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July 18, 2014

Friday: Got the Blues

Despite the title, I'm actually in a great mood.

Let's talk trends this week. Like any market, hockey jerseys are set and defined by trends. Over the years, trends have changed, what was once popular is dated or outdated, and new ideas flood to replace the old, some good, some not so good. Today, let's look at the not so good.

5. Reebok Cookie Cutter Templates

photo from: blog.thescore.om

Despite what some are thinking, this could have worked. The pre-edge NHL wash't the greatest looking, the mid 2000's didn't have many great designs and many designs which in 2000 were popular and looked good, were now in need of change. Reebok took over the NHL jersey licenses and unveiled their own set of templates teams could choose from, some worked (New Jersey, Boston, Chicago, NewYork Islanders, Philadelphia, Washington, All Star Games) but some REALLY didn't work. Colorado went from one of the best jerseys to one of the worst main sets, Edmonton spat on hockey design in general and Dallas went down a dark road they just corrected last season. Teams who were once unique were now bland, the jerseys looked the same across multiple teams (Ottawa, Pittsburgh and Tampa wore the same jersey for 4 years). Granted, most teams have since corrected their mistakes (Nashville, St. Louis, L.A., Toronto, Edmonton), the worst offender still hasn't.

4. Vintage for Vintage Sake

photo from: hurricanes.nhl.com

One trend that doesn't involve moving forward, but instead moving back, is a more recent trend of teams going back to past jerseys. Granted some work, Dallas, St. Louis, Toronto and Boston have taken horrible "modern" looks and making them better. But all of these teams have a past....Carolina? Granted I'm not talking about a faux-back, I'm talking about a team ditching a design with potential for one that isn't as good. New York had sweet jerseys, and while the 70's throwback was a nice 3rd jersey, it didn't need to be a full set. Buffalo....could have made the Buff-a-slug work, hell I LOVE the logo, why not work out the problems with the jersey, rather than just going back to a design that we've seen. But that's not the biggest issue with this trend, the use of vintage white.

3. Collar Laces for No Reason

photo from Icethetics.com

At one point, only the Rangers and Habs wore collar laces, then just the Rangers. It was a style reserved for teams who wore them back when it was necessity. Now however, Reebok almost makes teams wear them, with Carolina, San Jose, Tampa Bay and Atlanta/Winnipeg wearing them. Sure, Columbus wears them but on a vintage jersey. The biggest offender of this trend is the Stadium Series/Anaheim set inverse laces, which are a new idea...but...that's it, new. They look silly and something that shouldn't have made it past the Stadium Series, but we'll be seeing it on new "modern" designs

2. Making the Jerseys Lighter, or as I will call it: San Joseing a Jersey

photo from Sports.yahoo.com

When the story broke that the Sharks changed their jerseys because the players liked the black jersey and wanted to wear it full time, while keeping the teal. That's fine, nothing wrong with having player input...however, saying that it's to "improve player performance" is a load of horse shit if I ever heard it. Partially because the Sharks blew a 3-0 lead on the Kings in the first round, but lets look at other teams who ditched the hem stripe.

Toronto: Never made the playoffs in their pajama jerseys
Edmonton: Never made the playoffs in their original edge jerseys (or any edge jersey)
Boston: Players think their home and road are the proper weight

I'm not talking about jerseys the go from something different by not including a hem stripe (one of my best concepts didn't have one) but when a team does it for the wrong reasons, then it comes off as cocky. Really?! I'm surprised few jokes have been made about San Jose's losing and their claim to play better with new jerseys

1. Black for Black Sake!!!!

Photo from boards.sportslogos.net

This wasn't just a hockey issue, this was a TOTAL SPORTS JERSEY PROBLEM. In the late 90's/early 2000's, teams that had very little to no black on their logos/kits began unveiling black jerseys to seem "Edgy". Well, some were, The Blackhawks had a beautiful alternate for several years, the Capitals and Sharks both used black to their advantage in awesome alternates, but when Columbus and Anaheim both made black jerseys they had no business wearing, I drew a serious line. Buffalo ditched their BEAUTIFUL blue and gold jerseys for mediocre black ones (though the red alternate is a beautiful jersey), Philly ditched their orange jerseys for black, Washington ditched their blue jerseys for black, Calgary ditched their red jerseys for black, Anaheim ditched their jade and eggplant for black, by 2010, it seemed like every team had at one point had a black jersey! Thankfully, this trend is dying down, with the Canes and Yotes being the only teams with black alternates, and both are sweet alternates.

There's my list! I hope you have some other trends I may have missed, but feel free to bitch  talk about them in the comments below.

Also, after seeing the HJC open entries, I am thoroughly impressed. Thanks to everyone that entered, this really does look like a culmination of hard work and attention to detail that will make getting out of the first round hard this year. Remember to vote in the comments.

ALSO!!! COTY and COTW voting are EXTREMELY CLOSE!!! VOTES ARE NEEDED..PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE IF YOU HAVE NOT VOTED, VOTE NOW!!!

2nd Quarter Vote (ends Friday @ 11:59pm Eastern)
COTW July 7-13 vote (ends Friday @ 11:59pm Eastern)
HJC Open Round 1 Vote (due Saturday @ 11:59pm Eastern)

On to the concepts!

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Columbus Blue Jackets Concepts (By: Mario A.)


Just when I finish ranting about the Blue Jackets wearing black, Mario has a concept which gives the Jackets back their black. It doesn't look as out of place as in the black alternate, but I still ask the same question, why is the black necessary? It's used better on the white jersey, and acts as a decent accent colour, but and the blue jersey, the arms are black and look out of place. Mario's execution continues to get better, but there are still some wrinkles that need to be ironed out. The beige numbers on the blue jersey bad because there's no other beige outside of the logo and numbers, there would need to be some in the striping. The name, while I get it's supposed to be oversized, it looks too large and the numbers are off centre. The logo is also too small. I love the idea, but keep working out the kinks and we'll see Mario in the COTW voting bar soon. (5.5/10)

Toronto Maple Leafs Concepts (By: Phil B.)


The Leafs with a chest stripe, cringe at the thought...or actually don't, this one really works. The concept feels, trendy, like it has vintage elements, but they are hardly used and make for a faux faux-back (if that makes sense). The 60's striping looks solid all across the boards, and I like of the 90's/2000's Leafs font stands out, even with a stripe going through it. One minor complaint, change the shoulder patch from the primary logo with the TML through it, to just the TML and I'd snatch one of these up at the ACC anyday. (9/10) COTW Nom. from me! 

New York Rangers Concept (By: S2dio)


S2dio is like....a comic book artist, seriously, these templates are gorgeous! We all want the Lady of Liberty to come back on the Blueshirt's jerseys, and the Rangers wearing more red, I'm game. The jersey is nice and simple, looks similar to the days of Leetch and Richter. The red yoke is solid but the red helmet, maybe not so much. It looks okay but a blue helmet would look much sleeker. Please make a goalie template! (8.75/10)

New York Islanders Concept (By: Scott B.)


The Islanders going double blue is something I'll vouch for. The four Stanley Cup wins striping is a must for an Islanders alternate, they always like to reference it and it looks solid. The hem striping looks too thin and while I don't think it should match the arms, but just making them thicker will look solid. The NOPQRST is just lazy on the back,  just pick any player with no repeat letters if you don't wanna paste stuff for a while but the effort does show. (7.5/10)

St. Louis Blue Concept (By: Tristan M.)


This concept is how the Blues could totally bring back the angled arm striping of the past, and Tristan improves of the design. The angled yoke looks fantastic, but putting the name inside of the yoke would look even better! The V yoke is amazing, why don't the Blue wear this? One thing that's bother me is the collar lace. The blue comes up and interrupts the collar altogether. I'd go for a more modern collar (Like the All Star Game collars). (8.75/10)

Edmonton Oilers Concept (By: Christian L.)


Vertical designs are rare in the NHL, and since the Oilers are at this point willing to do anything to win, such a modern design may not be too far away. The Oil Derrick logo looks great, but the OKC Barons have made that look signature to them. The rest of the jersey is so solid, but using the Oilers primary on the front and putting the derrick on the shoulders and this would be SICK. The name on the back is hard to read, white numbers and NOB would be more visible. (8.25/10)

Washington Capitals Concept (By: Tristan M.)


This concept is really simple, it's a blue Caps jersey, not so much modernized but not a faux-back. I love how this shade of blue makes the red and white POP. The concept is really simple, but I'm so glad there's no vintage white or just a red version of their current white alternate. Not much I can say, just a really solid concept, can't wait to see the Blackhawks concept. (9/10)

That's the post, folks! Remember to vote, vote and vote! Please remember to vote, nominate, comment etc. and stay tuned tomorrow for Caz's post! Enjoy your weekend!

12 comments:

Kris Knudsen said...

S2dio's Rangers' Lady Liberty jersey for COTW! It's goergious!!

Christian Legault said...

I'll nominate Tristan for cotw. Tough to choose but I decided his Washington capitals concept was a tad better
Also I don't get a note;)?

DBro Alexander said...

I actually really dig the Stadium Series style inverse laces. It's like a modern-ish spin on a classic hockey jersey element. I think the Wild started doing it right after the Stadium jerseys were unveiled because I know they did it for a good chunk of last season.

I'm not saying every team should have them instead of regular laces but it's a good alternative for those newer teams that have no business wearing classic laces.

winnipegjets96 said...

@Christian: Yes you do, a solid 8.25

@Dbro: I don't think it's the worst thing ever, anything thing looks better than San Jose having Laces!

Christian Legault said...

Oops I didn't even see it. Haha very solid!

JAY Van Maldeghem said...

I think that the whole stink of laces being reserved for classic looks for classic teams is kind of ridiculous at this point. Laces aren't about the team anymore, I think they're just a alternate design to the standard reebok collar. Teams like LA and Phoenix and the Islanders had laces back in early 2000s and at this point in time any team adding laces to a uniform should not be surprising at all.

That being said, I really do like the various types of laces that have come around like the stadium series to the Wild's tie option and even the Flames alternate collar is really cool. I really like variety and I think the collar is a good place to add it.

winnipegjets96 said...

@JAY: When LA and Phoenix wore lace in the mid 2000's there jerseys were at least simple and weren't widely news. New York's wasn't necessary but it didn't seem too out of place, again, it wasn't widely used. San Jose, Florida and Atlanta have NO PLACE wearing the classic tie down, it's just to look different, nothing more, nothing less.

Phil B. said...

I think I've got 4 concepts or so with a COTW nom and 0 seconds. I blame my chest stripe blasphemy with the leafs ;)

Anonymous said...

There's still a few more black alts left on top of the Canes and Yotes... Ottawa, Boston and San Jose.

JAY Van Maldeghem said...

That's what I am saying. I believe they have every right to do that. Because it is different. If a jersey looks good then it doesn't matter if the team has the "classic" pedigree or not. Laces are purely aesthetic these days. I like that.

Caden Patafie said...

I will second Phil

Phil B. said...

Caden I will love you forever. Thanks bro.

Yes I'm sorry for begging.