Halifax CFL Team Set to Announce Name

Tomorrow night the potential future Halifax-based Canadian Football League team will have a name. Maritime Football Limited Partnership, the group pursuing the franchise, announced they will unveil it during a Grey Cup event in Edmonton at 6 pm Mountain Time (or 9 pm in Halifax/8 pm Eastern).

The team is a potential expansion franchise for the 2021 season, the group looking to bring the new team to Halifax is currently holding a season ticket drive.

Earlier this month the team released the short list of names they are considering: Admirals, Convoy, Schooners, and Storm, unfortunately, all of these names come with the “Atlantic” geographic identifier rather than, say, Halifax (or even The Maritimes). Why does that bother me? I dunno, I’m weird. Seeing “Atlantic” as a team rather than as a division when looking at the standings, or “he got traded to Atlantic?!”. It’s not so much that it’s more known as a (quite large) body of water, Tampa Bay has pulled that off for years without any problems; it’s just, as a team name, sounds… unusual?

The group has trademarked three of those names in the past month, Atlantic Admirals, Atlantic Convoy, Atlantic Storm. All were filed with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office on November 5, 2018. Meanwhile, Atlantic Schooners, which was the name of a previous CFL team who almost played in Halifax back in 1984, was trademarked by the group just under one year ago, on November 28, 2017. All four of the announced names have been secured, so there are no hints for us there.

Newspaper clipping announcing the original, ill-fated Atlantic Schooners – November 1982

Of the potential names, the following domain names were all registered in the last month and parked at the same place, suggesting they were all purchased and set-up by the same group:

atlanticconvoy.com & .ca (both registered October 26, 2018)
atlanticadmirals.com & .ca (both registered November 7, 2018)
atlanticsstorm.ca (registered November 7, 2018)

The two .coms above were registered using private registrations, the three .cas were all registered by employees of National Public Relations, a Halifax-based company which lists the Maritime Football Limited Partnership as one of their clients.

AtlanticStorm.com was bought in 2009 and last updated by a company in Florida back in March, AtlanticSchooners.com is owned by a property inspections company manager and has not been touched since 2016, and the .ca has no publically available ownership information attached to it but we can see was last modified this past August, the site itself is currently home to a CFL fan booster club based in Nova Scotia. So perhaps Schooners can be safely eliminated from the list? Perhaps not?

Earlier this month the team launched a season ticket drive, part of the perk to putting down your deposit was you got to have your say about which name you liked best.

“We’ve been out talking to the community and getting what we feel is the short list, but we are not sitting here saying it will be one of those (four names),” said Anthony LeBlanc of Maritime Football Partnership to Halifax Today in early November. “We may be blown away with some of the suggestions that are put in through the (poll’s write-ins)”

While the team did allow a write-in option, they haven’t trademarked anything else since announcing the four original names. In an interview with the Canadian Press this week LeBlanc revealed “Destroyers” was one write-in that could be a possibility also adding that the top two in the poll were the Storm and the Schooners.

What did we learn from all this research? Not much. It’ll be one of Storm, Convoy, Admirals, or Schooners… maybe Destroyers (as of Tuesday, it still wasn’t trademarked). Of those options, I’d probably go with Atlantic Admirals for the alliteration and the “s” at the end (I’m easily pleased), Schooners would also be fine for the (negative?) historical ties to football in the region.

Either way, it’d be nice to see CFL football make its way east and finally be a coast-to-coast league.

UPDATE Nov 23/18 5:30 pm ET: With just three hours set until the unveiling, it appears the team may have inadvertently already revealed their new name on their live stream of the event. This info and screencap courtesy Twitter user @SamT323:

So, Atlantic Schooners it is then? Alright, that’s not bad… I mean, at least they didn’t go with “Storm”.