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If you were watching all of the first-round playoff series, or even if you weren't, you probably got a pretty good idea of what each team's respective marketing groups were doing. Montreal went with the red towels and their "Ole" song from the regular season. Calgary's "Red Out" was effective. Tampa stuck with the insipid thundersticks, as did Ottawa.

But the winners for best accessories and accompanying song thus far goes to Edmonton, and of all teams, Anaheim. Edmonton's silver pom poms were noticeable (especially when the crowd would use them to taunt Manny Legace), and attractive.

Anaheim made a very shrewd decision when it selected Pennywise's Bro Hymn. It's a local connection (the band is from Hermosa Beach), the clip selected is highly singable as well as aggressive, and it's extremely original. You can listen to the clip that the Ducks use below.

Why is this relevant? Simple. I have a beef, and it seems a number of others do as well.

There have been casual complaints made about the Senators' playoff marketing scheme. Some were made publicly, and others were discussed amongst the fans themselves.

Some have taken issue with the game-opening festivities (plodding music, same tired antics). Others believe the team could've come up with a more original idea than "Rev up the Red" -- an idea that seemed to be plagiarized from Calgary.

Above is the logo being used on the playoff t-shirts. "Sens Army"? Seriously? Is this the best they could come up with? Apparently. Was this the only idea on the table?


How do I know that?

Because I submitted an idea of my own.

(See, I knew I was going to get to my point eventually.)

When the NHL broke for the Olympics, I corresponded with the Senators' V.P. of marketing, and submitted a theme and song that I believed to be original and effective.

Playing off the idea of "Leafs Nation", I decided that Sens fans should align under one banner. I chose "Empire", because a) it was a theme that hadn't been readily used in the NHL and b) it made sense, based on the logo and team name.

The corresponding song was The Empire Strikes First, by Bad Religion. It was heavy, hardly prototypical, and featured a chorus that fans could easily chant. What more do you want out of a playoff song? You can listen to it below.

The V.P. liked the idea, was familiar with the song (which I took as a positive sign), but claimed that they had already decided on a idea that he believed to be "similar".

That idea was obviously the Sens Army.

Now just imagine how torched I was to discover this vague and uncreative idea had been chosen over mine.

I won't lie: I had some personal motives. I'm a huge Bad Religion fan (the blog's title was taken from a B-side song), and have interviewed the band on their hockey preferences several times (they love the NHL). The likelihood of getting them to perform in Ottawa at a game if the Senators went far in the playoffs, could have been accomplished with relative ease. And the coup de grĂ¢ce? One of the members has been photographed for the band's liner notes in Senators gear on several occasions.

Maybe the band's political views scared them. Maybe they were just stubborn. But the fact remains that the Senators' marketing staff was given an idea with a multitude of angles to hit on, and they turned it down.

Now you know the rest of the story.

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