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Timmins Big Ms anyone?

TIMMINS - This city’s NOJHL franchise will be known as … drum roll please … the Timmins ???

No announcement has been made yet, so out of respect for the artist formerly known, currently known or soon to be known as Prince we will simply refer to them for the time being as the team formerly known as the Abitibi Eskimos, Eskis or Pesky Eskis (if you reside in Cochrane, or live somewhere else and cheer for the Crunch).

In fact, it now looks like the Timmins Junior ‘A’ franchise will not be announcing its new name, colours and branding until around the middle of April, not the end of March as had been previously reported.

We attached a poll to last week’s column to give readers an opportunity to have their say on the subject and also asked them to email us some of their suggestions.

Based upon the results of the voting, there is no real clear-cut winner — although the Timmins Tornadoes did generate the most votes.

Following are the complete results of the poll:

70 votes — Timmins Tornadoes (23%)

48 votes — Timmins Black Bears (16%)

45 votes — Timmins Timberwolves (15%)

32 votes — Timmins Blizzard (11%)

25 votes — Timmins Shaftmen (8%)

24 votes — Timmins Lynx (8%)

23 votes — Timmins Moose (8%)

14 votes — Timmins Wolverines (5%)

14 votes — Timmins Trailblazers (5%)

4 votes — Timmins Timbermen (1%)

The total number of votes, 299, is slightly less than the number of season tickets the team formerly known as Eskimos sold last season when they were based in Iroquois Falls.

We also received a number of suggestions that were not considered when I crafted last week’s column.

Patricia Gaudreau, for example, thinks the teams should be called the Timmins Rock.

“Words affiliated with the word rock include: strong, solid, gold, mining, smooth, hard, sharp, diamond, heavy, priceless,” she noted in her email.

“These and many more words could be used as attributes of to describe the team, players, fans, our city, the mining industry, etc. The name has been successful for the Toronto Rock lacrosse team. Let us not to forget Timmins’ own Dumas Rocks team that won the Canada Sings TV contest. It seems like a winner to me.”

It indeed would be a fine name and certainly much better than Patricia’s other suggestion: “My second choice would be the Timmins Habs. But I doubt Timmins is ready to jump off the Leafs’ bandwagon for that. lol.”

Ouch!

Way to kick a guy when his team is down.

Yes, I am a Toronto Maple Leafs fan, even though I can normally be seen sporting a Chicago Blackhawks hat, touque, T-shirt and/or sweatshirt.

I cheer for the Maple Leafs during the regular season and the Blackhawks during the playoffs — since the Maple Leafs never get invited to the postseason.

Besides, my favourite NHL player is Jonathan Toews, who plays for the Blackhawks, not the Maple Leafs.

I also like Tom Luke’s idea of naming the squad the “Timmins Frost.”

Meanwhile, Kevin Ford emailed in not one but three suggestions: “Timmins Northern Lights, Timmins Gold Rush, Timmins Golden Nuggets.”

Another emailer, who chose not to disclose his or her name, offered: “The Timmins Wild would certainly be a fitting name for this junior team. Timmins is surrounded by wilderness and lynx, moose and bears are seen in town regularly.”

We even had a few former Timmins residents get into the act.

Michael Charbonneau suggested: “I was born and raised in Timmins and played midget for the Timmins Combines. Not sure the meaning behind the name.”

Some of the comments posted online with last week’s column also produced some interesting thoughts.

• Marc Drouin: “Timmins Wild.”

To which JeanGuyButt replied: “Bad…..the Manitoulin tea,pm was called that for a while.

• Skippye: “The team will be representing the Porcupine, so I think we can look at the Porcupine Porkies. Years back the old senior league had the T&S Flyers and the South Porcupine Porkies. This would include the whole of the Porcupine population. The Porcupine Porkies.”

• Weightloss: “How about the Timmins Taxpayers. Lord knows we pay enough!”

• TheThirdGracchi: “Trailblazers is a pretty cool name and it actually makes sense given the history of the city and those who founded it. Do it!”

• SilkeEnder: “Call them whatever you want but keep in mind that merchandising has the potential to earn important revenue for any sports team. In the OHL, names like Colts, Greyhounds, Wolves or Otters can all market eye-catching sportswear as well as cuddly plush toys for the kids. That’s harder to achieve if you pick abstract names like Spirit, Pride, 67’s, or even the old Centennials. Stay away from old-standby colors like red, white and blue, or black and yellow, and choose colors that stand out from the ordinary. The San Jose Sharks struck gold with their teal and black with the shark logo. They sell tons of merchandise and earn millions every year. Sure, a Timmins team won’t make millions, but it could earn important dollars depending on the efforts of the people responsible for doing it.”

There were a few less-than-helpful suggestions I opted not to include in this column, as well.

When it comes down to it, maybe the easiest solution would be to name the team the Timmins Blackhawks.

After all, the team formerly known as the Abitibi Eskimos is allowing the team soon-to-be-known as the Iroquois Falls Eskimos use its old name, so perhaps TPA Sports — owners of the team soon-to-be-known as the Iroquois Falls Eskimos — to have its old name.

Like the team soon-to-be-known as the Iroquois Falls Eskimos — who will be altering the logo, black-gold-white colour scheme and design of their jerseys — the team formerly known as the Abitibi Eskimos would have to do the same, since the jerseys the road red jerseys Blackhawks used this season have a big M (for Mattawa) as part of their crest.

Big M?

Wait a minute. Timmins has a pretty famous Big M — as in Frank Mahovlich, as well.

Pretty sure that Big M never donned a Blackhawks jersey, however. Maple Leafs, Red Wings, Canadiens and Toros (Toronto’s WHA franchise), yes, but no Blackhawks.

You will find attached to this column online a new poll with the Top 5 vote getters from the first poll, as well as five new suggestions.

ONLINE POLL