Obviously, not all of the cities listed will be included. Last week we completed a poll in which you guys determined our league would have 30 teams. That brings us to this week. We're going to be doing two divisions at a time over the next three weeks.
This week you'll vote on the cities to be included in the Pacific and Central Divisions. One from the West, one from the East. Five cities from each division — 10 total. Yay, math.
From the 12 cities listed, you can choose to vote for as few as 1 or as many as all 12. It's entirely up to you. You just choose the cities you think should be included. However, only the five with the most votes at the end of the week will be included in the division.
For reference, next week will be the North and Northeast Divisions. That'll be the weekend of September 6. After that we'll do the South and Southeast. Those polls will begin on the weekend of September 13.
My plan is to do a few things concurrently just to get through this quicker, but I reserve the right to change my mind if it becomes too much work for me. Next weekend we'll know which cities are getting teams so at that point I'd like to start taking nominations for team names.
IMPORTANT: I will not accept name nominations until the city selection polls are finalized — no matter how many votes any city is getting!
Now, about how the naming will work. When you make a nomination, you must include locator with it. In other words, don't just submit Lightning. Submit Tampa Bay Lightning. Or Florida Lightning or St. Petersburg Lightning. Like I said before, you'll be choosing a locator that goes with your name.
When these polls are finished, I will offer a complete list of acceptable locators for each city chosen. For example, if Tampa was one of the selected cities, your locator options would be: Tampa, Tampa Bay, Florida, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and Lakeland. Orlando would not be accepted because it is considered a separate market for our purposes. However, if Orlando was selected instead of Tampa, Lakeland might still be included with it because of its proximity to both cities. But if Tampa and Orlando were both selected, Lakeland would only be available to one city or the other. Make sense?
We'll do the same name nominating process the week after for the next two divisions and so on. I'll accept nominations for a week and then have you guys vote on the final name. All nominations will be included in this process provided they fit within the guidelines I set up. More on those in the next paragraph.
I know saying restrictions sounds bad but it's basically what they are. I'm just starting to work on this so don't consider this final by any means. It's just a way of letting you know what to expect. A team name nomination will NOT be accepted if it breaks any of the following rules:
- It may not use a name of any current or past NHL team.
- It may not use the name of any current AHL or ECHL team.
- It may not use the name or close variation of any professional sports team currently or previously within the same market or geographical area.
- It may not use the name of any team from Project: IHA
- It may not be vulgar or in any way inappropriate. (And I'll decide what's inappropriate.)
That should cut down on any potential similarity to the NHL or any other league. I'll have another list like this for when it comes time to choose colors and create logos. But again, this is not final. If you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them. Email me or leave a comment.