The QMJHL's P.E.I. Rocket will play its final season in 2012-13. But not to worry Rocket fans, your team isn't going anywhere. It's just getting a new name beginning in the 2013-14 season. And because I waited so long to report this, I can now tell you what that name will be.
A year from now, the 13-year-old club will become the P.E.I. Islanders. And if that seems like it would be awkward to say out loud, you're absolutely right. But that's the way it is.
On August 22, the team announced it would be rebranded in 2013 and that the new name would come from the fans. For two weeks, the team accepted submissions. The top three entries were put up to an online vote from Sept. 6–19. They were P.E.I. Confederation, Islanders and Riptide.
At their home opener last Friday, the team announced that the new name will be Islanders. Apparently, Reebok will be developing the new look — colors, logos, uniforms and so on.
The franchise has undergone some front office changes recently and weren't satisfied that the name was connecting with fans. The team was founded in 1999 as the Montreal Rocket — named after the legendary Maurice "Rocket" Richard and their logo was even shaped like the No. 9 on his sweater. And in 2003, when the club packed up and moved to Prince Edward Island, they took the name with them. Guess 10 years was enough.
The Guardian recently ran polls regarding the new name. And the results were unusual. First of all, when asked to choose between the three finalists (Confederation, Islanders and Riptide), 59% of voters chose Riptide. However, in a later poll, only 54% give the new name a thumbs up.
What do you guys think of the new name? And what do you think Reebok will/should come up with in terms of a new logo?