International Soccer team names

Why not the Blanks?The members of Terminus Legion, the grassroots fan club that has rallied for Atlanta to be selected for a new Major League Soccer team, has spent months debating names for the club. And now the time has come to help them select a name that would be presented to team owner Arthur Blank and Darren Eales, the club president. (Team executives would get the final say.) Here are the choices, plus some explanations: Bantams
Bantams are small chickens noted for their aggressive nature. This would allow the team to embrace a scrappy, tenacious form of play. Chicken images could be interesting especially in an aggressive stance. In contrast, it would be natural for the opposition to call us cocks or chickens. Bantamweight is one of the lower weight classes in boxing and referencing a cock-fighting breed may not be widely accepted.

Black Harts
Hart is the Old English word for a stag or a deer. The southeast is known for having a large deer population, and it is not uncommon to see them in Metro Atlanta. We added the color Black to match the black color of the team and to allude to the cold-hearted attack of the victors. The downside to this name is that few will know the reference, might consider it misspelled and that no deer are actually black. Neutral, but an interesting fact, the EPL side Spurs home field is called White Hart Lane.

Georgia is known (unofficially) as the Empire State of the South, which is meant to represent the desire to be the leaders in industrial and economic development in the Southeast. As it refers to an MLS team, the name Atlanta Empire would symbolize the aspirations our team has to be at the top of the league. It could also represent the breadth of the Atlanta team’s fanbase, as we already have fans in Alabama, Mississippi, North and South Carolina, and Tennessee. A downside to this name could be that it may be confused with the official state nickname of New York (the Empire State).

While many of us completely dread even the slightest chance of being called the Phoenix, a description of a phoenix could work, in the name Firebirds. Perhaps even the Fire Birds. The imagery could be outstanding and it would reference the Atlanta seal. The association with the defunct Pontiac car could provide a negative unless we as a supporters group completely embraced it. The name doesn’t inspire a lot of passionate responses that we have heard and seems almost a “safe default.”

In addition to superiority, the Kings name would bring incredible heraldic imagery with crowns, scrolls, and a legitimate reason to have a shield shape. It would also bring a nice nod to Atlanta’s civil rights history. The name would have exactly zero chance of being misunderstood. The downside is that there is already an NHL and an NBA team with the name, so it wouldn’t be distinctive in sports, though it would within MLS. The connection with the MLK family would need to be carefully managed as well.

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