The Brooklyn Nets should change their name to the Brooklyn Hustlers.
Once upon a time the Nets name stood for something — it was the name of a new upstart team, the basketball equivalent to the Jets and the Mets, who were the new startup teams of NYC in 1967 when the Nets came into existence. The Nets first name was actually not the Nets — they were called the New Jersey Americans in 1967 their initial season — then moved to Long Island in 1968 and renamed themselves to the New York Nets to rhyme with the Mets & Jets who by that time were starting to win and become darlings. However, the Nets got stuck with the rhyme-game bag. Later came the Sets (NYC’s World Team Tennis team) and the Bets (NY Lottery commercials in the 1970’s used that team name).
Mets is short for Metropolitans — an adverb for a type of people that you can associate with. Jets is an active noun.
Most team names are one of those — either adverbs denoting a type of people (Knickerbockers, Yankees, Giants, Islanders, Lakers, Celtics, Wizards), animals (Cougars, Lions, Tigers), or action nouns (Jets, Flames, etc) — that people can identify with.
Nets is an inanimate object that does not denote any kind of action — it is a bunch of cords. Nobody wants to be associated with a bunch of cords. When the Nets were owned by Russian MIkhail Prokhorov, the local tabloids used to call them the Nyets (which means ‘no’ in Russian). Can a team name get any worse?
Street Cred Image Part of 3-Point Plan
The Nets — stuck in New Jersey for 2 decades with poor attendance even when Jason Kidd and Kenyon Martin led them to the NBA finals — are executing a 4-point plan:
- Move to Brooklyn,
- Develop a street cred image, and
- Build a winning team with good players (Spencer Dinwiddie, Caris LeVert, D’Angelo Russell (before he was traded), Jarrett Allen, Joe Harris), and good coaching (Kenny Atkinson), which leads to a team on the rise, which attracts marque free agents (Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant) they would have never been able to attract in New Jersey.
The Nets are building their Street Cred image in their advertisements, marketing merchandise, and uniforms. The Nets name has nothing to do with any of that. It is a vestige of the past. It sticks out like Bill Melchionni.
Nets Are Ashamed of Own Name
The latest straw is that the Nets have introduced their City Uniform for 2019-20 — and it doesn’t have the Nets name on it, instead it has Bed Stuy on the front.
𝑙𝑖𝑣𝑒 𝑓𝑟𝑜𝑚 𝐵𝑒𝑑𝑓𝑜𝑟𝑑-𝑆𝑡𝑢𝑦𝑣𝑒𝑠𝑎𝑛𝑡 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑙𝑖𝑣𝑒𝑠𝑡 𝑜𝑛𝑒 | 𝑟𝑒𝑝𝑟𝑒𝑠𝑒𝑛𝑡𝑖𝑛𝑔 𝐵𝐾 𝑡𝑜 𝑡ℎ𝑒 𝑓𝑢𝑙𝑙𝑒𝑠𝑡
Introducing our 2019-20 City Edition threads 🎥 pic.twitter.com/9UTp9IMgb4
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) November 22, 2019
1. To begin with this is a bad move — the Nets have already siloed themselves to NYC by taking the Brooklyn name — there are people in the other 4 boroughs and Long Island and New York State who will not associate with this team. So the Nets are playing to the 2 million people in Brooklyn. Fair. Understood.
But now the new City Uniform siloes the Nets within that silo. What — next year Canarsie, the year after Brownsville, the year after Bay Ridge? What about the good people in Red Hook or Borough Park or Flatbush, or Coney Island, and on and on. It will take 50 years to call out each section. Until then everyone but those named is an orphan child. Bad idea.
Not to mention that Barclays Center is in Fort Greene.
2. Secondly, the Nets are associating themselves with Biggie Smalls, who was reportedly a Knicks fan.
3. Thirdly, and very importantly — the Nets are essentially admitting they do not want to be associated with their own name — Nets — as it is nowhere to be seen on the uniform. Are they the Brooklyn Bed Stuy’s?
Sign the Petition; Change Name to Brooklyn Hustlers
We have started a petition to change the Nets team name to Brooklyn Hustlers.
1. The name Brooklyn Hustlers is a wonderful double entendre — a team of players hustling on the court, and hustling opponents. It is a name that will evoke fear — what team would want to play the Hustlers? They will out hustle you and hustle you.
2. It is a name that reflects the people of Brooklyn, who are hustlers, and proud of it.
3. The Brooklyn Hustlers matches the image the team is trying to evoke, and will grow identity with the team and increase the fan base. (And ps while they are at it, have Julius Erving attend more home games, and use the red-white-and-blue ball in warmups; and if the NBA doesn’t allow that still, press them on it.)
Rename the team to the Brooklyn Hustlers and they will come.
Please sign the petition if you agree:
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