According to the Silicon Valley Business Journal, we now know that the San Jose AHL team will be known as the Barracuda.
The reason for that??
The toothy moniker follows a multi-year “presenting sponsorship” deal with Campbell-based Barracuda Networks, the sources said. Terms of the agreement weren’t available, and Barracuda and the Sharks declined to comment for this story. An official announcement is expected sometime this week.
Of course, this is another realm of interesting as far as the debate goes on what will happen with North American sports and posting sponsorship on their jerseys. We’ve seen this in some outfits such as New York Red Bulls in the MLS, but nothing to this kind of scale in hockey. It begs the question on whether or not this is better or worse than actually have sponsor patches on the jerseys.
Sports-business analysts told me this week that such sponsorship deals — in which the sponsor’s name is bestowed on the team — are extremely rare in the U.S. But they said Barracuda (yes, that’s the plural) makes a lot of sense.
“They’re both creatures of the sea, so to speak,” said Mark Nagel, professor of sports and entertainment at the University of South Carolina. “You’re not saying you’re going to be the ‘San Jose Microsofts.’ But Barracuda is a legitimate name that’s appropriate for a sports team, which also happens to be a sponsor. I think it works from a branding standpoint.”
Though it is good they stuck to a theme without directly naming the team the Sharks, the Barracuda Network will get the most bang for their sponsorship buck when it comes to exposure. So long as the name isn’t out place like Nagel spoke about, the backlash or any complaining will be minimal and really just to complain for complaining sake– some NEVER seen in this social media work before….
In any case, now all the teams for the California/Pacific/Shorten-Schedule (allegedly) Division have been announced: Barracuda, Condors, Gulls, Heat, and Reign. Now, the question is whether or not the schedule will be shortened for these teams and whether or not it will be as booming of a success as fans, owners, and league executives thing it will be.
Until then, in honor of the announcement– turn up some Heart for your night.