Saturday, April 28, 2012

Update to Setting the Record Straight - The Quebec Nordiques

After posting our story concerning the actual colors of the proposed Quebec Nordiques unused jerseys on Monday the 23rd, we also posted an edited version of that entry on the Chris Creamer Sports Logo Community Forum, in hopes of not only sharing our research and educating avid sports logo fans to the correct information, but also perhaps jogging the memory of long time board members in hopes of getting the story on the source of the widely accepted, incorrectly colored version of the Nordiques jerseys which has been so widely circulated online for the last 15 years or so.

Nordiques_incorrect colors, Nordiques_incorrect colors
The widely accepted incorrectly colored version of the Nordiques proposed jerseys

We hit pay dirt on Thursday when the creator of the widely accepted image himself posted his account of how the image came to be.
I had to log in to reply to this (I haven't been a regular reader or contributor here for nearly ten years).
I drew the famous "incorrectly coloured" jerseys in Adobe Illustrator based on a black and white photo scanned from a newspaper. I knew that navy was the main colour but completely guessed on the shades of the others. When I drew them over a decade ago THERE WAS NO GOOD INFORMATION ON WHAT THE ACTUAL COLOURS WERE so perhaps we could tone down the rhetoric about drawing them "with no regard." 
I did post them on this board but I did not intend for them to become the definitive image of the unused Nordiques jerseys. 
As far as incorrect graphics goes, I'll admit it is frustrating to see logos, etc. that are rendered incorrectly if logos and crests are your "thing." I tried for years to get the Detroit Free Press to stop using my incorrectly drawn Red Wings logo but to no avail.
The internet is forever, kids. Try not to read too much into it.
Armed with this new information we have now gone back and edited our original article to reflect the facts behind the creation of the incorrect image and how those colors were based on an educated guess while working from only a black and white image and no further description of the other colors at the time. We also apologize to the original artist for any offense taken by any terms used in our original story.

Since the creation of that original artwork, which we must point out was entirely accurate otherwise, a color photo of the Nordiques proposed jerseys was published, which illustrated the correct black arm stripes as well as the generous use of teal in the crest, striping and customization of the numbers.

Nordiques unused 1995-96 jerseys Pictures, Images and Photos
The only known photo of the proposed Quebec Nordiques jerseys

Using the above photo of the actual jerseys, here is what the correct version of the Nordiques unused jerseys should actually look like - a much bolder, brighter and higher contrast look which uses the trendy colors of teal and black that were all the rage in the mid-1990's rather than the incorrectly colored, widely accepted version with it's dull, muted colors found so commonly online.

Nordiques_proposed, Nordiques_proposed

Please feel free to spread the word and save the above image, as well as using it wherever and whenever you find the need, especially when you can use it to replace the incorrect version so commonly found online. Email us, and we'll even send you the larger version we created or download it from this address.

In addition, here is the correctly colored logo of the husky dog, of which the full size version is available by clicking here.

Nordiques proposed correct colors, Nordiques proposed correct colors

Special thanks to Libertyernie2 for their help in spreading the word by uploading the correctly colored images to the Quebec Nordiques page on Wikipedia. We appreciate the efforts!

We also have to take a moment and share with you another concept from the SportsLogos.net forum we discovered while researching or original post. Forum member GoNordiques posted his version of the new Nordiques logo, and it's excellent.

Nordiques logo concept

Isn't that amazing? We of course like the use of the accurate colors in addition to the graphic design! For more of Jesse's fine work, please check out his website here.

But please remember, sometimes the things you see online, regardless of the page you saw them on or how believable they appear, just because you saw it on the internet, doesn't mean it's a fact. Be diligent and aware and do your homework.

And on a personal note...

We have really enjoyed creating this website for the last three years and interacting with all of you.

Over that period of time we have developed a workflow to create each of our entires which rely heavily on a few trusted resources. Beyond the places we look for information we also rely on Blogger for creating the actual entries and Webshots for hosting images of our personal jersey collection and Photobucket.com for hosting all of our other images.

Frankly, this has been the single most trying and frustrating week of our blogging lives.

First, Blogger has forced an entirely new interface upon the world of blogging. Yes, many people are not comfortable with change and will always prefer things the way they were, but a great many others in this world hate changes to not only what they find comfortable, but rightly detest change promoted as an upgrade which actually makes things worse.

For example, scheduling the time of a post used to require a click, selecting a digit and two keystrokes. One to change the date and one to select the time.

Simple.

It now requires a click, a second click, a third, a fourth, a scroll and another click followed by another click. Now please explain to me how that one example is an improvement?

We could go on and on and on and on about all the new "features" of the new interface make things more difficult, but we'll spare you the entirely of our rant about how the whole thing seemed to be solely designed to make it look like the rest of Google's properties visually, but how the actual way it works took a back seat in so many ways to how it looks.

We really pride ourselves on the "look" of Third String Goalie and work quite diligently at maintaining consistent formatting, such as fonts, spacing between lines of text, image size and centering of images, etc., and this new interface either makes all of that a longer process to maintain or behaves in quirky and unwanted ways, such as unexpected changing fonts or adding additional returns between paragraphs, all of which creates more work.

Another website which has drawn our ire this week is Photobucket. We've always preferred the organization of albums, ease of upload and quick access to the code for our photos needed to paste them into our articles, especially when compared to the popular Flickr. Later they added a slick editing tool which we relied on to shrink the size of any images we neglected to resize properly in Photoshop before uploading.

Life was good.

But then... Photobucket, without warning, changed to a new photo editing system which is simply, truly awful. We have more than 15 years experience with Photoshop and now cannot crop a photo while maintaining the proportions of the original, nor can we resize a photo by simply typing in the desired maximum dimensions as with the old system. We don't claim to be geniuses, but surely if someone with our extensive background in photo editing cannot simply look at it and understand how it works, it's not good, and if we cannot work at understanding it and still figure it out, it's bad. Really, really bad.

And if that were't enough, the ability to upload photos to Photobucket is now broken on their end and in their "help" forums, like Blogger's and Webshots, which are simply places for unsatisfied users to rant and commiserate with each other, seeing only the occasional appearance by an employee with minimal, if any actual help. In this particular case, a Photobucket staffer "helpfully" offers all the different methods to upload a photo if the system were actually working, without having apparently tried it from home as an actual user from the other side of the fence since none of the methods are currently functional due to the issues they are having!

While it may seem like the internet has been around for a long time, it really still is in it's infancy and many things do not work as intended all the time, and it seems like way, way too many web developers put things online which do not have the bugs worked out, the functionality tested or the way it works given precedence over the way it looks. And the temperature rises when these websites offer zero customer service and support. Walled off from the world behind their firewalls, if they choose not to provide an email address or phone number, and your only option is go visit their "community help" section which contains nothing more than other users at their wits end. Worse, their own twitter feeds, blogs and Facebook pages refuse to acknowledge their issues or address anyone's concerns, even going so far to remove negative postings from the Facebook pages.

When will these sites learn that people do not like change, particularly for the worse, and test these radical changes in advance, ensure that they work and offer even the most basic customer support, particularly in cases when they are charging for their services?

Sorry for the rant, but when you have bloogers the world over stepping out from behind the curtain to take time way from their political discussions, baseball card blogs and advice for mommies, there's a big issue we're all facing and it feels good to get it out of our systems because yet again, an "upgrade" is shown to be anything but an "improvement". Sigh.

And all this coming on the heels of the unwanted and unloved change to "timeline" on our Facebook page. When is it all going to end?


Friday, April 27, 2012

1984 Sweden National Team Anders Håkansson Jersey

Born on this date in 1956, Swede Anders Håkansson worked his way up to the top level of Swedish hockey after three seasons as a member of Malbergets AIF in the second division before joining AIK Solna in Stockholm for two games of the 1974-75 season at the age of 18. During his second season with AIK, Håkansson made his international debut at the 1976 World Junior Championships, where he accounted well for himself, scoring 3 goals and 4 points in 4 games.

1975-76 AIK team
Håkansson, third from the left in the back row, while with AIK in 1975-76

Following his international exposure and the new era in the globalization of hockey thanks to the success of players such as Borje Salming with the NHL's Toronto Maple Leafs and Anders Hedberg and Ulf Nilsson with the Winnipeg Jets in the WHA, Håkansson was drafted by the St. Louis Blues in the 1976 NHL Amateur Draft, but elected to remain at home in Sweden, where he continued to play for AIK for the next six seasons while pursing his engineering degree. During that time period, his best season was in 1979-80 when he scored 14 goals and 24 points in 36 games.

Hakansson AIK 78-79
Håkansson in the 1978-79 season after choosing to remain with AIK

That same season he again suited up for the Sweden National Team for five games. The following season he again answered the call for Sweden, playing in 10 games during which he scored 6 times for the Sweden National Team and again for the World Championships in the spring for an additional 7 games, scoring another 4 goals as Sweden came home with the silver medal. Håkansson's efforts earned him First Team All-Star recognition following the tournament.

Having a change of heart about competing in the NHL, Håkansson signed a contract with the Minnesota North Stars of the NHL during July of 1981.

Now firmly established with the national team, Håkansson donned the Tre Kroner yet again in the fall for the 1981 Canada Cup tournament, registering a goal and 2 points in 5 games as a precursor to his upcoming season in North America.

The sheer length of the NHL season was an adjustment for Håkansson, as the 72 games he played with the North Stars were twice as many as he had ever played in a season of Swedish hockey, but versatile left winger scored a dozen goals in what must have felt like a hockey marathon, which was added to with an additional 3 playoff games. Only a separated shoulder prevented him from playing even more games.

He returned to the North Stars for the start of the 1982-83 schedule, but was traded after only 5 games to the Pittsburgh Penguins in a deal which would eventually give Minnesota the first overall pick in the 1983 draft. Håkansson played in 62 additional games for the Penguins while raising his point total from 16 the previous season up to 21.

Hakanson Penguins

Just prior to training camp for the 1983-84 season, Pittsburgh shipped Håkansson west to the Los Angeles Kings for the rights to future star Kevin Stevens. The move to Los Angeles was a good one for Håkansson, who set a number of career highs, including 80 games played, 15 goals, 17 assists and 32 points while playing all three forward positions.

Hakanson Kings

He was once again called to play for his country, this time for the 1984 Canada Cup. Sweden fared much better than Håkansson's previous experience, as they qualified for the playoffs after a 3-2 record in the Round Robin stage. After a 7-1 thumping by the United States in the tournament's opening game, Sweden more than got their revenge by eliminating the Americans 9-2 in the Semifinals. They advanced to face the hosts Canada for a best-of-three final series, where they fell 5-2 in Game 1 in Calgary and 6-5 in Game 2 in Edmonton. Håkansson contributed a goal and an assist in 8 games for the Swedes.

Back in Los Angeles for the 1984-85 season, Håkansson scored 12 goals and 24 points in 73 games as well as making only his second postseason appearance with 3 games.

He was back with the Kings again in 1985-86, seeing action in 38 games, but limited to 4 goals and 5 points. When the Kings placed him on waivers with the plan on sending him down to New Haven of the AHL, Håkansson decided to instead retire from hockey and return to Sweden to resume his education.

His final NHL totals were 330 games played, 52 goals and 46 assists for 98 points.

Today's featured jersey is a 1984 Sweden National Team Anders Håkansson jersey as worn during the 1984 Canada Cup tournament, where Sweden finished the as the tournament runners up. Be sure to note the somewhat subtle collar on this jersey, which is relatively unique to Scandinavian hockey jerseys.

After going away from their traditional "Three Crowns" cresting for a period, including employing a polar bear logo for a period, Sweden returned to the "Tre Kroner" in the early 1980's and has stayed with their tried and true look ever since.


Sweden 1984 F jersey
Sweden 1984 B jersey

Today's video section is highlights of the final game of the 1984 Canada Cup between the hosts Canada and Sweden.


Thursday, April 26, 2012

1920 Canada Frank Frederickson Jersey

The Winnipeg Falcons were founded in 1911 with a roster of players of Icelandic decent because they were not welcomed on other teams due to racial prejudice. The Falcons orginally played until 1917 and the team was then reorganized in 1919 after a number of their players returned from service in World War I.

The Falcons were chosen to represent all of Canada at the Olympic Games by virtue of having won the Allan Cup as the 1920 Canadian National Senior Amateur Champions.

Photobucket

Ice hockey was first introduced during the 1920 Summer Olympics, which were held in Antwerp, Belgium. The participating nations were the hosts Belgium, Czechoslovakia, France, Sweden, Switzerland, the United States and Canada, who defeated Czechoslovakia 15-0 on April 24th to open their schedule thanks to Haldor Halderson's 7 goals and team captain Frank Frederickson's 4 with Magnus Goodman contributing 2 and Allan Woodman and Konrad Johannesson one each.

Canada next beat the United States in a close 2-0 game on April 25th Frederickson and Johannesson providing the scoring, which set up a meeting the next day between the two undefeated teams, Canada and Sweden.

The game story from the Associated Press from that match documents the ease of Canada's victory.
CANADA WINS OLYMPIC HOCKEY HONORS, OUTCLASSING SWEDENFalcons Place Winnipeg Conspicuously on World Sporting Map,
Overwhelming Swedes in Final 12 to 1 -
Byron Drops in Surprise and Scandinavian Team
Escapes a Whitewash.

ANTWERP, April 26 (Associated Press) - Canada won the Olympic hockey championship tonight, easily defeating Sweden by a score of 12 to 1. Sweden's goal was scored in the first half, after ten minutes of play, and came as an utter surprise to the Canadians. The victors had easily scored five goals, when Sevensson, the Swedish right defence, carried the puck down near to the Canadian goal and drove it into the net, surprising Goalkeeper Byron so much that he fell down. The Canadian line-up was the same as in yesterday's game, with the exception of one position - Fridfinnson replacing Woodman. The score at the end of the first half was: Canada, 5; Sweden, 1.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This was the famous goal, the only one scored against the Falcons in the whole tournament. The Swedish team considered this goal a victory, putting them ahead of all the other European teams in the European hockey world. Did the Falcons momentarily lose their focus? Did Wally Byron accidentally let it in because the Swedes were such nice guys? We'll never know for sure.

Halderson opened the scoring for Canada at 1:15 of the contest and added a second goal, Canada's 11th, late in the game. Chris Fridfinnson's only goal of the tournament came 40 seconds after Halderson's opener, giving Canada a 2-0 lead before the game was only two minutes old.

Frederickson got on the scoreboard at 5:20 for the first of his 7 goals. Sweden got their only goal of the game at 15:58 to make it 3-1 prior to Frederickson adding completing a hat trick with two goals within 1:35 of each other at 16:00 and 17:35.

Goodman scored at 23:47 followed by Robert Benson joining the scoring parade at 28:09 to make it 7-1. Frederickson then put on a clinic with three consecutive goals for his second hat trick in less than six minutes, with the first two coming 15 second apart.

Halderson then netted his second of the game and Frederickson closed out the scoring with his 7th at 39:02, securing the gold medal for Canada.

Photobucket

On their return to Canada, they were honored with a parade, given gold pocket watches and honored with several banquets.

On April 29th, 2006 the Winnipeg Falcons were inducted into Canada's Olympic Hall of Fame and there is now an exhibit in honor of the Falcons at the MTS Center in Winnipeg.

For further reading, there are now several books available about the Falcons, When Falcons Fly, Long Shot and Falcons Gold. We also recommend WinnipegFalcons.com, which proved invaluable in researching this entry.

When the North American pool of the World Cup of Hockey began in 2004, the United States travelled to Montreal to take on Team Canada, who wore 1920 Winnipeg Falcons throwback jerseys. Team Canada won the contest by a 2-1 score on goals by Martin St. Louis and Joe Sakic. It would be the only time Team Canada's senior team would wear the Falcons jerseys.

The jerseys were worn one once more, in an exhibition game between Canada's World Junior Team and Team Finland on December 20th, 2004 at the MTS Center in Winnipeg, which ended in a 6-0 win for Canada before they would go on to dominate the 2005 World Junior Tournament in Grand Forks, North Dakota with a team that included Sidney Crosby. The full roster of players from the exhibition game can be found here.

Sidney Crosby Winnipeg Falcons
The only time Crosby ever wore the Winnipeg Falcons jersey

Today's featured jersey is a 1920 Canada Frank Frederickson jersey as worn during the first ever ice hockey tournament at the Olympic Games.

This sweater is on display at the MTS Centre in Winnipeg, home town of the Falcons. Note also their blue and green barberpole striped jersey which the Falcons wore during domestic league play in Manitoba.

Frederickson would go on to have a lengthy career as a professional, joining the Patrick brothers Pacific Coast Hockey Association's Victoria Aristocrats for the 1920-21 season. He would remain with the club through a name change to the Victoria Cougars in 1922 and a switch to the Western Hockey League in 1924.

He would win a Stanley Cup in 1925 with Victoria, but after the 1925-26 season the Cougars rosters was sold to interests in Detroit, who had been granted an expansion franchise in the NHL. In honor of the source of their players, the new franchise was named the Detroit Cougars, who would eventually evolve into the Detroit Red Wings after a change in ownership.

After just 16 games with Detroit, Frederickson was again on the move, this time to the Boston Bruins. He would spend four more years in the NHL with stints with the Pittsburgh Pirates before a second round with Detroit, who by now were on their second name, the Detroit Falcons, a fitting place for the former Winnipeg Falcon to close out his NHL career.

During his professional career Frederickson would play a total of 324 games, scoring 170 goals and 266 points. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1958

Canada 1920 Olympic jersey, Canada 1920 Olympic jersey

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 2004 Team Canada Mario Lemieux "Winnipeg Falcons jersey as worn on August 31st, 2004. One unique aspect of the Falcons throwbacks is that all the jerseys had "CANADA" on the back instead of each individual player's name, similar to the 1972 Canada Cup jerseys.

The jersey also features the 2004 World Cup of Hockey logo patch on the upper left chest, along with Mario Lemieux's captain's "C".

While the Falcons normally wore blue and green "barberpole" striped jerseys, it's uncertain why the Falcons' Olympic jerseys were old gold and black, a choice of colors that proved unpopular with fans in 2004 and earned them a spot in Third String Goalie's "Curious, Weird and Ugly" Collection.

Canada 2004 WCOH Alt jersey photo Canada2004WCOHAltF.jpg
Canada 2004 WCOH Alt jersey photo Canada2004WCOHAltB.jpg
Canada 2004 WCOH Alt jersey photo Canada2004WCOHAltP.jpg

Here is Team Canada in action wearing their Falcons jerseys in the 2004 World Cup of Hockey versus the United States.


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dynamo Moscow - 2012 KHL Gagarin Cup Champions

Dynamo Moscow won a close fought seventh game of the KHL's 2012 Gagarin Cup Finals on the road in Siberia today, completing a comeback from falling behind 3 games to 1 to Avangard Omsk.

Dynamo Moscow - 2012 KHL Gagarin Cup Champions, Dynamo Moscow - 2012 KHL Gagarin Cup Champions

Neither team scored during the first two periods, setting up a tense winner-take-all final 20 minutes. Dynamo looked to have the chance they were waiting for with a 5-on-3 advantage which lasted over a minute early in the period, but Karri Ramo in the Avangard goal held Dynamo at bay as the game continued scoreless.

Finally Marek Kvapil found fellow Czech Jakub Klepis on the right side of the Omsk goal and Klepis, who was stoned on a one-timer, converted a backhander of the rebound on his second try to score the only goal of the game.

The final moments were tense, as Omsk pulled Ramo for an extra attacker and kept the puck in the Dynamo end for several good chances, but to no avail, as Alexander Yeremenko completed the shutout to give Dynamo the title.

Dynamo Moscow 2012 Gagarin Cup, Dynamo Moscow 2012 Gagarin Cup
Dynamo Moscow - 2012 KHL Gagarin Cup Champions

It was Dynamo's first Gagarin Cup, as well as the first for any club from the Russian capital, and a great result for a team which was on the verge of vanishing in 2010 when their previous and storied previous iteration HC Dynamo, who had been formed in 1946, merged with HC MVD to form UHC (United Hockey Club) Dynamo for the 2010-11 season in a deal which saw the new team assume the history of the legendary Dynamo club but the roster and ownership of MVD.

Here is the game winning goal, scored by Klepis, a one time Washington Capital.


Here is a report of Dynamo's arrival back at home in Moscow, where they were greeted by their excited fans.


1970 Soviet Union National Team Vladislav Tretiak Jersey

Widely considered one of the greatest goaltenders in hockey history, Vladislav Tretiak was born on this date in 1952.

An unknown 20 year old, Tretiak was the starting goaltender for the Soviet National Team as the historic 1972 Summit Series began in Montreal. Since the Canadian scouts had only seen him play once, a dismal performance in which he allowed eight goals against due to excessive celebrations at his bachelor party the night before, he was dismissed as no threat to the best professionals Canada had to offer.

Tretiak CCCP

Two Canadian goals before the game was seven minutes old only seemed to reinforce the scouts opinion on Tretiak, which would soon change. The Canadians would manage just one more goal for the remainder of the contest as the Soviets came alive and pummeled the startled Canadians 7-3.

His continued outstanding play in the first half of the series earned him a tremendous amount of respect and admiration as the Soviets showed that they were able to compete with the Canadians. Eventually Canada would prevail in the series by the slimmest of margins, but Tretiak's reputation had been cemented by his play in the series.

Tretiak CCCP

Although he was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in 1983 , it was at a time when Soviet players were not allowed to leave for the NHL. Tretiak would spend 15 full seasons playing for Central Sports Club of the Army (CSKA), or as more commonly known, the "Red Army".

During his 15 seasons in the Soviet Hockey League, Tretiak and Red Army would win the championship 13 times and finish runners up the other two. Tretiak was also named the First Team All-Star Goalie 14 consecutive seasons and league MVP five times. Outside of the Soviet Union, Tretiak and the club would take home the European Cup 13 times.

Tretiak Red Army

Internationally, Tretiak's resume would show three Olympic gold medals (Japan in 1972, Austria in 1976 and Yugoslavia in 1984), ten World Championship gold medals (1970, 1971, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1982 & 1983) and gold medals in the European Championships nine times. In addition he would be named the winner of the Golden Hockey Stick as the most outstanding player in all of Europe in 1981, 1982 and 1983.

He would also participate in two Canada Cups, earning a bronze with a depleted squad in 1976 and gold in 1981 when he was named the tournament's MVP. His final goals against average in 98 international games was an outstanding 1.78.

Tretiak CCCP

Another career highlight for Tretiak is the 1975-76 Red Army tour of North America when the Red Army faced off against various NHL club teams, the first time any Soviet club team had faced off against clubs from the NHL. Red Army came away with dominant victories over the New York Rangers and Boston Bruins and a notorious loss to the Philadelphia Flyers, but the most memorable game was a New Year's Eve contest against the Montreal Canadiens, that season's eventual Stanley Cup Champions, which ended in a 3-3 tie with Montreal outshooting Red Army 38-13 in a game considered by many to be one of the greatest games ever played.

After his early retirement in 1984 at the age of 32, ranked as #37 in the Top 100 Stories of the Century by the International Ice Hockey Federation, due to his desire to wanting to face a new challenge of playing in North America and the Soviet authorities refusal to grant him permission and the strain of the eleven month a year commitment required by the Soviet hockey system plus friction with his coach Viktor Tikhonov, Tretiak would finally make his way to North America in 1990, having been hired by the Chicago Blackhawks as their goaltending coach.

He would become the first Soviet-trained player to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1989 and the first European player voted in without ever having played in the NHL. His induction would be ranked by the IIHF as #55 on Top 100 Stories of the Century. In 2000 he would be voted the Best Russian Hockey Player of the 20th Century as well as being named the goaltender for the IIHF Centennial All-Star Team, a tremendous honor of he highest caliber, as only one player at each of the six positions would be named to this most exclusive team. Tretiak would be elected as the head of the Russian Ice Hockey Federation in 2006.

IIHF All Century Team
The IIHF Centennial All-Star Team announcement honoring Valeri Kharlamov, Tretiak, Slava Fetisov, Borje Salming, Wayne Gretzky and Sergei Makarov.

The many highlights of Tretiak's career appear over and over again of the IIHF list of the Top 100 Stories of the 20th Century. The Soviets victory over Canada in the 1981 Canada Cup ranks as #9, the New Year's Eve game with Montreal #23, the shock opening game of the 1972 Summit Series as #3 and the Soviets victory over the NHL All-Stars in the 1979 Challenge Cup as #36. Even the defeats of the Soviets during the Tretiak era were so uncommon that they merit recognition on the list as well. A loss to Poland in 1976 was #39, the conclusion of the 1972 Summit Series was #2, the loss to the USA in the 1980 Olympics was #1, their loss to the Czechs in 1972 was #5 and in 1974 was #67.

Tretiak Soviet Union, Tretiak Soviet Union

Today's featured jersey is a 1970 Soviet Union Vladislav Tretiak jersey. The owner of this fantastic piece of hockey history dates this jersey as having been worn from 1970 to 1972, up until the 1972 Summit Series when they Soviets wore a brand new set of sweaters.

Tretiak would have then worn this beginning at the age of 17 at the 1970 European Junior Championships (gold), followed by the World Championships (gold) as well as the Izvestia Cup (silver). In 1971 the cycle would be repeated with the European Juniors (gold), World Championships (gold) and Izvestia Cup (gold). The routine would change in 1972 with first the Olympics in Sapporo, Japan (gold) followed by the World Championships (silver) later in the spring. If in fact worn for each of those tournaments, which is entirely feasible as all those tournaments would total 34 games in all for both the red and white sweaters, this would have been a gold medal winning jersey six times and a silver twice out of eight tries, making this perhaps the most accomplished sweater in hockey history!


To read an interesting story about Tretiak's subsequent 1974 Summit Series white sweater, check out this story of theft, deception, adoration and reunion. Doug Duke's Tretiak Sweater from the Montreal Gazette.

Tretiak sweater reunion, Tretiak sweater reunion
Vladislav Tretiak reunited with his white sweater
from the 1972 Summit Series

Today's first video is his introductory video from Tretiak's Hall of Fame induction.


Here are highlights from the memorable game between the Red Army and the Montreal Canadiens on New Year's Eve in 1975.



Tuesday, April 24, 2012

2002-03 Vancouver Canucks Peter Skudra Jersey

Celebrating his birthday today is Pēteris "Peter" Skudra, who was born in Riga, Latvia, which was then part of the Soviet Union, on this date in 1973.

As he began to gain recognition as a player, he was named to the Soviet Union National Team for the 1991 European Junior Championships where he won a silver medal.

This was a time of great political upheaval in the world, and during his second season of play in the third division, the Soviet Union was dissolved and the Commonwealth of Independent States came into being. For the 1992-93 season, Skudra played for his hometown Pardugava Riga club. Despite only being 19 years old at the time, Skudra was named to the revival of the Latvia National Team for their return to international hockey since 1939.

The Latvians were forced to begin at the base of IIHF ladder system in the World Championships "C" Pool, which they immediately won, earning them a promotion to the "B" Pool for 1994. After another season of domestic hockey in Riga and a second World Championships for Latvia, Skudra took the bold step of coming to the United States as an undrafted free agent, where he started his road to the NHL with a season with the Greensboro Monarchs of the ECHL, where he went 13-9-5 in 33 games. He also appeared in a pair of games with the Memphis RiverKings of the CHL.

The next two seasons Skudra made several more stops, splitting 1995-96 between the Eire Panthers (12 games) and the Johnstown Chiefs (30 games), both of the ECHL.

The following season was one of progress for Skudra, as he took a step closer to the NHL by playing for the Hamilton Bulldogs of the American Hockey League in 32 games after starting the season with another 4 games in Johnstown. Following the season he made his third appearance in the World Championships for Latvia, who by now had earned another promotion, this one to the top level of the IIHF ladder.

Prior to the 1997-98 season, Skudra was signed by the Pittsburgh Penguins organization of the NHL. He began his season with the Houston Aeros of the International Hockey League for 9 games before realizing his dream when he made his NHL debut with the Penguins with 27 minutes of relief for starter Ken Wregget on November 5, 1997. Two nights later he earned a tie agains the Detroit Red Wings in his first start. After relieving Tom Barasso twice, Skudra got his next start in December 6th, where he earned his first NHL victory against the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim.

Skudra Penguins, Skudra Penguins

With both Wregget and Barasso healthy, Skudra also got some playing time that season with the Kansas City Blades in the IHL, posting an excellent 10-3-0 record, which earned him another call up to Pittsburgh, with whom he eventually totaled 6 wins for the season.

He spent the entire 1998-99 season with Pittsburgh, splitting time with Barasso. He posted NHL career highs with 37 games and 15 wins and continued with the Penguins in 1999-00 while backing up Jean-Sebastien Aubin with 20 appearances. He also played in the first NHL playoff game of his career during the postseason.

In an odd series of transactions, Skudra was signed by the Boston Bruins on October 3, 2000 but then claimed on waivers by the Buffalo Sabres just three days later. His entire career with Buffalo lasted just 27 seconds in relief of Dominik Hasek, who returned to the crease to finish the game.

Skudra Sabres, Skudra Sabres

He was on the Sabres roster riding the bench behind the iron man Hasek or spending 2 games in the AHL with the Rochester Americans until he was reclaimed off of waivers by the Bruins five weeks later! He eventually was able to play in 26 games in the crowded Bruins goaltending situation, as they used Byron Dafoe as their number one (45 games), Skudra (26). Andrew Raycroft (15), John Grahame (10) and Kay Whitmore (5). Skudra also made 3 appearances with the Providence Bruins, his fourth team of the season.

Skudra Bruins, Skudra Bruins

He played in 3 games for the Hartford Wolf Pack in the AHL at the start of the 2000-01 season, winning all three. That good start earned him a contract with the Vancouver Canucks as a backup to Dan Cloutier. He played in 23 games for Vancouver, winning 10, the second highest of his NHL career. He also saw action in a pair of playoff games against Detroit.

Skudra Canucks, Skudra Canucks

His second season with Vancouver saw him post nearly identical numbers with the same 23 appearances as well as 9 wins. He also made a single appearance for the Manitoba Moose in the AHL.

Skudra's final NHL totals were 145 games with a 51-47-20 record with a 2.73 goals against average in six seasons.

Skudra continued his career by returning to Europe for the 2002-04 season when he signed with Ak Bars Kazan who competed in the Russian Superleague. After 9 games with Ak Bars, Skudra was traded to Khimik Voskresensk, with whom he played 39 games over the remainder of the season as their number one goaltender, a position he retained for the 2004-05 season which allowed him to appear in a career high 43 games.

That summer he signed with CSKA Moscow and saw 24 games in goal in 2005-06 and another 19 in 2006-07 before moving to Metallurg Novokuzenzk for the final 13 games of his career before retiring after playing 13 seasons for teams in four different countries in eight different leagues for 20 different teams!

Skudra Red Army, Skudra Red Army

Today's featured jersey is a 2002-03 Vancouver Canucks Peter Skudra jersey. This alternate style was introduced in the 2001-02 season and was used through the 2005-06 season. It was a dark and moody affair, and quite unusual with it's main body that faded from deep blue to deep red, unlike any other in the NHL at the time. Also unconventional was the choice of metallic silver for the names, numbers and trim color rather than white.

It was a very polarizing design that fans either embraced or detested with only the bizarre Phoenix Coyotes alternate standing between it and being the strangest jersey in the NHL at the time and definitely benefitted from being wrapped around a player in 3-D when compared to seeing it laid on a flat surface or as an illustration as much as any jersey we can remember.

Vancouver Canucks 02-03 jersey, Vancouver Canucks 02-03 jersey
Vancouver Canucks 02-03 jersey, Vancouver Canucks 02-03 jersey

Bonus jersey: Today's bonus jersey is a 2005-06 CSKA Moscow Peter Skudra jersey. At the opposite end of the spectrum from the unusual Canucks alternate, this classic hockey jersey from Russia's most storied team, Central Red Army. It embraces the classic look of colored shoulders with simple arm and waist stripes and a bold main crest. In addition is has the traditional band around the chest which evokes the Montreal Canadiens iconic sweaters. Add some bold red stars to the shoulder and arms and you have a jersey which screams "hockey" with pride.

CSKA Moscow 05-06 jersey, CSKA Moscow 05-06 jersey
CSKA Moscow 05-06 jersey, CSKA Moscow 05-06 jersey

Monday, April 23, 2012

Setting the Record Straight - The Quebec Nordiques

Most NHL jerseys have a normal, predictable lifespan. They are designed, produced, worn for a period of time, ranging from a couple of years to decades.

A few are worn for a brief period of time, such as some of the unfortunate designs among the earliest of the third jerseys like the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim "Wild Wing" and the Los Angeles Kings "Burger King" jerseys, which were worn during the second half of the 1995-96 season for approximately six games each before being abandoned for good. But still, those designs live on, as they were produced in retail versions for fans to purchase and still to this day fetch big dollars on ebay, keeping them in the public eye.

Burger King Jersey Appreciation Day Pictures, Images and Photos
The King lives on thanks to Burger King Jersey Appreciation Day

On the other hand, some jerseys have come and gone, sometimes for years, before making a comeback as a vintage jersey re-release, which can cause the finer details of the jersey to blur over the passage of time. A perfect case in point are the Minnesota North Stars jerseys of the late 1980's. When those were first remade by CCM, either someone did not pay attention to the details or there were gaffes in production that went unnoticed, such as the star above the "N" in the crest being sewn on backwards, which caused the star to lean to the left, while the italicized "N" was tilted properly to the right.

North Stars backwards star, North Stars backwards star
A CCM North Stars remake with the star sewn on backwards

Additionally, the specs for the customization of the numbers was also botched, as the "drop shadow" of the numbers went up and to the left, thanks to the top layer of white twill for the number being improperly sewn onto the bottom right of the yellow layer of twill, rather than the top left of the yellow layer, which would have created a proper drop shadow going down and to the right. It's hard to imagine how this was allowed to continue past the initial production run, as the biggest clue as to how the drop shadow was supposed to look was sitting there in plain sight on the other side of the jersey in the form of the main crest!

Another such case of an incorrect version of a jersey becoming considered gospel is the legendary 1996-97 Quebec Nordiques Unused Jersey, which never actually saw action in the NHL, owing to the franchise relocating to Denver, Colorado for the 1995-96 season before the Nordiques could debut their planned new design.

In this Wikipedia world we all live in, where anyone can post anything online, giving it a certain level of credibility regardless of it's often dubious, if any, source.

It must be true, It must be true

What has happened with the proposed Nordiques jersey was that a contributor to the Chris Creamer Sports Logo Community drew the image below of the proposed home and away jerseys based on a black and white photo scanned from a newspaper, knowing only the intended main color of the jerseys was to be navy blue, and was forced to take an educated guess on the other colors based solely on the tones of the shades of grey in the black and white image. Once completed, that artwork was publicly posted on the Sports Logo Community forum.

That one image, based on an educated, but ultimately incorrect, guess, then began to be discovered through image searches, copied and reposted other places online without any idea the original artist had no information on the actual colors to work with.

Nordiques_incorrect colors, Nordiques_incorrect colors
The widely accepted, incorrectly colored version of the Nordiques proposed
jerseys based on an educated guess from a black and white image

To demonstrate, perform a google image search for "Quebec Nordiques unused jersey" and see what the results look like.

Nordiques Jersey search, Nordiques Jersey search

Notice the five highlighted results on page one alone. All five of them are the incorrect version of the proposed Nordiques jerseys, lacking both the color teal as well as the black arm stripes, the first two from Creamer's excellent SportsLogos.net, the third is another fan created concept from "HockeyJerseyConcepts" based on the incorrect version, and the final two, the logo by itself and the pair of home and road jerseys in a single image, are both from the Nordiques entry on Wikipedia, as shown below.

Nordiques Wikipedia, Nordiques Wikipedia
A snapshot of the Quebec Nordiques Wikipedia entry on 4/21/12

But let's take a moment and revisit the google image search results. Notice the very first image returned by the search, which is the key that the accepted version online has the colors wrong.

Nordiques Jersey search, Nordiques Jersey search

Clicking on that image reveals a publicity photo of the proposed Nordiques home and road sweaters, reportedly being modeled by either Nordiques team executives or members of the media. We've seen the gentlemen in the photo attributed as being both.

Nordiques unused 1995-96 jerseys Pictures, Images and Photos
The only known photograph of the Nordiques new jerseys

This photo clearly shows the generous use of teal on both the home and road jerseys for:
  1. the trim on the collars
  2. the captain's C's
  3. the sleeve numbers
  4. the stripes on the arms
  5. the background triangle behind the Siberian Husky's head in the crest.
Yes, while we are setting the record straight, it is a husky and not a wolf!

Additionally, the photo shows both jerseys also have black stripes on the arms, which is lacking in the accepted version online.

Why this readily available photograph of the actual jerseys, and the only known photo of the proposed jerseys, easily found with a basic google image search, has been so thoroughly ignored for so long by so many sources is beyond us, and it's time to set the record straight.

The commonly accepted colorizing of the proposed Quebec Nordiques new jerseys is wrong, as it lacks the actual teal and black and instead uses silver and periwinkle chosen by someone working from only an early black and white photo which forced him to make an estimation of what the actual colors were going to be based on shades of grey. That image was then copied and repeated on several respected locations across the internet, eventually becoming the accepted version of what the club had planned.

Further evidence of our assertion can be found in a news brief from The Hockey News in April of 1995, which reads:
Nordiques will have new look in 1996-97

Compiled by the THN Staff

The Quebec Nordiques don't have a new arena yet, but a new logo and colors are on the way.

When the Journal de Quebec published the Nordiques' new colors March 30, the team had no choice but to confirm the makeover.

The team's road jersey will be dark blue with a few lines of a teal-like green color, black, white, and silver. The crest has a large head of a husky dog with its teeth bared. They will sport their new colors in 1996-97 and not next season (1995-96) because they failed to meet the NHL's deadline for a logo change.
There's no mention of periwinkle, lavender or light purple. None, and the original creator of the accepted image did not have access to this more detailed information at the time of creating his work.

Again, here are the Nordiques colors from ColorWerx at SSUR.org, documenting the teal (PANTONE Coated 321) used by Quebec for their proposed jerseys, which also documents no periwinkle whatsoever.

QuebecNordiques_ColorWerx, QuebecNordiques_ColorWerx
The Nordiques color palette from ColorWerx

Using those colors, as well as the original photo of the actual jerseys, here is what the correct version of the Nordiques unused jerseys should actually look like - a much bolder, brighter and higher contrast look which uses the trendy colors of teal and black that were all the rage in the mid-1990's rather than the incorrectly colored, widely accepted version with it's dull, muted colors found so commonly online.

Nordiques_proposed, Nordiques_proposed

Please feel free to spread the word and save the above image, as well as using it wherever and whenever you find the need, especially when you can use it to replace the incorrect version so commonly found online. Email us, and we'll even send you the larger version we created or download it from this address. Now all we need is a tutorial on how to upload it to Wikipedia...

In addition, here is the correctly colored logo of the husky dog, of which the full size version is available by clicking here.

Nordiques proposed correct colors, Nordiques proposed correct colors

Today's featured jersey is a 1996-97 Quebec Nordiques Joe Sakic jersey, a jersey intended to be worn during the Nordiques 1995-96 season, but pushed back a year on the schedule due to the Nordiques missing the NHL deadline for approval of a new logo. The jersey was never actually worn on the ice by the club due to the sale and relocation of the franchise to Denver, Colorado for the 1995-96 season.

Some time ago an enterprising ebay seller accurately reproduced the Nordiques proposed road blue jerseys based on the photo shown above, and we were fortunate to be able to add one of them to our collection, as there are now even reproductions on ebay based on the incorrect periwinkle color scheme!

Quebec Nordiques unused 1996-97 F photo QuebecNordiquesunused1996-97F.jpg
Quebec Nordiques unused 1996-97 B photo QuebecNordiquesunused1996-97B.jpg

Today's video selection is a look back at the history of the Nordiques and the eventual announcement of their sale and relocation, which shelved the plan to change to today's featured jersey if they team had remained in Quebec City.


 

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