The Flames

Random Thoughts For A Failed Branding Opportunity Friday May 15, 2009

From a designer/branding perspective, the AHL is a bloody goldmine.

See unlike the major Leagues (MLB, NBA, NHL) the AHL really doesn’t have the storied tradition or teams with any sort of longevity (of course there are a few exceptions). Because of which there is major turnover within the league and each year two-three teams change locations and unveil a brand new identity.

It’s the league that gave use the beautifully wicked Milwaukee Admirals, San Antonio Rampage, Houston Aeros and the Hershey High…err Bears Logos. But it also happens to be the same league that gave us the Cape Breaton Oilers, Binghampton Dusters (WTF?) and the originally names Quad City Flames.

So now that the Flames have moved to Abbotsford, how did they utilize this golden opportunity at branding?

The Abbotsford Heat … I’m not going to completely throw the towel out on this one, but I have a feeling that a Flaming A and the color red might be involved.

… Because you know, that will go well in Canuckle Head country.

First – I posted this on the Armadillo Twitter link, but it’s too spine chillingly good not to post on the ol’overdrive – 53 Mind Blowing Uses of Typography (via. nonimage’s tumblr blog)

Second – IncSpring weighs in on the crowd sourcing controversy of it’s logo reselling business plan.

Third – A great typography web site has emerged that allows you to search on user submitted images based on the type in the image. The web site is called

Fourth – A list of the 25 highest scored shirts on twitter for 2009. Surprisingly this is number one.

HEARTLESS - Threadless T-shirts, Nude No More

Fifth – I’m not going to weigh in on the validity of the Big Television Network’s demanding a cut of the Cable company’s share of the pie, because frankly I’m not informed enough to state my opinion. But the decision by CTV stations in Calgary and Edmonton to launch save local T.V. sub-sites has irked me a bit.

I’m not sure what it is about the whole campaign, but using puppies to gain sympathy that’s just a bit of a low blow. Really, If we lose CTV Calgary, puppies are going to disappear … really. Come on now.

Sixth – TechVibes has released news that the IOC has set it rules for Athlete Bloggers during the 2010 Winter Games.

The rings are out, and mascots and other emblems belonging to the Vancouver Olympic organizing committee or national Olympic committees can only be used with permission.

Seriously! No Quatchi on your blog…le sigh!

Seventh – Mike Gart … errr …. Adam Goldberg has released the first single from his new music project LADDy. The first song is BFF and it is fantastic.

Eighth – At $93 this t-shirt better be made out of pure silk, but the HI! Design is to die for.

Categories: The-Random, The-Flames, The Calgary Vibe, The Canada Vibe, The Craziness, The Inane, The Music, The Pop-Culture, The Southern Neighbours, The T-Shirts, The World

Playoff Predictor 2009 Version Tuesday April 14, 2009

So you can’s escape a playoff media in the canadian media at the moment. Every seems to be chiming in on the 2009 Playoffs with their predictions. You’ve got Sportsnet’s usual gang of hooligans, TSN’s rag tag crew and of course Sure there is some intelligence used when picking the outcome, but one of the beauties about sport and the NHL in particular is it’s unpredictability.

There for I present to you, what could be the most throughout and strategic playoff predictor I’ve stumbled upon. (courtesy the great calgarypuck forums)

Cecil The Dwarf Hamster’s playoff predictions.

If anything, Cecil’s predictions probably have more street cred than anything that comes out of Nick Kypreos’ mouth.

Categories: The-Flames, The-Calgary-Vibe, The Canada Vibe, The Humourous

The Return of The Whale? Thursday January 15, 2009

Typically, I’ll add this sort of topic as a blurb in the random thoughts for the week, but this story deserves some spread. (BTW it comes via. The calgarypuck forums )

Anyways, Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez met with NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to discuss the possibility of an NHL Franchise relocating back to the Connecticut Capital.

So does that mean that the old Whale could be returning to the NHL?

There are it’s doubters, like this misinformed NBC analyst and a handful of others that would like to see the NHL back in Quebec before Connecticut. But, with the NHL struggling in Nashville, Atlanta, Phoenix and Miami and the upcoming economic fallout, it is very conceivable that the Whale could be returning. Contracting by 4 teams is not something either the PR reps for the NHL or the accountants at the NHLPA want to even think about. So the numbers look strong for a at least four franchises relocating.

This will anger people in Manitoba, but I think the NHL has a stronger chance of returning to a Hartford (1.5 million population base) than Winnipeg. I know Winnipeg has die-hard fans, but it just doesn’t make economic sense. I don’t think it will for at least 5-10 years. Even then, it would take a new stadium and some dramatic changes to the local Winterpeg economy (i.e. a shift from a government town to a more white collar technology town).

But Hartford, with a new stadium, is a very viable alternative. It could be the second coming of the Minnesota Wild expansion. Knowledgeable Hockey Fans, a strong hockey tradition (look at the success of the AHL Wolves), and a defacto rivalry with Boston Bruins. And If, as the mayor of Hartford has pointed out, Connecticut is looking at a renaissance; then this truly is a recipe for success.

So what are you waiting for Bettman bring back the Whale!

Categories: The-Flames, The-Future,

Andrew Ference Thursday November 27, 2008

Yes, I’m going to blog about that Andrew Ference. Yes, the same NHL Player who used to patrol the blueline for the Calgary Flames during the legendary 2004 run.

The reason I’m talking about Ference, is that he has made himself a bit of a name around the NHL as a great ambassador and a hardcore Eco Warrior. Because of which he was the feature interview on The Hour with George Strompolopulos

Imagine a beautifully embedded YouTube video of the Interview and then click on this link to view the interview

Anyways, Ference is widely regarded as an anomaly in the Hockey world. Talent wise, at best he’s a serviceable 3-4 Defenseman, but he’s used his minor celebrity status and popularity among the his teammates to champion some of the causes he believes in. Which in turn has creating a role that has garnish him far more accolades than his on ice performance.

So why the props right now? Well, besides once being a regular contributor (as okotoker) to the unofficial Calgary Flames Forums, Ference is just an interesting and egoless individual. He’s a pretty down to earth guy that has demonstrated that even the smallest celebrity can make change. He’s used his minor status to get more popular individuals involved in his causes. A few years ago he became a part of the Right to Play organization and tapped Robyn Regher and Alexander Ovechkin to join him in trips to poverty stricken nations. He’s pushed the NHLPA to adopt a Carbon Neutral program with the help of David Suzuki.

And for that he gets my admiration.

Categories: The-Flames, The-Pop-Culture, The World

Random Thoughts For Skulls & Cowboys Friday October 31, 2008 recently posted a complete photo gallery of the best NHL Goalie masks from this year.

And while this is by no means a biased opinion, Flames back-up Curtis McElhinney’s Flaming skulls and cowboy skeleton mask is by far the best of this year’s crop. (via.

Curtis McElhinney - Courtesy of

You realistically can’t beat a screaming skulls and a cowboy. But a close second does go to Marty Turco’s Trogdor inspired mask. Most uncomfortable mask goes to uber Nerd Kari Lehtonen’s Killbill/Anime Mask. While Mike Smith’s SAW V charity masks are pretty cool

And last but not least, the mask which truly encompasses the essence of his team award goes to Mathieu Garon for his grinning turd.

First – Meh, everyone’s already criticized Pepsi’s new branding to death, but in case you’re wondering it’s linked here. Great idea, bad execution…kinda like the new Vancouver Canucks Jerseys. (via Any and others)

Second – What’s better than Salt N’ Peppa … It’s Salt N’ Peppa Lyrics on a T-shirt!

ThirdSweetest Adidas shoes ever!

Fourth – Tim O’Reily (The man who is responsible for this Web 2.0 Term) has officially endorsed Obama. While it’s no surprise a leading edge technical guru would support a liberal presidential candidate over a self-proclaimed Luddite republican candidate (who has never used his email account), he does make a series of solid points solely from a technological standpoint.

Web 2.0 has shown the power of what I’ve elsewhere called harnessing collective intelligence. Despite the claims of critics like Nick Carr and Andrew Keen, Google does make us smarter. So does Wikipedia, and Amazon, YouTube, Facebook, the blogosphere, and Twitter. Our access to information today is unprecedented; the ability of individual citizens to discover and share important new ideas is greater than it has ever been in our history; important ideas are able to bubble up and become visible to those who need to know them.
Barack Obama understands this. His campaign has demonstrated his ability to harness the internet not only for fundraising, but also his comfort with its decentralized nature. is not a one-way fundraising machine, but a platform that has enabled his supporters to act independently, while coordinating their decentralized, bottom-up activities in a way that adds to their effectiveness. What’s more, it is a platform that has allowed supporters to disagree with him, and so to shape his policies – a far cry from the current administration’s belief that disagreement is equivalent to disloyalty

Fifth – An article from Avenue magazine regarding the naming of 17th Avenue. Should it be called the Red Mile or should the thousands of dollars in marketing spent by the Uptown 17th Avenue group determine the name of the street?

Sixth – A great article on marketing campaigns being killed by bad SEOs. (via. Mike Tighe)

Here we have an awesome campaign, a great message, I see no reason that it would not be successful. Yet at the same time you have a teen demographic which is highly advanced online – and you can’t Google the bloody site (pun intended).

Seventh – I bet you’re wondering how I found out about that Avenue Magazine article … Probably wondering how an unsophistimicated slob like myself found out about it? Well Avenue’s on Twitter. So there. bwahhh!

Eighth – Well it’s my last random thoughts before the big Overlord vs. McCain rumble in the Southern Jungle, so I thought it would be fitting to link to one last DailyShow clip – Sarah Palin: Going Rogue

Best part about the Going Rogue clip; the use of KillBill, Species, That Jane Fonda Flick and the Fifth Element.

Categories: The-Random, The-Flames, The Beverages, The Blogosphere, The Calgary Vibe, The Craziness, The Humourous, The Pop-Culture, The Southern Neighbours, The T-Shirts, The Twitter-verse, The Urban

« Older Newer »