COUNTERPOINT: The Union mascot is a great idea (as long as it's a moose)

COUNTERPOINT: The Union mascot is a great idea (as long as it's a moose)

Earlier in the day, Steve Moore -- both a hardcore soccer fan and Philadelphia Union supporter -- wrote strongly of his opinion that the organization potentially looking into the idea of a team mascot is a very bad idea. This is a counter point.

The Philadelphia Union may be putting out feelers as to how some of their fans would feel about the team adopting a mascot. This is great news.

A Philadelphia Union mascot would be totally awesome! As long as the mascot is a moose.

Now, some hardcore supporters may be against any idea of a mascot, but whatever. Steve's a fan. I'm a fan. We may not be fans in the same way, but my butt fills just about the same amount of seat space at PPL Park every fourth or fifth game.

Critics may say, "But a mascot is bush-league and no legit sports franchise would ever need to stoop to such levels.

Yeah, you may have a point EXCEPT:

Okay, now that we got that out of the way, why would a moose mascot be totally awesome for the Union?

You want a mascot that represents an important part of your local history or the history of a tropical island a couple thousand miles away. Either or.

We all know the Union need to be a frugal franchise while they're still in the organization's relative infancy. No need to spend any more money on focus groups when they can't even afford a legit left back. Just take what the truly spectacular work Adam Aaron did with the Sixers and run with it. Phil E. Moose already has the hearts of Philadelphians.

Not many people know this, but back in the late 1700's, moose were roaming all over the Pennsylvania and New Jersey areas. It was actually a moose with a lit cigar stuck between its antlers that helped guide the way on the famed frigid night when George Washington and his troops crossed the Delaware River.

WHERE IS PPL PARK LOCATED?

On the Delaware River.

Proof:

"Moose leading Washington Crossing" unearthed by Zoo with Roy

So there's your history.

Now, if you don't like my moose idea. Fine. I don't really care if the Union have a mascot or not. But my two year-old nephew might enjoy it, so I won't write the idea off while the team is in the INFORMATION GATHERING phase of things.

Some mascots are cool.

All moose are cool.

CSN, TCN to air 25 of Union's 34 games in 2017

CSN, TCN to air 25 of Union's 34 games in 2017

Twenty-five of the Union’s 34 games in 2017 will be featured on CSN and TCN, as Jim Curtin’s club vies for a second straight playoff berth.

Twenty matches will air on TCN, while five can be seen on CSN. The nine others will be appear across 6ABC, ESPN and FOX Sports 1.

The Union’s season opener on March 5 at the Vancouver Whitecaps will broadcast on TCN and the team’s home opener on March 11 against Toronto FC will air on CSN. The next three games — March 18 at Orlando City SC, April 1 at D.C. United and April 8 vs. the Portland Timbers — will be shown on TCN.

The Union are coming off an 11-14-9 season and their second-ever trip to the MLS playoffs in which they suffered a first-round exit to Toronto FC.

For the Union’s full 2017 schedule, click here.

Best of NHL: Toews nets hat trick in Blackhawks' win over Wild

Best of NHL: Toews nets hat trick in Blackhawks' win over Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Jonathan Toews had three goals and two assists and the Chicago Blackhawks beat rival Minnesota 5-3 on Tuesday night for their second win over the Western Conference-leading Wild in less than two weeks.

Toews notched his fourth career hat trick on an empty-netter with 1:02 left to stave off a spirited rally by the Wild, who began a franchise-record eight-game homestand on Feb. 8 with a 4-3 overtime loss to the Blackhawks. Toews had a goal and two assists in that one and has 37 points in 35 career games against Minnesota.

Chicago's captain has been chewing up almost everyone else, too, with 20 points in his last 12 games. Toews' wing men Nick Schmaltz and Richard Panik had the other goals, giving the Blackhawks 34 goals in their last eight games. Their first line totaled nine points.

Mikael Granlund's second power-play goal for the Wild brought them within 4-3, before Ryan Suter hit the crossbar with a shot that nearly tied it (see full recap).

Islanders open 9-game road trip with win
DETROIT -- Calvin de Haan was credited with a go-ahead goal that caromed off an opponent late in the second period and the New York Islanders went on to beat the Detroit Red Wings 3-1 Tuesday night.

De Haan's shot from above the left circle was stopped by Petr Mrazek, but the rebound went off Detroit defenseman Xavier Ouellet and the back of the goaltender's left leg and into the net. John Tavares scored early in the third period to give the Islanders a two-goal lead and they coasted to the victory.

Josh Bailey had a goal and an assist, and Thomas Greiss stopped 26 shots for New York.

Henrik Zetterberg scored for Detroit and Mrazek finished with 19 saves.

The Islanders, in contention for a wild-card spot, began a stretch of nine straight road games by winning for the third time in four games and improved to 8-13-4 away from home (see full recap).

Crosby, Penguins take care of Hurricanes
RALEIGH, N.C. -- Sidney Crosby scored the go-ahead goal on a deflection in the second period, and the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-1 on Tuesday night.

Evgeni Malkin and Scott Wilson also scored to help the reigning Stanley Cup champions bounce back from their only loss since the All-Star break. Pittsburgh moved three points behind East-leading Washington and is 7-1-3 since the break.

Jeff Skinner scored for the last-place Hurricanes, who have their second five-game losing streak in the past five weeks. They have been outscored 19-4 during the current slide.

Matt Murray made 29 saves for the Penguins while Cam Ward stopped 19 shots for Carolina (see full recap).