The good news: Ottawa has a CFL team again.
The bad news: They are called “RedBlacks.”
That’s right. Seven years after the city’s last team, the Ottawa Renegades, disappeared from the Canadian Football League, a reddish-blackish phoenix has risen from the ashes to take its place, apparently in a bid to attract children as fans.
As sports writers Bruce Arthur suggested on Twitter, the team may as well have been called the HelmetShoulderPads.
Excited for Ottawa’s CFL franchise to be named the RedBlacks, after its colours. Was hoping for HelmetShoulderPads, but will carry on.
— Bruce Arthur (@bruce_arthur) June 8, 2013
The team’s logo, inexplicably, is an R over a sawblade — because when people think of the city of bureaucrats, they picture sparks flying off a sawblade.
The team colours, by the way, are going to be red and black.
At the launch event Saturday, the new franchise’s owners seemed to think RedBlacks was an unprecedented bit of marketing wizardry.
“It’s unique, maybe even a little edgy, and it’s a brand that we think will stand the test of time,” said Jeff Hunt, president of Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group.
RedBlacks governor John Ruddy said the sawblade “represents many of the characteristics we hope our players will demonstrate: speed, unstoppable force, precision, balance, strong-as-steel and even dangerous.”
The only question remaining is what the team mascot will be. I nominate “Sawblade the Sawblade” just so we keep within the unimaginative motif the team has established for itself.