The Mystery Atlanta Thrashers Jersey

If you missed it, episode 18 of the HJC Podcast saw Phil, Ben, Ryan, and I discuss the 1911-12 Montréal Canadiens sash jersey that appears in the team's official jersey history, but seems to have no record of ever existing as of today and another form of the jersey without the sash stripe has been shown to exist. There's much research and speculation to be made about this jersey, and if you haven't listened to that podcast you can do so here.

The reason I mention this is not just to plug our podcast (though it is worth a lesson), but also to give background to a similar scenario that happened 18 years ago, when the Thrashers entered the league and of course the EA Sports NHL series, specifically NHL 2000. It has become common place these days for video games to intentionally or not unveil or leak jerseys that are programmed into the game. Back in the days of NHL 2004, you only got the jerseys that existed at the end of the previous season, so we didn't get the Minnesota, Columbus, Atlanta alternates or Calgary's new home at the time, along with the 2004 NHL ASG jerseys, and had to wait until NHL 2005 for that. Then in NHL10, codes would be given out online to unlock the Colorado, Minnesota, Florida, Nashville alternates and Flyers new home. I'm not sure if the gorgeous 2010 Winter Classic jerseys were in this game, but in later games they would be put in once unveiled using the same code system. Now a-days jerseys are brought in with updates to all the leagues in the game long with patching glitches and stuff. I only mentioned this to say back in 2000, what was in the game when you bought it, is what's in the game, so the developers had to get it right and sometimes had to take creative liberties to do so. 

For those who don't remember, here are the Thrashers original jerseys.

If you boot up any old copy of NHL2000 for a PC or Playstation, you'll find that not only the Thrashers are in the game, but they have their correct jerseys, at least on the surface. However if you dig into the PC version of the game (and assuringly the Playstation version too), you'll be able to access a third jersey if you will. A jersey that does not exist in reality to our knowledge, but at best we can guess this was a prototype and at worst a placeholder based on the Thrashers white jersey that at the time was their home. 

It's pretty easy to describe these, they are a matching version of their original white jersey, with a white feather pattern on the arms, white hem stripe with the beak/flying pattern within the stripe. The number style, shoulder patches and sock pattern are all the same as the away. I want to say first and foremost that in my research there is no evidence that these jerseys are modified jerseys put in later through an update or by fans of the game still playing similar to how NHL 2004 is. These are in the files of the game as the game was released from day 1. 

This does beg the question though, why do these jerseys exist in the game? If they had the home jersey, why would they not have the away as well? Jerseys are very rarely unveiled stratified from each other, particularly when home and road sets are been unveiled. I find it very unlikely the NHL did not let EA know what the jerseys looked like to get them in the game...but this is Atlanta Spirit we're talking about so anything is possible! 

It does cause a lot of speculation. Think about this for a second; we have a matching home and road set, and another navy jersey that would fit into that set as a solid alternate. Did the Thrashers originally plan on using their original road jersey as an alternate prior to the gorgeous baby blue jersey that would have given them 3 jerseys for their first 4-5 seasons?

Tell us your thoughts in the comments what you think of these? Were these ever meant to be used? Are they placeholders? Are the original Thrashers aways really meant to be alternates? 
The Mystery Atlanta Thrashers Jersey Reviewed by winnipegjets96 on February 09, 2018 Rating: 5

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