Sunday, 26 October 2008

There's Just One Problem

Last night, the Chicago Blackhawks took some time away from their game against the Detroit Red Wings to preview their game on January 1, 2009. That date, as you may know, is the date of the NHL Winter Classic where the Blackhawks will square off against the Red Wings in the outdoor match being held at Wrigley Field in Chicago. It has been discussed that the Blackhawks may use their "barber pole" look like they did in 1992 for the NHL's 75th anniversary and in 1946 as their regular uniform, but the Blackhawks and Red Wings decided on two other eras to wear.

The Detroit Red Wings, who will be the visitors in the Winter Classic, have opted to represent the 1926-27 Detroit Cougars. They did make one adjustment to the jersey in that they will wear the Winged Wheel as a shoulder patch. Personally, I like the look of the Olde English "D". It gives that retro feeling just from the look of it.

The Red Wings have only released the one picture thus far, so I can't comment on the fonts being used, but, if they are looking to stay true, has what the Cougars wore in 1926-27. Let's hope that the Wings go all-out, and bring back the striped socks as well.

The Chicago Blackhawks, on the other hand, have released many pictures. The Blackhawks have decided to honour the 1936-37 version of the Chicago Black Hawks, as seen here on former Blackhawk Bobby Hull. The Blackhawks' retro look is highlighted by the retro logo on the jerseys, which gets a huge thumbs-up from me. What does bother me, though, is that the rear font is a modern font rather than what the '36-37 Black Hawks wore. Why can't they wear the old-school numbers? Again, the hope from this writer is that they bring back the retro socks. Those old-time 'Hawks socks are sweet.

Both teams will feature the Winter Classic patch on their jerseys. I like the look of these jerseys, even with patch, due to them being uncluttered. There won't be any floating letters for the captains or alternate captains on the jerseys, so there shouldn't be any distractions away from the look of the game.

Here's my major beef. The RBK Edge jerseys worn on the ice will cost fans a ridiculous $350! The replicas, which must be lined in gold, will still set you back $175! Are you kidding me?!? Not only that, but if you want a name on the back of the jersey, you better be prepared to shell out an additional $80! That's $430 for a fully-customized professional jersey, and $255 for a replica jersey! I think I just threw up in my mouth a little.

Look, I just want to cheer for my team. I don't want to buy shares in it unless I want to buy shares in it. This pricing idea from Reebok and the NHL is absolutely ludicrous. We're in some tough financial times here, yet Reebok and the NHL are still squeezing blood from a stone. Wake up, corporate heads, and smell the economic downturn. Maybe the NHL offices in New York City can't see Wall Street from where they are?

All in all, the jerseys turned out to be excellent, and really will give a nostalgic feeling to Wrigley Field. Chicago and Detroit have battled each other closely over the last year and a bit, so I expect the Winter Classic to be just as hotly contested. You can't go wrong with two solid teams doing battle in timeless throwback jerseys.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!


Kirsten said...

My parents have offered that we can go to the event if I like, but I don't know. I certainly won't get a sweater, it has to do with the Blackhawks, but seeing the game might be fun.

Teebz said...

I'd go. I'd be there in a heartbeat. Heck, I'll drive the 20 hours or whatever to Chicago just to be a part of the event! LOL