July 09, 2008
You may recall that the Iowa Stars, the Dallas Stars' AHL affiliate, left Des Moines for Austin, TX, and that the Anaheim Ducks moved in to keep minor league hockey in corn country. Yesterday, franchisee Schlegel Sports announced the new name of the AHL team: the Iowa Chops.
"It illustrates Iowa's agricultural heritage while also playing into the definition of 'chops', having nerve, resilience and staying power. The word 'chops' can mean continually defeating someone, and that is the reputation we expect Iowa's new team to gain in the league," said team owner Kirby Schlegel, CEO of Schlegel Sports.
As you can see, the logo is a boar's head. Like the lunch meat. A pig logo is cool if your nickname is the Razorbacks or even the Rockford Ice Hogs, which takes a goofy cartoon approach to its swine. But even if Iowa's logo is passable, the "Iowa Chops" could be the worst nickname in professional hockey; yes, I am taking into account the Syracuse Crunch and the Columbus Blue Jackets, who were named for a fictitious insect before they decided to go all Civil War nostalgia on us.
"The Chops?" Nothing like a team name that evokes a grocery clerk's face from 1906. I never thought another minor league hockey team could make me yearn for the quaint understatement of the Greenville Grrrowl.
Hockey Blog in Canada sliced up the Chops like a Ginzu:
Firstly, the word "chops" does not mean "to have nerve" or "to continually defeat someone". The idiom is "busting one's chops", which means "to scold or insult someone" or "to disappoint or defeat someone". I'm not sure if people in Iowa speak English, but I was under the assumption that they did. Stretching the team name to reach an idiom would be like saying the NBA's Utah Jazz are called as such because they are "all that jazz". It's stupid, and it doesn't work.
How does the team name represent the "vision of the new team"? The word "chops" presents nothing visionary. Unless you're envisioning dinner, the Pork Chops have zero visionary aspects.
The Iowa Chops' official site is running a poll: "What is your favorite part about the new logo?" And the name is third as of Wednesday night. Did any of these marketing geniuses connect the dots between the word "chop" and a bunch of guys skating around with sticks in their hands?
Were their team front office computers able to run what we call here at Yahoo! "search engines?"
I only ask because a rather small segment of the population may believe that Des Moines's new hockey team is called the Iowa Changing Homosexuals into Ordinary People.
Especially with the name separated by those little periods in the logo. Just sayin'.