Effected logos to represent seven participating teams
Today, in a bizarre move, the NHL unveiled a collection of what it calls "chrome-treated" logos for the seven teams participating in the 2014 NHL Stadium Series. In essence, it was the result of someone goofing around with Photoshop — a fact eluding exactly no one. But there were some interesting revelations to discuss.
First, a new version of the New York Islanders primary logo was added to the mix — without the map of Long Island, the wordmark or the classic blue circle. The team has never used the NY on its own before. But check out the graphic posted on the front page of the Isles' website today.
It shows us that the new logo — un-chromed — was designed to sit on a blue background. So it appears we should be anticipating a blue jersey for the Isles' Stadium Series appearance.
By the way, said jersey is now on sale to Islanders' season ticket holders — sight unseen, no less. I'm not sure I could bring myself to part with that much money to buy something I've never seen.
The chrome logo for the New Jersey Devils re-introduces an old color palette. Green is back! But does this mean the Devils will simply break out the throwback jerseys they've been wearing in recent years for St. Patrick's Day? Based on what I've been hearing, I'm not so sure. Read on, I'll explain.
The Isles and Devils will both face the New York Rangers at Yankee Stadium in late January. And while this chrome-ified shield would indicate a Blueshirts throwback to the 1970s, I understand this logo will be little more than a shoulder patch.
The Rangers are known for the diagonal text across the front of their uniforms, and it may well be "NEW YORK" on the chest rather than the club's nickname — not unlike their Heritage Jersey, which debuted in 2011. Something to keep an eye on as we wait for the unveiling.
Speaking of which, the Rangers' own press release tells us the league will reveal all of the Stadium Series jerseys together "in the coming weeks." When that is exactly is anyone's guess.
The Los Angeles Kings are going back to the crown for their Stadium Series logo. But note the conspicuous lack of purple. Perhaps a sign the Kings could sport a Gretzky-era look? Maybe, but again I'm not so sure. Stay with me here.
The Kings' Dodger Stadium foe will be the Anaheim Ducks. But didn't we hear recently that Mighty Ducks might be making another appearance this season? Not if we assume this logo is the crest of the team's new sweater. On the other hand, I do still expect it to be orange. This would allow the Kings to wear black or white.
The Chicago Blackhawks and Pittsburgh Penguins will wrap up the Stadium Series on March 1 at Soldier Field. But their fancy chrome logos give us nothing. They're exactly the same as their existing primary marks — you know except for all that fancy chrome stuff.
I swear I did a logo treatment like this for Icethetics several years back. I'll have to try to track that stuff down. It didn't last long because you guys told me it looked terrible. And it did. Guess no one told them.
Stadium Series aesthetics will not be inspired by tradition
Since 2008, we've become accustomed to outdoor NHL games requiring a certain historical aesthetic. It's right there in the name. The Winter Classic. The Heritage Classic (double there!). Teams wear throwback jerseys and the whole event is designed to evoke feelings of the game's origin out there on the frozen pond in a world that could barely imagine our immense 20,000-seat arenas.
But there's a reason they didn't call this the Stadium Classic Series. (And it's not just the extra syllables.) The word "classic" conjures old-time hockey thanks to the Winter and Heritage Classics. It's my understanding the NHL is going in the opposite direction for these events. In a way, the goofy chrome logo treatment is to get fans out of that retro mindset.
It's right there in the Rangers' press release, actually.
The NHL also unveiled today the NHL Chrome Collection, chrome-treated team logos specifically designed for use in connection with the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series™. The Chrome logo designs are unique to the NHL Stadium Series and inspired from the chrome details on the NHL shield, bringing a dynamic and modern perspective to conventional team identities.
We might be wise to read a little more into that last line. Bringing a "modern perspective to conventional team identities." Likely a frightening thought to the traditionalists among us, but probably an important idea to consider.
In fact, someone with knowledge of the Stadium Series jersey designs recently described them to me as "futuristic." Later, another source told me the NHL and Reebok took the lead designing them. The teams were merely "consulted" as opposed to being directly involved.
Think about that as we wait for the league to finally unveil the jerseys. What sort of futuristic ideas could you imagine Reebok incorporating into these new uniforms?