Martin C. Barry
The Rocket de Laval, the Montreal Canadiens’ AHL affiliate team starting in the 2017-2018 season, last week officially unveiled their new logo and uniforms the players will be wearing when they hit the ice at Place Bell later this year for their inaugural season.
Geoff Molson, Marc Bergevin and several former Canadiens players were on hand at Carrefour Laval for the unveiling on Jan. 31. Place Bell president Vincent Lucier revealed the Rocket de Laval logo, as well as the jerseys the team’s players will be wearing at home and on the road when their season begins this fall.
“We reached our objective by creating a logo and uniform that solidify the historic link between the Rocket de Laval and the Canadiens, while honoring a Quebec legend, and by creating a new identity for a new generation of fans,” Lucier said.
“We can proudly say that the Rocket is now solidly entrenched deep in the heart of Laval’s sports landscape and that our thirst for success is as strong as our desire to be proud ambassadors for the city of Laval,” added Lucier.
“This is going to be awesome for all our children,” said Mayor Marc Demers, who attended the unveiling with several Laval city council members, including executive-committee vice-president David De Cotis and a good number of city councillors. “The kids are going to be able to see and meet professional, working hockey players, which is a great advantage,” said Demers.
Will boost local economy
From a purely economic standpoint, he pointed out that The Rocket’s presence in Laval will create almost 100 jobs. All things considered, he said “it’s very important what’s being done for sports, for our teenagers, our youngsters, for the economy and we’re very proud of it all.”
With the impending arrival of the team and the opening of Place Bell a few months from now, De Cotis is very optimistic about economic growth and development in Laval’s downtown core. “There’s going to be a free shuttle being offered by the STL,” he said, referring to one of the perks the transit agency is planning in conjunction with the surge in development downtown expected to accelerate in the next two years.
“It’s all coming together, and we’re happy today that the launch of The Rocket’s logo has been announced,” he continued. “It is looking very good on the economic side for the City of Laval, and also on the tourist side since this professional hockey team will put the city on the map.”
Making Laval known
Saint-Vincent-de-Paul city councillor Paolo Galati agreed the team is likely to raise Laval’s stature a few notches, spreading the word about the city beyond Quebec’s and Canada’s borders. “The mayor and his team, we all worked hard to make this a reality, and to get it done in a way that would be beneficial to all Lavallois,” said Galati. L’Abord-à-Plouffe councillor Vasilios Karidogiannis was impressed with the affordability of game tickets, even down at ice level. “It’s very affordable in a very family-oriented arena,” said Karidogiannis.
The Rocket worked in conjunction with marketing agency lg2 to develop its logo and brand identity. Inspired by the theme, History is Our Fuel, the Rocket de Laval jersey combines blue, white and red, which have been the Canadiens’ trademark colours for more than a century, while emphasizing the strong connection between the Rocket and the parent club.
The uniforms feature the bold primary logo on the chest, a solid ‘R’ with interior stroke and sharp serifs – alluding to the Rocket’s explosive speed – as well as a vertical type alignment that pushes skyward. The design is repeated on the back, with each player’s number. Secondary elements are found elsewhere, with sleeve patches featuring a shield and the legendary #9 again worn by Maurice Richard.
A winning logo
The link to the legendary ‘Rocket’ Richard is obvious. A graphic flame icon propelling the Rocket’s number upwards is also found below the player’s number on the back and on the socks, drawing a reference to the speed of a propelling rocket. The Laval logotype appears on the shoulders as well as in the neck tie of the jersey.
Hockey enthusiasts and Rocket fans can purchase season tickets to Laval Rocket games for as low as $15 per game during a pre-sale blitz. Three distinctive packages are available: full-Season and half-season, or a versatile Flex 20 package. Additional information on tickets and the Rocket de Laval team store and products can be found on the team’s official website, www.RocketLaval.com, which went online last week.