Saturday, 16 January 2016

Which Would You Wear?

The KHL has always been viewed as a league somewhere between the AHL and the NHL. It features a vast number of excellent players including some former NHLers, but the vast majority of foreigners and Russians playing in the KHL would probably find themselves on AHL rosters in the hopes of tweaking their games to the point of being a full-time NHL player. What brings these three leagues together, outside of various players moving between them, is that they all devise their own annual fashion show known as the All-Star Game.

You're probably aware that the NHL All-Star Game is being played in Nashville in a four-division tournament with each division sending their own respective all-stars to represent the division. You'd expect that each of the divisions to wear their own unique jersey, but the NHL has decided that there will be only two jerseys because only two teams play at a time. Here's what the NHL All-Stars will wear this year in Nashville.
Kinda bland, right? Aside from the three stars on the neckline, what says these jerseys were specific to the Nashville All-Star Game? Yes, they have a unique font on the back, but they're pretty boring and very non-star in their design.

The AHL has decided to use history for their annual All-Star Game. This year's event takes place in Syracuse, New York, and the AHL decided to embrace a little history of Syracuse and design the jerseys after the look of the Syracuse Stars. The Stars played in Syracuse from 1930-31 until 1939-40 after the Hamilton Tigers franchise was relocated to Syracuse. They played in the IHL as the Tigers did until 1936 when they decided to join the International-American Hockey League. For these last three seasons, the Stars were a minor-league affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs. This team would be purchased and moved to Buffalo in 1940 where they became the Bisons until the NHL's Sabres arrived in 1970.

The AHL, with the design seen above in mind, came up with these jerseys for the 2016 AHL All-Star Game in Syracuse.
Not bad, right? They keep most of the traditional elements of the Stars' original uniforms, but they made a few adjustments without removing the historical look of the jerseys. Personally, these are pretty well-executed.

The KHL is playing their All-Star Game in Moscow this season with Dynamo Moscow playing host to the various Russian- and European-based teams. The KHL often tries to make their All-Star Game represent the league by using KHL colours similar to what the NHL does, but they seem to grasp a faux-futuristic look with these uniforms as well. Case in point, here are the 2016 KHL All-Star Game uniforms that will be worn in Moscow.
As you can see, there's some silver on each of the jerseys, and the red and blue are used on the two separate teams. While I'm not a fan of the East's use of black, it is a nice concept to have a colour-on-colour All-Star Game match-up. That blue should really stand out against the contrasting white ice and black Eastern Conference jerseys.

Finally, I haven't spoken about their uniforms for the January 23rd game, but the NWHL has revealed their uniforms for their All-Star Game as well. The four-team women's league appointed Hilary Knight and Emily Pfalzer as captains, and the two captains drafted teams from the remaining four teams for the first-ever NWHL All-Star Game. So what are they wearing?
I'm not sure I'd be excited about wearing a "K" or "P" on my chest at an NWHL All-Star Game. While I respect that Knight and Pfalzer are the captains, isn't that why there are different jerseys? Shouldn't the NWHL's logo be on display at their event? In any case, the Buffalo outline around the letter is a nice touch, and I like the colours chosen. They're not gaudy or flashy - a very simple, traditional look.

So here's your question: you can only afford one jersey. You can buy either a home or road jersey, but you can only afford one of the eight jerseys shown above. What jersey would you buy, and would you have it customized? Whose name would go on the back of the jersey?

Have your say in the comments. I'm interested in seeing if there is a trend that develops based on the looks of the jersey, or if one league is more popular than the other three based on choices. Remember that you're choosing based on what you like, not what is popular. Be honest when you choose because the results will be that much truer.

So who do you have?

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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