Sunday: Once More, With Feeling

Hello everyone! Today's post features some excellent artwork using some of the more controversial logos of the last 20 years. We have a good mix of the traditional and the outlandish today. Want some mathematical proof of quality? Only one concept has a score of under 8/10, and today's concepts have an average score of 7.79.

No contest entries to post today, but we have several votes going on! Voting has started for the jersey phase of our World Cup of Hockey Competition, and we have two votes for Concept of the Week going. (last week we delayed COTW voting to focus on the final vote for Concept of the Year)

COTW Jan. 25 - 31 vote (ends Friday at 11:59 pm Eastern)
COTW Feb 1 - 7 vote (ends Friday at 11:59 pm Eastern)
World Cup Top 3 Teams vote (ends Friday at 11:59 Eastern)

Voting is scientifically proven to have a direct correlation to your 
favorite NHL making a good trade at the deadline.  

Congratulations to Wednesday's writer Christian L. on winning the 2014 Concept of the Year award! This year's finalists were some of the best concepts I've ever seen on this site, or anywhere for that matter. Chistian's design had to make it through several voting hurdles, but his Quebec Nordiques design emerged victorious in the end. Again, congratulations on a well-earned win.

Also, today will be my last post for HJC. My wife and I are moving back to Tennessee in a few months, and I simply don't have time to produce posts for the site that are up to the standards I set for myself. I wouldn't want you guys to suffer through months of phoned-in  reviews. When life settles down, I told Ryan I am open to returning, but that's going to be many months down the road. With this knowledge, let's do one last list! Let's go out with a bang.

How about a list of the most overrated jerseys in NHL history? Let's do it. Ratings on these will be determined by my strong personal views on each jersey vs. the deference given to each respected design. 

5. Boston Bruins black alternate

photo credit: Boston Globe
I've never understood the logic behind this jersey. It's essentially their home jersey without the yoke and hem striping that make it look good, and with a much, much worse logo. The Bruins secondary mark still manages to look like a secondary mark when it's used like this. Much like the fight pictured, it's a pointless exercise.

4. Calgary Flames

photo credit: www.flamesnation.ca
Don't get me wrong, I still prefer this jersey to what the Flames currently wear. This jersey isn't coming back, though. Let's be honest, this jersey is just too bright. It features a bright color, accentuated by a brighter color, with white. If the Calgary Flames overhaul their jerseys, this would be a good starting point for inspiration, but I don't want it back. (full disclosure: I have a thing about red and gold touching, and these jerseys are serial violators of that pet peeve.)

3. Washington Capitals

photo credit: www.redbricktown.com
This goes for the original as well as the current alternate. They're essentially the same. You must admit the Capitals' logo is a glorified wordmark. I would love to meet the genius that realized that the letter 'T' could look like a hockey stick. I assume he also informed everyone that the United States flag contains stars, and the jersey should reflect that. What a hero. What an innovator. Has anyone ever noticed how similar this jersey is to the long-standing design of the Canadiens' white jersey without the gloss of a thousand stars? Sorry, Caps, but Canada wears it better. 

2. Quebec Nordiques

photo credit: www.avalanche.nhl.com
Much is made about when/if the Nordiques will return. If that were to happen, I wouldn't want this look back. Some logos are classics that need never be updated, but let's not pretend the Nords' primary was one of them. It looks dated. The colors aren't balanced well. The primary logo is mostly red, but that color only manifests itself in a thin number outline on the jerseys. Do you really need eight fleur-de-lis? Two fleur-de-lis on the shoulders is sufficient. In all honesty, If the Nords come back, I would rather them use Christian's design.

1. Toronto Maple Leafs

photo credit: www.cbc.ca
The problem with these jerseys, like the team itself, is that they aren't as good as they were 48 years ago. The best jersey in the Leafs' current set is their alternate that hearkens back to those designs from 1967. These aren't bad jerseys, but what bothers me is that they could be better. They could be more interesting. They could have more character. When I browse the internet looking for jerseys to add to my collection (which I do more often than I care to admit), I always search for Maple Leaf thirds; never the home/road jerseys. These sweaters are like Coke: not bad, but once you've had one made with sugar like the old days, all the new high fructose Coke is just a disappointment.

After that list, you may be ready for my resignation. Let's move on to the concepts.

Chicago Wolves Third Jersey Concept - Ryan C.

Positives: Gold jerseys always get me. The striping is clean and balances out the colors well. Ryan C. said he was going to use a different template, and he made good on that. I have to give him credit for listening to criticism. Most artists would put contrasting-color numbers with a white outline on a gold jersey, but white numbers with a red outline was the right decision here. The main problem with designing Wolves jerseys is that their logos are a disgusting train wreck of clip art. Ryan circumvents this to an extent by putting the clip art wolf in a roundel logo. The styles don't necessarily fit well, but it at least takes some attention away from that wolf logo. 

Negatives: Stitching overlaps the hem stripes. There is some pixel distortion with the image. I don't think it's Ryan's fault, though. Try saving your images as .png files (which allow transparency) instead of .jpeg files. The bare shoulders could use some attention. Any Chicago Wolves logo you put there will only make it worse, so you have two choices in my opinion. First, you could create your own logo. I don't fault you if you didn't want to go that route, as making a good logo is a difficult task. Second, you bring back some of that striping for the shoulders. Personally, I would have gone the second route here.

Overall: Really solid improvement here for Ryan C. (8/10)

Washington Capitals Concept - Ben B.

Positives: You can't say Ben didn't go for it, or that there is a lack of effort. This an extremely bold design, and looking at the details, it probably took some time to make. The outline on the logos here almost looks like a slight gradient. That's interesting. 

Negatives: This design is in need of some restraint. Putting the Captials wordmark over the "Weagle" only serves to make both logos illegible. There are way too many stars. Take the stars away from the name bar at least. Why the old Senators font? The striping pattern on the arms, pants, and socks don't match. That's three different striping patterns, which is too many. The striping pattern for the arms just comes out of nowhere, and isn't uniform in spacing. Both the primary logo and the back numbers are too far down on the jersey.

Overall: I'll give credit for effort, but sometimes less is more. (5/10)

St. John's Ice Caps Concept - Brooks F.

Positives: The striping pattern is very appropriate for the team. Double blue and silver are utilized well here, which is not something I would say for the Jets uniforms. The double-outlined numbers look great. I'm not a fan of this template, but Brooks uses it well.

Negatives: The striping on the socks seems a little high.

*side note* I've never realized how strange the Winnipeg Jets primary logo is when it's used as a shoulder patch for concepts like it is here. With the jet being two different shades of grey, it almost looks like the two logos don't match properly in this context. Of course, that's nothing against Brooks. Obviously that has nothing to do with him.

Overall: This would make a good set for the IceCaps. I think I actually like this set better than I do the Jets jerseys. (8.5/10)

Dallas Stars "Return of the Mooterus" Concept - Coby S.

Positives: The "Mooterus," while awful, could work in the right circumstances. Coby makes the sound decision to remove the pointless red from the original logo. The Stadium Series style fits the logo well. Execution and presentation has improved for Coby.

Negatives: The collar/shoulders could use some silver or white trim. The helmet/pants would look more realistic with a logo. Plain black equipment isn't really worth seeing.

Overall: I think this is one of Coby's better designs. Clear improvement over a few months ago. I wouldn't mind seeing the "Mooterus" return like this. (8.25/10)

Los Angeles Kings Concept - Taylor R.

Positives: The gradient is a bold choice, which you need to be bold with the "Burger King" logo, and it's done well. These would definitely get people's attention. Execution is excellent.

Negatives: Very few teams are going to want to have to bring a separate pair of pants on the road with them, or manufacture to pants styles. The white jersey needs a corresponding white helmet. The secondary logos and sleeve numbers impact the striping, making them especially difficult to read on the white jersey. I know it's been said before, but Under Armour logos on Reebok templates is a little weird to me. I realize that likely won't matter to some, though.

Overall: Practicality is really the only issue here. Throw that out, and it's a good set. (8/10)

Vancouver Canucks Third Jersey Concept - Steven G.

Positives: Steven's compliment to his Canucks set from yesterday looks good. It does what a good alternate should, present a different, less conservative way of representing the team brand. No orca logo! Execution is flawless. Do yourself a favor. Open up this concept in a separate tab, zoom in, and observe how Steven has manipulated the stitching on this concept. That's immaculate attention to detail. I love that shade of green.

Negatives: I would like to see a more daring design. It's a very good alternate, however the best alternates challenge you, while make you love them all the more for it.

Overall: Detailed, solid work here. (9/10) COTW nomination from me!

That's all for today's post! See a concept that you think deserves to move on to COTW voting? Give it a nomination! Second opinions always help, so tell us your's on today's artwork. My word isn't final, after all.

It's been a pleasure writing on this site, and I want to thank Ryan for giving me the opportunity to contribute. It was my goal to present a different point of view on hockey and jersey design, and maybe offer some insight to the expansion of hockey in the rural American South. Hopefully I accomplished that, and provided some quality reading for you all. 

So, for the last time, see ya'll later.

Sunday: Once More, With Feeling Reviewed by Caz on February 08, 2015 Rating: 5


Ryan C said...

Despite Taylors harsh criticism of me at times, good is good... and those kings jerseys are pretty darn good. Never though the BK logo would work, but if the kings wore these i coukd ALMOST be a kings fan... nice set

winnipegjets96 said...

So many good concepts today!

COTW Nom for Brooks though, such an improvement over the Jets ripoffs the Icecaps currently wear.

Vaughn said...

Hope to see you back soon Caz!

Anonymous said...

You do realize that it's the Washington Capitals, not the Washington Capilals, right? The "hockey stick letter" on the jersey is a "T", not an "L"!

Caz said...

Oh, wow! I've been saying it wrong this whole time!

Honest mistake; of course I meant the T.

DBro Alexander said...

Caz, hopefully you rejoin us soon as a writer or at least a podcaster. Good luck with the move man!

Unknown said...

The fact that you put the Nordiques jersey on your list is very disappointing to me

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