Good as Gold

The NBA season tipped off last night and, as you can see at right, the Heat commemorated their championship by wearing gold-lettered and -numbered jerseys (plus they also had an O’Brien Trophy patch). The whole “Let’s celebrate by wearing gold” thing isn’t exactly my favorite uniform trope of recent years, but I think this Heat design looked really, really good. Gold fits really well with their color scheme, no?

Naturally, there were also some crazy sneakers, most notably the ones worn by Dwyane Wade and LeBron James. (And for some reason the Getty photographer took a ton of photos of Derrick Rose’s sneakers, too.)

Naturally, the Heat raised their championship banner. They also received their rings, which look like so:

Notice anything unusual about that last photo? Here, take a closer look — a triple apostrophe catastrophe. Arrgghh! An egregious grammatical error cast in precious metal for all the world to see, how lovely. (For those who have no idea what I’m talking about, look here.)

Meanwhile, as long as we’re talking about the NBA, here are some additional notes:

• A source who used to work for the Timberwolves says the team will have a black sleeved alternate later this season.

• Reader Andrew Powell-Morse has created a series of charts and graphs showing how NBA players break down by race, by salary, by position, and more. Interesting stuff — recommended.

• Finally, on an embarrassing note: As several readers have pointed out, my NBA season-preview column, which was posted on ESPN on Monday, had a major omission: I neglected to mention that the Magic are wearing a 25th-season patch. Missing the boat on that patch was a major gaffe on my part. Orlando had worn the patch throughout the preseason, but somehow I just missed it. No excuses, no rationalizations — I just blew it. Mea culpa, and my thanks to everyone who pointed it out.

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Radio is a sound salvation: Media people — myself included — are constantly stealing borrowing ideas from each other. Case in point: On Sunday I was quoted in a New York Times story about the deplorable state of MLB pants. Approximately 48 hours later (i.e., yesterday morning), I was contacted by the folks at NPR’s All Things Considered program, who wanted to interview me about, of course, the deplorable state of MLB pants. You can hear the audio of the resulting segment — heavily edited from the original interview, which ran about 12 minutes — here.

This is maybe the third or fourth time I’ve appeared on All Things Considered. Here are some behind-the-scenes details that might interest you:

• Before you do the actual interview with one of the hosts, you have to do a “pre-interview” with a producer, who asks you lots of the same questions that will eventually be asked in the real interview. The producer also takes notes on your responses to these questions, and those notes are then given to the host conducting the real interview. So the host sort of has a crib sheet telling him or her what to expect. I understand why they do this, but I don’t care for it — it kinda ruins (or at least compromises) the spontaneity of the real interview.

• Most radio shows are happy to interview me over the phone. Some of them don’t even mind if it’s my cell phone. But NPR shows, including All Things Considered, always want me to come in to NPR’s Manhattan studios, because they’re obsessed with getting good audio quality. I appreciate and respect this, but I usually refuse to make a special trip to Manhattan just for a short radio spot — it blows too big a hole in my day. NPR producers and I have butted heads over this for years (one time they actually sent an audio crew to my house and had someone hold a boom mic over me while I did the interview on the phone, so that my audio would sound as good as the host’s audio), but recently they came up with a good solution: an iPhone app called Report-IT, which creates a broadcast-quality audio file. I believe this is what NPR reporters (and, I assume, lots of other broadcast journalists) use when reporting “from the field.” Anyway, the upshot is that I no longer have to argue with NPR producers about going to the goddamn studio, because now I can just do the interview over the phone while using Report-IT.

All Things Considered has a standing policy: If you’re a working journalist and they interview you for a news story, like they did with me yesterday, they pay you $100. This isn’t an NPR-wide thing — just for All Things Considered. Obviously, a single C-note isn’t going to make or break me. But given the many hours’ or maybe days’ worth of free programming content I’ve provided to various radio stations over the years, it’s nice to see a little scratch.

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Trouble with slideshow? Click here

rafflet ticket by ben thoma.jpg

NHL Poster Raffle: Last week Brinke linked to a bunch of eBay listings for those early-1970s NHL posters that everyone seems to like. The guy selling those posters is named Matt Miskelly. His father owned the company that produced the posters, which is why Matt has so many of them to sell.

Anyway: Brinke’s links to Matt’s auctions apparently resulted in a lot of sales, so Matt is showing his gratitude to the Uni Watch readership by raffling off one of the five posters shown above.

To enter, send an email with your name and address to the raffle address by next Monday, Nov. 4, 7pm Eastern. One entry per person. The winner, whose name I’ll announce next Tuesady, will get to choose a poster from the five designs shown above.

Big thanks to Matt for doing this — good stuff.

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Click to enlarge

An addition to the Uni Watch family: Meet Mike Chamernik, one of two new Ticker interns who’ll be assisting me in the coming weeks. The Ticker you’re about to read today was compiled by him.

Mike is 23 and has a journalism degree from DePaul, where he covered the school’s sports program. Although he lives in Chicago, his favorite teams are the Brewers (MLB), Lions (NFL), Panthers (NHL), and Bucks (NBA), and he asked for an old-school Magic treatment on his membership card, so it would be fair to say that he’s a man of eclectic and inscrutable rooting tastes. Judging by a bunch of emails and one Skype session, I’d say he’s also a very smart fella, and a nice guy to boot.

Mike and my other new Ticker intern, Garrett McGrath (who I’ll be introducing to you next week), beat out a large field of highly qualified applicants who responded to my recent “Help Wanted” call. For now, I’ll just be outsourcing the Ticker to them for one or two days a week, but they may end up assuming larger roles on the site as we move along. Please join me in welcoming them to the Uni Watch family.

Here’s Mike’s inaugural Ticker — enjoy.

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Baseball News: Many readers sent this in: The Akron Aeros have changed their name to the Akron RubberDucks. “Kind of a clownish name,” says Rob Ullman, “but everything about the Aeros identity (teal and purple, dumb cartoon mascot, ugly unis) was so half-assed that it’s basically a wash.” Here’s how the new logo will look on the caps, and here’s the team’s official fight song. … Pitcher Ken Ray of the Rakuten Eagles in Japan was hit in the face by a line drive last month. When he returned, he wore a masquerade party-inspired mask for protection (from Mike Kotler). … “I was watching the World Series on Monday night and I noticed David Ortiz seems to have a bat grip on his bat handle like you would find on a metal bat,” says Fran Simmonds. “I did some digging around and found a company called Lizard Skins Baseball, and they claim he is using their product.” Fran found some other players who use the tape, too. … San Diego State’s baseball team played a game in Halloween costumes. … “There’s a small subgroup (which includes the ubiquitous Terry Proctor) of Red Wing uniwatchers,” writes Brian Bennett. “Paul Bielewicz and Craig Brown did some really in-depth research on full uniforms throughout the team’s history. From their work and my own research, I’ve noticed a pattern (or anti-pattern?): an incredible lack of consistency in the R letterform used by the team on hats, jackets and jerseys. So it will be interesting on Nov. 1 to see if the Wings utilize one of the many R letterforms from their past, or add one more.”

NFL News: Mental Floss has a T-shirt with a spin on the NFL shield (from Max Weintraub). … Remember the Browns DIY quarterback jersey floating around the interweb? David Teigland passes along a Vikings fan who did the same thing. … The Chargers will be honoring their 1963 championship team on December 1. “One could only hope this means powder blue jerseys and helmet numbers for the game,” says Rich Paloma. … The Rams will be wearing 1999 throwbacks versus the Titans on Sunday.

College Football News: No photo, but Benji Boyter notes that Clemson’s Vic Beasley went JrOB (Jr. on back) during their game against Maryland this past Saturday. Typically, he just has his last name on the back. … Fordham will have Autism Speaks puzzle piece decals on their helmets on Saturday. … Troy will be wearing a alternate uniform for its game on Halloween (from Ryan Bohannon). … Daron Nowak sees Richard Nixon on the back of CJ Brown’s helmet, above the “M” in Maryland (Here’s a zoomed-in view). “The helmets are hand-painted, so there may be wierd shit like that on the helmets,” Nowak says. “Some uber-Uniwatcher should review all pics from the game and look for funky details such as this one.” … Arizona State will be wearing gold helmets, white jerseys and maroon pants on Thursday versus Washington State, the first time the Sun Devils have worn that combination since their branding relaunch in 2011 (with thanks to Marc Altieri). … Purdue will be wearing black helmets on Saturday. … Oregon football raised over $200,000 by auctioning off autographed game-worn pink helmets. Whoever bought the Joey Harrington-signed helmet surely got it at a discount. … New Mexico will retire Brian Urlacher’s No. 44 jersey. … Mark Flightmaster passes along a great slideshow of the now-defunct Xavier football team. Note all the striped socks, Bowling Green’s helmet decals, and the interlocking “XU” logo. … Phil sends a couple of items: Purdue researchers are developing a new shock-absorbing helmet to help prevent concussions, and Michigan State might wear their alternate uniforms this Saturday against Michigan. When asked if the team would wear the alternates, coach Mark Dantonio said, “I guess I would anticipate it. Would I expect it? Don’t know if I’d expect it.” Hall of fame coach-speak example, right there.

Hockey News: It’s the time of the year for “spooky” themed jerseys (from Phil). … Lyndsey Fry, a forward who’s trying to make the women’s USA hockey team, honors the memory of teammate Liz Turgeon by carrying Turgeon’s jersey with her. … The Saskatoon Blades will be wearing 1984 throwback sweaters for two games this week.

NBA News: Matt Beahan sends along several items: The Knicks used the Yankees-esque “NY” logo, but here’s a shot that shows the Knicks wordmark over it; The 1949-50 Rochester Royals team photo has players with contrasting typefaces and number fonts; Someone (Porter Meriwether, maybe?) is wearing a different uniform than his teammates in this 1962-63 Syracuse Nationals team photo; the CBA’s Maine Lumberjacks wore Sonics-inspired uniforms in the early 1980s; and, the CBA’s Tampa Bay Thrillers adopted the Blazers’ diagonal stripes for their own uni set. … Alan Kreit spotted the New York Nets ABA championship banners hanging at Nassau Coliseum.

College Hoops News: “UConn is getting new basketball uniforms for 2014-15 that will be completely new, unlike this year’s which are only sort of new,” says Gregory Koch. “Makes me wonder why we don’t just go with the new new uniforms this year.” … New uniforms for Stephen F. Austin (thanks to Chris Mycoskie). … Here’s a history of Maryland’s basketball uniforms (from Steve Hoyle).

Grab Bag: New jersey sponsor for Real Salt Lake for 2014 (from Karson Kalian). … The USA Olympic freeskiing and luge teams unveiled their new uniforms for the upcoming Winter Olympics. Also, every article of clothing for Team USA is made in the country (from Tommy Turner) … “I was at a Duluth (MN) Denfeld high school football game a few weeks ago and noticed the socks they were wearing,” says Jarrod Leder. “They had stirrups on them! They were directly on the sock, not a separate piece of hosiery. You can see that some of them need to pull them up, but the overall effect was pretty sweet for No. 25 in this photo.” … Subway maps have an intricate science behind them (thanks, Brinke). … Want a swatch of turf or a turnstile from the Astrodome? Head to Houston this weekend. Workers have been carefully tearing up the dome and sorting items for a yard sale Saturday (thanks, Mike Klug). … Milan (Michigan) High School saluted the military on Friday night with camouflage uniforms. But really, if they’re that garish, how can they be camouflage? (Thanks, Jim Polacek). … “Pyeongchang 2018 released their paralympics logo,” says Dan Kurtz. “It’s basically two of the ‘snowflakes’ that originates from the Korean word “창” which is the 2nd part of the cities name ‘chang’. … The Arena League’s Pittsburgh Power has a new uniform. … Nike is challenging a 50-year-old tariff in hopes to better compete with New Balance. … A high school football player with autism scored a touchdown wearing a Pinktober jersey (from Chris Perrenot). … Want to see a tattooed guy with an unruly goatee write beautiful script with a paintbrush? No? Oh. Carry on, then.

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What Paul did last night: Did you know that Dorothy Parker bequeathed her entire estate to Martin Luther King, and that her ashes eventually passed into the possession of the NAACP, which buried them at their Baltimore headquarters more than 20 years after her death? Or that a few fragments from the poet Percy Shelley’s skull are held (and available for viewing!) at the New York Public Library? Or that one of Alastaire Cooke’s cancer-ridden legs was sawed off of his corpse by organ thieves?

I learned all of this, and much more, last night at a presentation devoted to famous dead people’s body parts that ended up in unusual places. The event was hosted by a Seattle writer named Bess Lovejoy, who’s written a book on the subject.

My favorite thing about all these stories is that almost all of them include a banal aspect. Dorothy Parker’s ashes, for example, spent years in her attorney’s file cabinet before being passed along to the NAACP. And while you’ve probably heard that Napoleon’s penis was displayed in various museums (I remember first hearing about that when I was still in junior high), you might not know that it also spent a lot of time in a suitcase under a bed in New Jersey. There’s something sort of endearingly non-dramatic about that.

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Party reminder: Remember, Uni Watch party this Saturday, Nov. 2, 2:30pm, at Sheep Station. Hope to see lots of you there.

 

130 comments to Good as Gold

  • hmich176 | October 30, 2013 at 7:49 am |

    Every time I’ve seen these NHL posters, I haven’t seen one of the Penguins. Did they ever make one for them, or just these teams seen in the slideshow?

    • Rob Ullman | October 30, 2013 at 9:14 am |

      I was thinkin’ the same thing.

      • BurghFan | October 30, 2013 at 6:33 pm |

        40-some years later, I’m pretty sure they were one of the posters available on the back of the Wheaties box. Light blue, dark blue, and black, of course.

  • BurghFan | October 30, 2013 at 7:53 am |

    What’s the Japanese on the wearer’s name side of the Heat ring?

    • terriblehuman | October 30, 2013 at 8:30 am |

      It’s Chinese, actually (Japanese writing incorporates Chinese characters, though words aren’t usually identical).

      From the press release:
      Etched within the Black Trophy is the team’s motto “Sacrifice,” written in Chinese, paying homage to where the journey to the 2013 title began.

      But it’s really, really, really crappy typography. The radicals that make up the characters need to be brought much closer together, like this: 牺牲.

      It’s almost as if they found a tattoo artist on Collins Avenue and got him to do whatever he does for drunk South Beach partiers who want a cool Chinese character tattoo.

      • BurghFan | October 30, 2013 at 8:41 am |

        Thank you, and my apologies for not correctly identifying the language.

        • terriblehuman | October 30, 2013 at 8:45 am |

          No worries – I wouldn’t expect non-speakers to tell the languages apart without context.

      • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:00 am |

        Yeah, the characters on the ring are a little too far apart. In addition, it’s interesting to note that the Chinese characters used on the ring is written in simplified Chinese, as opposed to traditional (complex) Chinese, which would’ve been 犧牲 instead.

  • Bruce Menard | October 30, 2013 at 7:56 am |

    Hey, welcome to the Uni family new intern Mike Chamernik!

    • BurghFan | October 30, 2013 at 8:02 am |

      Yup. Garrett, too.

    • ChrisH | October 30, 2013 at 9:44 am |

      Congratulations and welcome, Mike!

      • Mike Chamernik | October 30, 2013 at 3:43 pm |

        Thanks, guys!

  • JonathanL | October 30, 2013 at 7:57 am |

    Those Akron RubberDucks logos are filthy ugly. Dumb name, dumb logo. Though I do like the whining about how it’s not “manly” enough. Taking a bath or shower is manly.

    As someone who listens to NPR and various podcasts, audio quality really matters to me. I work in customer service and the quality of voice we have in 2013 is deplorable. I know there’s a new standard (HD Voice) that is always in the future, but man, we cannot get there fast enough.

    • The Jeff | October 30, 2013 at 8:06 am |

      The silly name is fine for minor league baseball, but the logo/colors/etc are just totally wrong. I mean, how the hell do you call a team the RubberDucks and not use a yellow duck logo? Trying to tie the thing into the rubber/tire industry just doesn’t work. If they wanted to do that, they should have called them the Wheels, or Wheelers, or Rollers or… anything other than RubberDucks.

      • James Burke | October 30, 2013 at 8:07 am |

        My best guess is that someone owns the rights to the yellow duck.

      • JonathanL | October 30, 2013 at 8:14 am |

        I had high hopes for a yellow and some shade of blue team with RubberDucks. If they’d embrace the idea of a RUBBER DUCK with the name RubberDucks, they could do something fun that only Minor League Baseball gets away with this. But you’re totally right; the weird tire/duck amalgam just doesn’t work.

      • arrScott | October 30, 2013 at 9:16 am |

        Nah, black and a tire reference could work just fine, but like the two words of the name, the two references need more separation. On the colors, the team absolutely needed to have gone bright, but if they’d used bright yellow or yellow-orange and bright royal blue (for the duck and the bath water), then black as an accent color would pop nicely. Then start with a more literal representation of a rubber duckie, without forcing a false fierceness into the design, and work a tire into it. Maybe the duck has tires, or a tire, instead of feet. Maybe it uses a tire as a floating ring. Whatever. Coulda worked.

        Alternately, just keep the duck and the tire separate: Use the duckie as the mascot, but render the jersey script in the style of tire treads. If the rest of the uniform is sufficiently colorful, then the black script could still work.

      • Rob Ullman | October 30, 2013 at 9:18 am |

        Being from Akron, I can tell you with nearly 100% certainty that the tire came before the duck, and I suspect that the latter was kinda shoehorned in. The Akron Beacon-Journal ran a poll a few years back to re-name the club…I can’t recall if “RubberDucks” was on the ballot, but it did feature “Vulcans” (which is pretty badass), “Devil Strips” (my personal fave) and “Stick with the Aeros”, which was the winner.

        • Stevie | October 30, 2013 at 9:50 am |

          I like the name Akron Rubbers myself.

        • marc | October 30, 2013 at 10:30 am |

          Why would they name the team after galosh… oh… i get it now. Never mind.

      • Jerg | October 30, 2013 at 12:01 pm |

        You’re thinking Rubber Duckies. These are the RubberDucks!

      • Bromotrifluoromethane | October 30, 2013 at 3:04 pm |

        The tire marks along with the “mean” looking duck just make it look like the duck was run over to me. Is that what they were really going for?

        They did a good job on the Travs and to a lesser extent the Knights although I’ll wait to see full uniforms to decide. But this one and the El Paso ones are terrible. I don’t feel so bad having the RailRiders here now although I still think Fireflies (should be Lightning Bugs) or Porcupines would’ve been better. But at least we got a porcupine crammed into the logo so there’s that.

    • ChrisH | October 30, 2013 at 9:52 am |

      Arthur Weasley would like to know:

      http://www.youtube.c...

  • Phil P | October 30, 2013 at 7:58 am |

    Interesting about Nike lobbying against the tariff. The piece says New Balance does some manufacturing here, I was under the impression they did it all (or most) here in Boston, but turns out (according to the Wiki) it’s 25%. But, they are heavily involved in the construction of a new headquarters and subsidized a new commuter rail stop to spur on other development in their area of town and seem like good corporate citizens

    • ChrisH | October 30, 2013 at 12:41 pm |

      New Balance surely could have secured naming rights for that rail station since they are footing the bill for all that construction, but they opted no to do so.

  • Phil Hecken | October 30, 2013 at 8:03 am |

    Welcome aboard, Mike!

    Nice job with your first ticker!

    • LarryB | October 30, 2013 at 10:40 am |

      Agreed, welcome Mike

      • Mike Chamernik | October 30, 2013 at 3:45 pm |

        Thanks! And thanks Phil for submitting most of the day’s Ticker content. Always good stuff.

        • Phil Hecken | October 30, 2013 at 6:33 pm |

          Yeah, sorry about that.

          If I’d known yesterday/today was your first day, I’d have gone a little easier ;).

          Great job!

  • hodges14 | October 30, 2013 at 8:27 am |

    Coulda fooled me, your new intern looks like Colin Kaepernick. No, seriously.

    http://www.bet.com/c...

    Anyway, congrats to Colin…uh, Mike, and I wish him the best.

    • hodges14 | October 30, 2013 at 8:30 am |

      Heck, his name is pretty close to Kaepernick too. Is the Ch a soft pronunciation, like a sh, or a hard pronunciation, like a k?

      • Paul Lukas | October 30, 2013 at 8:33 am |

        Not “sh” or “k” — “ch,” like “chosen.”

      • Mike Chamernik | October 30, 2013 at 3:48 pm |

        Ha! I’ve heard that I look like Kaepernick before. I’ve also gotten Cardinals first baseman Allen Craig.

        • hodges14 | October 30, 2013 at 6:07 pm |

          I sorta see the resemblance, but to be completely honest, if you and Colin Kaepernick happened to meet at a party, I’m pretty sure people would ask if you’re related.

  • Dumb Guy | October 30, 2013 at 8:30 am |

    I don’t see Nixon in CJ Brown’s helmet, but I DO see George Jetson!!
    (profile looking left)

  • Dumb Guy | October 30, 2013 at 8:34 am |

    It’s “paralympics” not “paraolympics”.

  • Connie DC | October 30, 2013 at 8:53 am |

    Those Heat rings are really … something. For a long time championship team rings have bowed only to championship boxing belts in their over-the-top busy gaudiness. I mean, it’s a form of tradition, right? And definitely funny in a funny-ugly way. But those Heat rings, oy.

    • BrianC | October 30, 2013 at 10:47 am |

      True. In this case it’s not the blinginess, it’s just an ugly-ass random design, as if someone said “take all these elements and make sure they’re on the ring, I really don’t care where.”

    • Mike V. | October 30, 2013 at 11:53 am |

      Agreed. I think they are boring for a championship ring. I always like when rings incorporate colored gems to ad a little splash of color. Would have been nice if they used a ruby or a orange colored gem for the little flame thing coming off the T or for the word mark on the front. Something.

      Also, the NBA championship trophy is the worst, most dull trophy. So the ring is boring on boring.

  • terriblehuman | October 30, 2013 at 8:55 am |

    And for some reason the Getty photographer took a ton of photos of Derrick Rose’s sneakers, too.

    Cynical guess:
    Rose is an Adidas guy, and his signature shoe is the league’s signature shoe. Getty Images photos are owned by NBAE. So the Getty photographer’s asked to take a lot of pictures of Rose’s shoes.

    • Phil Hecken | October 30, 2013 at 9:20 am |

      Who is Derrick Rose?

      .

      .

      .

      .

      .

      .

      (I KID)

      But seriously, maybe the photog is just a sneakerhead?

    • SaveFarris | October 30, 2013 at 10:04 am |

      My guess: this was Rose’s first regular season game in 15 months coming from a knee injury. The photog was trying to get a shot of the repaired leg in action.

      • terriblehuman | October 30, 2013 at 12:01 pm |

        That makes sense, though you’d think the knee pads, and not the shoes, would be more prominent in the photos since he had an ACL injury. And this photo in particular feels awful lot like Adidas product placement.

        • kory | October 30, 2013 at 8:31 pm |

          I actually thought Ray Allen had the best shoes last night. New riff on the classic and timeless Jordan XI, white and gold with red accents…Gorgeous

  • ScottyM | October 30, 2013 at 9:05 am |

    That San Diego St Halloween game was pretty funny. What a great, fun, idea!

    • Joe O | October 30, 2013 at 10:18 am |

      Northern Kentucky University baseball did this last week, as well. No links, but it was all over Twitter.

    • Ty | October 30, 2013 at 11:48 am |

      I actually laughed my ass off watching that! I’m surprised Tony would have his team do something like that . . very funny stuff. I thought it was hysterical seeing the Kid dressed as a Charger cheerleader hit one out. And then the guys that were the Jamaica bobsledders . . . cracked me up :)

  • Jason M (DC) | October 30, 2013 at 9:08 am |

    Yellow/gold has always been a tertiary color for the Heat. It should stay that way. (Yes, I know those uniforms are likely for one game only.) The Heat in those red and yellow uniforms look like how the Atlanta Hawks SHOULD look like.

    • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:50 am |

      Colorwerx has it listed as “dark yellow.”

  • Bruce Menard | October 30, 2013 at 9:11 am |

    Ack….
    Those Heat rings are so boring, bad design call Miami.

    • Bruce Menard | October 30, 2013 at 9:13 am |

      BTW, I don’t mind the side panels, but the face is very unexceptional.

    • Jason M (DC) | October 30, 2013 at 1:25 pm |

      I thought that they were fine. I think I would like the word HEAT to be in red rubies, or something, though. Give it a little pop.

  • Jet | October 30, 2013 at 9:56 am |

    I do what the unruly goatee guy does! Except there’s not much call for it anymore, do most of my lettering in computer-cut vinyl now

    -Jet

    • marc | October 30, 2013 at 10:23 am |

      The roundhand lettering demo video made my day. I suck at painting especially when it comes to lettering. I’m in awe of folks who can do it well and make it look as easy as Glen Weisgerbe does. My productivity this morning is now shot.

      *Stepping up on the soapbox*

      It’s a shame there’s not much demand for hand-painted lettering anymore. Using a plotter to cut vinyl just doesn’t have the same feel (aesthetically) as when done by hand. Even if the vinyl is cut freehand, it’s just not the same. I think – for me, anyway – with vinyl, it’s the lack of texture and the perfection of the surface. When lettering is hand painted, you can see tiny flaws and feel the thickness of the paint. That’s art. Vinyl lettering, while consistent and clean, has all the charm of modern sports logos that have been “Illustrator-d” to death. They’re too perfect. For an old school guy like me, they just don’t compare.

      • Jet | October 30, 2013 at 11:22 am |

        Marc, its not so much that there’s not a demand, its that often the customer doesn’t even know the difference or doesn’t appreciate the subtleties of hand-done work. I also do hand-carved signs with chisels but most of that work is also done by table router machines now and 95% of the customers don’t care as long as they’re getting the cheaper price.

        -Jet

        • marc | October 30, 2013 at 12:32 pm |

          “… the customer doesn’t even know the difference or doesn’t appreciate the subtleties of hand-done work” says it all, Jet.

          Sadly, money usually trumps art. I did sign work a while back and tried my hand at hand lettering (could never get it right), but none of that matters anymore in the era of plotter-cut vinyl and table routers that do all the work.

          Real hand-drawn art and clients with an appreciation for it still exist, tho! Here’s a cool example from a guy named Simon Frouws, a designer from South Africa, of a job he did for the U.S. Playing Card Company:

          http://www.behance.n...

        • arrScott | October 30, 2013 at 12:54 pm |

          Some other similar playing card projects with hand-drawn craftsmanship:

          http://www.kingswild...

          http://www.kickstart...

  • Mirliton | October 30, 2013 at 10:06 am |

    “I heard that Paul Lukas guy you like so much on NPR today. I enjoyed his spot.” The greatest thing my girlfriend has ever told me.

  • Thomas J | October 30, 2013 at 10:25 am |

    I thought the Heat’s gold trim looked outstanding. Unlike past uses of gold trim, the Heat used the shade of gold they already use not a generic metallic gold. This gives the look a continuity so seamless its almost good enough to be their regular look.

    • arrScott | October 30, 2013 at 10:30 am |

      Agreed. I don’t mind a little metallic gold as a trim accent for a championship jersey, but if you’re going to swap out the dominant color of a uni element, best to use a shade of yellow you already wear, if you have one. Personally, I think last night’s Heat unis are as good as Miami has ever looked.

      • The Jeff | October 30, 2013 at 10:37 am |

        I dunno… I think if you’re going to use your uniform to gloat about the previous year’s championship, you should go all the way with it. I’d rather see them take the design of their standard home whites and transplant it onto a metallic gold uniform.

        • arrScott | October 30, 2013 at 11:57 am |

          You mean like when the Wizards won the NBA championship?

          But yeah, that would be a valid way to go. I’m for either restraint or a full-on The treatment. To me, the Heat were a nice example of a restraint option. Using metallic gold in place of the yellow they wore last night would have been neither restrained nor fully committed to over-the-top self-congratulation, so it would have been a mistake.

    • Phil Hecken | October 30, 2013 at 10:40 am |

      “…its almost good enough to be their regular look”

      ~~~

      I actually watched more of the game last evening than I care to admit, but I did like the Heat’s gold treatment — except for the NOBs, which without any kind of outline, were impossible to read at distance (not that that is a bad thing, mind you, but if you’re going to put a NOB, then it should actually, ya know, be legible).

      But as far as “almost good enough to be their regular look.” I was thinking the same thing. And it’s not like the Heat don’t have 10 alternates already. I’d bet we see these again (probably sans the O’Brien patch), and I could see, moving forward, this possibly becoming part of the ever-expanding rotation.

      • Thomas J | October 30, 2013 at 2:05 pm |

        Well with the all-red uniform this year they’ve already completed the Imperial trifecta so they might need a fresh direction. Although a washed out all gold would be very C-3PO.

      • Ken G. | October 30, 2013 at 5:51 pm |

        The Heat’s nubering and lettering looked almost orange to me, and evoked the 1976 Bucs (who wore white to all games) who had orange numbers that could not be read by anybondy in the stands or the press box; maybe basketball player numbers are less important, but I couldn;t read any of it.

        In 1977 the Bucs reversed the numbers so body was red and outlined in orange.

        • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:08 am |

          I wonder if the red outline has anything to do with it, but if Thomas J is correct, then the yellow used is actually, according to Colorwerx, “dark yellow,” hence the orange look.

          Phil is right: it’d be better if there was a outline to the NOB, or maybe they could’ve done it in red or left it in black, or black with dark yellow outlines.

          On a related topic, this is the kind of look I was hoping the Lakers would use on their Sunday white jerseys, where the team name and numbers are in gold, as opposed to purple in gold outline like they are now.

  • Jeremy | October 30, 2013 at 10:29 am |

    The front of the Heat rings raises an interesting question. Usually, teams put the number of trophies they have won as an organization. On the side of the jersey, the Heat have three trophies, accompanied by the year they won. However, on the front they only have two trophies, which I assume represent the back to back titles. Are they basically saying that the last two years were a franchise “rebirth”, and recognizing the separate era from the team that won in 96 (I believe Wade is the only player remaining from that team)? Maybe it is just to celebrate the back to back championships? Or are they finally admitting that the refs gifted them that title ;)

    • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:09 am |

      All the titles are gifted by the league, just like the WWF…err, WWE.

  • Chance Michaels | October 30, 2013 at 10:38 am |

    Want to see a tattooed guy with an unruly goatee write beautiful script with a paintbrush?

    Do I ever!

    Now I want to watch the rest of his videos. And find something I can pay him to letter.

    Much better than a computer-generated script.

  • Rob H. | October 30, 2013 at 10:55 am |

    To those of you who are wondering how the Rams’ throwback is going to look with the current helmet, as long as they swap the horn, the blue color of the helmet itself isn’t that much different:

    http://i.imgur.com/N...

    • The Jeff | October 30, 2013 at 11:10 am |

      Yeah… the Rams have always just swapped decals for this throwback uniform, so it’ll look the same as it did last year when they wore it. The Rams wore navy helmets for decades before finally switching to navy jerseys. That aspect of those uniforms always annoyed me.

      I’m curious to see if the Titans will play along with the “1999″ thing and wear the navy pants. (Of course, the Rams wore white for their SB win over the Titans, but that’s beside the point)

  • John | October 30, 2013 at 11:09 am |

    Do NCAA teams have to get approval for wearing certain uniforms before their games that NFL teams do?

    Could a team show up like Auburn show up with Orange uniforms and not let the NCAA/SEC know ?

    • The Jeff | October 30, 2013 at 11:14 am |

      I don’t have access to an NCAA rulebook, but I think the teams are allowed to wear whatever they want without any prior approval. If the contrast isn’t deemed great enough by the officials, there’s a 15 yard penalty assigned at the start of each half. Auburn could wear orange at home vs a team in white and it wouldn’t be an issue. If they showed up in Alabama in orange uniforms, it’d probably cost them some yardage.

      • Paul Lukas | October 30, 2013 at 11:18 am |

        The visiting team can’t show up in anything other than white without the home team’s permission.

      • John | October 30, 2013 at 2:51 pm |

        “If they showed up in Alabama in orange uniforms, it’d probably cost them some yardage.”

        So teams can show up to play with color uniforms that arn’t even in their color scheme? That’s messed up. I thought black was approved by the NCAA as a secondary uni next to colors in the teams color scheme.

        I guess its cool if you design ciollege uniforms. Pretty much no rules

  • Maks | October 30, 2013 at 11:18 am |

    boy… lots of ticker arent letting me connect. some website are slow to connecting and some pops up security. i never had the issue before. i’m at work and it usually the only time i read UW.

    • Maks | October 30, 2013 at 11:30 am |

      hmm… never mind. it is more likely WAS on my end at work. all seems to be okay now.

  • John Q | October 30, 2013 at 11:31 am |

    I thought the problem with the “Heat” ring was the term “27 Game Winning Streak.” Shouldn’t it be “27 Game Win Streak?”

    I’ve always had a problem with “Hitting Streak” because the word “hitting” is a verb but what you’re really trying to describe is the accomplishment of a noun, “base hit.” I think it really should be “Hit Streak” as in a “56 game consecutive hit streak.”

    The term “winning” is often used incorrectly in games/sports. As in “we’re winning the game.” The correct term should be, “we’re ahead or behind.” A win or a loss is only determined at the conclusion of a game. The word “winning” is an adjective which should be used to describe something like a “winning team or a winning smile or a winning lottery number.”

    • Nate | October 30, 2013 at 11:46 am |

      I think I hate you.

    • Floorwalker | October 30, 2013 at 12:29 pm |

      Winning is a gerund, right?
      http://en.wikipedia....
      From a verb, it operates, like Hitting, as a noun.

      I like your “ahead or behind’ thing, though.
      More like “on our way toward winning”

      • John Q | October 30, 2013 at 4:21 pm |

        Floorwalker,

        I used to work with this 70 year old grizzled old-school guy about 15-20 years ago and he always used to chastise me about using the terms “winning” or “losing.” The kind of guy that smoked unfiltered chesterfields and despised the “new” NFL with their pads and helmets. He always said “ahead” or “behind and he was very adamant about it. Maybe this was a pre WW2 way of referring to games/contests.

        His logic was that barring a tie, a game is either won or lost and in baseball it’s either won or lost. In baseball it’s a binary system whose results are only determined at the end of the contest. So again, his logic was that you may be ahead on points/runs but this doesn’t mean you’re going to win the game/contest because the outcome hasn’t been determined. He said it was a false logical assumption to assume you’re “winning” or “losing” a game just because you have a lead or you’re behind. In a sense you haven’t won or lost anything at that moment in the game.

        He would also bring up that you wouldn’t say “we’re tying the game” when the score is 2-2 in the 5th inning so why would you say “we’re winning the game” when you’re up 2-1 in the 5th?

        He also said “up” or “down” was acceptable as well.

        • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:13 am |

          I always wondered why, if a team is behind by three points, they’re “within” three. No: they are exactly three points behind. If they were 2.5 points behind, THEN they’d be WITHIN three!

          I think your coworker wouldn’t have a problem if people said “Lakers are leading by 5″ or “the Mets are trailing by 3 runs” instead of using “winning by” and “losing by,” respectively.

    • arrScott | October 30, 2013 at 12:47 pm |

      But the present progressive form of “to win” is clearly understood by all speakers of American English, and it follows the form and meaning of other verbs in the same conjugation, so even a prescriptivist ought to recognize the validity of “are winning.” It’s like the old saw, “A new Gallup poll reveals that if the election were held today, 90 percent of voters would be very surprised.” It’s a good joke, sure, but we all understand that a poll result depicts the current state of a contest whose outcome remains contingent. Just like the score of a game while the game is ongoing. Plus, in many sports, a team with the lead plays differently – adopts different strategies – than a team that is tied or that is behind. Thus the concept of being in the act of winning, which is what the present progressive of “to win” means, is a valid concept. In the sense of describing a true action that happens in reality.

      This is especially true for game circumstances in which the ending could come at any moment, and thus the current score might, instantly and unpredictably (or even, in baseball, retroactively) become the final score. Anytime after the middle of the fifth inning, a baseball team with more runs really is winning, and might in fact already have won, given the rules on game suspension. The same with a soccer team holding a lead in stoppage time.

  • mike 2 | October 30, 2013 at 11:41 am |

    Dumb question about the Nets banners in Uniondale – do they also have banners at the new arena in Brooklyn? Or did they leave their banners behind a couple of moves ago?

    • Paul Lukas | October 30, 2013 at 11:59 am |

      I could have just walked down 4th Ave. and peered in. But instead I googled “Barclays Center Nets Banners” and got this:
      http://www.netsdaily...

      • mike 2 | October 30, 2013 at 12:09 pm |

        Very cool.

        It was exactly a year ago that we were walking up 4th Ave back to Barclays after the get-together at Sheep Station. Sorry to be missing it this year.

        • Mike Engle on iPad | October 30, 2013 at 5:43 pm |

          Yep. Same goes for me. I’d love to be there, but I’ll be up in Saratoga Springs instead. Somebody wear a hockey jersey for me!

      • terriblehuman | October 30, 2013 at 1:25 pm |

        Now, this might require a ride or two on New Jersey Transit buses, but could you check on the Nets championship banner situations at the Prudential Arena, Izod Center and the Hackensack Armory? Thanks.

        • CWac19 | October 30, 2013 at 7:47 pm |

          Pretty sure the ABA banners were added to the Izod Center (during its Continental Airlines Arena days) sometime midway thru the Nets’ occupancy. I believe they followed the team to Newark. The Teaneck Armory predated the move to LI. Can’t speak to the brief stint at the RAC.

  • Rob S | October 30, 2013 at 1:05 pm |

    Wow, just going through today’s entry again, I noticed there wasn’t a ‘Skins Watch ticker today.

    I’m sure it’ll be back tomorrow, though, and odds are this Chris Creamer article about Chief Wahoo will get a mention.

    • Jeremy | October 30, 2013 at 6:40 pm |

      While I am certainly glad that they are phasing out that racist caricature of a logo, I’m really not a fan of the block C logo as the primary. When they do get rid of Chief Wahoo, surely they can update to a better primary logo?

  • Ferdinand Cesarano | October 30, 2013 at 1:06 pm |

    Just a wee point: even if you want to consider the wrong-way apostrophe an error, it would be a punctuation error. It has nothing to do with grammar. (My own preference is that an apostrophe be rendered with a short vertical straight line having no curl. Same with quote marks.)

    A more substantive comment about the ring: I love that it says “World Champions” and not “NBA Champions”. I am a big fan of soccer; and my fellow world soccer fans will not understand this. But, despite the N in NBA, that league is not the “national” league of the U.S. (or of Canada) in the sense that the Premiership is the national league of England in football.

    The NBA is in fact a league with a global scope; if conditions warranted, it could unilaterally decide to put a team in Mexico, in England, or anywhere else. And the same is true of Major League Baseball. So the champions of these global-scale leagues are rightfully called “World Champions”.

    The Celtics got it right on their most recent banner (which continues the practice they have used on previous banners); and the Heat got it right on this ring. I hope that this trend continues.

    • Paul Lukas | October 30, 2013 at 1:10 pm |

      Just a wee point: even if you want to consider the wrong-way apostrophe an error, it would be a punctuation error. It has nothing to do with grammar.

      Right you are. My bad — thanks for the corrective.

    • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:17 am |

      In Paul’s OMFG article( http://www.newrepubl...
      ), maybe the Lakers are using the ʻokina, even though it still wouldn’t have been right.
      http://en.wikipedia....

    • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:29 am |

      Ferdinand Cesarano wrote:
      A more substantive comment about the ring: I love that it says “World Champions” and not “NBA Champions”.

      In the U.S., punctuation goes inside the quotation marks, as follows:
      A more substantive comment about the ring: I love that it says “World Champions” and not “NBA Champions.”

      In South America, and I’m sure other countries, you’d be correct.

  • Flugel Horn | October 30, 2013 at 1:07 pm |

    Regarding the Heat rings:
    - I noted the term “World Champions” on the rings. We all know that they are really the NBA Champions.

    I’m interested in whether the bad habit of a league champion declaring themselves “World Champions” (such as done frequently by the NBA champion and by the NFL champion) is something that irks or interests UniWatch readers?

    The “World Champions” term always irks me. Perhaps it’s because I’ve got a global world view and not an Americentric view of things. I think it’s arrogant and indicates a narrow world-view where if you’re a USA league champion, you’re automatically “World Champion”.

    Granted, the NBA champion is likely the best club team in the world, and same with the NFL champion. But that’s not the point.

    Does anyone else get irked by the “World Champion” monicker?

    • Flugel Horn | October 30, 2013 at 1:14 pm |

      Just replying to say that I didn’t read Ferdinand’s comment, when I was doing my own comment.
      - we posted pretty much simultaneously on the topic.

      …interesting that 2 different views were posted at the same time. :)

      • James Burke | October 30, 2013 at 1:22 pm |

        There is no objective way to know, but even an average NBA team could beat a champion foreign team 60% (or more) of the time. And in the NFL’s case, the Jsguars could beat any other league’s winner 95% of the time.

        • Flugel Horn | October 30, 2013 at 1:44 pm |

          But if you call a non-North American team “Foreign”, then how can you call an NBA champion “World?”

          ie. if the NBA is global, then there are no “Foreigners” except for Martians and an old pop band.

          So, who is a Foreigner, when your league calls its champion a “world champion?”
          - There can’t be any foreigners, because we’re one big group of world players, where the NBA represents the best.

          (just following the World model, where if you say “world champion”, then you can’t say “foreigner)

        • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:33 am |

          I think I remember reading this elsewhere, but they ARE champions on this world–as opposed to the Moon or other worlds. Or perhaps, the world of the NBA.

          Also, to foreigners, Americans are foreign, so we’re all foreigners–to one another!

    • terriblehuman | October 30, 2013 at 1:23 pm |

      It used to bother me, but I accepted it as a way of the American sport culture (and I think Ferdinand makes a good point above).

      I actually want to see MLS Cup winners following the American convention and declaring themselves “World Champions”. No one takes the FIFA Club World Cup seriously anyway.

      • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:19 am |

        Ever heard of “advertising”? I kid :)

        Speaking of being the world’s best:
        http://www.youtube.c...

    • Jordan | October 30, 2013 at 1:38 pm |

      I completely agree! I remember asking my parents about why a team was the “World Champions” if they didn’t play anyone else in the world. They didn’t have a good answer.

      It is probably a true statement, like you said, but to assume is arrogant on the leagues’ part. For example, it would be like the MLS giving their league champion the title of “World Champion”, which is incredibly false.

      • terriblehuman | October 30, 2013 at 1:55 pm |

        But MLS is just one league in the global pyramid that has FIFA at the top, with continental confederations governing each nation’s FA, which oversees its own league pyramid.

        There is no such structure above NBA, NFL or MLB – they are all, at least theoretically, global leagues that could place franchises anywhere in the world.

        • Ferdinand Cesarano | October 30, 2013 at 2:27 pm |

          Precisely. The Premiership (and the entire English pyramid) is confined to England. It also has two teams from Wales; but those teams became part of the English league system before Wales had its own league. (It is for the same reason that a New Zealand club is allowed by FIFA to play in the Australian league, that the club from Monaco can play in the French league, and that the Canadian clubs can play in MLS.)

          Many in the Premiership would like to add Scotland’s biggest clubs, Rangers and Celtic. And those clubs would like to be part of the lucrative English league. But FIFA rules do not allow it. So, unless those rules are changed or an exception is negotiated, this cannot happen.

          The NBA and Major League Baseball face no such constraint.

    • Rob H. | October 30, 2013 at 4:39 pm |

      Maybe the NBA should rename the NBA Finals, “Basketball’s World Series”

      • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:34 am |

        I smell a lawsuit.

  • Anthony S. | October 30, 2013 at 1:57 pm |

    Does it bother anyone else that there are actually 5 trophy’s on the ring (2 on the top, 3 on the side). I get that the 3 list the 3 championships the Heat have won, but why just the 2 on the top? Back to Back? Seems unbalanced.

  • Jim Gregg | October 30, 2013 at 2:53 pm |

    I hope more sportswriters start bashing the pajama pants. They are horrendous. Part of the color of the game are the stirrups. The NFL has league uniform rules about their hosiery and MLB should do the same. Maybe draw pictures for players of what is acceptable but bring back the stirrups. I saw maybe two Cardinal players high cuffed and they have gorgeous stirrups. The color splash is just awesome. Pajama pants need to go.

    • terriblehuman | October 30, 2013 at 3:37 pm |

      Right or wrong, I can’t think of anything less persuasive to a bunch of (mostly) 20-something athletes than the opinions of older people who aren’t in sports or entertainment or take 30% cuts of their paychecks.

  • Jim Gregg | October 30, 2013 at 2:59 pm |

    On the Lizard Skins, while this is a new product, we used to use tennis grip tape back in the day on wooden bats. It was a tape that you could wind over a worn tennis grip. Worked pretty well in helping you hold the bats as batting gloves weren’t a big deal in the 1970s when I was playing. I missed out on the metal bat era. They were just getting started back then.

  • P Hoelter | October 30, 2013 at 3:11 pm |

    Nothing stays the same forever. Technology has always changed the typewritten word; even here in ’13. I’d like a black sleeve patch to mourn the pilcrow, tironian et, virgule, manicule, percontation mark, interrobang, snarks and ironieteken.
    8 Punctuation Marks That Are No Longer Used
    http://www.huffingto...

    • BWags | October 30, 2013 at 5:57 pm |

      I may have to begin a campaign to return the snark to its rightful place of prominence! Who’s with me?!(Damn! I wish had a an interrobang key!)

      In today’s world of texting, nobody ever needs a way to convey sarcasm.~

  • Paul Lukas | October 30, 2013 at 3:45 pm |

    My take on the new Olympics closing ceremony outfits by Ralph Lauren:
    http://espn.go.com/o...

    • Will S | October 31, 2013 at 1:02 am |

      Canadian Olympics uniforms also unveiled today. Done by Hudson’s Bay Company; Clothing for the athletes is being made in Canada. Replicas garments for the public are being made offshore.

      http://www.thestar.c...

  • Floorwalker | October 30, 2013 at 7:57 pm |

    John Q, I love the logic, thanks for posting. Gear stuff to consider through all my cheering activities. Right on!

  • Adam w | October 30, 2013 at 8:07 pm |

    Memphis wearing some crazy ass helmets

  • Adam Betz | October 30, 2013 at 8:13 pm |

    Anybody know why the Cavs are wearing maroon at home? http://scores.espn.g...

    • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:38 am |

      Didn’t a lot of teams opened with colors at home last year?

      Or maybe I remembered it wrong, maybe it was a lot of NFL teams opened with white at home?

  • collin | October 30, 2013 at 9:15 pm |

    anybody else notice ferrell’s triple swoosh on his undershirts during the dugout interview?

    • Coleman | October 30, 2013 at 9:23 pm |

      Haha, yeah. Took a pic and sent it in to Paul.

      • collin | October 30, 2013 at 9:34 pm |

        seemed mighty excessive

  • Parrothead | October 30, 2013 at 9:31 pm |

    Neat little racing paint scheme analysis
    http://draftingtheci...

  • Zac Cosner | October 31, 2013 at 12:23 am |

    Looks like Arkansas will debut sweatbacks for the men’s basketball team tomorrow. http://t.co/b5gJswC4...

  • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:42 am |

    Miami Heat. Gold name with red outlines? Maybe they should play at the Great Western Forum!
    http://img13.imagesh...

  • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 1:53 am |

    Why “ARISON”? If their motivational motto was “ARISE,” shouldn’t it be “ARISEN”? This should bug Paul more than the smart quotes…

    (Unless Pat Riley isn’t happy with just the “three-peat” trademark that now he wants to trademark the word “arison.”)

    • Matt B | October 31, 2013 at 6:07 am |

      Mickey Arison is the owner of the Heat.

      • Paul Lee | October 31, 2013 at 10:29 am |

        Thanks. I knew it had to be a name; Google results showed that it was a businessman, but didn’t immediately say that he owned the Heat. Should’ve looked closer.

  • Matt | October 31, 2013 at 7:26 pm |

    A day late, but from one DePaul guy to another, good luck Mike!