I have always had the feeling that if you look good you play good. That has followed me all the way through baseball and even to professional dress. I believe I was born in the wrong decade when it comes to that. I say that because I am a fan of the three piece suit, a la Mad Men. I digress, it is time to get back to sports namely hockey. As many of you have seen, the Winter Classic/Stadium Series has been very successful this year. From 60 degree hockey in LA to 10 degree hockey in Yankee stadium, the atmosphere has been electrifying! If you watched the Winter Classic on Jan 1, you saw that in Matty D’s “Big House.”
I wanted to present the winners and loser of fashion that the outdoor games have presented us this year…let’s just call this my State of the Union on the NHL. The second most important SOTU by a PRES this week.
“And the Grammy goes too…”
First winner is the New Jersey Devils. The sixth place Metropolitan Division team came out strong with their Christmas jerseys of yesteryear. Similar jerseys were worn by the Devils from 1982-1992 when they switched the verde for black. Whether the fear was instilled by the Devils or you felt that Santa Clause was coming to town a dismal loss to the Rangers, 7-3 was gifted to them
Their defeaters, the New York Rangers also had very nice jerseys. Plain, simple and to the point. No frills, very similar to many years and styles of sweaters that have adorned the team. These men were 2-0 in their Yankee Stadium tilts. The real winner was King Hendrik’s pinstripe pads, not sure if the Yankee’s catchers can wear them they surely would help though.
Bonus Coverage: Though I will not display them here, I do have to say that the jerseys the Maple Leafs and Red Wings wore on Jan 1st were classic and the type of jersey the game demanded. Out of all the jerseys that have been worn since the first in 2008, I can say they were my favorite of all time.
“Goodie bags and Booby Prizes too…”
I hate to even say this…every other team. The Chrome Jerseys that the NHL and more than likely title sponsor Coors Light came up with, are gaudy. It made me think of Austin Power’s Gold Member. I just wanted Doc Emrick to say, “I like goollllldddd.” Mulberry and Jonesy couldn’t because they would get confused and may have been the first intelligent thing they have ever said on NBC’s coverage. Enzo, well he is another story. So let’s see the fashion offenders…I feel like I am on an episode of Project Runway. Hated it!
The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim: Their saving grace is that PennDot may be able to use them for their road crews on the Turnpike this year. To me it looked like the Great Pumpkin on ice. “Good Grief” I think the resurrection of the Quack Pack or Goldberg would have been a better choice.
The LA Kings: I was hoping that Barry Melrose or The Great One would have laced up the skates and got out on the ice. It was warm enough, maybe too warm for Mr. Melrose’s hair, yet the jerseys, ugh. Instead of going with a purple and gold crown, showing the dynastic colors that reigned all the way since the time of the Romans (see my minor in Classics is finally paying off!), they went with more of a serf look in drab gray and black. Looking more like the opening act KISS than a regal member. PS would have rather watched the volleyball game in right field. To add insult to injury, the Kings lost 3-0 and missed on a penalty shot to the Ducks.
The New York Islanders: Well they weren’t terrible, yet they are not making it to the runway anytime soon. I would have had them much rather worn the Gorton’s Fisherman jerseys that they sported when on the Isle in the early 90’s. The waves would have been a much better accent then the skate blade looking Y they had. Too sharp for my taste…and a 2-1 loss to the Rangers did not help either. Still kind of seasick too.
Now to the main event…the last Stadium Series match between the Chicago Blackhawks and your Pittsburgh Penguins!
Lets begin this with both team have awful jerseys. Too much chrome, too much black and white and too much non-tradition from an Original Six and Second Six teams. Over the years many beautiful jerseys have graced their backs by many that played for these two great hockey towns and NHL HOF’s. Who wins the match between the two division leaders? I say the game goes to the Pens over the Chi Hawks 3-2. Sorry G-Man your team is not winning. I will not even burn your eyes with the horrid nature of the jerseys.
My Penguins picks:
Agree or disagree this has been the Presidential Address, thank you for your time, God Bless these United States of American and most importantly this ThunderBlog.
I am Jarred S. Barnes and I approve this message.
Bonus Footage of the creation of the Penguins new logo for the Igloo/Civic Arena in 1992-2000 then back to the Penguin on the Jersey now.