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The Blue Jackets jersey that never was

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The Blue Jackets jersey that never was

It's rare that fans get a look inside an NHL team's jersey design process. It's especially exciting to see prototype jerseys and imagine what might have been.

Today, John from the memorabilia-centric blog Blue Jackets Pucks and Stuff provided the world with a look at a concept from the earliest days of the Columbus Blue Jackets. It's the kind of thing Icethetics readers live for.

Reader Nathan submits our latest feature, and it's a doozy! It's a Pro Player jersey concept for the Columbus Blue Jackets from around 1998 or 1999. The final jersey design was announced on October 15, 1999 so I would say this predates that announcement by at least several months.  Prototype jerseys are exceedingly rare, and eagle eyed collectors are happy to obtain them when the opportunity arises.

John doesn't say where Nathan took these photos, but the jersey appears to be on display somewhere with other Blue Jackets gear around.

As far as the design, the Blue Jackets probably made the right call steering clear of the powder blue. However, they would've stood out in 2000.

Another way they would've stood out is the lace-up collar. At the time, only the Rangers and Maple Leafs had that feature. Today, of course, they're all over the place and less functional than ever.

But it was inevitable. The lace-up collar was eventually used on the team's first third jersey in 2003. It came back with the new third in 2010.

This is a nice bit of Columbus Blue Jackets history to be sure. I hope that someday fans and collectors can get a glimpse into other proposed designs from this era.

Seconded.

If you want to see more high-resolution photos I strongly encourage a trip to Blue Jackets Pucks and Stuff right now!

For more stories on unused NHL prototypes, check out these past blog posts:



These are the jerseys the Blue Jackets chose for their inaugural season in 2000-01. // Photos from Blue Jackets Pucks and Stuff

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Sweater Switch 2014: Summer Edition

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Sweater Switch 2014: Summer Edition

Less than 24 hours into NHL Free Agency, we've already seen the new sweaters a handful of players will be switching to this fall. So bring on Sweater Switch 2014!


Ryan Miller · Canucks

After 12 years in Buffalo, it was a jarring to see Ryan Miller sporting the Blue Note for the last few weeks of the 2013-14 season. But apparently, he wasn't looking to stay in St. Louis. The all-star goaltender signed on with the Vancouver Canucks.

Within minutes, the team tweeted a photo of his new jersey.

Have to admit some surprise he didn't stick with No. 39. In fairness, I didn't watch the press conference so I don't know if that was addressed. I understand 39 is his preferred sweater, but he wore 30 in Buffalo all those years out of respect for Dominik Hasek. (Maybe he's worried about Dan Cloutier mojo in Vancouver?)


Thomas Vanek · Wild

The Minnesota Wild could not tweet enough photos of their newest member, Thomas Vanek, with his new sweater.

Vanek will take over Matt Moulson's No. 26 — for the second time in a year. Vanek and Moulson were traded for each other last fall between the Isles and Sabres. But Moulson will not return to the Wild in 2014.


Matt Moulson · Sabres

In fact, after he joined Minnesota, I pointed out on Twitter that Matt Moulson held the 2013-14 record as the player who'd worn the most NHL jerseys. He played for three teams, all of whom had three sweaters.

Knowing he was hitting the free agent market, I wondered if he would end up in a 10th NHL uniform in less than 10 months. As it turned out, he ended up back in Buffalo where he spent the middle part of last season. (And there are no new jerseys coming to the Sabres this year. That I know of. Right?)


Paul Stastny · Blues

Continuing with the No. 26 theme, the St. Louis Blues nabbed ex-Av Paul Stastny in yesterday's excitement. He'll continue to wear the number he had in Denver.

UPDATE · Jul 2 · Great catch by "M. March" in the comments, who wrote: "Dmitrij Jaskin gave up his No. 26 to Stastny over Twitter." Here's that tweet.


Brian Gionta · Sabres

The Buffalo Sabres added plenty of new faces to the mix this week, but Brian Gionta got a special press conference this afternoon. It was there he got acquainted with his new sweater.

For even more photos, check out this photo gallery on the Sabres' Facebook page.


P.A. Parenteau · Canadiens

Joining the Montreal Canadiens is P.A. Parenteau. Early Wednesday the team tweeted a photo of the forward in his new sweater. Parenteau will stick with his standard No. 15 sweater.


Dan Boyle · NYR
Brian Boyle · TBL

Jul 4 · Funny point made in the comments by "TheTI2112" who writes:

Dan Boyle signed with the Rangers just as Brian Boyle left to Tampa. Both share the same last name and both wear number 22. So Dan's new jersey looks exactly the same as one the Rangers have been used to for the past several years.

Put your sewing machines away. No re-stitching necessary.

Though it will be funny when part-time Rangers fans not paying attention to offseason transactions show up at MSG this fall. The looks of confusion will be priceless.

Wait, we got a different guy named Boyle? Who also wears No. 22? What.

For those wondering, Dan and Brian are not related. In fact, Dan is Canadian while Brian is American. But Brian does have a hockey-playing brother who was drafted by the Senators in 2012.

Wouldn't you just die if he wears No. 22 too?

By the way, to make things funnier, Dan played with the Lightning during their Stanley Cup championship in 2004. He also wore No. 22 then. 

Brian or Dan?

Brian or Dan?

Brian and Tim Boyle. These guys might be related.

Brian and Tim Boyle. These guys might be related.


Jarome Iginla · Avalanche

Jul 5 · Jarome Iginla spent 17 years of his life as a member of the Calgary Flames. So it was jarring to see him don a Pittsburgh Penguins uniform in 2012.

By signing with the Colorado Avalanche earlier in the week, Iginla now joins his fourth NHL team in two years.

Earlier today, the Avs tweeted out some photos of the process of creating his sweater. He'll continue wearing No. 12.


Jason Spezza · Stars

Jul 6 · For the second summer in a row, Ottawa Senators fans said goodbye to their captain. Last year Daniel Alfredsson departed for Detroit.

This week, Jason Spezza joined the Dallas Stars. Today, the team tweeted the first photos of his new sweater and new number.

Spezza wore No. 19 for years in Ottawa but it's retired for Bill Masterton, the former Minnesota North Star — a fact Tyler Seguin learned last summer. He went with No. 91.

Spezza will wear No. 90, becoming the first Star ever to do so. And he'll no doubt make his mark with it.


Ryan Kesler · Ducks

Jul 10 · The Ducks sure made a big deal out of Ryan Kesler's arrival in Anaheim yesterday. The team shared plenty of photos of him sporting that new white sweater.

It's been noted that the numbers on his jersey are outlined in gold instead of orange as they were at the draft. We can probably chalk that up to lack of availability either at the team store or in the locker room — depending on who did the customization.

But perhaps the stranger sight for jersey geeks was to see yet another jersey with Kesler's name and number on it.


Any other new free agent jerseys out there? Drop me a line and I'll expand this post.

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Nashville wants future NHL All-Star Game

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Nashville wants future NHL All-Star Game

The Nashville Predators have entered a bid to host the NHL All-Star Game within the next five years, according to The Tennessean.

The team reportedly informed city officials earlier this month they want the event in 2016, 2017, 2018 or 2019. However, if the NHL participates in the Winter Olympics in South Korea, a 2018 date would likely be off the table.

From the article:

Bill Daly, the NHL’s deputy commissioner, said in an email that he couldn’t comment on individual applications.
But he said he hopes the league “will be in a position to make an announcement on the 2016 All-Star Game” by July 1.
Daly declined to say how many cities are in the hunt for that game.

Sounds like we may know the next host of the All-Star Game by Tuesday, so stay tuned!

If Nashville gets the game, what do you imagine the logo would look like? And could we potentially see gold versus blue all-star jerseys?

RELATED: NHL All-Star Game concept art

Meantime, Columbus will finally host the 2015 game this season after its 2013 game was lost to the lockout. While the logo has been around for three years, we're still waiting to see jersey designs.

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5 Noteworthy Items From the 2014 NHL Draft

draft13.jpg

If you remember five things from the 2014 NHL Draft, this is what they should be.

1. Ducks debuted new primary jerseys

Hours after revealing their new uniform designs on Twitter, the Anaheim Ducks made Nicholas Ritchie the first player to wear it. The poor kid couldn't look more deer-in-headlights in his draft portraits, but he was the only one to sport the white sweater this weekend. Later round picks on Saturday were given the new black jersey.

PHOTOS: Arizona Coyotes

PHOTOS: Arizona Coyotes

2. Coyotes changed name, shoulder patch

The Arizona Coyotes name was officially introduced at the draft, making Brendan Perlini the first member of the franchise in the post-Phoenix era. Note the new "AZ" shoulder patch on the jersey. The same logo is also featured on Perlini's hat.

PHOTOS: Columbus Blue Jackets

PHOTOS: Columbus Blue Jackets

3. Blue Jackets tried All-Star Game patch again

Under the theory, "if at first you don't succeed..." the Columbus Blue Jackets gave to their draftees jerseys emblazoned with the 2015 All-Star Game patch — just as they did in 2012, when they were scheduled to host in 2013. It should take this time, though.

PHOTOS: St. Louis Blues

PHOTOS: St. Louis Blues

4. Blues brought only their third jersey

Every year there are a handful of drafted players that simply cannot take a good photo. This year, Robert Fabbri was a standout in that area. All I wanted was to point out that the St. Louis Blues — who will be launching new primary jerseys this summer — used their alternate at the draft. But all you'll be able to look at are Fabbri's weird faces.

PHOTOS: Buffalo Sabres, Minnesota Wild, Colorado Avalanche

PHOTOS: Buffalo Sabres, Minnesota Wild, Colorado Avalanche

5. Only a few teams handed out white sweaters

It's common for teams to give out their colorful home jerseys at the draft — as evidenced by the fact that 27 of them did. But there are always some outliers, including four teams this year. The Buffalo Sabres and Colorado Avalanche were among them — as were the Minnesota Wild, who just introduced that white jersey late last summer. And of course the Ducks debuted their new road design as mentioned in No. 1 above. Full circle.


For now, I'll leave you with a look at all 31 jerseys from the 2014 NHL Draft.

PHOTOS: NHL, ESPN

PHOTOS: NHL, ESPN

By the way, the 2015 NHL Draft will be held in South Florida at the BB&T Center. We're still waiting on a logo, but as soon as I see one, look for it here.

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Anaheim Ducks unveil new home and road jerseys

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Anaheim Ducks unveil new home and road jerseys

The Ducks will wear these beginning this fall. PHOTO: Anaheim Ducks

The Ducks will wear these beginning this fall. PHOTO: Anaheim Ducks

Just hours before the draft, the Anaheim Ducks officially unveiled their new home and road uniforms — proving recent rumors true.

This morning the team started accepting pre-orders by phone. The jerseys are not yet available to purchase online.

The new home jersey is the third that debuted in 2010. The new road jersey is a white version of that.

Both feature the new style collar laces introduced with the Stadium Series jerseys last season. Also, the numbers on both sweaters are now outlined in orange instead of gold.

The Ducks just went up several rungs in my book. What do you think of the new jerseys?

As of today, the Ducks have retired the home and road sweaters they've worn since 2006.

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