Dear Crabby, What is a Kraken?

Dear Crabby,

One of the things I’ve really been missing during this pandemic is live, televised sporting events, so I was thrilled when hockey started up again. And then Seattle announced its new team name for the 2021–22 season – Kraken. Is this a joke? It has to be one of the silliest names in sports. What do you think?

B. Barnburner

Dear B. Barnburner,

Personally, I’m more of a baseball man and so far the Detroit Tigers aren’t doing half bad. Maybe we need to have a shorter season all the time; we seem to do better with more rest. But I digress. You asked about hockey. I’ve always taken great pride in the fact I grew up in one of the cities with an Original Six team. For those who aren’t fluent in sports, the Original Six hockey teams are the Boston Bruins, Chicago Black Hawks, Detroit Red Wings, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, and Toronto Maple Leafs. These six teams ruled the roost for 25 years, starting with the 1942-43 season, right up until the 1967 expansion of the National Hockey League (NHL). While the ’67 expansion was the largest one-time addition of teams; since then one to three teams have been steadily added over the years. And some of the names are a hoot!

Dear Crabby sits infront of his laptop

Dear Crabby Gives Advice

Back in 1998, Nashville got a team and named them the Predators. At the time I thought that was such a silly name. Well, I also thought it was pretty silly for Nashville, a city known more for warm weather and country music to be getting into the hockey scene. But I gotta admit, over the years they’ve really proven themselves and come pretty darn close to taking Lord Stanley’s Cup home. Then, the Columbus Blue Jackets joined in 2000, I thought the name lacked imagination, but then again, Ohio ain’t exactly known for their cleverness. Four years ago I was sure the Las Vegas Knights had finally taken the crown for daftest team name (along with the dumbest location for an NHL team. It’s a desert for crying out loud.) when along comes Seattle.

Two years ago, the NHL bigwigs said Seattle could have a team and since then there’s been much discussion over every aspect, but the one people seemed to be speculating the most about was, “What were they going to name the darn team?” Even in the beginning, ‘Kraken’ was the name thrown around. Some people loved it, while others didn’t, but in the end, that’s exactly the name they went with. For those wondering what in tarnation a Kraken is, it’s a gigantic octopus-looking sea monster that originated in Scandinavian folklore, I believe. From what I can gather, it’s primary purpose was to terrorize sailors, which explains why over the years it popped up in everything from Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea to Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest. But I’d wager most people are familiar with the battle cry: “Release the Kraken!” from Clash of the Titans which has come to symbolize all hell is about to break loose. Considering Seattle’s proximity to Puget Sound, all the references to water, sailing, and even the Kraken make sense… at least to the people who are thrilled to have a hockey team again for the first time in nearly 100 years. Heck. Even the team colors of deep-sea blue, ice blue, boundless blue, shadow blue, and red alert tie into their watery theme. Personally, I think they sound like something you’d find in a J. Crew catalog.

Will this team become a force of nature to be reckoned with? We’ll just have to wait and see, but for now, the Kraken is here to stay. And to that I say…

Let’s Go Red Wings!
Dear Crabby

About Dear Crabby

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  1. M Carpenter says

    My son lives in Tacoma, WA now but grew up here in the metro Detroit area (Rochester Hills). He has always been a fan of the Wings and has proudly worn his RW jersey a lot since high school. Many, many of the folks I. the Seattle area have been dreaming of a team for years and years. We were all together on a family trip when the choices were announced. He was really geeked about the name Kraken when he first heard it although the rest of us couldn’t quite grasp the idea. He started talking about the various name suggestions and explained why it was a great choice. Below is a screen grab that might explain their enthusiasm.
    Dakota Harr
    Washington State has no shortage of octopus myths. The well known Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus haunts our canopies from coast to mountain top, but it’s Tacoma that is home to the real King of the North.

    Deep below the surface of the Tacoma Narrows, among the ruins of a bridge once nicknamed “Galloping Gertie,” the King Octopus is said to live. At a rumored six hundred pounds and with eight massive tentacles, the King certainly lives up to his title. Noted as one of the eleven wonders of Tacoma, the legend of this giant octopus is one that is ingrained in Tacoma’s colorful culture.

    But how much truth is there to this particular local legend? As it turns out, quite a bit. While the reality is on a much smaller scale, it is just as fascinating. While no evidence of a six hundred pound colossus has been found, the ruins of the old Galloping Gertie bridge that fell in the 1940s do provide the perfect home to one of the most incredible creatures on earth, the octopus, and one type in particular, the giant pacific octopus.

  2. James F. Ahearn says

    Dear Crabby,

    Perhaps you can tell me what this new Rocket team is all about. I can’t believe the article in this publication didn’t explain it to the readers.

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