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Friday, February 16, 2007

What's in a name?

Like many Canadian sports fans, I've been silently grousing of late over the CFL's run-it-up-the-flagpole-and-see-who-salutes idea to sell the naming rights to the Grey Cup. But, in thinking about this issue, I figured it wouldn't be the end of the world because, after all, the championship series between the top professional baseball teams in North America, aka the World Series, has done pretty well for itself, despite being named for the old New York World newspaper.

Turns out, though, that the linkage to the newspaper is an urban myth.  Bottom line, then:  I'm back to my original reaction--I don't like the idea.

Posted by Terry O'Neill on February 16, 2007 in Sports | Permalink


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American College Football fans are unlikely to mind much, since all the major bowl games have corporate names. Personally, I hate the idea. I don't much care what the Football leagues do, however, except that it could eventually give the NHL ideas. The day the call it "The Tim Horton's Stanley Cup" is the day I stop watching.

Posted by: Mark Logan | 2007-02-16 8:35:18 PM

Having spent a career in marketing and being a lifelong auto racing enthusiast,I have had many changes of heart on this topic.

I have come to believe we have no choice but to submit to the inevitable.....everything is for sale.Whether it's every square foot of board in an NHL rink plastered in corporate logos,or the branding of the arena itself.Horrifying when first new,yeah....but we adjust.

Take a look around your home...most of your prize possessions are covered in corporate logos.Hell...go out to the driveway and check out your wheels.You are probably a rolling billboard for both the manufacturer AND dealership.

It is simply one of the negative spinoffs of a consumer driven economy.Just like TV time-outs.

After two years,I still think 'Winston' Cup,not 'Nextell'(NASCAR).In the end,I couldn't care less,I still enjoy the competition on the track....so I continue to consume their product.

Posted by: Canadian Observer | 2007-02-16 8:45:35 PM

Mark L says
"American College Football fans are unlikely to mind much, since all the major bowl games have corporate names.

Motor City
Fort Worth
New Mexico
New Orleans
Las Vegas

Posted by: h2o273kk9 | 2007-02-16 9:25:00 PM


You got the names wrong. They are:

- Allstate Sugar Bowl
- FedEx Orange Bowl
- Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
- The Rose Bowl Game presented by citi (Yes, that's the full proper name for the game)
- AT&T Cotton Bowl

etc, etc, etc ....

Posted by: Mark Logan | 2007-02-16 9:48:38 PM

Grey Cup instituted by Earl Grey has been around for a long time - since about 1906 or 1907 I think -
saw the original once years ago on display at the University of Toronto, and later at the CNE "Sports Hall of Fame" - I think the historic throphy should be left alone -in our House CFL Football is too boring to watch. Prefer Canadian College Football
for which the Grey Cup was originally intended
- MacLeod

Posted by: Jack Macleod | 2007-02-17 9:51:48 AM

Try to imagine how little I care!

Posted by: John | 2007-02-17 10:03:52 AM

I don't like the idea. Its one more sell out of our traditions and history.

On the other hand would it really matter? The English Football Association Cup (Soccer) has been the Carling FA Cup for some time. But true fans still know it as the FA Cup. I think that most Canadians will put aside a new corprate title and stick to what we know and love, the Grey Cup.

Posted by: Stones | 2007-02-17 11:24:42 AM

Right on Stones - this Country has lost too many important symbols, and the Grey Cup is really an important Icon in the history of Canadian inter college football and the post World War II revival of the game into professional status. The Grey Cup could easily be saved from commercialization by the
Harper Government declaring it a National Icon through either Heritage Canada or Sport Canada.
It's a great opportunity for real Conservatives to display their respect for our Symbols and Heritage
-I'll say one more thing, if the Hon. Sheila Copps was the Minister of Canadian Heritage there would be no question of support for retention of the
famous Grey Cup. How come Ms. Copps ain't a Tory?

Posted by: Jack MacLeod | 2007-02-17 11:45:59 AM

The Tim Horton's Grey Cup,
Real Canadian sounding eh?

Posted by: RightInTO | 2007-02-17 12:20:52 PM

Might actually attract more veiwers and fans...

Posted by: Stones | 2007-02-17 12:35:49 PM

Tim Hortons already had the Brier.

Posted by: Set you free | 2007-02-17 12:58:27 PM

It could attract more cops for sure...

Posted by: Marc | 2007-02-18 1:30:21 PM

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