The jerseys that the Pittsburgh Penguins will be wearing in this year’s winter classic have been photographed and released, and I just happened to catch a glimpse of them for the first time only minutes ago when I noticed them posted on someone’s Facebook. My immediate reaction that it was a joke—someone had photo-shopped a hideous jersey in an attempt to make fun of the Penguins, who have never really had a nice jersey. Then I find out that these jerseys are indeed real. Have a look for yourself:
The goal behind this monstrous creation was to take a little something from every jersey they have ever worn and combine it into one. This would not be a bad idea if every jersey the Penguins have had were actually good. There were the baby blue jerseys they sported in their inaugural years that were replicated for their appearance in the NHL’s first winter classic four years ago (not terrible). Then their black and yellow jerseys which featured a cartoon-like Penguin were laughable, and that design has shifted over the years. In my humble opinion, the picture below is the best jersey they ever wore—a very sharp black and yellow with the word “Penguins” down the center. Notice how it is not flashy, just very traditional:
But is this the ugliest jersey ever designed? The NHL is a league that has had their share of doozies over the years. From the mid-1990’s Los Angeles Kings wearing a jersey nicknamed the “Burger King”, to the New York Islanders having a center patch that was a mirror image of the Gorton’s Fisherman, only holding a hockey stick. Oh, and who can forget this design thunk up by the St. Louis Blues before Iron Mike Keenan shot it down and vetoed it? (Thank you, Mike!)
Year after year teams come up with awful designs, most recently teams beginning to use nicknames like the Lightning have with “Bolts” and the Senators with “Sens”, both of which can be seen in gigantic, unrepentant patterns right across the crest of the jerseys.
The Winter Classic is one hockey game that tops all others for viewership every year in its existence, and this is the best that the Penguins could come up with? Not only is it just an ugly clash of colors, but it contains that same cartoon penguin in the center and about three too many stripes on the bottom and the sleeves. To be frank, it looks like it was designed by someone who went into an acid-driven coma in the 1970’s and woke up this year to create this jersey.
It’s about time that teams stopped trying to stretch their creative minds past what they are limited to, and get back to simplicity. Each of the Original Six teams still wear jerseys identical to or slightly changed to what they wore when they debuted. I don’t hear anyone complaining about them.
So what do you think is the ugliest jersey ever? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below!