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April 7, 2017

Friday: NHL Uniform Countdown - Specialty Jerseys

Last October I ranked the home and road uniforms of each NHL team.

Back in February I did the same with alternate uniforms.

And now it's finally time for the conclusion of my "NHL Uniform Countdown" series, as today I'm ranking all the specialty jerseys worn in the NHL during the 2016-17 season.

I've decided to split these jerseys into two categories, "New" jerseys and "Vintage" jerseys.  The "New" jerseys category will include Stadium Series jerseys, Centennial Classic jerseys, and 50th Anniversary jerseys, while the "Vintage" jersey category includes Winter Classic jerseys, Heritage Classic jerseys, and other miscellaneous throwback jerseys.  I created these categories because comparing a modern jersey to a throwback jersey is like trying to compare apples to oranges.

Okay, let's get started!

Top "New" Jerseys

6.  Philadelphia Flyers 50th Anniversary Jersey
The striping pattern of the Flyers 50th Anniversary jersey is fairly nice, but I'm just not a fan of the gold numbers.  I'd prefer black numbers with a gold outline.

5.  Detroit Red Wings Centennial Classic Jersey
I love the detail of the Stanley Cup winning years "engraved" onto the silver sleeve stripe, but overall I think the Red Wings Centennial Classic jersey suffers from an identity crisis.  It has too many stripes to be modern, but it's not vintage either.  It's a poor mix of the two.

4.  Philadelphia Flyers Stadium Series Jersey
The Flyers Stadium Series jersey has several unique features, some of which I like and some I don't.  I like the raised sleeve stripes and the large sleeve numbers on those stripes, but I'm not a fan of the outline-only back numbers or the contrasting orange nameplates.

3.  Toronto Maple Leafs Centennial Classic Jersey
Unlike their opponent, I think the Maple Leafs did a good job of combining old and new with their Centennial Classic jersey.  But I also think this jersey looks a bit generic, due to it's similarities to the Panthers new jerseys.

2.  Los Angeles Kings 50th Anniversary Jersey
You don't see grey (or silver) jerseys very often, which is part of the reason I have the Kings 50th Anniversary jersey ranked so high (I like jerseys with unique main colours).  I'm also a fan of this striping pattern, I think this jersey would make a good full-time third jersey (if the gold accents were removed).

1.  Pittsburgh Penguins Stadium Series Jersey

Yellow is also a less common jersey colour, and I think the Penguins pulled it off wonderfully with their Stadium Series jersey.  I like the striping pattern, the triangle-less logo, the stencil font for the name and numbers, and especially the yellow helmet.  The only thing I'm not a fan of is the white in the collar, but that's a fairly minor complaint.

Now on to the vintage jerseys!

Top "Vintage" Jerseys

7.  Chicago Blackhawks Winter Classic Jersey
The Blackhawks Winter Classic jersey doesn't look bad, it actually looks good, but it's just too similar to their normal road jersey.

6.  Arizona Coyotes Throwback Jersey
I like the Coyotes throwback jersey as a specialty jersey worn for a few games each year.  I think it's too dated to come back full-time though, but that doesn't affect it's rating on this list, I just happen to like the upcoming jerseys more.

5.  Los Angeles Kings Throwback Jersey
The Kings current jerseys aren't very colourful, so it's a nice change of pace when they wear this gold throwback jersey.  I did prefer the purple version of this jersey though, but I do think this gold version is very nice as well.

4.  St. Louis Blues Winter Classic Jersey
I've always been a fan of the Blues original jerseys, so as you can guess I like their Winter Classic jersey as well (which is based off of their original blue jersey).  I think the lighter shade of blue looks great too, but I don't like the use of vintage white.

3.  Toronto Maple Leafs "St. Pats" Jersey
The only thing I don't like about the Maple Leafs "St. Pats" jersey is the gap between the boxes for double digit back numbers.  Other than that I think this jersey is great, I love how it honours the franchise's history, it's a fun way to celebrate St. Patrick's day, plus the colour green is very underused in the NHL.

2.  Winnipeg Jets Heritage Classic Jersey
In my opinion, the red pants are the best part of the Jets Heritage Classic uniform.  The splash of colour the pants provide is very nice, and the double stripes with the jet logo within them look great.  The jersey itself is good too, there's nothing that special about it, but it doesn't have any flaws either.

1.  New Jersey Devils Throwback Jersey
Let's get this out of the way right away, I don't think the Devils should promote this throwback jersey.  It wouldn't be the worst thing in the world, but I think the Devils could do better.  However, I think this jersey is perfect for how it's currently used.  The colour scheme, striping pattern, and red helmet provide lots of vintage charm, and (like with the Leafs) it's a fun way to celebrate St. Patrick's day.

So those are my thoughts on all the specialty jerseys worn in the NHL this season.  If you disagree with me, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.

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Here are the latest entries for the Norfolk Admirals Redesign competition...

Anthony C:

Ryan C:

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There will be two votes upcoming this week, a standard COTW vote as well as the COTW-March vote.  Those polls should be up sometime tonight.  The entry phase of the Norfolk Admirals Redesign competition is ongoing as well, the deadline for that isn't until next Friday though.

COTW-March vote (ends next Friday @ noon Eastern)
COTW Mar 31 - Apr 16 vote (ends next Friday @ noon Eastern)
Admirals Redesign entries (due next Friday @ noon Eastern)

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NHL All-Star Game, by Anthony C:
Anthony starts us off with an NHL All-Star Game concept, which is really just a recolouring of Team USA's white World Cup of Hockey jersey.  I don't like concepts that recolour existing jerseys, I think it's lazy and uncreative.  On the plus side, Anthony's execution is getting better, most noticeably the sleeve numbers are no longer floating outside the jersey.
For the Eastern Conference, the jerseys are the same except for that red is swapped in for blue, and that leaves me a bit confused.  If these are meant for a Conference versus Conference All-Star game then you only need one jersey for each conference, but if these are for a Divisional format then having two white jerseys (that could face each other) doesn't make much sense.
Rating: 6/10

NHL Hats, by Mike F:
Next up we're taking a break from jersey concepts to review these hat concepts from Mike.  I like the idea of the slapshot design, it's a unique way to use the different canvas a hat provides.  The glowing trail behind the puck is also a fun (and probably unintentional) callback to Fox's glowing puck experiment.  However, the perspective of the pucks looks a bit off, I think the pucks need to be angled away from us some more.  I also think matching the player model to the team's uniform more closely would be better (like using white-black-white stripes for the Blackhawks instead of the reverse).
Rating: 8/10

NHL Hats, by John E:
We also have a hat-trick of hat concepts from John.  I like the overall theme of these hats, they're not groundbreaking designs, but they're not boring either.  As for each individual hat, I like the logo choices and use of green for the Canucks.  The Sharks hat looks great with their vintage logos, and I like everything about the Blackhawks hat except the under-brim logo.  I just don't think their black and white logo is the best fit for the hat.
Rating: 8/10

Nashville Predators, by Zack H:
Do you all remember the Predators 2009-11 checkerboard jersey?  Zack brings it back here with some alterations, including adding yellow into the checkerboard pattern.  I'm not a fan of that change, I think having both yellow and blue makes the pattern too busy.  My suggestion would be to use two shades of yellow for the pattern, which would make it much more subtle.  Also, I don't understand the black outlines on the numbers, there's no other black on this concept.  I do like the addition of the pant stripe though (or I would if the pattern was more subtle).
Rating: 7/10

Edmonton Oilers, by Zach H:
Zack also sent in a third jersey concept for the Oilers, which uses a contrasting upper-arms design.  I can't recall seeing many Oilers concepts with contrasting upper-arms, so it's nice to see something a bit different.  The colours are also balanced well throughout this concept, with the white numbers providing relief from the amount of orange in the stripes.  I also love the sublimated oil-drops in the white stripes (which I didn't notice at first).  But I'm not a fan of the pants, I think they should either have some orange included or no stripe at all.
Rating: 8/10

Anaheim Ducks, by Taylor R:
Last but not least we have a Ducks concept from Taylor, which uses their original logo and colour scheme.  I like the striping pattern that's used here, it's a bit more traditional than the original Mighty Ducks jerseys, but it still has some character to it.  I also like the decision to use silver for the sticks in the logo instead of yellow.  The Ducks current font looks good here as well, even though it has three outlines (you don't see that very often).  Normally I think the less outlines the better, but I think the outlines work in this case.
Rating: 9/10 and my COTW nomination!

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That's all folks!

2 comments:

Ryan C. said...

2nd Taylors Ducks concept for COTW!

Vaughn Roberts said...

I'll 3rd Taylor