Monday, April 21, 2008

Wind Blows Riot Away

i was hoping the Chicago Riot could stage a late rally to earn a spot in the final three, but the Chicago Wind held off the Riot to earn entry into the Chicago Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) team’s Name the Team Sweepstakes final round. Chicago Red Stars and Chicago 1871 continued to lead the non-binding vote and will join the Wind as the other two teams in the contest’s final month. No more names will be eliminated through the sweepstakes. Fans can continue to vote on the three finalists through May 16th and the team name is expected to be announced in early June. Fans can vote on line at

Chicago Riot was nominated in honor of Chicago’s famous civil unrests – including the Chicago Lager Beer Riots of 1855, the Haymarket Square Riot of 1886 and the Grant Park Democratic National Convention Riot in 1968. While polarizing at the time, they all led to a better place to live for all Chicagoans and reflect (though exaggerated) the passion and spirit expected from the team’s players and fans.

I’m disappointed that Riot missed the final cut. Chicago Riot was the first name I thought of for this team more than a year ago. I think it was hurt by political correctness. Maybe some people took it literally and thought we'd be advocating violence at games. In any regards, it would've been somewhat problematic as there is already a burgeoning rugby team in town that is called Chicago Riot. No name is perfect, but Riot had a lot going for it.

The Chicago Red Stars extended their lead over Chicago 1871 by 132 more points and now lead the voting by more than 600 points.

Below are the current standings that include online voting and votes from paper ballots distributed at more than 100 locations in the area including all 44 AthletiCo Rehabilitation, Fitness and Performance Centers.

With balloting heading into the eighth and final stage, fans are welcome to vote again. Vote totals below display both the cumulative and weekly vote. Fans who voted for Progress, Towers, Massacre, Stinking Onions, Union Blues and Riot before, may want to vote again and choose a replacement for their selections from the three finalists:

Cumulative voting through 4/21:

Red Stars......3545.....31.5%
Riot...........2300.....20.4% Eliminated April 21st
Blues..........1564 Eliminated April 14th
Union..........1056 Eliminated April 7th
Stinking Onions..611 Eliminated March 31st
Massacre......526 Eliminated March 24th
Towers........183 Eliminated March 17th
Progress.......109 Eliminated March 10th

Weekly vote: 4/14-4/21:

Red Stars......479.....35.5%
Riot...........236.....17.5% Eliminated April 21st

In order to brand the team with a connection to the City of Chicago, the team nominated ten names that have direct historical connections to Chicago. The three remaining nominated names and their historical connection to Chicago follow:

Chicago 1871 - The year of the Great Chicago Fire, which is memorialized with a red star on the city flag. The Great Chicago Fire was a conflagration that burned from Sunday October 8 to early Tuesday October 10, 1871, killing hundreds and destroying about four square miles. Though the fire was one of the largest U.S. disasters of the 19th century, the rebuilding that began almost immediately spurred Chicago's development into one of the most populous and economically important American and international cities. Chicago Fire Soccer was named in honor of the great Fire October 8, 1997.

Chicago Red Stars - In honor of the four red stars on the City of Chicago’s Municipal Flag, which represent the city’s four greatest events – the Great Fire, the Fort Dearborn Massacre and the 1893 and 1933 World’s Fairs. On the city flag, each of the 24 star points also has meaning, which is described here. Mayor Daley has said the city would add a fifth star if Chicago hosts the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

Chicago Wind - In honor of Chicago’s most famous nickname, the Windy City. Possible explanations for this nickname include Chicago's weather, politics, World's Fair, and rivalry with Cincinnati. Some say that the name comes from Chicago's political history. Specifically, they reference the "spectator sport" style of politics practiced in the last century, and the adage that when Chicago politicians speak they are "blowing a lot of wind".

One lucky winner will be chosen at random to receive more than $2,500 in cash and prizes including inaugural season tickets and suite tickets to its inaugural game at Toyota Park. Ten runners up will receive two tickets to the team’s inaugural home game.

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