New XFL Team Designs Appear Less "Gimmicky" Than First Iteration
The names and logos of the eight XFL teams "make clear" what league Founder Vince McMahon has "emphasized from the beginning: Version 2.0 will be a lot less gimmicky and a lot more conservative than the original model," according to Deron Snyder of the WASHINGTON TIMES. DC Defenders President Erik Moses said, "With Vince McMahon's vision and genius in marketing, and the resources he has graciously provided us, if we can't get spring football to work, then it doesn't work." The Defenders, whose "logo includes a nod to the District flag," will play five home games at Audi Field in the first XFL season next February. Moses is "still trying to secure office space and a practice facility" for the team, with Bowie State, Howard Univ., the Univ. of Maryland and the St. James complex "among possibilities for the latter" (WASHINGTON TIMES, 8/22). Rich Eisen asked about the Defenders, "What if you played offense on that team?" ("The Rich Eisen Show," The Audience Network, 8/21).
BREATHING FIRE: Seattle Dragons President Ryan Gustafson said of the team's branding, "We wanted something that was unique but also part of the entire brand that represents the community of Seattle, with the imagery of water, the city and just the fierceness of the character." He added there was a big list of options, but "this is the one we landed on early." Gustafson also said that the Dragons expect to "unveil their uniforms by Thanksgiving" (SEATTLE TIMES, 8/22).
GOING TO WORK FOR YOU: In DC, Matt Bonestell notes a number of "observers noted some similarities between the new XFL logos and the logos of other football teams" (WASHINGTON POST, 8/22). In Houston, Matt Young notes the Houston Roughnecks logo is a "bit reminiscent of the old Houston Oilers with an oil derrick featured prominently." The XFL team "opted to go away from the Oilers' Columbia blue though, and went with a more Texans-like red and blue" (HOUSTON CHRONICLE, 8/22).
RAISING HELL: In Dallas, Damon Marx writes the Dallas Renegades' logo "has a familiar feel." Dallas area fans "may be reminded of the logo" for the former AFL Dallas Desperados. The Renegades logo "features the silhouette of a Wild West outlaw from the neck up with a sky blue handkerchief obscuring his face." Bright red eyes "peer out from underneath a sky blue and black cowboy hat." The primary team colors "appear to be light blue and black, perhaps with red accents" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 8/22). Meanwhile, Overwatch League analyst Christopher Mykles claimed the XFL "just straight up stole" the name and logo of the Renegades esports team. Mykles: "That was my creative vision. ... In this case it has to deal with active US trademarks in the competitive space. It is also the formatting of the logo and text. This will be a lawsuit, I am pretty sure" (TWITTER.com, 8/21).
READY TO STRIKE: In Tampa, Josh Fiallo writes the XFL's team names "left a lot to be desired," which "rang true" with the Tampa Bay Vipers. The team name is "better than being the BattleHawks, but not much about the Vipers -- and its lime green and black logo -- scream Tampa Bay" (TAMPA BAY TIMES, 8/22). ESPN Radio's Jason Fitz said, "Frankly, a lot of hate yesterday for the logos, the names, for the slogans, whatever it might be." But ESPN Radio's Mike Golic Jr. noted "we're talking about it, though" ("Golic & Wingo," ESPN Radio, 8/22).
LOOKING DEEPER: CBSSN's Evan Washburn said he believes "spring football can work (but) these XFL names are so safe" ("Time to Schein," CBSSN, 8/21). YAHOO SPORTS' Frank Schwab ranked the XFL team names from "most ridiculous to ... well, not best, but less ridiculous," and named the St. Louis BattleHawks the most ridiculous and the L.A. Wildcats the least (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 8/21). In L.A., Chuck Schilken also ranked the new team names and logos, with the N.Y. Guardians as the "best" and the Defenders as the "worst" (L.A. TIMES, 8/22). THE RINGER's Shaker Samman wrote some of the team designs are "objectively awesome and original," while others are a "bit derivative." Samman ranked the BattleHawks as the best new team design, and the Guardians as the worst" (THERINGER.com, 8/21). PFT's Mike Florio said he was "disappointed by the team and the logos." Florio: 'It just doesn't feel inspired to me" ("PFT," NBCSN, 8/22).