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10 Awesomely Awful Sports Logos

Updated on January 2, 2011

Having already taken to task several repugnant sports uniforms, I've decided to turn my ire toward some of the athletic world's most unsightly company signatures. How the following sports trademarks ever got past a focus group with at least one good eye is beyond me, but rest assured, the proceeding incoherent ramblings have been slapped together in an effort to give said logos their just desserts. They aren't pretty, friends, so consider yourselves duly warned for what follows. Trust me. They're even worse than the cell phone pics Brett Favre has allegedly been sending me:

Who knew the old "gunslinger" was such a jokester?
Who knew the old "gunslinger" was such a jokester? | Source

Awkward.

On with the list!

#10 - San Jose Earthquake (Major League Soccer)

I searched high and low to try to find a picture of this logo, but came up completely empty. But that's okay, you really ain't missing much. There's a soccer ball, some sort of picture behind it and waves that, apparently, are meant to imply potentially deadly seismic activity. With all of the accidents incurred at your typical soccer matches (collapsing stands, riots started over missplaced sock and sandal combos), one would think that choosing "Earthquake" for a team moniker would be frowned upon, at least slightly.

My biggest beef with this logo is that the designers passed up a perfectly good opportunity for honoring the late, great John Tenta. Don't worry, San Jose soccer fans (both of you). I've got you covered:

Much better.
Much better. | Source

#9 - Golden State Warriors (National Basketball Association)

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Staying in Cali for a minute, the city by the bay deserves mad props for this one. After all, if you find one basketball fan that likes your team enough to spend his or her own money on merchandise bearing whatever the hell this is supposed to be, you've got yourself one dandy marketing team.

This awful thing adorned everything Warriors-related from 1997 until 2010. That's 13 years of lightning bolt-clutching, rejected superhero duds, if you're keeping track at home. Thankfully, the good people behind Oaktown's b-ball squad decided to ditch this in favor of something that harkens back to the Rick Barry days.

I'm not ashamed to admit I'll miss this one just a little. I suppose anything that prompts me to belt out Patty Smyth's The Warrior - each and every time I see it - can't be all bad.

Shooting at the walls of heartache

Bang, bang!

I AM the warrior

Well, I am the warrior!!!!

You're quite welcome.

#8 - Vancouver Canucks (National Hockey League)

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Replacing their previous logo of, uh, brown ice skates with a killer whale was a wise move for the Vancouver Canucks franchise back in the late '90s. If you're old enough to remember those ugly, boring old unis, I'm sure you'll agree with me. Aside from needing a massive makeover, I think the change had more to do with the ownership group being called "Orca Bay Sports and Entertainment." Unfortunately, I couldn't find any info on the 'net to back me up. It's been a longtime hunch of mine, so for the purpose of this article we'll just go ahead and assume this to be the case.

If it is, I can only presume that the team's previous owners are big fans of Sea World (and its aquatic inhabitants) and subsequently took their obsession just a bit too far. Mark Messier + Shamu jersey = fashion fail.

On the bright side, this logo looks like another genius creation from SyFy's most esteemed cinematic auteurs. Sharktopus has got nothing on "Fin the Whale," a team mascot fond of attempting to eat the heads of Canuck fans, all in the name of good, wholesome family entertainment.. Simulating gruesome murder by dangerous sea creatures is fun! Can't wait for the movie.

 

#7 - Memphis Grizzlies (National Basketball Association)

Not exactly "Bear in the Big Blue House."
Not exactly "Bear in the Big Blue House." | Source

Pictured just above is not only the latest logo for the NBA's Memphis (formerly Vancouver) Grizzlies, but also the most requested item from Hell's Build a Bear Workshop. Yep, not even "Torture Me Elmo" and "Polly Pocketknife" come close in yearly sales. Get your own little plush "Bearelzebub" while it's hot. Literally.

All (bad) jokes aside, this nightmarish woodland creature needs to go. There's not a PETA member on Earth who can justify the existence of this thing. And whoever surmised that putting John Wayne Gacy on the Fisher-Price teddy bear design committee could ever even remotely be in the realm of good ideas is officially fired.

On the positive side, the creation of this logo has all but put an end to little blonde girls making pit stops at houses belonging to bears. Consider your porridge safe, my domesticated, carnivorous friends. And tasty.

 

#6 - Tamba Bay Buccaneers (National Football League)

Source

"Arrr! 'Tis I, Bruce the Buccaneer, sexiest scourge of the seven seas! Yeah, me name's Bruce. Got a problem with that, landlubber? Can't keep yer deadlights off me booty, can ya?

Well, me and me hearties come to pillage yer fine stock o' Australian Gold tanning lotions and oversized, pink novelty pirate hats. We require all ye got stored in yer bungholes, ya scurvy bilge rats. Get it smartly, me saucy beauties! There ain't a Spencer Gifts for a thousand nautical miles. Metrosexual pirates are we!"

#5 - Cleveland Indians (Major League Baseball)

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This little ode to racial intolerance has been one of the biggest focal points of Native American ire over the past several years. Somehow the logo is still around, proudly displayed on baseball caps and jerseys in the supposedly forward-thinking year of 2010. As hard to believe as that is, the reasons for Cleveland's baseball club keeping i's team name and logo are even more mystifying. Truth be told, many fans and people associated with the team have stated that the logo is intended to "honor" Native American people.

"Chief Wahoo" has been around in varying forms nearly as long as the Cleveland ballclub itself. There's some controversy today as to how offensive this logo actually is to Native Americans, but in my mind, this bigoted atrocity is exactly one teepee away from being a secondary character in a 1940s Bugs Bunny cartoon. There's nothing "honorable" about stereotyping a people into an insulting caricature and turning them into a sports team's mascot. As far as outdated logos go, it couldn't get any worse.

Oh, wait. Yeah, it could.

Cleveland Indians: Oblivious to intolerance since 1946.
Cleveland Indians: Oblivious to intolerance since 1946. | Source

#4 - Indiana Pacers (National Basketball Association)

Being one of the biggest Indiana Pacers fans in the known universe, it pains me deeply to write this, but I suppose that if I'm going to make a list disparaging the company logos of other folks' favorite teams, I may as well include one of my own.

And sadly, this one deserves it. No one knows exactly where the lone hand featured in the design is coming from, but it's there, wrapping its ghostly phalanges around a basketball, en route to a monster jam. Boomshakalaka... or something.

The logo is bad enough on its own, but when placed on a player's b-ball shorts, it manages to look even more awkard - sort of like a severed arm reaching up for some unlucky (or quite fortunate, depending on your own level of perverseness) player's "frank" and "beans." That just ain't cricket, kids.

As the logo's one saving grace, readers will be happy to know that this former piece of Pacers property was voted "Sports Logo of the Millennium" by the SSDLA. That's the Society of Sporty Disembodied Limbs of America, just in case you were wondering.

 

#3 - Columbus Crew (Major League Soccer)

Source

If you're truly "America's hardest working team," one would think such a strong labor ethic might translate to the team's design department. Clearly, this is not the case, as this probably took all of seven minutes to come up with.

Here's my best assumption of the step-by-step process some intern on the Crew's graphic design team went through in the creation of this logo:

Step 1: Lure three most arrogant douchebags in state of Ohio to Columbus Crew graphic design studio with promise of free Ed Hardy brand t-shirts, jeans and assorted fragrances.

Step 2: Place plastic construction helmets on douchebags.

Step 3: Simultaneously inform all three of said douchebags that promise of free Ed Hardy clothing will not be fulfilled. State audibly and matter-of-factly that Ed Hardy clothing is ridiculously stupid and that any form of grown men's apparel decorated with dragons or any other mythical creatures is totally lame.

Step 4: Equate scent of Ed Hardy fragrances with that of buffalo urine.

Step 5: Point and laugh.

Step 6: Take picture.

Step 7: Add cool shadow effects through Adobe Photoshop.

Presto! You've got yourself the hottest thing on MLS.com's apparel shop. Oh, and Ed Hardy clothing sucks just as much this team logo. Just throwing that out there.

#2 - Toronto Raptors (National Basketball Association)

Source

Having the misfortune of entering the NBA in the midst of a nationwide dinosaur craze (due in no small part to the success of Jurassic Park ), Toronto's expansion franchise suffered the severe consequences of that phenomena, winding up with a nickname that, by today's standards, is most certainly prehistoric. Coming claw-in-razor sharp-claw with the cheesy name was the above logo, destined for a tar pit long before Damon Stoudamire and co. ever set foot in the Skydome.

Clearly, the concept of a b-ballin' velociraptor is a novel one, but that in no way excuses the designers for bringing something this groan-worthy to horrible fruition. This is what happens when fads and passing fancies creep their way into fan polls. Consider ourselves lucky we didn't wind up with the "Toronto Pogs" or the "Ontario Beanie Babies."

Anyhow, future generations will one day unearth this crappy cretaceous logo. And laugh. A lot.

#1 - Cincinnati Reds (Major League Baseball)

Source

Mere words cannot truly describe the specialness of Mr. Redlegs (pictured above), so I think the best way to honor this creepy, yet beguiling longtime Cincy Reds logo is through song. Just below is my own, personal little commemorative ditty to all the feelings the sight of this thing conjures up inside me. It should be noted that I have much less than zero musical talent, so you'll have to imagine your own tune to go with my lyrics. I recommend a bouncy, up-tempo piano riff. Anyway, Mr. Redlegs, this is for you!

The Mr. Redlegs Song

Who's that guy with the baseball face?

Loves to run in the hot dog race

Got a rockin' stache and a winnin' smile

Insists he's not a pedophile

Who's that man? Mr. Redlegs!

He's always cool and he's really quite splendid

Been taken to trial, but never convicted

He's tons of fun and he's a really a hoot

Owns a van full of dead prostitutes

Who's that man? Mr. Redlegs!

He doesn't work for free, gets paid by the hour

Likes to watch older women shower

His favorite time is the seventh inning stretch

When he goes around sellin' kids cigarettes

Who's that man? Mr. Redlegs!

His friends will say he's really super

Spends everyday in a drunken stupor

Always has fun, it's a wonderful life

They'll never prove he killed his ex-wife

Who's that man? Mr. Redlegs!

He's a heck of a guy and great with the ladies

His favorite snack is human babies

A logo this cool, no other team has it

Will do anything to support his crack habit

Who's that man? Mr. Redlegs!

He's happy all the time, even when the team is failin'

Said he would vote for Sarah Palin

Tons o' fun and loves everyone

Not legally permitted to ever own a gun

Who's that man? Mr. Redlegs!

Stop touching me!

Mr. Redlegs!

Someone call the police

Mr. Redlegs!

God, help me!

Mr. Redlegs!

I hope that's a flashlight

Mr. Redlegs!

Everyone loves... Mr. Redlegs!

Well, that's it. I would love to hear how right or wrong I am with this list, so feel free to fill up the conveniently-placed comment box below. Thanks for reading... and remember to stay far, far away from Mr. Redlegs.

 

 

Posted October 13, 2010

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    • profile image

      ruffridyer 

      7 years ago from Dayton, ohio

      Great hub, really quite humorious.

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