc.   These real estate companies invest in their brand so that you think you are already familiar with them when you call them to sell your home.  When you invest in branding, you are taking away the “individual” in the company.  This is a smart move for company longevity.  After all, many NFL greats are out of the league by age 35.  It makes no sense to brand a player when the player will be gone in a few short years.

I’ll Be OK With The BattleHawks

The XFL is a brand new league.  There’s no history, and there’s no brand recognition.  Their first order now is just survival.  After all, it’s going to take time for those logos and team names to become a part of the social fabric in America.   It’s ok to poke fun at the St. Louis BattleHawks, but you can bet that if the league is successful, years from now there will be someone in a cemetery with a BattleHawk logo and a tombstone that reads, “loyal BattleHawk fan.”