Neepawa MJHL hockey team changes its name to Titans

The Neepawa Natives are no more.

The Manitoba Junior Hockey League team revealed it has changed its name to the Neepawa Titans on Monday.

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“This is a bittersweet day for me,” said Titans general manager Ken Pearson.

“As a player who wore this sweater in the 90’s, It played a big part in my life. It was a special time. However, for a younger generation of fans, and the next chapter in Neepawa’s hockey history this new name is something people will embrace and be proud of. I’m looking forward to it.”

The Neepawa Titans logo. Neepawa Titans/Supplied

The logo was designed by Brooks Freeman of Virden, Man., and is inspired by Greek mythology, which defines a Titan as “one that is gigantic in size or power.” The colours refer to a field of canola on the horizon, said the team.

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The name change comes amid a flurry of professional sports teams rebranding after appropriating Indigenous names and likenesses for decades.

The most recent was the former Edmonton Eskimos, who revealed their new name, the Elks, last week to positive fan response.

A team in Morden changed their name to the Morden Bombers late last year, after using the derogatory term “redskins” for more than 25 years.

Click to play video: 'Morden hockey name change' Morden hockey name change
Morden hockey name change – Oct 20, 2020

The team’s logo was also a stereotypical Indigenous man with four feathers in his hair, a replica of the controversial logo of the National Hockey League’s Chicago Blackhawks.

It is now a large red, white and black ‘B’ logo, keeping the team’s traditional colours.

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