The new New York team now has a name:
Its the New York Riptide.
Long Islands expansion franchise is set for a December debut in the National Lacrosse League. The teams name and logo were unveiled before the New York Open tennis final Sunday at NYCB Lives Nassau Coliseum, where the Riptide will play.
I like it because it sort of signifies Long Island for me, said Gary Fuhrman, managing partner at GF Capital and a board member of GF Sports, the company that was awarded the franchise in December. I think its a very strong name. Just very relevant, powerful.
The logo features the name and a lacrosse stick in a swirl of water. The team had solicited name suggestions and received hundreds of them, according to Fuhrman. Then the list got narrowed. Then the team surveyed the fans again.
The fans chose it, Fuhrman said.
Fuhrman called box lacrosse super-exciting. He said the Riptide will be an affordable ticket. He hopes this hotbed location for the sport also will help the team draw.
I think thats part of it, the fact that Long Island is synonymous with lacrosse, Fuhrman said. We had a choice to bring it anywhere in New York and we chose Long Island. The whole community has been behind it, from the coaches to the kids to small businesses.
Head coach and general manager Regy Thorpe said he now has to solidify his coaching and scouting staffs. Hes also scouting.
If done the right way with an expansion entry, he said, you can put a good product on the field right away.
There used to be an NLL franchise at the Coliseum. The New York Saints lasted from 1989 through 2003.
That was a long time ago, said Thorpe, a former NLL player who sees a good reason why this attempt can succeed. The GF Capital group is a really passionate, strong group behind it, he said. [We] really want to be centered around the community. We love the way the Islanders fans are so passionate about the Islanders in the Coliseum. Its been awesome. We want to maybe try to mimic that and create that fan-community support that they have to really energize us.
Former Islanders player and coach and current broadcaster Butch Goring, who has lived in Oyster Bay since 2011, also thinks lacrosse can work at the Coliseum.
Theres just a tremendous interest, he said. I think lacrosse has had a lot more exposure over the last 10 to 15 years than before. So yes, I think theyll gain tremendous support. Its a lot like hockey. Its a very physical game . . . Long Island has very passionate fans and they love their sports.