Saturday, August 23, 2008

From The Ground Up, Part 3

Part 1 · Part 2

Today voting ended on the poll about how many teams our little fantasy league will have. Much to my disappointment, you all chose 30 — same as the NHL and same as the IHA. I know I run the risk of alienating readers by calling 34% of you a disappointment, but that's something I'm just going to have to live with. (Unless someone can give me a really good reason why we should be unoriginal and then I'll eat my words.)

I'll tell you I almost didn't include it because I wanted to stay off the beaten path. I used it more or less as a test to see how much you guys were willing to stray from what you know and move into new territory. Comfortable is comfortable but let's not make a habit out of recreating the NHL here. That's not the point, remember?

I've been reading the comments in the last two posts. A lot of you seem to like the idea of doing a league with all non-NHL cities (with an Original Six exemption, oddly enough). That's not a terrible idea considering what we've witnessed in the last two polls. But to do that would be an executive decision by me. Instead, here's the plan.

Instead of creating a giant list of cities and allowing you guys to pick your favorites, I have a better idea. First, you're going to choose the geographical boundaries for the divisions.

I've created five maps for you to choose from. I think they're each different and good in their own way. None of them are even close to being in line with the NHL's current divisional map. You guys can study them and pick your favorite. Once we have the divisional boundaries decided, everything we vote on will be done division by division. Makes less work for me.

At some point tomorrow the new poll will appear in the sidebar with the five choices.

The next step will be selecting the markets that will have teams. I say markets (or metropolitan areas) for a couple of reasons: 1) I'd like to avoid multiple teams from the same market like New York or L.A. (I know it's one decision I'm taking away from you. Sorry. Let's make this easy.); and 2) if, for example, a city like San Francisco is chosen, I want there to be the option of placing the team in San Jose or Oakland or something.

I'll pick 12 cities from each divisional area (based on market size, most likely) and the 5 with the most votes will be awarded franchises. Simple as that. If you don't think this is the good plan, present a better one to me either by email or as a comment.

I've also been planning into the future of this league and while I won't go into detail right now, I will offer a few tidbits. Once we have all the cities picked out for each division, we'll move on to naming the teams, one division at a time. We'll take nominations and every entry that meets the guidelines will be included in the voting. More details on that later.

To keep the rest of the process from becoming excruciatingly tedious, we won't be voting on things like logos and colors separately. Once all the teams have been named, I'll begin taking logo submissions. That means you pick the color scheme to go with your logo set. The team's colors will be determined by the winning logo. All entries that meet the guidelines will be included in the voting. More details on that later.

All of the accepted entries will appear on one page and you'll rate each logo from 1 to 5 stars. The logo with the highest rating wins. In the event of a tie, we'll hold a run-off poll. After we have logos, we'll do jerseys. After that who knows. But all that will probably take us several months anyway.

By the way, this league is going to need a name. Start making suggestions. The only criteria I have is that it must use the name Icethetics in it and it cannot have the acronym IHA or NIHL. Let's hear some creative ideas.

For what it's worth, I like the idea of the guy who said we should pretend we're creating a new league in a world 20 years after the collapse of the NHL. Let's say some Bettman-like character holds the trademarks to every team name and logo from the NHL and he's vindictive. You steal one of his logos or team names — even a little bit — and he'll eat your children. You don't want your children eaten do you?

Let's try to be original and, mostly, have fun!


nogoodbye said...

I voted for 36. I thought more would be better. Isn't more better? And even though I have no children, I agree with steering as far clear of anything NHL related. It all sounds like fun anyway.

Arenacale said...

It's late to make this suggestion, but today I had the idea that it might be cool to use AHL cities rather than the NHL ones which have been done to death. There's a lot of history in those cities but there's also a lot of freedom for creativity. I'll support the process regardless, especially considering the amount of work that's being done on it, but it's a thought.

As for the name, I submit the Reg Dunlop-approved Icethetics Federal League of Hockey.

Vic DiGital said...

I was one of the 36-teamers, non-NHL cities, international division supporter, okay with Original Six cities. But I like what you've decided upon. I can live with it and be happy. I also like the idea of letting the logo designers have free color reign. The best logo should win each time. As we go along, and we see what logo/colors are winning, maybe you can set a moratorium on some colors that might become too common.

Vic DiGital said...

Also, my entry for a league name is:

The NAIL. North American Icethetics League (of hockey).

Anonymous said...

I completely agree with the original six cities. there should be some minor league cities who have great fans and such great passion and should be recongnized. I feel like there should be more ex NHL cities too. maybe like Winipeg?

Warrior19 said...


Icethetics Federation of Hockey

Jason New Era said...

Icethetics Hockey Federation (IHF)

Love the rules. This will be awesome, can't wait to contribute.

Anonymous said...

Wow. I'm so glad I stumbled upon this site. I cannot wait for all of this to unfold, and a big hand for Chris for making this all possible.

Hopefully we'll see a Seattle team :)

Bach said...

Agreed. So many creative ideas going on with this website. It's really great for up-and-coming graphic artists practicing their craft. Thanks Chris.

Shawn said...

Why have us vote if you are just going to complain?

Chris said...

Why have us vote if you are just going to complain?

Ha! Fair point. Annoying right? To be honest, I only mentioned it because I thought it was funny. Everybody talks about how they want something different from the NHL yet... Just disappointed, you know?

Still, I said I was leaving this up to you guys. And that's how it's going to be, regardless of my opinions.

Agreed. So many creative ideas going on with this website. It's really great for up-and-coming graphic artists practicing their craft. Thanks Chris.

That's my goal. You're welcome.

As we go along, and we see what logo/colors are winning, maybe you can set a moratorium on some colors that might become too common.

I hear that, but I want to put this on you guys as much as possible. I won't be making decisions like that. If, as we go, certain colors start showing up a lot, it'll be up to you guys to curb that by not voting for them again and again. Know what I mean?

I only plan to put restrictions on things to make my life easier. Editorial decisions will be up to you all.

HockeyLister said...

Everything is really coming together nicely here. I'm really excited for all of this. My league name suggestion is;

Icethetics Hockey League of Aesthetics.

After all, it is all about designs and how things look.

holmes.brodnik said...

icethetics league of champions

canucklehead said...

I voted for the 32 team league.

34% for the 30 team league team really isn't a convincing majority at all. It may simply be that the people who are voting against the 30 team league are simply being split amongst the other options.

I know that it would be more work, but you could consider trying run-off voting or the single transferable vote in future polls to get a true consensus pick. The run-off vote is doable but mean voting would take longer. I doubt you could do a STV vote with the voting programs that you're using but it would save more time.

freez said...

Continental Hockey Assosiation of Icethetics

also i think that 30 isnt the right choice i mean arent we trying to bulid a new team? something like the nhl wasnt ther? its really a bummer but i guess we have to use that...

i know i said bummer wierd right?

freez said...

i agree with cunackle head i think we should do a vote for 30 teams and 30 or 36 then we can see the vote should only be on for like 2 days then itll be fast and fair, it would be a bummer if we didnt do that..

i said bummer again!

Vic DiGital said...

I also vote for a run-off to determine a true majority.

Vic DiGital said...

Also (and I know it's a long way away), will you be formalizing some of the templates used for submitting items? For example, would you provide the jersey template that everyone should use to submit their jersey ideas? Likewise things like rink designs, goalie masks, etc?

Also, once each one is finalized, I think it would be cool to have an official-looking Icethetics downloadable logo sheet/style guide for each team, with pantone colors, home and away, third jerseys, etc.

Blake said...

My suggestion for the name of the league is

the Amalgamated Electronic Icethetics Opinionators Unlimited

Also, the seasons could occur quad-yearly like the olympics and thus the acronym would become

AEIOU and sometimes Y

Contrived? yes.
Am I sleepy? again, yes.

Lyndon said...

my suggstion:

Xtreeme Icethetetics League: XIL!

Mykl and Kevin said...

World Hockey Association of Icethetics


cant wait to see all the teams

cr3we said...

IHF: Icethetics Hockey Federation

paploo said...

FHLI- Fantasy Hockey League of Icethetics

I think for choosing the team names that there should be a reason behind the name, not just what fits with its geographic location or City name.... An example being the Nova Scotia Highlanders based out of Halifax(to Chris: yes I sent in this fantasy team sometime ago).... On second thought maybe you could post it for an example. I sent in the reasoning behind the logo and the team name to show the heritage that the team would represent (If you need me to send it again I can).

Anonymous said...

hey chris,

i think i've only commented once before, but i love this blog and i think this league is a great idea. i hope it will take the bad taste out of your mouth caused by negative comments about the other fantasy league. as a professional graphic designer and hockey fan, i value your hard work on icethetics and was sad to see you were discouraged. i hope this new idea gets things back on track. keep up the great work.

S.D. said...

May I suggest Icethetics Icehockey International (III).

I would echo what canucklehead said about the 34% people voting for the current setup: that means two thirds of the people voted for something different. Personally I voted for 24 because I think most sports leagues are too big (I'd have voted for 20 or even 16 if such options had existed). I don't know whether we need to have a run-off, but I wouldn't feel disappointed at the results.

As for the idea of all non-NHL cities as a rule, I don't think it's a good idea. Sure, we can all think of NHL cities that shouldn't be in the NHL (Raleigh, Nashville, etc.), but there are more reasonable choices than unreasonable choices in the league. But if you do decide to do it, I'd suggest no exemption for the Original Six. If there are no NHL teams at all, then we have to assume we're working on a top-level minor league instead of a major league, and a top-level minor league shouldn't have teams in every single Original Six city (which is what would inevitably happen if they were available options).

cptjeff said...

I like the top minor league idea personally. Get some new cities into the mix to make things more interesting.

Oh, and North Carolina has a strong fanbase that's only growing... quit ragging on southern Hockey. It's getting old and most of the arguments don't hold up anyway.

Ogre said...

The problem with that, cptjeff, is the study that showed (At the start of last season) that something like 50% of the people in Raleigh didn't even know the Hurricanes existed. You can have your rabid fans, and I don't disagree there should be a team there, but half the population doesn't know you exist?

That said, they haven't been there that long, and they do deserve their team more than Phoenix, one of the Florida teams, and Nashville, to make a short list.

cptjeff said...

That study was pretty much crap. It was not Raleigh, it didn't weight age groups- so about half of the data was from people over 50, drew disproportionally from parts of the state far from the Hurricanes... Basically complete crap. It's more or less "Out of the demographic that the Hurricanes have the least amount of attraction to, who has heard of the Canes?"

The real kicker? It was the final project of a summer intern.

Before you judge a market, try coming to a game or two.

go sens go said...

ILL: Icethetics Logo League... and this is gonna be ILL! lol


ILA: Icethetics Logo Association


ILHF: Icethetics Hockey Logo Federation

... ya, I know... bad ideas!

cptjeff said...

How about Icethetics Nice Logo League? No claim as to what level they'll play at or anything like that, just that they have nice logos.

INLL isn't that hard to remember either.

Anonymous said...

Been out a few days.....I like what Chris said about 66% voting for something else. I voted 36 teams myself, but we cant do like the Democrats and insist on a new vote when it doesnt go our way. Ive been harping on the one team in Ny and LA so at least if it does go along NHL lines, we will have 2 teams to play with.

I had an idea too. Maybe later we could do a minor league for the league we create? I mean, if the fantasy is the NHL folded, these teams we make are gonna need feeder teams right? Please dont take offense anybody but do you see a town of 90,000 as major or minor league? That would be an ethical way to do a do over, and possibly include everyone's geographic area. It would for sure be mostly or all non NHL cities.

Just trying to keep the peace, but say for example. Atlanta doesnt make it,Atlanta fans wouldn't get all pissy because maybe, just maybe , they could make it as the affiliate for the Edmonton Lumber Jacks, Manitoba Lakers, or the Dallas Tornados?

Just putting that out there.....

Vic DiGital said...

I like the idea of a minor league. I'd make it mostly unofficial or allow Chris to assign minor league teams to people that 'apply' for a franchise. That way, everyone could create a team from their hometown or otherwise unrepresented city, and it can be the 'feeder' team to the big league. And if there's five minor league teams from Denver, then so be it.

But only allow each person to submit one official minor league team.

Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Icethetics hockey league of ( insert Chris's hometown)

Sabres Persuasion said...

The Icethetics Ice Hockey Collaboration seems like an excellent name, to me.

Ryan said...

International National Ice Hockey League Federation of North America Excluding Mexico Unless They Build A Rink And Pony Up Some Dough.


Vlad said...

It's a great plan, Chris! :)

If non-NHL teams are included in every division, we have the opportunity to vote for them... and make this league different.

Vortican said...

If it's supposed to be all in fun...

Icethetics League of Logos - iLOL

ogre39666 said...

@ Vortacan
HAHA, thats pretty clever

Mattstro Disastro said...

American-Canadian Elite Hockey League.

The ACE H L.

Vic DiGital said...

I love ACE H L.

Along the same lines, how about

Icethetics Confederated Elite Hockey League.


Vic DiGital said...

Change that to:

Icethetics Continental Elite Hockey League


That one's got Icethetics in it, the scope of the league, and a cool way of saying it that ties nicely back into the origin of the league. ICE HL

Anonymous said...

ILL (Icethetics Logo League) is the best so far. If I have to contribute something original instead of voting for someone else's idea, I'll say EIL (Elite Icethetics League) -- nicknamed "the eel" by fans.

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