As the National Hockey League (NHL) prepares for the return of professional ice hockey, Alaska Airlines is getting into the spirit of it by offering free early boarding to anyone wearing a Seattle Kraken hockey jersey. This airline said today that any passenger departing from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) or Paine Field (PAE) will be eligible for the offer.
When the NHL announced in 2018 that Seattle would be getting a professional ice hockey team, there was much speculation about the team’s name. When NHL Seattle first installed signs on their downtown office, employees arrived at work to find a post-it note stuck to the door with a handwritten message which read “release the Kraken.”
A mystical sea creature
Northern Ireland actor Lian Neeson widely popularized the phrase “release the Kraken” during a 2010 remake of the movie “Clash of the Titans.” The Kraken is said to be a mythical sea creature that lives just below the sea’s surface. Given that Seattle has a rich maritime history and that the Pacific Northwest is steeped in legends, the Seattle Kraken seemed like a fitting name for the city’s new sports franchise.
Initially, they wanted the team to be called the Metropolitans after the city’s original professional hockey team that won the Stanley Cup in 1917. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman opposed the name as the NHL already had a Metropolitan Division, and he didn’t want to change its name for the sake of a new franchise. Other team names in contention were the Sockeyes and Totems, but Kraken won the day in the end.
The Climate Pledge Arena
It has been more than a year since the new team’s name was announced, allowing plenty of time for branding and marketing. Ahead of the pre-season opener against the Vancouver Canucks, on September 27, 2021, hockey fans and Alaska Airlines employees have been clamoring to get a hold of Kraken jerseys.
All Kraken home matches will take place in the Climate Pledge Arena, a multi-purpose venue located downtown on the 1962 World’s Fair site. The three-floor arena spans 36,000 square feet and will seat 17,100 ice hockey fans. As a founding partner of the Seattle Kraken and the team’s official airline, Alaska Airlines‘ branding and travel opportunities will feature prominently on the ice and the boards around the rink.
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Seattlites love sport
“We’re thrilled for hockey to return to Seattle and help to bring joy to our community and visitors for years to come. We can’t wait to cheer on the new team and show off our hottest new destination – the Alaska Airlines’ Atrium.”
The Alaska Airlines Atrium is located at the main entrance on the south side of the Climate Pledge Arena. It will offer a unique Alaska-immersive experience for everyone attending a Seattle Kraken hockey match. When speaking about partnering with the Seattle Kraken in an Alaska Airlines blog post, Alaska Airlines President Ben Minicucci said:
“I grew up playing hockey and love the drive and energy of players and fans alike. This is an incredible sport – kids must really want to play, with early ice times and cold temperatures – so anyone who winds up in hockey has to work for it. At Alaska, we get that, and we’re proud to be a founding part of bringing hockey to this great and growing city.”
Seattle has a love for all sports, as is evident in the passion Seattlites show when supporting the Seahawks Mariners, Sonics, and Sounders. No doubt the Seattle Kraken will experience this also.
What do you think about Alaska Airlines offering free early boarding to people wearing a Kraken jersey? Please tell us what you think in the comments.