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NBA All-Star Game Recap

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Happy Presidents Day! I was looking through NBA All-Star Game photos last night and cracked up when I came across this shot. An uncontested dunk with everyone basically standing around looking bored — that pretty well captures the All-Star spirit!

Anyway, by now you know the drill regarding these uniforms: Everyone on Team Giannis wore No. 24 for Kobe Bryant, while Team LeBron wore No. 2 for Bryant’s daughter, Gianna. Both teams wore memorial patches with nine stars — one for each victim of the Bryant helicopter crash. (The black memorial band on the other shoulder was for David Stern and has been included on all NBA uniforms since Stern’s death back on New Year’s Day.)

One thing that I don’t think we had seen until last night (or at least I hadn’t seen it): the sock designs. Much like the jerseys, they featured stripes representing Chicago’s eight transit lines (click to enlarge):

A few other notes from the game:

• Former NBA star Allen Iverson showed up wearing a Bryant jersey (that’s Dr. J in the suit):

• Chaka Khan wore an interesting jersey-based outfit while singing the national anthem:

• As you may have heard on Saturday, they renamed the game’s MVP award after Bryant. And boy, you can really tell what a huge honor that was by the size of Bryant’s name on the trophy compared to the size of the Kia advertisement:

A stirring tribute, to be sure!

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MLB pants update: I spent a fair amount of time last Thursday discussing the back of MLB pants, but it turns out that the real action is on the front, where eagle-eyed reader Alex Burbidge has spotted something new. It appears that some teams, including the Mets, have new belt tunnels!

In the past, the Mets had two loops on each side of the front buckle area (top left), but now those loops have been replaced by tunnels with diagonally slanted edges (top right).

At least one other team is also wearing this new belt tunnel format: the Royals. This slo-mo video provides a really good look at the tunnel design

But several other teams still appear to be using the old format, at least for now. Something to keep an eye on as the season progresses.

(Major thanks to Alex Burbidge for this excellent spot.)

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No relation: As I’ve occasionally mentioned here on the site, Lukas is not my original family name. My parents changed it from Lewkowitz shortly after they married (and more than a decade before I was born). So I don’t share my surname with any ancestors or extended family, and it’s relatively uncommon to see Lukas spelled with a “k,” so it’s rare that I encounter other people named Paul Lukas. (One exception, as I wrote about in a 2011 blog entry, is an old Hollywood actor.)

So it was very weird when Phil notified me on Friday that he’d come across a few news stories about the death of a Kenyan man named Paul Lukas, who died in Seattle last week under mysterious circumstances. (He worked for Alaska Airlines, which explains the photo above.)

Obviously, I have zero connection to this Paul Lukas. Still, I find it very weird to see the words “Paul Lukas dies” in a headline. I guess if your name is something fairly common — like, say Alex Jones — you get used to seeing it in contexts that have nothing to do with you. But I’m not used to that myself. It’s interesting how a simple sequence of letters can pack such an emotional wallop.

Anyway: Sorry to hear about my namesake’s demise. R.I.P.

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New décor at Uni Watch HQ: Isn’t this nice? Scored it on eBay last week. I love the colors, love the sock designs (look at the chickens and cactus on the one at top-right!), love the die-cut shape, love the name “Sunbeam Sox” — the whole bit.

I thought it would look good on my bedroom dresser — and it does! Dig (click to enlarge):

I know some of you will want to know what those other things are on my dresser, so okay — from left to right:

• The black-and-white photo is a self-portrait that my father took of himself when he was 15 or 16.

• Behind the photo is a porcelain forearm/hand that was originally used as a mold to make rubber gloves. It is “wearing” three promotional wristwatches (top to bottom: Rice Krispies cereal, Moxie soda, and Quisp cereal) and three rings from important people who are no longer in my life (my father’s college ring, my brother Henry’s high school ring, and my sister-in-law Mimi’s wedding ring).

• To the right of the porcelain hand is a carved wooden dog that’s one of my favorite possessions. It has all sorts of wonderful details that aren’t apparent in the photo, and there’s a very, very special story behind it that I won’t get into here.

• To the right of the wooden dog is a vintage Old Hickory Shoe Laces display case that I found at a junk shop about 20 years ago. I keep various things in the drawers: cufflinks, knickknacks, duplicate keys, batteries, a little sewing kit, etc.

• On top of the shoelace case are five clay discs, each of which contains a memorial paw print from a cat I once owned (including former Uni Watch boy mascot Tucker). Let the record show that the Tugboat Captain is skeeved out by these, but I insist on displaying them.

• To the right of the shoelace case is a piggy bank that my sister-in-law Mimi gave me shortly before her sudden death in 1993. I remember we joked that it was unusually lean and thin, and therefore probably wouldn’t be very tasty. Whenever I get any pennies in my pocket change, they go into this bank, and then I cash them in ever four or five years when the bank fills up.

• And to the right of the piggy bank is the new sock sales display thingie. Fits right in, don’t you think?

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ITEM! Prexy Day sale: In honor of Presidents Day (or, as some states prefer to call it, Presidents’ Day), I’m offering a 15% discount on our Uni Watch Pin Club design featuring Abe and George (and on all the rest of the merchandise in the Uni Watch Shop and the Naming Wrongs Shop. To claim it, use the code PREXY15 at checkout.

This discount will only be available for today. Enjoy!

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ITEM! FOCO discount: Remember those oversized NHL hoodies that I recently raffled off? The company behind them, FOCO (short for “Forever Collectibles”), is now offering Uni Watch readers a 10% discount for anything on their site (including NBA bobbleheads like the ones shown above).

To claim this discount, go to FOCO’s site and use the checkout code UNIWATCH10. One use per customer, limited-time offer. My thanks to FOCO for doing this!

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The Ticker
By Jamie Rathjen

Baseball News: Louisiana Tech wore throwbacks yesterday (from Austin Perry). … Baylor has new yellow sleeveless jerseys (from @squatcheeontop). … Northwestern State’s softball team got a new uniform.

Hockey News: The Canucks wore white at home yesterday because the Ducks only brought their orange alternates for their current two-game road trip (from Patrick Johnston and Josh Kolba). … The Canucks also wore the Sedin brothers’ numbers/NOBs in warmups. They had retired the brothers’ numbers a few days earlier (from Wade Heidt). … Some Penguins players were asked who in the NHL does the “weirdest” job taping their stick (from Jerry Wolper). … The ECHL’s Jacksonville Icemen took uniform advertising to a new level yesterday by turning their entire jersey into an ad for supermarket sandwiches (from multiple readers). … Two junior hockey items from Wade Heidt: the OHL’s Flint Firebirds continued their annual tradition of dressing up as the Flint Tropics from the movie Semi-Pro. … The OHL’s Owen Sound Attack wore tie-dye jerseys in support of a local summer camp. … Down a level in junior hockey, a new team in the Junior A Superior International Junior Hockey League, the Kam River Fighting Walleye, apparently poaches the logo of the ECHL’s Toledo Walleye (from Will Scheibler).

Basketball News: Villanova and Temple both wore throwbacks yesterday (from @UntillTheNight). … Elon’s women’s team retired No. 55 for their all-time leading scorer, Venessa Corbett (from Timmy Donahue). … Women’s college teams that wore pink or pink accents included Clemson, Pitt (from Jakob Fox), both Louisville, who wore black and pink at home, and Notre Dame (from Josh Claywell), and Oklahoma (from Sam McKinley). … Wichita State and Tulane’s men’s and women’s teams both played each other in color-vs.-color games yesterday: WSU in yellow and Tulane in black for the men (from Josh Hinton) and WSU in black and Tulane in pink for the women (from @Corneal_Univ). … Two more from Timmy Donahue: Division II Texas A&M-Kingsville wore throwbacks this weekend. … The Greenville (S.C.) News recently republished an article on the equipment used by the county’s high schools before integration.

Soccer News: German teams 1. FC Köln and Mainz 05 wore Karneval kits yesterday, and Köln’s shirts appear to feature a labeled map of the city’s districts (the latter from Scott Moomaw). … Starting next season, Italy’s Serie A is to have a standard number/NOB font and ads won’t be allowed to have colored backgrounds (from Josh Hinton). … The numbers on Brazilian team Flamengo’s new shirt display “manto sagrado” — “sacred shirt,” perhaps — when viewed from the right angle, which is surely only to impress the people buying it (from Germán Cabrejo). … Last week, we had an item on Irish team Bohemians’ new second shirt, which has a “Refugees Welcome” message instead of an ad in partnership with Amnesty International. This column argues that if Bohs decided to forgo an ad, Premier League teams of vastly greater revenues have no excuse not to, and suggests they use their shirts to promote charities, which they already can do once per season. The only other top-tier team in the UK and Ireland that currently wears a charity logo instead of an ad is Scottish team Heart of Midlothian, since 2015. … With that, another from Germán and Josh: Everton’s dumping their shirt advertiser next season, and somehow I don’t think they’re replacing it with Everton in the Community’s logo. … Speaking of charities on shirts, Heart of Midlothian’s women’s team just added their own, separate from the men’s team. … Josh also sent us a Reddit user’s mockup of MLS Western Conference teams without ads. … Bartlesville (Okla.) HS sent us their new shirt. … Here’s our first look at Inter Miami’s shirt ad.

Grab Bag: Purdue now uses its sports logo as its non-sports logo (from Kurt Esposito). … The NLL’s Halifax Thunderbirds and Saskatchewan Rush both wore Canadian military-themed uniforms (from Wade Heidt). … Major League Rugby officials have worn mono-pink on multiple occasions this season, but it’s unclear if that’s permanent — pink shirts are seen on officials elsewhere in the sport — or some kind of promotion (from @bryanwdc). … Middle Tennessee State’s women’s tennis team wore green shoelaces for mental health awareness (from @wilds_lee). … Here are the guernseys for next week’s Australian Football League bushfire-relief game between a Victoria representative team and an all-star team. … Adam Herbst went to a cricket-themed Indian restaurant in Cliffside Hills, N.J., which included this homage to Sachin Tendulkar with “God” as his NOB — the No. 200 is a reference to his becoming the first male player to score 200 runs in a One Day International in 2010. … This is apparently one of the Olympic jerseys for the U.S. women’s volleyball team (from Jeremy Brahm). … The next two items are from yesterday’s/today’s Daytona 500: Bubba Wallace’s No. 43 featured tribute decals for both Kobe Bryant and John Andretti, the latter a former driver of the No. 43 who passed away recently (from James Gilbert). … Alex Bowman has a pants pocket for his phone (from Adam Hitt). … This is pretty amazing: a series of seven bike racks that, when viewed in a row, form the Wichita city flag design (from @PhillyPartTwo). … Siena College in Loudonville, N.Y., recently announced former Congressman and Siena alum Chris Gibson as its new president. “At the presser announcing his appointment, he wore a tie in team colors,” notes Joe Makowiec.

Your All Star 2020 Sneaker Primer

By Phil Hecken, with Matthew Weidner

Well, it’s that time of year again: time to see the shoes the NBA All Stars will be wearing for the big game today. I’m pleased welcome back sneakerhead reviewer, Matt Weidner, he took up the mantle of ASG shoe reviewer after the erstwhile Matt Powers retired a few years back.

Readers probably know that I’m most definitely not a sneakerhead, and this sort of thing is way out of my wheelhouse. But I know there are many readers who are into this sort of thing, so I’m happy today to bring you the latest in NBA kicks. Here’s Matt (for all photos below, you can click to enlarge):

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Your All-Star 2020 Sneaker Primer
By Matthew Weidner

The NBA is gearing up for the All-Star Game in Chicago. We’ve all seen the uniforms (more good than stupid) and are aware that the teams will wear 24 and 2 in honor of Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna. All-Star uniforms are usually a blip on the radar since they’re only wore one night. They ultimately don’t matter that much, though I presume there will be a spike in retail sales due to the honorary numbering. The uniforms will be, well, more uniform than usual. What won’t be uniform is what the players will be wearing on their feet.

I’m back once again to break down the sneakers for this year’s All-Star Game. I enjoyed doing last year’s breakdown, so when Phil reached out this year I was excited to do it again. If you don’t remember, I am a Sixers’ fan from suburban Philadelphia. If you’re interested in the 76ers, sneakers, or both you can follow me on Twitter at @SixersSneakers.

Unlike last year’s game there are a lot of new faces. Players with signature sneakers are either hurt (Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant) or didn’t get selected to play (Paul George, Kyrie Irving). Some of these players still had All-Star versions of their sneakers created, but we may see them on court being worn by other players.

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Team LeBron

Captain – LeBron James

Team captain James is arguably the most famous basketball player in the world. If you haven’t heard, he’ll be starring in Space Jam 2 which is slated to release next summer. Nike jumped on the marketing train already and created the Nike LeBron 17 ‘Monstars’ for All-Star 2020.

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James Harden

Harden is the top guy over at adidas. He will be playing in a pair of his signature model, the adidas Harden Vol. 4, designed in collaboration with Los Angeles-based designer Daniel Patrick.

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Kawhi Leonard

Last year, New Balance sent me into a tizzy when they dropped their newly created OMN1S on the Friday before the All-Star Game when I had already sent my completed piece to Phil. Leonard will wear the New Balance OMN1S again in this year’s game. This version was created with Chicago streetwear mogul Joe Freshgoods and are dubbed with the tag line “No Emotions Are Emotions.”

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Anthony Davis

Davis has been playing in sneakers from Kobe Bryant’s signature Nike line since his days in New Orleans. I would venture a guess that Nike has a special colorway of the recently released Nike Zoom Kobe 5 Protro for players to wear during the weekend. Nothing has been put out by the brand as of publishing.

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Luka Dončić

Dončić signed a multi-year deal with Jordan Brand in December 2019. Jordan has released two versions of their signature model, the Air Jordan 34. The first is the Air Jordan 34 SE. It features premium materials and a quilted shroud. I’ll break down the other model when I get to fellow Brand Jordan endorser Kemba Walker.

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Reserves

There are two members of Team LeBron coming off the bench who have signature sneakers – Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook (both with Jordan). Damian Lillard has a signature sneaker with adidas, but he has been ruled out after tweaking his groin in Wednesday night’s game.


Westbrook will be wearing the Jordan Why Not? Zer0.3 ‘L.A. Bred’. The sneaker features a bright neon colorway that pays homage to Westbrook’s upbringing in Los Angeles. These remind me of the opening credits from Saved by the Bell.


Adidas teamed up with rapper Pusha T to design the adidas Dame 6 sneakers Lillard would have worn in the game. They are dubbed ‘I Am My Own Fan’.

Paul will play in the Jordan CP3.XII. No specific All-Star version has been released by the brand.

Rounding out the reserves for team LeBron are a bunch of Nike (and one Jordan) guys. The lone non-Nike player left is Jayson Tatum. He is signed with Brand Jordan and will wear an iteration of the Air Jordan 34. Like Davis, Domantas Sabonis and Lillard replacement Devin Booker have been wearing sneakers primarily from the Nike Kobe line. Ben Simmons plays in the Nike Zoom Rize. He’s had some interesting colorways this season, so I expect something unique for the game. Nikola Jokic wears the Nike Hyperdunk X. He wore the same sneaker in last year’s game.

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Team Giannis

Captain – Giannis Antetokounmpo

Nike blessed Antetokounmpo with his own signature sneaker in 2019 – the Nike Zoom Freak 1. The version he’ll be wearing All-Star weekend pays homage to the movie Coming to America. This colorway is dubbed ‘Employee of the Month’ and is inspired by the uniform Eddie Murphy’s character wears while working at McDowell’s.

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Joel Embiid

Since Steph Curry is injured, Embiid will be the only player representing Under Armour in the ASG. The brand announced in mid-January that Embiid will be getting his own signature sneaker. There are leaked images floating around, some of which I posted on my Twitter a few weeks ago, but those were promptly removed after Under Armour’s legal team got involved. Because of this, I will not be including any pictures in this post, but if you’re curious search for Under Armour Embiid 1. If I were a betting man, I’d say that these make their debut in Chicago on February 16.

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Pascal Siakam

First-time All-Star Siakam has been playing the Nike KD 12 this season. Nike did create an All-Star version of the sneaker since Durant is an annual stalwart in the game. Nike linked up with famed Chicago streetwear designer Don C to create a colorway based off the Chicago city flag.

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Kemba Walker

As mentioned above, Jordan will be releasing two versions of the Air Jordan 34 since the game is in Chicago. Walker has been wearing the ‘Jordan Unite’ version for a few games already, so he will likely continue that streak into All-Star weekend. The multi-coloring on the heal tab is meant to be indicative of the Chicago transit system.

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Trae Young

Young is signed to an endorsement deal with adidas. He has played much of the past two seasons in the innovative, sock-like adidas N3XT L3V3L. There is a rumored N3XT L3V3L 2 in the pipeline, but they have not been part of adidas’s marketing for ASG 2020. Adidas has indicated that their non-signature players will wear the Pro Model 2G ‘Shelltoe 50’ which honors 50 years since the brand introduced the + + + + + + + + + +target=”_blank”>Superstar.

Reserves

The only player coming off the bench for Team Giannis with a signature sneaker is Donovan Mitchell. He will be wearing an orange and black rendition of his adidas D.O.N. Issue 1. The other adidas members on the team are Kyle Lowry and Brandon Ingram. Lowry has been wearing the Harden Vol. 4 this season, but we’ll likely see him in the previously-mentioned Pro Model 2G. Ingram has been playing in the adidas ZONEBOOST this season, so the brand could reasonably make an All-Star version of that model. On the other hand, the Kanye West-designed YEEZY BSKTBL Quantum is releasing All-Star weekend. If any of the adidas guys wear them, I would put my money on Ingram.

Three of the remaining reserves are Nike athletes. Khris Middleton plays in the Nike Air Force Max Low. Rudy Gobert wears the Nike Air Max Dominate. Surely Nike will dress up their favorite shoes for them. First-timer Bam Adebayo is a Nike guy, but has worn so many different sneakers this season, that I cannot even guess what he’ll wear on Sunday.

Last, but not least, we have Jimmy Butler. It was reported last month that Butler requested that his contract with Brand Jordan be terminated 10 months before it was set to expire. He has still been wearing Jordan sneakers, but he is technically a sneaker free agent. There has been no news lately where or when he will be signing a new contract. Maybe his All-Star Game footwear choice will signal his next move.

There you have it. There will be Kobe tributes aplenty during the weekend which is fitting since he was a mainstay of the event throughout his career. Thanks to Phil and Paul for letting me run with this again.

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Thanks, Matt! Great job with the sneaker run down. OK, readers, please be sure to thank Matt and let’s have your thoughts on this years kicks!

NBA ASG Unis Of The Past…

The NBA ASG is today, and in a break (sorta) from past years, the uniforms return to red vs. blue. With the passings of David Stern (former NBA Commish) and Kobe Bryant, there will be two memorials on the unis themselves: tribute patches in honor of Kobe and Gianna Bryant and the other Calabasas crash victims as well as a black band for David Stern. Expect more than a few guys to point up towards the sky after doing something that cries out for attention. Instead of “Look at me” it will be more of a “this is for you, Kobe” type thing. Just sayin’. The game will also feature an interesting twist: In the fourth quarter, there will be no clock. Instead, whichever team gets to 24 points more than the leading team’s score after three quarters will win. (24 was one of Kobe Bryant’s numbers.) Be interesting to see how that works out.

Here’s a look back at some of the uniforms the NBA have worn in the past — it’s not all of them, but it’s a lot. They haven’t always been better back then than they are now, but let’s just say I prefer the older ones to the more modern looks.

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1950

Early All Star Games had plain (gorgeous) unis.

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1963

By the 1960’s the jerseys had “EAST” and “WEST” on the chest, along with the simple stars.

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1970

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1972

By 1972 the colors weren’t always red, white and blue. The ’72 game, played in LA, featured the East and West in Lakers colors, in a nod to the home/host city. Also note Jerry West with his NOF and NOB.

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1975

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1976

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1977

Note the upper/lower case fonts, in sort of an Olde English script. Can you guess where this game was played?

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1978

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1979

Not a yuge fan of the diagonal pattern.

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1980

Now THAT is a set of unis!

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1981

Yeah, they probably didn’t need to add “All Stars” to the front of the jersey. We know who you are!

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1982

Hmmm. The “EAST” and “WEST” look too crowded with “ALL STARS” on the front. I know, let’s move “EAST” and “WEST” to the lower back!

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1983

Who wears short-shorts?

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1989

All Stars shortened to All Star, and the NBA Logo are added — but damn those look good.

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1994

By the early-mid ’90s, the NBA loved sublimation. And it shows here.

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1995

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1996

You either loved or hated these two years — played in Phoenix and San Antonio, respectively. They really tried to bring out the host city flair for these.

Perhaps they were a bit “too” much, as for some strange reason, from 1997 thru 2002, there were no All Star Game unis — teams wore their respective home and road unis. I was never a fan of this format. This isn’t BASEBALL!

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2003

Ah. The return to sanity. Damn those are purdy.

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2004

By making “EAST” and “WEST” really big and diagonally aligned, the “All Star” wording becomes the size of an ad patch. Smaller actually. Might as well not be there.

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2005

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2006

By 2006, the NBA would start experimenting adding more solid color blocks to the white jersey, and more white color blocks to the blue jersey.

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2007

Very minimalist. Also very bland.

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2008

Hey, remember that color blocking thing we started in 2006? Let’s make the front of the unis one color and the backs a completely different color. But make sure the team with the white front plays a team with a white back. That won’t be confusing at all!

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2009

Hey 2008? Yeah that was a bad idea. Signed 2009.

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2010

I know. Let’s make the game color vs. color (you can’t blame Nike for this one). Also, let’s at “The” to EAST and WEST. Also, lets add a makers mark!

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2011

Let’s add some sublimation to the color vs. color! And how about 3 stripes down the side of the jersey?

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2013

Make the 3 stripes bigger!

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2014

Hey, how about a giant logo? And sleeves! Wait, wait…how about TV Numbers too!

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2015

Well, the weekend will be spent in NYC, with Brooklyn and the Knicks both serving as hosts, so while this was technically black vs. white, it was done with the Nets and Knicks unis in mind. Also note the FNOB/Number/LNOB on the jerseys. Also, the teams did away with the East vs. West designations.

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2016

Teams returned to simpler unis and EAST and WEST designations. The unis also featured an ad patch.

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2017

The last ASG with adidas unis would be kind of an anthracite vs. gray affair. The ad patch is still there.

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2018

The first ASG in Nike (actually Jordan Brand) unis, the East/West conferences were done away with again, and all teams wore a monochrome team logo on their chest. Rear numbers were ghosted, and the unis were about as minimalist as you could get. I mean — the game’s really all about the footwear anyway, so why not let the players show that off with as little to distract them as possible. Just a Jumpman, and ad patch, and a logo.

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2019

Another Nike/Jordan game. Another black unis vs. white unis game. At least this year we get a return to red vs. blue.

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Enjoy the game today boys and girls. I won’t be watching (not out of boredom or spite or anything), but because I’ll be teaching curling in Brooklyn. Maybe I’ll get home in time to watch the last few minutes (also known as the time when they allow defense to be played).

Colorado & LA Do The Stadium Thing

The Colorado Avalanche and Los Angeles Kings played the most recent outdoor “Stadium Series” game last night, in the Air Force’s Falcon Stadium. It was about what we’ve come to expect with these outdoor games; we’d already seen the unis (they’re not great), so this was all about how they looked on the ice. I actually watched some of this game, and the novelty is wearing off. Almost all the tight shots look like the teams are indoors, and in the long views, you can tell who’s playing, but it’s hard to follow the action. I barely noticed the Kings wearing shiny chrome helmets unless we were seeing them up close. Here’s a few shots:

While the Kings hats sure were shiny in those photos, almost any shot that wasn’t at ice level made the helmets appear black, as they were reflecting the black Colorado night sky. Not a bad effort, but let’s hope the chrome domes go the way of the dodo in the NHL.

You can see lots more photos here.

Some quick notes from Jakob Fox on the scorebug, and also the placement of the “C”. It’s also apparently the first time the Kings uniform contains no crowns (from Kings Uni History).

And here’s a bit of information about the Stadium Series goalie masks.

Guess The Game…

from the scoreboard

Today’s scoreboard comes from Delia DeLyon.

The premise of the game (GTGFTS) is simple: I’ll post a scoreboard and you guys simply identify the game depicted. In the past, I don’t know if I’ve ever completely stumped you (some are easier than others).

Here’s the Scoreboard. In the comments below, try to identify the game (date & location, as well as final score). If anything noteworthy occurred during the game, please add that in (and if you were AT the game, well bonus points for you!):

Please continue sending these in! You’re welcome to send me any scoreboard photos (with answers please), and I’ll keep running them.

And now a few reminders from Paul

Hi there. Here are a few things to keep in mind this weekend:

• Teespring is currently running a sale. For this weekend, you can get 10% off the price of anything in the Uni Watch Shop (including the new February Pin Club design) and the Naming Wrongs Shop by using the checkout code CANDY.

• I’m matching the Teespring discount by offering 10% off on our Uni Watch Classic cap. For this weekend, it’s priced at $35.99, instead of the usual $39.99.

• I’m also running a 50%-off clearance sale on the handful of Uni Watch gumball helmets I still have in stock. Get ’em before they’re gone!

• This coming Wednesday is the submission deadline for my “Redesign the Patriots!” contest, which I’m doing in conjunction with InsideHook.

Okay, back to Phil!

Uni Watch News Ticker
By Phil

Baseball News: Priorities, people! This article mentions 5 things that happened in the offseason we might have missed, taking special care to note the MOTD appears on baseball uniforms, but failing to mention the multiple teams who’ve changed unis, or added alternates. … Of the three College Baseball tournaments coming up this month in Texas, only the Round Round Classic doesn’t have an advertiser (from Ignacio Salazar). … Tulane announced Friday that former coach Rick Jones will have his jersey No. 10 retired May 2nd in a ceremony during a Saturday game against Cincinnati (from Timmy Donahue). … Squatchee Watch! David Price still has his (from Jakob Fox). Are we taking bets on when it comes off? … Raines faced Ribault on Feb 13th in the inaugural HS Heritage Classic game celebrating the 100th anniversary of Negro League baseball. Teams competed in throwback Jacksonville Red Caps unis (from Timmy Donahue). … Looks like the Vandy twitter account GetsIt™ (from Lee Wilds). … Bill Victor writes, “I was reminded of this double decker name while watching MLB TV’s special on the Herzog Cardinals. … Cheaters never prosper…or play Little League, apparently: Two California LL’s have banned the use of Astros uniforms (from Timmy Donahue). … Tweeter Jeffrey Seals writes, “Gotta give it up to @CMUBaseball starting pitcher Cameron Brown for the great look on the mound today in Las Vegas against @unlvbaseball!” I agree! … Another tweeter, Squatchee on Top says, “Super pumped about @BaylorBaseball having gold visors on their batting helmets finally matching their ball caps. Have had solid green helmets in the past. Bravo.” … New throwback uniforms for Florida (from Gator Uni Tracker).

NFL/Pro Football News: With regard to yesterday’s XFL Washington (DC) Defenders vs. New York Guardians game, bryanwdc writes, “Never seen something like this in the stands before – or a team tweet it out – not a uniform but clearly some sort of athletic aesthetics of some sort.” … Also in that game, the Guardians had a pretty epic jersey fail (good spot by Jonte Robertson). … The @XFLonFOX score bug has been slightly updated from last week to reflect the team records (from Josh Hinton).

Hockey News: Not quite pink in the rink: The Niagara IceDogs wore special uniforms for Valentine’s Day (from Wade Heidt). … The Boston Bruins wore alternate uniforms yesterday vs. the Red Wings (from Bunson Burner Account). … The Twitter account Bus League Hockey writes, “Maybe it’s just us, but this teal-yellow game between Columbus and Battle Creek in the FPHL looks fantastic.” … Kary Klismet writes, “Colorado College (seen here celebrating clinching the Pikes Peak Trophy with a win over Air Force on Friday night) wore a new home white jersey, their third new sweater in as many games since unveiling the school’s new athletics logo set last week. None of the three new sweaters have the excellent new tiger head logo on the front, which feels like a real missed opportunity. Disappointing.” … Whoops. Last night Ilya Kovalchuk’s sweater’s NHL logo was backwards (from Clint Dickenson). … Check out the script on Puerto Rico women’s Volleyball Team from 1970 (from Jeremy Brahm).

NBA News: Houston Rockets G Chris Clemons had his jersey retired Friday night at Millbrook HS in Raleigh & will have his college jersey retired SAT @ Campbell University (from Timmy Donahue). … Nike and the Jordan Brand unveiled uniforms for inaugural Basketball Africa League season.

College Hoops News: Yesterday the Kansas Jayhawks wore 90’s throwback uniforms against the Oklahoma Sooners. You can check them out in this gallery. Here’s another look (from Brandon Daley). … Speaking of throwbacks, Sparty wore throwback unis against Maryland yesterday, and you can see lots of pics here. … (Syra)’cuse debuted new road uniforms today, with what appears to be an unfortunate apostrophe catastrophe (from Jakob Fox). … New black uniforms for Cleveland State (from Ed Żelaski). … Color vs color between Tulsa and South Florida yesterday (from Josh Hinton). … Also from Josh: Oklahoma State wore black at home, causing Texas Tech to wear white on the road. And earlier this week, Louisville went GFGS at Georgia Tech. … Oakland & Youngstown State threw back: “Beautiful color on color uni matchup for my alma mater. Throwbacks offered a refreshing/rare chance to see jerseys with no maker’s mark or conference logo,” says Timothy Pontzer). … Providence wore pink-accented uniforms last night against Seton Hall as part of their Stand Up To Cancer campaign (from Josh Hinton). … Also from Josh, Here’s a good look at the insignia used on the floor of the Stephen C. O’Connell Center, denoting Florida’s decision to name their court after Billy Donovan. And color vs color between Gonzaga and Pepperdine.

Soccer News: Pacific Rim correspondent Jeremy Brahm notes, “it may be purple, but Sanfrecce Hiroshima has their own wrapped train now.” … Yesterday FC Barcelona players wore Ousmane Dembele jerseys prior to their match in support of their teammate who underwent hamstring surgery (from Jakob Fox). … Josh Hinton writes “Great (paywalled) article (from The Athletic) that implies Parliament will pass legislation that could mean the end of betting ads on kits.” … Club America players wore shirts in support of Nico Castillo and Nico Benedetti in the pregame photo, as both players will miss the remainder of this season (from Josh Hinton).

Grab Bag: No jerseys? No problem! ICYMI, in the NRL Nines 2020, the NZ Warriors women were forced to wear men’s jerseys after leaving kits at a hotel. … Beginning yesterday, Alabama teams in their competitive seasons will honor Wendell Hudson, who became UA’s first African American scholarship athlete 50 years ago, by wearing a WH patch or helmet sticker throughout the duration of the 2019-20 academic year (from Chicago Gump). … The 1st Make-a-Wish Uniform: Timmy Donahue writes, “This article popped up on my Facebook and I thought you might be interested. The MAW “about us” page shows the little boy, Chris, in his custom police uniform.” … Starcom Racing’s entry for today’s Daytona 500 will honor the 30th anniversary of Team Manager Derrike Cope’s 1990 win (from Chris Hickey). … WHOA! Check out these socks for UNC ‘Heels Lax players (from James Gilbert). … The Allentown PD has recieved a grant to purchase new gear. Part of the $ will go toward buying new uniform shirts with patch & badge attachments. Other equipment include cameras, helmets, and shields (from Timmy Donahue). … Utah and Air Force played a color vs. color game yesterday in men’s lax (from Martin Alonzo). … Old Glory DC Rugby have some pretty cool custom cleats (from bryanwdc). … The Albuquerque Police Dept has created specialty patches for Autism Awareness (from Timmy Donahue). … Looks like Austin Dulay’s corner borrowed the Titans’ logo (from Steve B. Creations). …Interesting “Flying Tigers” treatment on a Bartow County, GA fire helmet. The department was honoring the child pictured for saving his mom & sister when their home caught fire (from Russell).

Reviewing The 2020 Prexy Candidate Logos

By Phil Hecken, with Anthony Emerson

You could say this “off-uni” post has been about six months in the making — but the time is nigh for it to run. Readers may recall that UW’s own Anthony Emerson took a look at candidate campaign logos back in the summer of 2018, and now that the presidential campaign season has been underway for months, and the first Caucus (Iowa) and Primary (New Hampshire) in the books, it’s time review the logos for the remaining Presidential candidates on the Democratic side (since the GOP incumbent faces negligible opposition, we’re only looking at the other side today).

Please note we’re looking only at the LOGOs of the candidates, not taking any political positions or endorsing any candidates. Anthony will be discussing (and opining upon) the aesthetics of the logos of the remaining viable candidates. Please keep your comments to discussing the quality (or lack thereof) of the image/logo, not on the candidate, candidate’s positions, or politics in general. We’re just concerned with the effectiveness and appearance of the logos (even if Anthony may seem to impart his own preferences — please keep your thoughts to the logos). Thanks! Here’s AE with your…

• • •

Designing 2020
By Anthony Matthew Emerson

The time is upon us. We’re two states down in the primary process, we’re rapidly approaching Super Tuesday, we’re in this thing.

Phil had wanted this article as early as last summer, but it was simply an impossible task at that point — there were over 20 candidates at certain points in this race. I did post some preliminary thoughts on my Medium account, but since I published those, several candidates have entered and several more have withdrawn. Now, there are eight. A much more manageable task for reviewing. So let’s review — in order of the candidates’ positions in the Real Clear Politics polling average.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Bernie Sanders

What I said then: “But keeping the logo almost completely the same is probably a smart move; it allows all those college activists to break out all their old T-shirts and buttons. But from an aesthetic standpoint? The kerning is still weird, the star tiddle on the ‘i’ is still too small (and should be red), and the sweeping lines on the bottom still evoke Aquafresh toothpaste and intersect with the letters at weird places. It’s instantly recognizable, and I’m glad I’m not going to have to get a new bumper sticker. But part of me wishes it was updated a little, if it was a little more polished. And the campaign should really seek to somehow include the bird.”

What I say now: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Sanders has barely changed his logo from 2016, and his slight changes to his overall graphic design — introducing a new, bold-italic version of Jubilat on campaign materials — are all major improvements. Design was kind of an afterthought on Bernie’s 2016 campaign, but it doesn’t seem to be this time around. For example, the campaign’s embraced navy blue, while slightly brightening the light blue from his 2016 campaign, which in retrospect was kind of sickly and anemic. My criticisms of the logo from the summer still stand, but the Sanders campaign probably has the most instantly recognizable and effective identity of anyone left in the race. You know when you’re behind a Bernie bumper sticker, or see a Bernie sign in front of someone’s house. And that’s what a logo is supposed to do, right? Be an instantly recognizable symbol for whatever it is supposed to represent. In that regard, Bernie hits the ball out of the park.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Joe Biden

What I said then: “Atrocious. Awful. Terrible. You’d think being the Vice President to Barack Obama, whose campaign basically birthed modern electoral design, would have rubbed off on Joe. But it didn’t. The weird “E” thing is even weirder when you realize it’s not used consistently in the logo. The font itself seems childish and unprofessional and not cut out for a presidential campaign. It’s too bold and too curvy. It looks like the logo of a child’s toy.”

What I say now: Listless, bland and lazy. It’s a shame that his logo is so fucking bad, because I actually like some aspects of his overall identity — his “no malarkey” branding in particular, which the campaign has dropped. While the slogan itself is kinda dumb, the red-to-blue effect on the signs and the script itself were actually quite nice. I’m also liking the use of negative space in the “D” to localize the logo to specific states. He’s also mercifully dropped the “JO” logo.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Michael Bloomberg

What I said then: Nothing, because the dude launched his campaign in November.

What I say now: I’m sure a consultant told him he’d be 14.7% more relatable if he was “Mike” in lowercase. The design is schizophrenic — if you’re going to be a lowercase guy, be a lowercase guy! Don’t put your first name in lowercase and your last name in all caps. And the way he’s trying to shoehorn the letter “O” as zeroes is an attempt at playfulness that just comes across as desperate. There’s also too many colors in the glyphs themselves — Biden and Sanders held themselves to two in their logos, Bloomberg has three, including two alone in the year. All of this is a transparent attempt to try to come across fun and relatable, and all of it fails.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Elizabeth Warren

What I said then: “I like the use of mint green as an accent color, but the total avoidance of any warm colors (or even a light blue) makes her entire identity feel cold, which is criticism I often hear leveled at Elizabeth Warren herself. … It just feels incomplete and somewhat lazy…”

What I say now: My feelings for this logo have changed. I loved the mint green (which the campaign is calling “Liberty green,” as it’s supposedly inspired by the oxidized green color of the Statue of Liberty) back in the summer — now it looks sickly, and not just because all of her staffers have changed their Twitter avatars to monochrome versions of themselves with a plain liberty green background. At this point, it evokes nausea more than Lady Liberty. I loved the kinda-sorta Art Deco font, but now it looks distant and cold, and it isn’t even being used consistently by the campaign — look at the W, E, R and A in the “BLACK WOMEN” and compare it to those in “WARREN”. I’m more convinced than ever that this identity needs a bright, warm color. I thought back in the summer the campaign should’ve done something with the W, and while they are just now trying to make the W a thing, it’s not strong enough to stand on its own, and it isn’t recognizable enough to be an effective part of the campaign’s identity by itself. If the W itself was more dynamic, it could work in a way similar to Obama’s logo. But it isn’t. It’s just a W in a kinda-cool font.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Pete Buttigieg

What I said then: “It’s got folksy charm, works well on a wide variety of backgrounds, has great fonts, and is dynamic as hell. It’s perfect. I’m not sure I like the total absence of the last name on the logo, but when your last name is “Buttigieg,” I kinda understand it. Best of all, Buttigieg (or his team, whatever) care enough about the aesthetic presentation of the campaign that there’s even a section of the website devoted to design, where you can download the campaign’s official logos on a wide variety of color pallets, as well as find the logo the design team made for every state.”

What I say now: Indeed, the Buttigieg campaign was so impressed with their own work that they’ve applied for a Best Brand Identity Shorty. As with the candidate himself, the campaign’s identity seems less folksy and more corporate-attempting-to- be-folksy the more you look at it. And that’s my biggest complaint: it’s too clean. It looks too nice. Have a worse logo, Pete! Stop making me like your graphic identity! It’s infuriatingly good.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Amy Klobuchar

What I said then: “When your last name is “Klobuchar” it’s understandable you’d go with your first name in your campaign logo. And I like it. I really like the kind of folksy serif font, though the kerning between the “m” and “y” could be a little better. I like the forest green (which has a Minnesota heritage in political logos) and bright blue. The sans-serif “America” is just different enough to draw attention without distracting from her name … The logo’s also proven to be highly versatile, working on a wide variety of backgrounds and colors.”

What I say now: Klobuchar has a great logo. A lot of people think that three different fonts and three different colors for three words is too much, and I understand, but she’s consistent in her use of that gorgeous serif font, the italic font, and the sans-serif font. This is everything I want a campaign identity to be — understated, consistent, and not completely full of itself.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Tom Steyer

What I said then: Nothing, he hadn’t launched his campaign yet.

What I say now: Tom Steyer’s logo annoys the shit out of me. It’s as if a graffiti tag got a 9-to-5 job. It’s big and bloated, and the way the campaign stacked “2020” is dumb. Like the other billionaire in the race, someone told him if he went by “Tom” he’d become 22.4% more relatable. This also might be the first time in recorded history that blue and orange don’t look good next to each other — the blue is too bright and the orange is too dull for the color choices to be appealing.

+ + + + + + + + + +

Tulsi Gabbard

What I said then: “I hate how much I like this. I should hate the gradient sunrise, but it’s gorgeous. It evokes light breaking through the darkness, and it practically radiates off my computer screen. … It just works. It would be interesting to see if the font could be used for things other than her name, because right now I think it lacks versatility (and the black version that the campaign sometimes uses isn’t nearly as good).”

What I say now: Guess which logo the campaign’s been using almost exclusively since I wrote those words. Now, we have to reckon with how weird the font is, its lack of versatility, and the fact that the “2020” looks kinda off-center. All they needed to do was keep the sunrise, and instead they dropped it completely.

• • •

Wow. OK, thanks, Anthony — obviously he’s got some strong opinions (and not just about the logos), but again, it’s JUST the logos we’re concerned with here.

What are your thoughts? Who has a great logo? Whose logo could have used some more work? As an aside, being that we’re somewhat of an odd bunch here in that I think we as uni watchers (and certainly some of our preferences and tastes spill over to non-uni design and logos as well) tend to place more emphasis an aesthetics and design in general over the non Uni Watching crowd, so would a logo or design ever make you more or less likely to vote for, use, buy, wear, etc. any product? How much does design play in determining your preference for (or aversion to) something? No matter what your politics, I think we can probably agree that the original Obama logos from 2008 set a new standard for Prexy logo design — do any of these stand up to that?

Again, please keep your replies strictly to the designs of the logos in the comments. Thanks!


Uni Concepts & Tweaks

After being dormant for a while, the Uni Tweaks/Concepts have returned!

I hope you guys like this feature and will want to continue to submit your concepts and tweaks to me. If you do, Shoot me an E-mail (Phil (dot) Hecken (at) gmail (dot) com).

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Occasionally I’ll have some concepts tweeted at me. This one comes from Brad Wolf, who has a bunch of new Browns concepts.

He writes, “Revisited my old Browns concept today and made some minor tweaks. If the new uniforms even somewhat resemble these, I’ll be happy. A return of Brownie the Elf would be a bonus. And given that Nike and the Haslams are in charge, I’m sure everything will turn out great! (lol)”

Later, he added some alternates:

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Thanks. OK readers, tweeters (and concepters). If you have some tweaks or concepts, shoot ’em my way with a brief description of your creation and I’ll run ’em here.


Kreindler’s Korner

I had the distinct pleasure of featuring the wonderful artwork of artist Graig Kriendler on two occasions over the summer and fall of 2017, and more recently, in August of 2018.

For those who don’t wish to click the links, Graig paints baseball heroes (and regular guys) from the past, and is an immense talent.

Occasionally, I will be featuring his work on Uni Watch.

Here’s today’s offering (click to enlarge):

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Title: “Andy Cooper, 1920” (color study)
Subject: Andy Cooper, 1920
Medium: Oil on linen mounted to board
Size: 5” x 7”

Big Andy Cooper was considered one of the greatest pitchers in Detroit baseball history – a claim that also includes the Tigers. He possessed a biting fastball, swooping curve, and a devastating screwball; but what he had unlike a lot of his predecessors was pinpoint control. It was said that not only could he put the ball anywhere he wanted to, but did so with a deep memory on batter’s weaknesses. One of his sexiest known stats is that he once pitched 43 straight innings without issuing a single walk.

He pitched for Detroit throughout the 1920s, save a short stint with the Kansas City Monarchs. Sporting a 92-47 record with the Stars, he rejoined Kansas City in 1931. In 1936, perhaps his best year, he went 27-8 and made the East-West All-Star Game. Cooper went on to manage the Monarchs to three pennants.

Here he is pictured with the Detroit Stars in 1920. This is one of 200+ paintings of mine that are currently on display at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum until May 31, 2020.

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Thanks, Graig! You can (and should!) follow Graig on Twitter.

And now a few reminders from Paul

Hi there. Here are a few things to keep in mind this weekend:

• Teespring is currently running a sale. For this weekend, you can get 10% off the price of anything in the Uni Watch Shop (including the new February Pin Club design) and the Naming Wrongs Shop by using the checkout code CANDY.

• I’m matching the Teespring discount by offering 10% off on our Uni Watch Classic cap. For this weekend, it’s priced at $35.99, instead of the usual $39.99.

• I’m also running a 50%-off clearance sale on the handful of Uni Watch gumball helmets I still have in stock. Get ’em before they’re gone!

• This coming Wednesday is the submission deadline for my “Redesign the Patriots!” contest, which I’m doing in conjunction with InsideHook.

Okay, back to Phil!

Guess The Game…

from the scoreboard

Today’s scoreboard comes from Stagger Lee.

The premise of the game (GTGFTS) is simple: I’ll post a scoreboard and you guys simply identify the game depicted. In the past, I don’t know if I’ve ever completely stumped you (some are easier than others).

Here’s the Scoreboard. In the comments below, try to identify the game (date & location, as well as final score). If anything noteworthy occurred during the game, please add that in (and if you were AT the game, well bonus points for you!):

Please continue sending these in! You’re welcome to send me any scoreboard photos (with answers please), and I’ll keep running them.

The Ticker
By Anthony Emerson

Baseball News: Tom Ekstrand found footage of an April 1987 Expos/Cubs game where the umpires’ uniforms and equipment didn’t arrive on time. But the best part is that Bill Murray — yes, the actor — stood in for Harry Caray in the booth! Highly recommended. … Miami’s pitcher during yesterday’s game against Rutgers had a quarterback-style wristband for signs hanging off his belt. Rutgers’ pitcher had one in a more natural position (from Chris Buono). … BYU has revealed their unis for this season (from Heath Allred and Jon McBride). … Looks like throwbacks are on deck for Oakland University (from Steve Moeller). … Oregon State have altered their sleeve striping, making it much worse than it was. … Bard College has new jerseys (from James Ketterer). … Both UL-Lafayette and SE Louisiana wore “36” caps in honor of Tony Robichaux, Lafayette’s baseball coach who died in July. … Tennessee Softball had two players with misnumbered jerseys — but only on the front. Regardless, one of the players was ruled out when she reached base for the first time (from Derek Brownlee and Justin Simmons). … The University of Florida is building a new baseball stadium (from Kary Klismet). … (Yester)day the Padres posted a few pictures from their workout. “These white pants, to my recollection, were NOT part of the Uni unveiling,” notes Ty Murphy. “Perhaps a Spring Training special?? They’re certainly not the pants they’ve worn the past few years on Friday nights with the alternate Brown jerseys.”

NFL News: It appears that the cover of this old 8MM home video of Super Bowl 8 inexplicably has the Raiders jersey drawn onto a live-action photo of the game (from @DrSoup_MD).
.

Hockey News: Is this a new alternate logo for the Kings? (from Moe Khan). … Here’s a look at some of the prototype logos that led to this year’s Stadium Series design (from Jakob Fox). … Also from Jakob: The AHL’s Hartford Wolf Pack wore special rainbow sweaters for LGBTQ+ Pride Night. … The University of Iowa’s club hockey team is moving to an arena about 25 miles north of campus (from Kary Klismet).

NBA News: Going off yesterday’s ticker item about the 30th anniversary of Michael Jordan wearing a nameless No. 12 jersey after his own was stolen from the locker room, here’s a Yahoo! article going deeper into the story (from Kary Klismet).

College Hoops News: Kansas men are wearing 90s throwbacks today (from Blake Cripps and @devinseay23). … Kent State men are having an autism awareness game, with student-designed uniforms and an SOB — that is, statistic on back. “Instead of NOB [the uniforms] will have ‘1 in 59’, 1 in 59 children being diagnosed as somewhere on the autism spectrum,” tweets Timmy Donahue. … Washington women wore pink unis yesterday for Valentine’s Day (from Anthony Edwards).

Soccer News: SoccerBible listed the 15 most “iconic” kit trends (from James Siddall). … Juventus K Gianluigi Buffon has been playing for so long that he’s swapped jerseys with younger players whose fathers he also swapped shirts with back in the 90s and 2000s (thanks, Jamie). … New kits for USL Championship side FC Tulsa, with no home or road — or even primary or secondary — designations (from Ed Żelaski). … The Icelandic Football Federation has updated its logo (from Germán Cabrejo).

Grab Bag: NASCAR’s champion this year will get a new trophy, named for Bill France, the founder of NASCAR (from Christopher Hickey). … Sean Kautzman sends along the latest installment of the Sturgis Journal‘s series discussing local schools mascots, this one about Three Rivers Community Schools.

Uni Watch DIY Project: Suiting Up with the Penguins

For most photos, click to enlarge

[Editor’s Note: Today we have a guest entry from reader John Baranowski, who’s going to tell us about the amazing DIY suit he’s wearing in the photo above. Enjoy. — PL]

By John Baranowski

I’m a history teacher in Northern Virginia. I’ve been wearing hockey jerseys regularly since high school and it’s become a calling card of sorts – people may not know me, but they know the guy in the hockey jerseys.

Since I’m known for wearing jerseys, every time I wear something different, like a suit, I get a bunch of jokes (“I barely recognize you!”) and usually a half-serious suggestion about how I should have a suit that looks like a jersey — a jersey suit.

The idea started percolating about a decade ago, but I couldn’t sew, so this was left to be a pipe dream. But when that teacher in the St. Louis Blues suit went viral last fall, I knew I had to make my idea real or someone else would do it first.

The first question was which jersey the suit should be based on. It had to be something where I could find a suit in the team’s jersey color for cheap (because this was an experiment and could fail miserably), plus it also had to be recognizable. I’m a Penguins fan, so through process of elimination I settled on the black Penguins jersey that was worn following the team’s first championship, with “Pittsburgh” across the chest. While I was never a big fan of that jersey, it’s a very simple design, people there love it, and it’s certainly grown on me.

I started looking through local thrift shops and finally found a decent-looking black suit jacket at a price I was willing to pay. I never learned to sew in any formal sense, but I managed to figure out how to do it.

I started with glue. I found a quick-drying fabric fusion that worked, but after applying the first side of the hemline striping, I realized that the glue bled through the fabric and was highly visible. So I ripped things back apart and started over. I’d end up pulling it apart and fixing it a few more times by the end – sewing takes a ton of practice!

I continued on to the sleeves — a trickier proposition, because the sleeve stripes meet at an angle. Initially I liked having the vertex of the angle align with the gap in the sleeve cuffs, where the sleeve buttons are. For a suit, that made the most sense. But once I had that all glued on, I realized that this approach left the vertex positioned far too far forward – it looked alright, but it wasn’t accurate to the original jersey. So I pulled everything apart, rotated the sleeve stripes a bit, and made it look more like the jersey design, although it’s rotated a bit forward for effect.

By this point, I knew I was going to follow through to the end of the project, so I started buying more accessories — shoulder patches, custom numbers, letters, all from eBay. Those went on rather well, though I stitched the layers together at first because they’re just heat-pressed.

Now that the jacket was done, I needed some matching pants. I bought some black slacks and add Penguins-style sock stripes to the lower portions of the leg:

I felt that the jersey’s collar stripes needed to be on the shirt, not on the jacket, because the jacket was already busy enough. After realizing the different sleeve lengths between the jacket and shirt, I made an artistic decision to make the shirt sleeve cuffs match the sock stripes.

The necktie was a custom job on Zazzle, which turned out great.

I wanted a captain’s “C” for the jacket, but a jersey-sized “C” patch would be too big for the jacket lapel. I figured a lapel pin was appropriate for a suit and eventually found a “C” for a letterman jacket that worked well enough.

Next: the “helmet.” I decided that a scally cap would really tie the whole look together. Mario Lemieux wore a very distinctive helmet during the era that this jersey was worn — hockey players would recognize it immediately. There was no way to replicate that helmet but hockey people know exactly which helmet I’m talking about when they see the Jofa logo on the cap:

In a similar vein, I toyed with the idea of adding Starter or ProPlayer logos to the suit, but they didn’t make the suit, so that seemed like pointless logo creep. (Of course, Jofa didn’t make the cap either, but that logo seemed more important to communicate that sense of “the Jofa bucket.”)

Finally, the shoes. I took an old pair of my dress shoes, got some leather paint, and got to making them look like old CCM Tacks, a very ’90s look. Some time ago, a company made shoelaces that looked like skate laces, but I couldn’t find a pair anywhere. So I got some blank laces and a Sharpie and got to work – I think it looks pretty authentic:

The socks, which you can see in that last photo, are from Steel City, a Pittsburgh-centric clothing store. I saw them online and instead of paying for shipping, I waited for the holidays when I’d be in Pittsburgh and bought them at their awesome little store downtown.

I debuted the jersey suit at a Penguins game last month and got a ton of compliments. What I found most surprising was how many of the arena staffers commented on my look. These are people who see every bit of Penguins gear over the course of a season, so for them to say something, I figure I must have done a pretty decent job!

Since then, I’ve gotten some requests from friends to make suits for them. I also found a red blazer, and since I live in the DC area, maybe a Capitals suit could be in my future.

But for now, I’m thrilled with how this project turned out. The next time someone asks why I’m wearing a suit and not a jersey, I’ll tell them that I can do both.

———

Paul here. Now that is an excellent project! When I saw the photos, my favorite detail was that John used skate laces on the shoes. Once I was editing the text, I was amazed to learn that he actually drew the ticking marks on the laces by hand — incredible!

Let’s hear it for John for making his idea a reality, and also for sharing it with us. Nicely done!

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• • • • •

Sale reminders: If you’d like to help support Uni Watch — which, frankly, could use your support these days — this is a good time to do it, because:

• Teespring is running another of its 10% sales. From now through Sunday, you can get a discount on anything in the Uni Watch Shop (including the new February Pin Club design) and the Naming Wrongs Shop by using the checkout code CANDY.

• I’m matching the Teespring discount by offering 10% off on our Uni Watch Classic cap. From now through Sunday, it’s priced at $35.99, instead of the usual $39.99.

• I’m also running a 50%-off clearance sale on the handful of Uni Watch gumball helmets I still have in stock.

My thanks, as always, for your consideration.

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Design contest reminder: In case you missed it last week, my latest Uni Watch design challenge, which I’m doing in conjunction with InsideHook, is to redesign the New England Patriots. With the Brady/Belichick era nearing its conclusion, this seems like the right time for it. Full details here — get crackin’!

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The Ticker
By Anthony Emerson

Baseball News:  Brewers beat reporter Andrew Wagner reports that the team will wear its regular season uniforms for all spring workouts and Cactus League games. So that’s another team that won’t be wearing the new BP cap (from Andrew Wagner). … New Giants coach Alyssa Nakken has been assigned No. 92, and thus has become the first woman to be assigned an MLB uniform number (from Russell Preston). … The NHL’s Los Angeles Kings wore Dodgers-themed warm-up sweaters on Wednesday night. … New Reds OF Shogo Akiyama appears to be wearing Velcro-closure shoes — a possible MLB first (from Nick Walter). … The Round Rock Express, Triple-A affiliates of the Astros, will play as the “Hairy Men” on July 18 (from Nicklaus Wallmeyer). … Virginia has revealed their new unis (from David Tra). … The University of Washington has released their new unis (from Kary Klismet). … Mets 1B Pete Alonso’s number was retired by his high school (from Timmy Donahue).

NFL/CFL News: More Chiefs logo confusion: Both versions — the “closed C” and the “open C” — appear on this Super Bowl Champions pennant (from Salvatore Montalbano). … Mike Chamernik sends along this video of the greatest shoe-less NFL plays. … The Hamilton Tiger-Cats have revealed uni numbers for their free agent signings (from Wade Heidt).

Hockey News: Cross-posted from the baseball section: The Kings wore Los Angeles Dodgers-themed warm-up sweaters on Wednesday night. It works surprisingly well. … The Sabres change their board ads during intermissions. … The ECHL’s Florida Everblades will play as the “Florida Skunk Apes” for Conservation Night (from Jared Adkins). … The Air Force Academy will have new solid-white unis, including white pants and gloves, for their outdoor game against Colorado College. Additional photos here (from WB Young and Erik Herskind). … The Blues had D Jay Bouwmeester’s jersey hanging in their locker room last night. Bouwmeester collapsed on the bench a few nights ago with an apparent cardiac issue.

NBA News: The Celtics are retiring Kevin Garnett’s No. 5 sometime next season (from Mike Chamernik). … Kary Klismet sends along this retrospective of NBA All-Star uniforms. … At the Riviera golf tourney, which is now underway, the pin flag for the eighth hole is rendered in Lakers colors and typography in honor of Kobe Bryant. … The D League’s Windy City Bulls have some fun Education Night unis (from Steve Johnston). … A Twitter user found a deck of bootleg NBA playing cards — not trading cards, playing cards — full of hilariously misspelled or incorrect names (from Jerry Wolper). … Today is the 30th anniversary of Michael Jordan wearing No. 12 with NNOB after his regular jersey was stolen.

College/High School Hoops News: Marcus Morris will have his No. 22 retired by Kansas on Monday (from Timmy Donahue). … Cincinnati and Memphis went red vs. blue last night (from Josh Hinton, Timmy Donahue and our own Alex Hider). … West Virginia and Kansas men went color-vs-color, while Ben Roethlisberger — yes, the Steelers QB — was in attendance and wore the Mountaineers’ mascot’s coonskin cap (from Kary Klismet). … Also from Kary: Jasper High in Indiana are playing a game this week in their old Art Deco-style gym, which they moved out of in 1977. … One more from Kary: Iowa State’s Ashley Joens didn’t have her I-State wordmark logo on the back of her jersey during Wednesday night’s game. … Villanova retired Ryan Arcidiacono’s No. 15 on Wednesday, and USC has retired DeMar DeRozan’s No. 10 (both from Timmy Donahue). … UCLA G Tyler Campbell appeared to be taking short shorts to a new extreme last night (from @BackAftaThis).

Soccer News: Serie B side Livorno have added a 105th-anniversary patch to the center of their kits, above the primary ad (from Ed Żelaski). … English second tier side Bristol City are moving to Hummel kits next season (from Josh Hinton). … Also from Josh: USL Championship side Reno 1868 have unveiled their new home kits. … New USL Championship franchise San Diego Loyal have unveiled their inaugural kits (from @FightinFriars).

Grab Bag: East Ascension High in Louisiana has unveiled new athletics logos (from Kary Klismet). … Akec Makur Chuot of the AFL Women’s team Richmond wears No. 34 in honor of her 34 siblings (from Graham Clayton). … The National Lacrosse League has unveiled its new trophy, the Alterna Cup (from Wade Heidt). … UMBC men’s lacrosse has a schedule poster that turns into a wearable helmet (from Brian McQuiston). … You can help pick Philadelphia’s new “I voted” sticker design (from Timmy Donahue). … Also from Timmy: The US Air Force has updated its grooming and headgear policies to be more religiously inclusive. … One more from Timmy: Dickinson Public Schools in North Dakota has decided to keep calling its teams the Midgets, even after meeting with the Little People of America, the civil rights organization for people with dwarfism. … The U.S. Navy has punished 18 sailors who violated military rules by adding “Make Aircrew Great Again” patches to their uniforms during a recent speech by President Trump (from @kdill14).