AHL names 2017 All-Star host, unveils logo

On Saturday, the American Hockey League quietly announced its next all-star game. The 2017 AHL All-Star Classic will be hosted by the Lehigh Valley Phantoms at the PPL Center in Allentown, Penn. on the weekend of Jan. 28-30.

As for the logo... ouch.

What more is there really to say? The AHL may not exactly be known as the pinnacle of design when it comes to All-Star logos — but they're not even trying anymore. Hire a professional designer already. And stop trying to put EVERYTHING in the logo. 

I can just imagine the directions given to the designer: It has to have a big drawing of the arena... and the arena's logo... and the name of the region, of course... oh, and include the name of the league TWICE just to hammer home the point. Can you get a puck in there? And tack on the Phantoms logo? Also, don't forget some stars because, you know... all-star game.

Heck, there's still white space at the top. For a potential corporate sponsor, I presume?

This is beyond embarrassing. I'm embarrassed for them. Professional organizations all signing off on this artwork. It'd be laughable if there weren't genuinely talented people looking for work in this field.

I know I'm being extremely critical here — and for what, really? — but no one with any design sense will disagree. Yes, I hold the AHL to a higher standard. They should hold themselves to one. That's all.

For now, here's a collection of all the AHL All-Star logos going back to 2005.

UPDATE · Jun 16 · To the surprise of no one, the AHL has added a corporate sponsor to the event and to the logo, of course. Just wanted to point that out.