Cybulski: Raptors need to change their name to Huskies

James Cybulski

5/3/2010 12:37:41 AM

Just what kind of week was it in Raptorland?

Well, Chris Bosh - the face of the franchise - took to Twitter to decide his fate, while LeBron James - the face of the NBA - reminded everyone just how bad a finish it was to one of the most disappointing Raptors seasons in memory.

The King made a blunt statement about how he was glad to have faced Chicago rather than Toronto because they posed a stiffer challenge and the Raptors looked like they wanted no part of the post-season. 

In 15 NBA seasons, the Raptors have been to the playoffs five times.  Fans have felt cheated by their former heroes, who couldn't leave town fast enough. There have been more draft day misses than hits and trades haven't really fared much better. 

But there was one bright spot this Raptors season: the Huskies. Introducing the past to the present was a brilliant marketing idea.  The Huskies were Toronto's pro basketball team in the 40s that folded in 1947. The uniforms were slick and the merchandise was sold. 

I understand why they decided to name the franchise the Raptors back in the early 90s.  Jurassic Park was all the rage at the box-office and babies were Barney-crazy.  But let's face it: dinosaurs aren't cool anymore, unless you're five.  Nothing of great substance has come of the Raptors' first 15 seasons, so here's what I suggest...

Change the franchise's name to the Huskies.  Do it as soon as possible, too.

Ask any hoops fan that has a vested interest in the Toronto franchise and they'll agree - at least every fan that I've spoken to in recent weeks.

No one rocks a Raptors jersey or cap on the streets, but I've seen a lot of dudes sporting Huskies gear.  What NBA free agent says, "I want to be a Raptor!" They're slim and none, unless they get crazy He-dough.

The Huskies represent an acknowledgement of the past, along with far more of a Canadian flair.  And if nothing else, Huskies sell.

Don't tell me people would complain.  I think it would be overwhelmingly supported if MLSE recognized the switch would do nothing but good.

Besides, the uniforms would be more in line with the Toronto market.  The Maple Leafs, Argos, and Jays all wear blue and white. No more of the purple, pinstripe, red, and black jerseys that have brought nothing but frustration for the most part.

Make the change and make it right.  Go Huskies.