By Phil Hecken, with Hockey Wing President Teebz, and Pollster James T. Huening
So I turned on Versus the other day, hoping maybe they’d be broadcasting the Grey Cup or perhaps some college football, or even some bull riding, and what to my wondering eyes should appear? Hockey! I didn’t even realize they still played anymore, much less had a national TV contract, but lo and behold, there they were. But something was off… one of the teams (does it really matter which?) was wearing a sweater I’d never seen before. So, I immediately dialed up the Hockey Wing President, Teebz, to give me the run down. “Oh yeah, they still play hockey, slapnuts,” he began, “and some of the teams have new third jerseys this year. Don’t you remember our posts last year about the alternate jerseys?” Shaking off the cobwebs, I did in fact recall something to that effect. So I said to myself: “Self. We have to take a look at the new thirds. In fact, we gotta see what the readers think of them too — even last year’s efforts.”
So, I conscripted Teebz and my buddy and UW pollster James Huening to craft this post, in which Teebz will describe the new sweaters and then you’ll be asked to rate them, much as you did in the NFL Uniform Polls. Some of them are pretty sweet, some are kind of “meh,” and others will make you say, “what were they thinking.” Being that opinions are myriad, we thought you’d like to rank them. Without further ado, then, I bring you Pollster James, and the Chancellor of Canuckistan, Teebz, who’ll let you bear witness to the complete listing of NHL third jerseys. We’re gonna give you two chances to vote, both before and after the preview. James?
Here we are once again asking for you to answer a survey. The format this time around is similar to the surveys we did for the NFL uniforms. We’d like you to give each NHL third/alternate uniform a rating from 0 (terrible) to 5 (outstanding). We’d also like to know which one you think is the best and which one you think is the worst. There is a bit of a twist this time. Please let us know your overall view of the NHL’s alternate uniforms.
OK, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, we can get on with it already. So at this time, I’ll turn things over to the Hockey Blogger in Canada (and unofficial president of the Uni Watch “Hockey Wing”) himself. Here’s Teebz:
Atlanta: Georgia is football country, and the Thrashers are trying to blend in.
Boston: the primary and secondary logos swap places as the Bruins stay in black.
Buffalo: Buffalo opts to go with their retro look with necessary gray armpit fabric.
Colorado: The Avalanche go baby blue and diagonal with the state’s name. Apparently, the Avalanche want to be glaciers.
Dallas: The Stars also adopt the football look with their alternate, helping to make the state of Texas proud.
Florida: Florida incorporates the baby blue into their jerseys, and simplifies while modernizes the panther in their logo. Shoulder logo has been updated so senior citizens and Canadian snowbirds aren’t afraid of the evil panther. Milk cartons across Miami ask “what happened to red”.
Nashville: The Predators go black-and-blue with their alternate jersey. Checkerboard patterns on the shoulder logo and the hem stripe honour Nashville’s rich motorsports history. Nashville changed their font to something more basic.
New York Islanders: The Islanders debuted their new alternate jerseys this season. You know I had to work the Fisherman in there! In all seriousness, the Islanders have stuck with their retro look, and will be wearing them all season starting in 2010-11.
Philadelphia: The Flyers actually did good by maintaining a trend. The Flyers swapped last year’s alternate jersey with their home jersey, making the black jersey their alternate for this season. Dan Carcillo is far too excited about this.
Phoenix: The Coyotes went for a black jersey with a leaping coyote on their chests. The shoulder logo on the left side is a paw print rather than their primary logo as they have on the right side. How many logos can one team wear?
Pittsburgh: The Penguins continue to wear their Winter Classic jerseys as their alternate jerseys. Rumour has it that this jersey will be retired after this season in favour of a new alternate design.
San Jose: The Sharks love their black alternate jerseys featuring the “SJ” shoulder logo. Just so we attract the animal lovers out there, this is a black shark, known by its Latin name labeo Chrysophekadion. It is normally found in freshwater aquariums and is quite docile. It’s also a member of the carp family. Ergo, ladies and gentlemen, here is a school of San Jose Carps.
Tampa Bay: The Lightning, like their expansion cousins in Ottawa, decided to put their nickname prominently across their chests. The Tampa Bay Bolts also wanted to be different, so they put the city’s name on the hem. So when the players sit down, Tampa Bay is looking right up someone’s… well, you know.
Toronto: The Maple Leafs brought back the old-style Leafs jersey as their alternate. It’s too bad that the Leafs are playing like the Maple Leafs of the mid-1980s instead of the Maple Leafs of the 1950s.
Thank you James and Teebz! Excellent rundown. But we’re not done yet — now that you’ve seen the thirds, we need you to vote on them. Yeah, we posted the link to the poll above, but that was before Teebz influenced your vote. So, if you haven’t already done so, please
We’ll tally the votes and be back with the results real soon. Thanks!
Got a little “contest” for you all today. With the “Uni Watch Winter Classic” no longer a ‘viable’ name for the January 22-24, 2010 event many of us are attending — quite simply, the term “Winter Classic” is the term being used for the NHL’s New Year’s Day hockey game — we need you to come up with something so good…so clever…it can really both describe and the events of the weekend and the spirit of Uni Watch. Basically, the ‘slogan’ we’re looking for must pass Paul’s Is It Good or Is It Stupid test. “Winter Classic” is a fail not because it’s inherently stupid — but because it’s completely unoriginal.
So, if you scroll down to the second item in this post, the one where it says “Winter Classic Update,” you’ll get an idea of the events being planned for the weekend. Not only will there be the Pond Hockey Championships, which Paul will be covering for ESPN (and many of us will be attending), but there are several other activities (including, of course, a “Gathering” for all Uni Watchers), in which we can all partake. Use this as your guide for a slogan.
Post your suggestions in the comments below. If we can come up with a clever enough ‘slogan’ we’ll think about a logo contest, possibly to be put on some t-shirts for everyone who makes the trek. Give it your best shot, Uni Watchers — we’re counting on you and we hope to see you there.
Back with more NFL tweaks/revisions/concepts from you guys today. Great stuff ahead. Keep sending them my way.
We begin today with Brad Keppler, who has three teams he’s provided revisions to: Seahawks, Bills and Panthers. Here’s Brad:
With the recent flurry of NFL uniforms tweaks, I decided to make my own version of a team. I, like most of the uniwatch world, am an old school guy. I prefer classic traditional looks over the modern “bumper sticker” approach. So i narrowed my selection down to what i consider the worst uniforms in the NFL. The Vikings, Bengals, Seahawks, Bills, and Cardinals.
I quickly realized that all the Vikings need to do to fix their monstrosities, is revert back to the Cris Carter era uniforms, both home and away. by doing so, they have instantly gone from looking like power rangers to a professional football team. problem solved.
Being a Steeler fan myself, part of me enjoys the fact that Cincinnati looks like an low class arena football team with a halloween hard on. So I didnt really want to “help them out”.
The Bills are another team that could be “fixed” by reverting to an older uniform. I personally like the “juice’s” era.
So it comes down to the Seahawks and the Cardinals. I decided to redesign the Seahawks because i felt the colors and logo would present a nice challenge. Here is what I came up with.
I went back to the silver helmet with the updated mean seahawk logo. I always loved the seahawk sleeve stripes they had back in the old days. I thought Id bring those back with the updated logo. I actually dont m ind the electric lime green as long as it is used appropriately. Obviously a lime green jersey is out of the question. But I feel it really pops as an accent on the sleeves, collar, and pants. The lesson here Seattle is “Less is More”. Addition by subtraction in my mind. Hope you all can agree with me.
Brad also sent along his concept for the Carolina Panthers.
Next up is Rafael Ortiz-Torrez, who has some interesting concepts for the Miami Dolphins:
First of all, I would like to thank you for including my New Orleans Saints Tweak in the November 23 set.
This is my idea for a Miami Dolphins concept…
Logo: The same with a few alterations; most of the navy is replaced with aqua, while some is replaced with white.
Wordmarks: Current script, altering it to loosely base it off the classic Dolphins scripts of the 70’s, 80’s and early 90’s.
Helmet: navy stripes are replaced with white; aqua facemask stays.
Uniforms: Arm stripes are based off the late 70’s-early 80’s Dolphins jerseys. Wordmarks are on the jerseys (see above for wordmarks). Only white pants with a coral-aqua-coral stripe would be used.
Numerals: Simple, yet somewhat unique, thin block numerals with a thick coral outline, loosley based off the early 70’s Dolphins uniforms.
Again, thank you, Mr, Hecken
Moving along we have Kieran Chapman, who was intrigued by my recent post about “changing” the classic NFL unis, and who decided he’d do just that, with the Colts and the Bears:
Chicago – they currently use a well loved classic look that is virtually unchanged since the 1950s. While I have no problem with the look, I couldn’t help but wonder what they might look like with a modern twist. I have changed the home jersey to orange with Navy numbers (as they had in the 30s) and paired it with navy pants as I am a fan of matching Helmet/pant and jersey/sock combinations. I have also added the stripe to the helmet (to match the pant stripe) and changed the facemask to orange to add a little colour. You will note that there is very little white, which is intentional for no reason other than its a bit different!
The road jersey is white with orange numbers outlined in navy and the alternate is an all navy look (which I’m guessing you’ll hate!) with lots of orange. On all jersies, I have added ‘CHICAGO’ to the chest rather than bears, as the city is so loyal to the franchise, I thought they deserved a mention! In an ideal world, I would have the graphical expertise to add GSH to the sleeve. I also thought the three stripes on the sleeve could remain, in the form of a bear claw-mark /slash type thing. Again, beyond my capability to show here, but it was an idea.
Colts – again a team that don’t really need changing, but what if they did. I decided to add another colour to their outfits and chose yellow (or gold!) as I am such a big fan of the old Rams outfit that was worn once this season against the Vikes. So the home outfit is basically the same as now but with some yellow accents including a yellow facemask and 2 yellow stripes on the helmet.
The road outfit features a blue Helmet (so I can stick with my matching pants/helmet idea – I have no idea if that’s legal in the NFL or not, but hey this is my game!!) once the blue pants were in place and again features yellow highlights. And finally, adding a third colour to their look gives scope for an alternate yellow jersey with blue highlights!
Thanks for taking the time to read this! Let me know what you think and keep up the great column.
And next is Ryan Van Buskirk, who has his own ideas on how to improve the Patriots:
I was messing around with the patriots unis, prior to this season (by the way – love throwbacks) I was thinking they should ditch the “dirty gray” alternates and go with a red alternate. Well, they did ditch the gray, but word is the new alternate is the throwback. So I messed around (using MS Paint – sorry) with the unis, one with Blue Striping/Pants, and the “away” socks, but that maybe looks too much like the texans :)
The second one, is with gray stripes/pants, and just for kicks – the throwback socks. Would love to hear feedback on it. Again, sorry for the crappy MS Paint job.
Ryan Van Buskirk.
And winding it up for today is Joshua Bennett, who admits what you’re about to see are not his actual designs, but are designs he found and wanted to share. I was a little reticent about including these, but since there are some interesting concepts to be found, I said, “what the hell.” Here’s Josh:
Hi Phil, long time reader, first time contributer. I DID NOT CREATE THESE, but i wanted to share them with the uniwatch community. On a site called football-freaks.com, where people make updates and mods for the PC version of Madden, a user named “anthonyjh7” posted what he calls “new age unis”. There aresome hits and misses, but they are all vry interesting. Included is the home/away for all the teams, and any alternates that were included. Thank for reading, and you and Paul keep up the great work!
Rather than post all 82 (!) designs individually, I’ve put them into a flickr album for your amusement. Enjoy!
That’s all for today. Thanks to everyone who contributed, and there are still more to come. Keep sending them my way.
Rick’s back with a new strip for you all, which I’ll have him intro is a sec. Hey Ricko, is that Ozzie at the bar? Here’s Mr. Pearson:
In “World O’Benchies” everyone has story. And, strangely enough, everyone seems to have an ex, too. Go figure.
Enjoy your Saturday Benchies.
Guess The Game From The Scoreboard: Jumping from the diamond and the gridion today to the hardwood. This really shouldn’t be terribly difficult, but it’s a change of pace, and maybe a hint to send some more (and more difficult) of these my way. I’m not sure if there exists a “box score” for this per se, but you can certainly find something which indicates the date, location, teams and final score. Ready? Guess The Game From The Scoreboard. And, as always, if you enjoy the game, please send me some new scoreboards! Drop me a line. Thanks!
Army & Navy will meet today in their 110th matchup, at 2:30 EST at Lincoln Financial Field in Philly. Last year’s game proved to be quite an interesting uniform matchup, with both teams being outfitted in Nike “Enforcer” uniforms. Will they both don “Pro Combat” unis today? In this instance, such terminology might actually make sense. Bill the Goat has had the decided on-field advantage over the mules, taking the past 7 games. Even though neither team is exactly a football powerhouse anymore (although in 1944 & 1945 both teams were ranked #1 & #2 respectively), the game has enough tradition to warrant being almost a Bowl game. From its earliest days, and up through the 1950’s, the uniforms have always been classic … well, until last year anyway. Will they wear something unique again today? Guess we’ll just have to watch to find out. (Thanks to Larry Bodnovich for those beautiful color pics).
Anybody have any interest in those NCAA Bowl Game pools that seem to be gaining popularity these days? You guys know how Vince runs the annual NC2A Tourney Pool for Basketball? This is kinda sorta the same thing, only for football. They pretty much work the same way, only different — you simply pick the winners of each bowl. If so, and you know how to set these sort of things up, drop me a line. In the comments below, simply mention if you have any interest in a “mini-contest” and we can get it set up in time for the Bowl games. If there’s interest, we’ll do it…if not, well…we won’t. It’s that simple. Thanks.
Well, there you have it. Remember — come up with a good slogan for the
Uni Watch Winter Classic Uni Watch (fill in the blank) thing with the pond hockey and gathering and sports and unis and … well lots of good stuff. And let me know if you have interest in a Bowl contest. And of course, thanks to Teebz and JTH for help with the NHL third jersey descriptions and poll. DON’T FORGET TO VOTE. Good stuff coming tomorrow too. I was planning on taking an “indefinite break” from the column to focus on becoming a better husband, father and person…but I guess I’ll just be back tomorrow instead.
Everyone have a fantastic Saturday.