Most NHL teams have a somewhat consistent look. Even though their logos and jersey designs may change throughout the years, most teams don’t typically stray too far from the original concept. The Toronto Maple Leafs wear blue and white and they have a Leaf on their chest. The Montreal Canadiens are red, white and blue with a “CH” logo. The San Jose Sharks like teal. That’s just how it is.
However, sometimes teams make drastic changes. They do this to rebrand the team, usher in a new era or, sometimes, just to try something new. Today, we’re going to take a look at some of these changes with an obviously sarcastic eye.
We’re not talking about minor tweaks here… these are full overhauls. Thankfully, most of these looks didn’t last.
We’re sorry to have to subject you to this jersey again.
The Boston Bruins have some of the nicest jerseys in hockey. The “Spoked-B” is iconic and their colour scheme works well. However, whoever decided to make a yellow jersey with a giant bear head on the front must have been under the influence of some substances.
What is perhaps even more confusing is that the Bruins used this jersey as their third for more than 10 years.
Todd McFarlane is best known for his involvement with the comic series Spawn. However, his company also creates action figures, including sports figures. At one point, he was the co-owner of the Edmonton Oilers. It was at this point that he designed a new logo and jerseys for the team.
The jersey design and logo are actually quite nice, but they’re a radical departure from what we’re used to seeing with the Edmonton Oilers. The team wore the jerseys as their third between 2001 and 2007.
Not to be outdone by their Alberta rivals, the Calgary Flames had a drastic jersey change of their own in the late-90s/early-2000s. The team wore this jersey as their third for many years and it was actually their primary dark jersey for a couple of seasons.
Like the McFarlane/Oilers design, there are really no issues with the logo and style of the uniform. However, the fact that these are so different from the traditional Flames look made them stand out.
1996 was the year that Wayne Gretzky wore a Burger King look-alike on his chest. The image above is from The Royal Half. They’ve put together a great look at how the jerseys came to be and their legacy.
The crest isn’t bad and its positioning is unique but not awful. However, the gradient “sash” idea is just hideous.
We’ve discussed “the Mooterus” before and we can honestly say that we don’t hate it. That puts us in the minority. This radical jersey change lasted as the team’s third for three years before disappearing.
Oh New York Islanders, don’t think we’re going to let you get away.
To this day, whenever we think of Captain High Liner, we think of this jersey. Thankfully, we don’t think about Captain High Liner very often.
While refreshing their logo and jerseys wasn’t a bad decision, the end result was pretty awful. The curved numbering and names on the back made this design even worse. The Islanders brought the old logo back as soon as they could and the jersey design changed shortly after.
Most of the jerseys listed here were third jerseys or they were used for a relatively short time. However, some teams have gone the extra mile to completely change their image for good. Some teams have developed new logos, new colours and even new names that they would use (or plan to use) on a regular basis.
These teams will be covered in part two of “When Radical Jersey Changes Attack!!!” Coming soon to a blog near you.