School is starting back up for many kids this week and next. In preparation for the upcoming school year, my wife and I watched all 8 of the Harry Potter movies as a last hoorah before she has to start teaching again at her middle school. One of the first big events that happens in the series is the sorting of the first years into one of 4 houses of Hogwarts: Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, and Slytherin.
I used the Harry Potter wiki to understand the qualities of people who are members of each house and sorted the current 11 teams into the 4 houses in an unbiased manner.
What if the NASL teams were to attend Hogwarts? What house would your team be sorted into?
Let the sorting begin!
"Gryffindor values bravery, daring, nerve, and chivalry. Its emblematic animal is the lion and its colours are scarlet and gold." - Hogwarts Houses; Harry Potter wiki
The Silverbacks were a hard team to place, but in the end, I felt they showed more qualities of Gryffindor than any other house. The NASL currently owns the Silverbacks and are supposedly looking for new ownership to either keep them in Atlanta, or to relocate them. With Atlanta United FC joining MLS in 2017, it looks like the Silverbacks may be pushed out of the city. But currently they are showing that they are not going to give up so easily. They had a bad spring season, but have come on strong in the fall and have placed themselves within striking distance of a playoff berth.
Jacksonville Armada FC
The Armada are the newbies of the league in 2015. Their inaugural season is going about as well as most thought it would. They finished 6th in the spring, are currently 7th in the fall, and 8th overall in the combined standings. Jacksonville has been the definition of a successful expansion team in every sense of the word. They are 2nd in the league in average attendance, only behind Indy Eleven, and have seemingly done everything right. Even though it's only their first year, it's hard to hate the Armada. [except on game days]
Ottawa Fury FC
The Fury are another relatively new team, this being only their 2nd year in existence. While they finished in the bottom three last year, the Fury have really come on as of late. They are 2nd in the combined standings, thanks to a 12 game unbeaten run in the fall. In the end, the Fury were placed into Gryffindor for a couple reasons. First and foremost, "Gryffindor corresponds to the element of Fire" and with the Fury having a flame in their crest, this was the logical choice to place them in. They have also displayed the trait of "Strength of Will" by their perseverance of coming from the bottom to seemingly solidifying themselves in The Championship come November.
"Hufflepuff...values hard work, patience, loyalty, and fair play rather than a particular aptitude in its members. Its emblematic animal is the badger, and Yellow and Black are its colours."
Patience and loyalty are two qualities of Hufflepuffs that Indy fans have embraced since the beginning of their tenure in the NASL. They continually sell-out their games at Carroll Stadium despite finishing in the bottom half of the table in 2014 and currently sit in 10th place in 2015. They lead the league in average attendance and seem to be behind the team 100% of the time. Good things come to those who wait...
Tampa Bay Rowdies
The Rowdies were sorted into Hufflepuff based on their historical fair play record. 3 out of the 4 years of the NASL's existence, Tampa Bay has received the Fair Play Award at the end of the season. While they actually lead the league in yellow cards this year, their reputation gives them the benefit of the doubt. But like everyone at Hogwarts, the Rowdies display some characteristics that are not emblematic of their respective houses. Just today, Bill Edwards, the owner of the Rowdies, fired both his GM and his HC, Thomas Rongen. What is even more baffling is that the team is currently sitting in 4th place, with a Championship berth and a game in hand on the 5th placed Eddies. While the fall has not gone their way so far, they were only 1 point behind the Cosmos for the Spring Championship and still have 12 games to play. Certainly a lack of patience and loyalty there.
Fort Lauderdale Strikers
First and foremost, the Strikers make it into Hufflepuff based on their color scheme. Yellow certainly is something that they both have in common. In addition, the Strikers, during this 2015 season, have the fewest yellow cards among the 11 teams. They also have the second most red cards this season, but this house just seems to fit this team better than the others.
"Ravenclaw values intelligence, knowledge, and wit. Its emblematic animal is the eagle, and its colours are blue and bronze...Ravenclaw corresponds to the element of air." - Hogwarts Houses; Harry Potter wiki
The Railhawks fit nicely in Ravenclaw due to their mascot, which is also a bird. They do share the color blue with the house as well. The team is in sort of a limbo in regards to their ownership right now. Traffic Sports was involved in the FIFA scandal that was exposed earlier this summer. I just know though that somehow, they will move past it and get the right ownership that they deserve. Ravens and hawks are not the sort of animals that will go down easily or without a fight. They will fight for their survival - and so will the Railhawks.
Minnesota United FC
Minnesota joins Carolina in Ravenclaw because of their mascot as well. The Loon is not only the state bird of Minnesota, but the mascot for United. Creativity is another trait of Ravenclaws and United have the most creative kit in the entire league. The loon on the jersey is a really nice look. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like they'll be in the league for much longer. Back in March, Minnesota was selected as an expansion franchise for MLS. They probably have 2 more seasons in the NASL - IF they can get a stadium built.
FC Edmonton was one of the more difficult teams to place in a house. They are so far off on their own, out in the Canadian wilderness, that it is hard to get a hold on where they fit. In the end though, the Eddies from Edmonton, Alberta find themselves in Ravenclaw because they are so far removed from the rest of the league physically, that they show some individuality, or uniqueness. They also share the blue color of Ravenclaw.
"Slytherin house values ambition, cunning and resourcefulness...Its emblematic animal is the serpent, and its colours are emerald green and silver." - Hogwarts Houses; Harry Potter wiki
New York Cosmos
This was the easiest team to sort out of the entire league. The Cosmos carry the burden of being the most hated team in the NASL. Some of it stems from the dislike of the original Cosmos back in the 70s who spent and spent to bring in big names like Pelé, Beckenbauer, and Carlos Alberto. While they weren't the only club to overspend, much of the original NASL's demise is credited to the Cosmos. Dislike for the club also comes with being one of the most successful club teams in American history; It just comes with the territory.
San Antonio Scorpions
While this is my least favorite house, as I'm sure it is for many of you, I do think the Scorpions fit in here for a few reasons - as much as I'd rather them not. First off, while not a reptile, scorpions carry with them a negative connotation - just like snakes. They share similar characteristics to that of snakes; they produce venom which is harmful, and they are disliked by most in society - just like snakes.
On the field of play, San Antonio does have a reputation for accumulating high numbers of yellow and red cards. The team currently leads the league in red cards (6) and is third in yellow cards.
On a positive note though, not all Slytherins are bad guys, like Horace Slughorn and Severus Snape. The Scorpions were created for a special purpose - to create a source of revenue for our owner, Gordon Hartman's life work. If you don't know what that is; Morgan's Wonderland is the world's first accessible family fun park for those with special needs or handicaps. "The net profits from STAR Soccer, the Scorpions and Toyota Field help non-profit Morgan’s Wonderland meet its operating expenses as well as expand programs and services for the special-needs community. This business model is unique in the world of professional sports. In addition, the Academy at Morgan’s Wonderland, a school for students with special needs, opened in August 2011. It’s a unique learning environment next to the theme park that enables students from ages 12 to 24 to learn and reach their maximum potential."
What a great mission to be a part of!
What do you think about how the clubs were sorted? Let me know below or in the comments section!
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