LOOK: Edmonton Oilers unveil new mascot Hunter; Twitter recoils in horror

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Meet the Edmonton Oilers' new mascot. Oilers

The Edmonton Oilers are moving into a new building this season and with that will come some new traditions. Like, for instance, a new family-friendly mascot - the first in the team's history - that was unveiled Monday.

Ladies and gentlemen, meet the lynx that surely has no plans to eat you or your children, Hunter.

It looks like the Oilers were going for authenticity over the regular cartoonish nature of most mascots across the league. The results are a little bit on the scary side. Like New Orleans Pelicans scary side.

It didn't take the people of Twitter, arbiters of all things everywhere, to make it known what they thought of the Oilers and their new mascot. Mainly it's just a lot of people who are scared, confused or good with Photoshop:



Well, there was a lot of thought put into Hunter. "It might scare the kids," may not have been one of those thoughts, though. But wait a minute... According to the team, the Oilers surveyed more children from kindergarten through ninth grade and they picked the lynx over other options. I'd hate to see what the rest of the field looked like.

Per the team:

Working with the Edmonton Valley Zoo, the Canadian Lynx was identified through research and was ultimately chosen due to its heritage in Oil Country. There are more Canadian Lynx in Alberta than anywhere else in the world. Sightings are rare due to their reclusive nature but Canadian Lynx frequent Edmonton's River Valley.

The Oilers also surveyed over 2,200 students, from kindergarten to Grade 9, from across the city to identify which mascot concept they preferred - the Canadian Lynx was far and away the most popular choice.

Maybe Canadian kids are just that unfazed by the uncaring eyes that suggest imminent doom to all in Hunter's path.

Here's a video of Hunter hanging out with local school kids who put on their brave faces as Hunter bounced around the room.

By the way, Hunter has a first-person origin story to tell, too. Gather 'round the campfire.

Via Oilers.com:

It all started when I was a young lynx, growing up in the beautiful Edmonton River Valley... 18,000 acres of beautiful urban parkland that I love dearly and am extremely proud of!

Like my lynx family and friends, I only come out at night to hunt, and on one of those nights I actually came across a bunch of kids playing hockey on an outdoor rink.

One look at the game and I was hooked. The speed, the skill, the fun! I began climbing up the banks of the River Valley every night during the winter, catching shinny games with everyone wearing their Edmonton Oilers jerseys, both old and new! It didn't take me long to become a hard core Oilers fan.

It keeps going if you have the time and want to get to know Hunter better.

Assuming the Internet's gentle ribbing doesn't end with Hunter being released back into the wild, he'll be on hand as the Oilers open the new Rogers Place on Oct. 2 in a preseason game against the Los Angeles Kings.

CBS Sports Writer

Chris Peters has been a hockey writer for CBS Sports since 2012. Prior to that, he wrote for numerous outlets and edited the United States of Hockey blog, covering the sport at all levels. Peters also... Full Bio

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