The roaring marketing success of the "Sounders" brand's move from NASL to A-League to USL to MLS makes it hard to imagine anything other than Vancouver being the Whitecaps and Portland being the Timbers.
However, the expansion annoucement made no mention of the Whitecaps name -- the B.C. Republic, anyone? -- so speculation continues.
Here's a quick overview.
Meanwhile, an odd little Twilight Zone question we'll never really know the answer to: If you changed nothing but the name, would Seattle Alliance FC have drawn two equal sellout, scarf-waving crowds to Qwest Field by now? Or was the goodwill associated with the Sounders name a key part of Seattle's success story?
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