What if the original Ottawa Senators never moved to St. Louis and then folded? This is the sequel to my study of the Montreal Maroons, and I have to say that this one was much tougher. The biggest question i faced was "Would they drop the Barber Pole stripes?" In my research of the non-NHL teams Ottawa has had since the Senators folded, the barber pole has been everywhere. The city is proud of it, they embrace it, I once heard from a Senators fan discussing new jerseys "If it isn't a barber pole, it sucks." I think the franchise would think much the same, considering they twice wore patches saying how awesome they are.
Their alternate history is a struggle with "is the barber pole ok?" I also figure that this team has won 11 Stanley Cups, and is older than the trophy itself, coming to be in 1883. They were the first powerhouse, and would have a pretty good sway over the league. So without further adieu, the history of the Senators.
The following images are from NHLuniforms.com, the Hockey Uniform Database, to give you a full picture of where I was working from.
The Senators take a slight change to their sweaters, bringing the white shoulders back from 1931.
Black pants are added.
With the Black Hawks copying their barber pole, the Senators are forced to adopt a white sweater for certain games, essentially removing a whole bunch of stripes. The number box also gets bigger.
The striping on the white sweater changes slightly.
The full barber pole is dropped as a black version of the white sweater (and a white logo) are introduced as part of trying to modernize.
The barber pole is brought back...sorta. TV cameras couldn't handle the many stripes, and it looked like a big mess on the CBC, so the Senators enlarge all the stripes.
The Senators introduce a new logo around the same time as the Black Hawks were redesigning their look. It incorporates the O they had for decades, the Peace Tower from Parliament flying the Red Ensign flag, surrounded by the red and white maple leaves from the National Seal, finished with the three-branched leaves from the symbol on the flag. (I'm no logo designer, I just wanted to add something to the big 0).
The jerseys get simpler, feature the new logo, and look classy on Hockey Night in Canada. this is their "Original Seven" sweater.
With all the crazy new sweater designs of the Class of 1967, the Senators bring back the barber pole on the sleeves.
The logo updates to the modern Canadian flag.
The Senators add names, as per NHL regulation.
Just like the Bruins, the Senators decide to simplify their sweaters, removing a good number of sleeve stripes.
The Senators celebrate their 100th Anniversary, setting the stage for Montreal's a few decades later, by bringing back sweaters from the past, notably the first actual sweater pictured (though with a larger logo and numbers) for use in certain games. Notice on the 1921 sweater, instead of saying "1921-22" for the championship patch, it gives tally marks, implying that there will be more cups in their future. Considering they won 11 prior to 1934, I don't think it's that much of a stretch to think that the original powerhouse would get 6 more by this point.
They wear this patch for the season, using their original logo from their Sporting Club days.
Back to the classic sweaters.
For the NHL's 75th Anniversary, a throwback is introduced. The Senators treat it nonchalantly, they've been there, done that.
Back to the classic sweaters.
The Senators get in on the 3rd jersey craze by adding a red alternate. It will remain until the Edge switchover.
The RBK Edge switchover did not work well for Ottawa. RBK insists that the barber pole cannot be done with the system (as they recently told the Ottawa 67's in our history), so the Sens do what they can.
The Senators insist that RBK fix their barber pole sleeves, threatening to sue out of the uniform contract. They get their way. Also, coming full circle, a third jersey is introduced, taking their Edge jerseys and barber-poling the whole thing, making the team come full circle: the Barber Pole is cool again.
And that's the history of the Senators, if they managed to stick around. I tried for a 20s-ish looking font, and really, number fonts weren't a big focus for me. Honestly, I wish I had more sports-looking fonts.