Oil, Oil, Everywhere… so let’s all change the name! (Should the Edmonton Oilers be concerned about their name?)

February 14, 2011
Montreal Expos
by jrgcastro

Oil was founded in Edmonton…that’s a given.

It’s understandable that the franchise, formed in 1971, would like to honor its roots by showcasing its city’s heritage, but with the recent events that have happened in the media, it hasn’t bowed well for the club (thank you BP for hurting them like this).  Thus I came up with an idea…why not rename the team?!?!?

It’s certainly not unheard of.  Several professional franchises have done it in the past.!  The Phoenix Cardinals did it back in 1994, when they decided to include the whole state in on the party and changed to the Arizona Cardinals.  That franchise alone is full of name changes!  In fact,  the nickname of Cardinals was adopted after the team started wearing uniforms inherited from the University of Chicago that were a faded maroon color. The reddish uniforms prompted then owner Charlie O’Brien to label them as “Cardinal Red”, thus the Cardinals moniker was coined.

Back to the team at hand however.

Even the Oilers themselves haven’t had issues with change in the past.  Originally, when they came into the league, were called the Alberta Oilers, but later renamed themselves after the major city in it.

But then again, those were the club’s first names…not last.

There have been teams who have changed both, and then left the city.  Teams with similar name problems, like the NFL’s Houston Oilers, changed their name to Titans and moved to Tennessee back in 1996.  But that’s relocation, and certainly relocation isn’t anything new to professional sports.  It’s happen ever since teams have played professionally…in the 60s MLB’s Washington Senators team moved to Minnesota and became the Twins.  In the 70s the second Washington Senators team (an expansion team) moved to Texas and became the Rangers.  In the 80s, the San Diego Clippers moved to L.A. (and still no one has noticed), in the 90s the NFL’s Houston Oilers moved to Tennessee and became the Titans, and in 2005, the Montreal Expos moved to Washington and became the Nationals (so hopefully 3 times is a charm for the folks in D.C.)

For few and far between, things happen, so the big question is… is a name change…or relocation in the future of the Oilers?  Let’s take a look at 10 possible ideas for some PR friendly names:

Edmonton Sasquatches

Because it certainly would be the first 3 syllable team in the league, not to mention everybody loves Big Foot, and it helps that they have several area landmarks such as the North Saskatchewan River.

Edmonton Eskimos

Although they already have a Canadian Football League team named this, they could easily buy them out of the name, and besides that, it just makes sense!  Eskimos + Ice = Good Times

Edmonton Rush

Edmonton was the center of the Klondike Gold Rush in the late 1800s, was a major stopping point for most people…if only those people had more to buy than a cup of oil…maybe next time think ‘trinkets’

Edmonton Mixers

Because Edmonton was one of the first cities in all of Canada to have a large cluster of ethnic groups, including English, German, Irish, Scottish, Ukrainian, and French origin…now if they could only host their food festivals accordingly, they’d be set!

Edmonton Androids

Because nanotechnology was founded here

Edmonton Killers

Because, it works for the band! Besides that, they have the largest mall in the world, and when it was built, hosted the MindBender Rollercoaster which killed 3 people at the Mall in 1986…and a Tornado hit the town the very next year, killing 27 people.

Edmonton Edmontosaurus’

Because the remains of the Edmontosaurus was found in 1917 the dinosaur was found in the Edmonton Formation along the Red Deer River of southern Alberta, Canada

Edmonton Flatheads

Because the area is almost completely flat, opposite of west of town, which is the top of the Rocky Mountains

Edmonton Centers

Because Edmonton lies directly center in the providence of Alberta.  I would love to play center for the centers!

Edmonton Buddies

Because everybody is your buddy in Canada!

Any name change, given the history of the organization and the fact that they are only 1 of 4 teams left from the 1979-1980  WHA (World Hockey Association) merger. (New England Whalers, Quebec Nordiques, and the Winnipeg Jets)  Memorable stories from the club, such as signing a 18-year old prospect to a UNHEARD OF 21-year ‘personal services’ contract, went on to win 5 Stanley Cups in the 1980s, then faced with serious financial issues, trading that same franchise player Wayne Gretzky to the Los Angeles Kings for a package of players and cash.  The club has little to show for itself since making ‘The Trade’ in 88′ with 99, however there have been a few bright points, most noticeably making the Stanley Cup just once in the last 20 years (2006 vs. the Hurricanes)

However, despite disasters and protesters, politicians and school children’s letters to the owner, I doubt any change, except personnel, will happen to the name “Oilers” anytime soon.

Shane Saathoff is a independate freelance author who writes about the clinks and clanks of life one step at a time.  A self proclaimed entrepenuer, Shane is the Founder of K3Lights.com, a website devoted to showcasing his area’s christmas lights in a virtual tour, going from one town to another, street by street, neighborhood by neighborhood. Shane currently resides in Bourbonnais, IL. Shane is a big Chicago Blackhawks fan.

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