Never a Dull Moment in Topsy-Turvy NBA Uni Scene

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Lots of NBA news yesterday, kids. One thing at a time:

1. In a move that had been widely expected, the Hornets became the second team to announce a throwback for the upcoming season (the first was Milwaukee). As you can see above, the new rendition takes a few liberties with the Alexander Julian-designed original, most notably by making the stripes signifcantly thicker. Here’s a side-by-side comparison — original design on the left, throwback on the right (click to enlarge):

Personally, I’ve never liked this design. I don’t like the asymmetry of the stripe pattern, plus I hold this uniform responsible for igniting the purple and teal Dumpster fire of the 1990s. But it’s been made very clear to me over the years that Charlotte fans love this uniform, so good for them — now they’ll get to see it again. (Additional photos here.)

But they won’t get to see it very often, because, the Hornets plan to wear the throwback only three times: Nov.15 against the Cavaliers, Dec. 23 against the Bucks, and Jan. 13 against the Thunder. I guess that’s what happens when you have so many other jerseys to sell wear.

2. NBA uniform sleuth Conrad Burry posted a video game screen shot of what was purported to be a red alternate jersey for the 76ers:

That got the attention of the Philly-centric sports blog Crossing Broad, which promptly posted photos — real photos, not video game screen shots — of the same red jersey. It’s not clear where they got them or how long they’d been sitting on them. Here’s the front shot (you can see the rear view and the shorts in the Crossing Broad post):

The team hasn’t confirmed anything. But given that the photos match the screen shot, I’m inclined to believe that this is legitimate. Some quick thoughts:

• This design has the same thin drop shadow and “Brotherly Love” hem embroidery that we saw with the Sixers’ blue and white uniforms, which were unveiled last month.

• The script looks a lot like the Christmas designs from the past two years.

• Speaking of the script: What the hell is that extra prong between the “i” and the “x”? Look:

Okay, so we all know cursive writing is going the way of the dinosaurs, but that’s a bizarre way to connect those two letters. Let’s compare it to that Christmas design:

Now, which one of those looks better? Even worse, which one looks like “Sixers” and which one looks like “Suxers”? Come on, people — what were you thinking?

3. And then came the mother lode: That Sixers screen shot — the one that Conrad Burry posted — was originally tweeted at him by a gamer in Australia who apparently got his hands on NBA 2K18 ahead of everyone else. The gamer also posted shots of alternate designs for the Celtics and Raptors:

So Burry asked the gamer if he could provide similar shots for all of the other teams, and the guy obliged. Burry then posted all 30 of them on SportsLogos.net — a great scoop on his part.

Ordinarily, I’d be at least a bit skeptical of video game shots. But the fact that the Sixers design appears to be legit suggests that the others probably are as well. We’ll know for sure soon enough, because the Suns are planning to unveil their alternate design tomorrow, and I’m hearing that there may be other unveilings tomorrow as well.

As you can see from those Celtics and Raptors jerseys, the screen shots indicate these alternates are a mix of new designs and old ones that teams have already been wearing. Some of the new ones are fine, and one is outstanding; some of the others aren’t so hot. You can see all of them in Burry’s post. I’m going to hold off on assessing them until we know for sure that they’re legit.

Also: As Burry notes in his piece, we were originally told that these alternates would be listed under the rubric of “the Athlete’s Mindset,” but the video game has them listed as “Statement Uniforms.” Those two terms are cringeworthy in roughly equal measure, so we’ll just keep referring to them as alternates.

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ESPN reminder: My latest ESPN column has the results of our Titans-redesign contest. Check it out here.

Raffle reminder: I’m currently raffling off some cool Hartford Whalers memorabilia. Full details here.

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Uni Watch roster update: As you may recall, I recently put up a “Help Wanted” sign so I could hire a new Ticker intern in the wake of Mike Chamernik’s departure from the site. I’m happy to report that we had so many excellent applicants that I ended up hiring three of them. Meet Jamie, Kris, and Anthony:

Jamie Rathjen
I’m from Centreville, Virginia, in the Washington, D.C. area, a recent graduate of the University of Virginia with a degree in English, and a longtime Uni Watch reader who had never submitted anything to the Ticker until last Thursday. That was a good time to start, I suppose.

My favorite sports are hockey, soccer (men’s and women’s), football (college and pro), and college basketball. I don’t actually play a sport (although I tried out for the UVa quidditch team), but I enjoy running and cycling. My other interests besides sports include reading, writing, music, video games, history, geography, and trivia.

———

Kris Gross
I am a 24-year-old board op/producer working for ESPN Radio in Dallas. I also work part-time with the Dallas Cowboys TV department.

I am a uniform enthusiast with a passion for purple jerseys (sorry, Paul) and a disdain for white pants. I graduated from TCU in 2014 with a degree in Sports Broadcasting, and I’m getting married to a girl way out of my league on Oct. 21.

[It’s a measure of my belief in Kris’s potential that I didn’t let the purple thing get in the way. — PL]

———

Anthony Emerson
I’m a 22-year-old English student at the University of Southern Maine in Portland. You may know me from the handful of soccer pieces I’ve written with Phil over the years. Soccer is indeed my favorite sport. I first got into Uni Watch via the ESPN column and then the blog, which I’ve been reading religiously since I was a teenager. I’m proud to be a part of the team.

———

Jamie, Kris, and Anthony all did extremely well in their Ticker auditions, and I’m confident that you’ll see no drop-off in quality when they’re on duty. With these new team members in place, and with deputy editor Phil Hecken and assistant editor Alex Hider still on board, we’ve reshuffled the Ticker assignments. Effective immediately, the Ticker will be authored by the following people on the following days:

Mondays: Jamie
Tuesdays and Wednesdays: Alex
Thursdays: Me
Fridays: Kris
Saturdays: Anthony
Sundays: Phil

I’m extremely happy to have these new additions to our roster. Please join me in welcoming them to the Uni Watch family.

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Naming Wrongs update: Scott Turner and I have been wanting to create an all-purpose design that would apply to all corporate-named stadiums. We briefly dabbled with a design that said “I Hate Corporate Stadium Names,” but the use of “hate” seemed a bit extreme, plus we felt we could come up with something more creative. And now we have (click to enlarge):

Not bad, right? We can do this in just about any color combo. If you have specific requests, just ask. We’ll also be adding versions with the word “Stadium” replaced by “Arena.”

All of these designs are now available in the Naming Wrongs shop. They’re also cross-listed in the Uni Watch shop, where card-carrying members can get 15% off. (If you’re a member and need the discount code, send me a note and I’ll hook you up.)

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The Ticker
By Paul

’Skins Watch (now running on Thursdays): The city of Montreal, moving toward reconciliation with indigenous people, has added an Iroquois symbol to its flag and will rename Amherst Street, which had been named after the British general who advocated giving smallpox-laced blankets to Indigenous tribes (from @PureLipschitz).

Baseball News: I remember when this happened: Pirates OF Dave Parker had to wear a helmet in the field in Montreal because fans were throwing stuff at him. … The excellent Threads of Our Game website, which chronicles pre-1900 uniforms, has recently turned up some good info on designs from 1891. … A tweet from A’s exec Chris Giles indicates that the team will be moving back to kelly green. Maybe so, but I can tell you that it isn’t happening in 2018 (from Kyle Brown). … Speaking of kelly green, look at this! That’s the Single-A Eugene Emeralds. Yes, the stirrups are backwards, but still. Here’s another shot (from Wade Heidt). … Good spot by Jeff Walter, who noticed a sleeve logo inconsistency in a 1996 Reds game. … Durham Bulls P Mike Broadway was victimized by a NOB font inconsistency (from Casey Hart). … Check out the Phillies’ locker room nameplates: The lettering font matches the jerseys, but the number font doesn’t (good observation by Frank McGuigan). … Here’s our best look yet at the “Postseason” cap patch (from @frankie2pants).

Pro Football News: Here’s another article about the Colts’ seamstress, who’s been getting a lot of attention lately (from Mike Miller). … The CFL is eliminating pads from regular season practices. Current NFL policy limits teams to 14 padded practices during the regular season, although some teams don’t use them. … Back to school special: The mighty Fleer Sticker Project has a great post on old NFL and AFL textbook covers. … This is pretty funny: Taylor Nicolaisen has a blog devoted to spotting crooked Broncos logos.

College Football News: Here’s this week’s uni combos for Vanderbilt (here’s a closer look at the gold helmet), Virginia Tech, and Illinois. … The 1938 Tulane/UNC game might win the prize for weirdest program cover design (from James Gilbert). … Here’s a breakdown of the uniform outfitters for all 130 FBS teams (from @VictoryCB). … Here’s a good look at the Tulane equipment staff getting helmets ready for a game (from Ryan Doyle). … Here’s a good look at Purdue’s college football centennial helmet logo from 1969 (from Pro Football Journal). … As you know, I’m not a fan of commingling sports and corporate logos. But I have to admit that Ball State wearing the Ball jars logo would be pretty good. … Penn State freshman now have to earn the stripes on their practice helmets (from Jerry Wolper). … An alum has written an entertaining plea for the Columbia football team to wear Columbia blue uniforms. … Houston plans to scrap their regular NOBs for Saturday’s home opener and instead go with the rarely seen SNOB — that’s school name on back. … You knew this was coming: Florida is adding a new helmet decal for Hurricane Irma (from George Mangrum). … New mono-white road uniform for Northern Illinois (from @AVKingJames).

Hockey News: Some new uni number assignments for the Rangers (from Alan Kreit). … Speaking of the Rangers, look how their torso striping looks on the new Adidas road jersey — ay-yi-yi. That looks more like an Islanders fisherman jersey than a Rangers jersey. … New center ice design for the Capitals. “The buried lede of the whole situation is that they also changed the stripe pattern of the red line, from white stars to red stars within a red outline,” notes Zach Spencer. “I think the stripe looks way better and cleaner this way.” … The Canucks’ new practice jerseys use the team’s retro logo (from Ryan Wetstein). … New Ron Hextall-inspired mask for Flyers G Brian Elliott (from Patrick Thomas).

Soccer News: Nike’s soccer jerseys are making too many teams look the same (thanks, Alex). … UK soccer team logos reimagined through a Simpsons filter? Sure, why not (from Tanner Welch).

Grab Bag: A Canadian judge was suspended without pay and reprimanded for wearing one of Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” caps in his courtroom. … Gross: William Penn University puts the Nike logo on its business cards (from Jesse Gavin). … Here are this week’s IndyCar liveries (from Tim Dunn). … Interesting piece on hate group logos and iconography (from Jeremy Baker). … According to this book about marketing, chicken farmers in Nakuru, Kenya, painted their chickens purple. Why? “The color purple is not appetizing to birds of prey. As a matter of fact, eagles and hawks don’t know how to process purple things — they don’t recognize purple as food.” No comment (from Will Scheibler).

Golden State to Wear NBA’s Latest Badge of Shame

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The Warriors yesterday became the latest NBA team to add an advertising patch, as they announced a new deal with the Japanese tech company Rakuten.

The deal is notable for several reasons:

• The Warriors are the defending NBA champs, so anything they do carries extra weight.

• The deal is reportedly worth $60 million over three years, which is by far the highest price that’s been paid for an NBA uniform ad so far, nearly doubling the value of Cavs’ deal with Goodyear.

• Most of the other NBA teams participating in the uni advertising program have partnered with local companies — perhaps as a genuine expression of community solidarity, or perhaps just to provide a fig leaf of respectability to the ad patches (probably some of both). By going with a Japanese company, the Warriors are essentially saying, “Never mind the local community. We’re looking to market ourselves to an international audience.”

• The deal also includes a new name for the team’s practice facility, which will now be known as the Rakuten Performance Center. (I still call it — uh, what did it used to be called?)

• Rakuten also advertises on FC Barcelona’s jerseys, making them the first soccer uni advertiser to double-dip with the NBA.

• According to the Warriors and Rakuten, the ad patch is not actually a patch. It is, they insist, a badge, which really scales new heights in newspeak and chutzpah. (No joke: About two hours after the Golden State announcement, someone on Twitter wrote to me about “NFL captain badges.” Sigh.)

Here’s how the badge patch will look on the team’s white uniform:

A white version of the logo will be used on the team’s blue uniform.

Golden State is the 14th NBA team to sell ad space on its uniform. Sixteen teams remain ad-free — for now.

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Titans contest results: Today, finally, we have the results of the Titans-redesign contest over at ESPN (including Gene Sanny’s design, shown above, which as you can see solves “flaming thumbtack” problem by keeping the flames and eliminating the thumbtack). Check it out here.

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Eight of one, two dozen of the other: For years now, people have been wondering and debating which number the Lakers would retire for Kobe Bryant. Would they go with No. 8, which he wore for the first half of his career and his first three championships, or No. 24, which he wore for his second half and final two championships?

And now we have our answer: They’re going to retire both numbers. It’ll take place on Dec. 18, prior to L.A.’s game against Golden State.

I know of no other player in any sport who’s ever had two numbers retired by the same team. Some may think it qualifies as overkill, but I think it’s actually the right move. Bryant was a special player, he put up similar stats with each uni number, and it’s hard to imagine anyone else ever wearing either of those numbers for the Lakers, so why not go ahead and retire both of them? Works for me.

This will also make Bryant, by my count, the 12th person from the Big Four pro leagues to have two different numbers retired (although all the others did it with multiple teams, not one team). Here are the other 11 that I’m aware of:

LeaguePlayerNumbers (Teams)
MLBSparky Anderson10 (Reds), 11 (Tigers)
Wade Boggs12 (Rays), 26 (Red Sox)
Carlton Fisk27 (Red Sox), 72 (White Sox)
Reggie Jackson9 (A's), 44 (Yankees)
Nolan Ryan30 (Angels), 34 (Astros, Rangers)
NBAJulius Erving6 (76ers), 32 (Nets)
Pete Maravich7 (Jazz, Pelicans), 44 (Hawks)
Earl Monroe10 (Wizards), 15 (Knicks)
Shaquille O'Neal32 (Heat), 34 (Lakers)
Oscar Robertson1 (Bucks), 14 (Kings)
NHLTim Horton2 (Sabres), 7 (Maple Leafs)

There are no NFL players on that list because only one NFLer has ever had a number retired by two different teams: Reggie White, whose No. 92 was honored by the Eagles and Packers.

Also worth noting: Moses Malone has had his No. 24 retired by the Rockets, and there was talk two years ago that the 76ers were going to retire No. 2 for him, which would qualify him for this list. As of now, however, the Sixers haven’t gone through with that plan.

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New MLB anniversary logos: Two MLB teams released anniversary logos yesterday — one officially, one unofficially.

Let’s start with the Rockies, whose 25th-anniversary mark is shown at right (and can be clicked to enlarge). They released it yesterday on Twitter, and although they didn’t specifically say that it’ll be worn as a patch, it will be.

I’ll say this much: It certainly doesn’t follow the standard MLB boilerplate patch style, so they get points for breaking the mold. Can’t say I love the design, though, and I’m generally not fond of square patches — the Mariners have been wearing one this season, and I think it looks clunky.

Next up: the D-backs. They haven’t made an official logo announcement, but they did tweet their 2018 schedule yesterday, and the graphic included a 20th-anniversary logo. I managed to isolate it from the background, as you can see at left.

Although the shape is a bit odd, the use of symmetry makes this more of a conventional MLB patch design — and a fairly handsome one. The weird thing is the big “20” echoed by the use of “20th” on the bottom line. Why the repetition? Doesn’t make sense.

Looks like we’ll be seeing a lot of patches in 2018, as these two designs are joining the ones for the A’s 50th anniversary in Oakland and the Royals’ 50th season, which were released a while back. It’s worth noting that next year is also the Marlins’ 25th anniversary and the 60th anniversary of the Dodgers and Giants moving to California, so they may have patches as well. Stay tuned.

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Too good for the Ticker: The Pirates released their 2018 schedule yesterday, and they did it via a one-minute video clip that is completely brilliant. I don’t know who created it, but they deserve a raise. Trust me, this is the best 60 seconds you’ll spend today:

(Big thanks to Yancy Yeater for letting me know about this one.)

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Raffle reminder: I’m currently raffling off some cool Hartford Whalers memorabilia. Full details here.

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The Ticker
By Alex Hider

Baseball NewsThe third base umpire in last night’s Rays/Yankees game was wearing a snapback cap (from George Falkowski and Ryan Siciliano). … Spotted in Cleveland yesterday: a Tigers/Indians frankenjersey (from @mgvanwormer). … This poster shows the uni evolution of the Wilmington Blue Rocks, the Royals’ AA affiliate (from @EnigmaSolutionz). … Brian James Simmons found a youth baseball team sporting not-quite tequila sunrise jerseys. … Dodgers OF Curtis Granderson is still wearing his Mets batting gloves. … The ad for Dodgers merch appears to show what the postseason cap patches will look like (from @GoBeavers24). … Astros P Lance McCullers Jr.’s charitable foundation is selling “Houstrong” tequila sunrise T-shirts, with the proceeds benefitting animals that were affected by Hurricane Harvey (from @BeautyOfAGame). … The A’s have chosen the site for their new stadium (thanks, Brinke).

NFL NewsHere’s another piece on the Vicis Zero1 helmet (from Tommy Turner). … It’s hard to read in these photos, but it appears that the Browns include a hashtag on the jerseys that players wear when doing charitable work in the community. Does anyone know what it says? (From Beau Parsons.) … An editorial cartoonist illustrated a Bills-themed comic earlier this week, and put a hamster in a ’00s Bills jersey (from Brad Loliger‏). … Niners fans think the team’s stadium is too hot, so the team is exploring ways of “enhancing the fan experience” on warm weather days (thanks, Brinke).

College/High School Football NewsMinnesota will be going mono-yellow on Saturday, with — get this — Goldy the Gopher-themed helmets (from Ted Chastain). … The ACC Tracker has been updated to reflect week two. The University of Manitoba, a college football team in Canada, will sport new unis this season. Here’s what they wore from 2008-2016 for reference (from Daren Landers). … New uniforms for Riverside High School in West Virginia, designed by reader Ethan Dimitroff‏. … AZCentral.com ranked the top 10 high school football uniforms in Arizona (from Tyson Tomao).

Hockey News: The Golden Knights broke out their white jerseys last night — and the white gloves finally made an appearance (from Maximiliano‏). … The Maple Leafs will be one of the few teams to sport an alternate jersey this year, as they’ll wear 1918 Toronto Arenas throwbacks during the “Next Century Game” in December. The game celebrates 100 seasons of NHL hockey in Toronto (thanks, Paul). … New unis for North Dakota (from Patrick Thomas). … Here’s a really interesting video showing how Blackhawks D Connor Murphy got to help paint the team’s center-ice logo (from @True2Atlanta).

NBA News: It looks like the Hornets will be unveiling a new uni today (thanks Paul). … NBA Live 18 may have given us a sneak peak into what Nike plans to do with referee uniforms (from @cdj80). … Suns head coach Earl Watson presented a customized Suns jersey to former president George W. Bush on Monday (from Josh Pearlman).

Soccer NewsThis may have been shared before, but the Premier League put together a graphic that includes every jersey that every team has ever worn in the league’s 25-year history (from Chris Cruz). … New away kits for Bologna FC of Serie A. The striping includes the names of past Bologna players (from Ed Zelaski). … Charleston Battery of the USL will wear orange kits on Saturday, which will later be auctioned off to raise money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (from Will Chitty). … Aaron Creswell of West Ham wore last season’s home shorts for the second half of Monday night’s game (from Ben Isaacs).

Grab BagA bakery in Chapel Hill, N.C., baked a giant UNC cake for the grand opening of a new campus bookstore. Unfortunately, they misspelled “Tar Heels” (from James Gilbert). … Ben Whitehead spotted a Pittsburgh pro sports logo mashup window decal the other day. … Someone mocked up a football helmet for Ballast Point, a craft brewery based in San Diego (from Andrew Cosentino). … The Adelaide Crows — that’s an Aussie football team — are letting fans vote on their 2018 clash guernsey (from Jeremy Brahm).

Uni Watch DIY Project: A Custom Jersey by Wafflebored

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[Editor’s Note: Today we have a guest entry from the goalie-obsessed DIY genius Wafflebored, whose latest project was a commission from a Uni Watch reader. Enjoy. — PL]

By Wafflebored

I was recently contacted on Twitter by Uni Watch reader Chuck Eldridge, who wanted to know if I would be interested in making a custom jersey for him to wear in his beer league and pickup games. The project appealed to me immediately, as Chuck is a goalie. In fact, he’s a big goalie at 6’6″, so I knew interesting custom tailoring would be needed. In addition, he had an absolutely great concept for the design: Chuck is a proud resident of Santa Ana, California — the seat of Orange County — and envisioned a jersey design based on the great vintage orange crate labels from the region.

We bounced around some ideas, and I made some quick sketches of possible logos that could serve as the jersey crest. In addition, we had ideas for interesting treatments of the sleeve numbers and back number. I made this mock-up so Chuck could get a feel for what I was thinking for the overall jersey design (I opted for dark navy as a lot of the vintage labels seemed to use that color, probably because it contrasts so well with orange):

Chuck was happy with the designs, so I started work on the jersey, using a heavy polyester mesh. Chuck sent me some measurements of his existing jersey, which looked a little tight, so we made it a bit larger. Off-the-rack goalie jerseys can still be snug for a guy of Chuck’s size, and I guessed he’d probably never enjoyed the feel of a loose-fitting jersey.

Here are some photos of the jersey as I was working on the collar and sleeves:

I had a lot of fun with the front crest. Since the vintage produce labels used a lot of color and different elements, I made sure to use a variety of fabrics, including a red-pinstriped baseball jersey material, as well as poly-cotton twill and satin tackle twill. I used hand-drawn paper patterns. Everything was sewn down with a standard zigzag stitch.

For the sleeve number patch, I envisioned something like the old Cleveland Barons jersey, where they had the sleeve number within an Ohio-shaped patch. We used a single orange with the number inside it. I used a number font inspired the typography of the vintage fruit box label era.

For the back number, Chuck and I agreed we wanted to do something unique, similar to the Warriors’ cable car design. After trying to fit the number 31 inside a crate, I came up with a design that shows a graphic representation of an orange crate as viewed from the end. You can see the slats on the side, and the top is overflowing with picked oranges. I included a green tree leaf, which is a common theme throughout the jersey and also references the green leaves that are commonly found on the vintage crate labels.

Of course, 31 is a classic goalie number, but it also has multiple meanings for Chuck. He grew up as a Ducks fan and watched Guy Hebert when he wore that number. In addition, California is the 31st state, plus Chuck has multiple family members who are retired from the Santa Ana police department, and 31 is the local station number that appeared on all of their badges. All of this information really added to my enjoyment of the design and end product, since everything on the jersey was totally customized for Chuck.

As luck would have it, Chuck’s parents were visiting Vancouver the week after I finished the jersey, so I dropped it off at their hotel so they could deliver it to him personally.

Chuck has now worn the jersey on the ice, and it’s exciting for me to see these pictures of him wearing it (photos by Jason Frerking):

———

Paul here. What a spectacular project! Big thanks to Chuck and Wafflebored for sharing it with us. You can see more Wafflebored projects here.

Meanwhile, here are a few closing words from Chuck, the very happy client:

It was fascinating to see the creative process. In the couple games I’ve played wearing the jersey I’ve had quite a few opponents and refs compliment the look. And believe me, it’s unusual to have those two parties take a moment to skate up between face-offs and start chatting about a jersey. They’re always shocked to learn that it was hand-crafted. It’s also by far the best-fitting jersey I’ve worn

My beer league captain has ordered team jerseys, but they have yet to arrive, so for now it’s a free-for-all regarding jerseys during the games. Once the team jerseys arrive, that’s what I’ll wear. But I’m also a semi-permanent sub with another team — as a sub (and a goalie, at that), I can wear what I want, and the Orange County jersey is a unique and stylish look when I’m in the crease.

Great stuff. Thanks again, guys.

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Raffle reminder: I’m currently raffling off some cool Hartford Whalers memorabilia. Full details here.

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Collector’s Corner
By Brinke Guthrie

When I first saw this jersey I thought, “Fouts knockoff.” But no, this one’s from Sand-Knit, and they made a lot of jerseys back then. So perhaps this one was just as close as you could get to the real thing. Sure looks nice, right?

Now for the rest of this week’s picks:

• Kinda funky-looking handle on this Oakland A’s beer stein. The listing says 1970s, but they used this logo from 1982-1992.

• Joe DiMaggio, the Yankee Clipper himself, looks a little like Emperor Palpatine from Star Wars on this 1940s pennant, if I may say so.

• Check out this beauty: a 1970s NFL football bank with 14 teams on the base. You lift the laces on the top to drop your coins in. Looks like the red striping is peeling a bit, but a little glue will fix that. Reasonable price, too.

• Another football — this one is a Wilson/NFL Football “Solid State” AM radio, complete with a tee.

• Before the Rockies were an MLB team, there was a team by that same name in the NHL. Here’s a Colorado Rockies Starter jacket from the 1970s. Always loved that logo — such simple execution.

• Though the listing says 1970s, I’m pretty sure these Pittsburgh Steelers Superpro Club helmet stickers are from the early 1980s. One of my favorite helmet looks.

• These 1980s 76ers basketball socks come with the hang tag that says “Japan/NBA.” Here’s another pair of Sixers sox — these look thick and comfy, with embroidered “76” and NBA logos.

• Had one of these! This is an early-1970s Dallas Cowboys display button. You could stand this 6″ button up with the pop-out cardboard stand on the back, or pin it to your shirt, though I always wondered how anyone would wear such a large button.

• This 1960s Baltimore Colts helmet looks kinda DIY, does it not?

• We’ve run one of these before, but it bears repeating: You simply cannot do any better for 1960s NFL artwork than this poster by the Master, Dave Boss.

• This 1972 Stancraft/Kansas City Chiefs poster is a design by George Bartell, another artist who could bring his A game.

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The Ticker
By Paul

Baseball News: D-backs P Jake Barrett somehow ended up with two American flag cap patches last night. … A Sherwin-Williams ad behind the home on deck circle in Cleveland misspelled “Serwin.” … The Indians, who have the best record in the American League, have won 19 straight. The Dodgers, who have the best record in the National League, have lost 11 straight. And L.A. still has four more wins than Cleveland. Think about that.

NFL News: Fun fact that I hadn’t been aware of: The Falcons wore white for their first-ever home game. Good-looking uni matchup there, eh? (From Jay Jones.) … Just a few months after installing new turf, the Pats are replacing it with newer turf (from Mike Chamernik and Dan Tarrant). … We’ve seen this before, but it’s always interesting to see the odd FIOB style that the Chargers used back in the mid-1970s. Additional examples here. The Browns did the same thing (first Chargers photo from Andrew Greenstein). … An official in last night’s Broncos/Chargers game mistakenly announced that a time out had been taken by “San Diego.”

College Football News: I’ve seen plenty of thigh pads with an imprint of the team logo, but I’m not sure I’ve seen them with the player’s uni number. That’s Penn State RB Saquon Barkley (from @FightinPhils13). … Hmmm, why does Michigan WR Grant Perry not have TV numbers? (Good spot by John Canterbury.) … GFGS this week for Miami of Ohio. … Mono-orange this week for Idaho State (from Brad Davis).

Hockey News: At the Young Stars tourney, the Jets wore Adidas while the Oilers wore Reebok. … Ray Hundt sent along some scans from early-1970s Topps hockey comic booklets. Very cool stuff. … Good piece on how Madison Square Garden workers create the Rangers’ ice in preparation for the new season.

Basketball News: The Suns will unveil their alternate uniform “from the athlete’s mindset” this Friday. … New uniforms for Rutgers (from Dan Torsiello).

Grab Bag: This is so completely awesome: People dressed exactly like random things. Don’t miss (from my pal Jules Verdone). … Ever see those ads for wristwatches that are almost free? Or actually free, if you pay for the shipping? The great Bay Area artist Jenny Odell, who I first became aware of when we were both part of a Pop-Up Magazine live performance thingie, has written a really brilliant piece in which she investigates the origins of one such watch. Interesting and entertaining — highly recommended. … New black-and-white logo for BMW. … New logo possibly in the works for Apple.

Monday Morning Uni Watch

The NFL season kicked off in earnest yesterday, which means it’s time for our first Monday Morning Uni Watch report of the season. As you can see above, the big surprise of the day was in Chicago, where the Bears came out in mono-navy. Contrary to what some observers said, this was not the same as their Thursday-night uniform, because that uni has dark socks. Prior to yesterday, they had gone mono-navy with white socks only twice: in 2006 and 2002 (both times against the Packers). Additional photos from yesterday’s game here.

In other news from around the league yesterday:

• In a move that was widely expected, the Texans added a helmet decal for Hurricane Harvey relief:

• The Steelers wore their Dan Rooney memorial patch for the first time. The design had been unveiled back in July, but the team didn’t wear the patch during the preseason (click to enlarge):

• If you look again at that photo, it appears that Ben Roethlisberger was wearing the odd hybrid jersey. The collar looks like the new template, but the jersey has seams like the ones from the old template. Weird.

• In a related development, three Bills offensive linemen — guard Richie Incognito, center Eric Wood, and tackle Cordy Glenn — wore old jerseys with the full collar striping (click first photo to enlarge):

At least one of those players — Incognito — also appeared to have some aftermarket modifications made to his sleeves, with some sort of laces inserted into the sleeve cuffs (click to enlarge):

• As you can see from some of those earlier photos, the Bills wore captaincy patches. First time in a while they’ve done that — they had stopped wearing them during the Rex Ryan coaching era.

• And speaking of captaincy patches, the Eagles wore them too, I’m pretty sure for the first time ever.

• The Browns unveiled a new field design, with really nice retro-styled end zone scripts and, surprisingly, no midfield logo (here’s how it looked last year; click to enlarge):

• The Browns also have a new signature for the Dawg Pound.

• Speaking of fields, the Colts/Rams game looked like it was being played on a hybrid NFL/NCAA gridiron. Obviously, USC plays there as well, but it’s surprising to see the college graphics still so visible:

• Colts tight end Jack Doyle appeared to be missing the maker’s mark on his left jersey sleeve.

• The Packers had some serious color-inconsistency issues with their socks.

• Not sure if this was already noted at some point during the preseason, but Seahawks wideout Paul Richardson is going with JrOB this year. He didn’t have it last season.

• Halle-freakin’-lujah: The Cowboys are finally cutting the striping tape on their SpeedFlex helmets.

The funny thing about that is that they were still running the stripe across the flex-panel gap throughout the preseason. Odd that they changed now.

• Six teams wore white at home: the Texans (they always wear white for their home opener), Bengals, Titans, Browns, Rams, and, of course, the Cowboys.

• Here’s a list of players who protested during the national anthem. Additional info here.

• I’ve decided not to list postgame jersey swaps this season. So many players are now doing it, it got to be overwhelming, and I got the impression that not many readers cared one way or the other. Thanks for understanding.

And that wraps us up for Week 1. It’s like riding a bike, right?

(My thanks to all contributors, including Mike Chamernik, Kyle Good, Rok Grilec‏, James Gilbert, Jared Grubbs, Robert Hayes, Steve Lega, Pat Quinn, James Riley, Spencer Seaner, and Justin Zayid.)

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Raffle reminder: I’m currently raffling off some cool Hartford Whalers memorabilia. Full details here.

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The Ticker
By Alex Hider

Baseball News: Today is Sept. 11, but only 16 of the 30 MLB teams are playing today, so teams wore American flag cap patches yesterday (with the New Era maker’s mark moved over to the other side). The teams that are playing today will wear the caps again today. … The Blue Jays’ caps had the Canadian flag alongside the American flag. … The Mets have been wearing first responder caps during pregame warm-ups for the past couple of days. … USA Baseball’s 18U team has some spiffy-looking stirrups (from Nick Lineback).

Pro Football News: The Bengals released their jersey schedule just before kickoff yesterday. … Panthers LB Luke Kuechly reportedly has been wearing a “Q Collar” on the field. It’s a device that helps detect concussions (from James Gilbert). … Marc-Louis Paprzyca made some modifications to his Jay Cutler jersey. Kevin Butler was a member of the 1985 Super Bowl champion Bears. … Anyone in the market for a Cowboys/Vikings frankenjersey? (From Rick Glover). … Erik Gamborg‏ found this shirt with a white Chiefs helmet, that includes one random red facemask bar. … Good story on the issues that CFL equipment managers deal with week in and week out (from Ted Arnold).

College/High School Football News: College football name of the year goes to Eastern Michigan DL Lion King. Yes, that’s really his name. Even better? He goes FNOB (from Michael Lipinski). … Latheron “LA” Rogers-Anderson of Western Kentucky wears “LA” on his NOB, which also includes a hyphen (from Bryan Fyalkowski‏). … Colorado has been wearing a pair of helmet decals this season. One commemorates the 50th anniversary of the running of Ralphie, the live buffalo that stampedes into the stadium each game. The other is a memorial decal for Rahsaan Salaam, whose number will be retired later this year (from Ron Ruelle). … Youngstown State will wear camo jerseys on Nov. 18 on (from Robert Hayes). … New Hampshire has been wearing ’80s/’90s-era logos on their helmets this uear (from David Bailey). … Reader John Michael Williams designed a pair of memorial decals for his alma mater, Mayfield High School in Kentucky. … Someone whipped up a BFBS West Virginia concept (from Mamba Gunna).

Soccer News: Club Universidad Nacional of Liga MX went “big logo” yesterday against Tijuana (from Ed Zelaski). … New kits for San Diego State (from Maximiliano). … New third kit for Roma (from Matthew Klimberg).

Grab Bag: Reader David Firestone is talking US Open tennis balls and toss coins over on his blog. … Ray Hund sent along this collection of  “Celebrate the Century” stamps. Released in 1998, they include iconic moments from the 20th Century. … Wade Heidt took these photos from the 2017 Mann Cup — the senior men’s lacrosse championship of Canada. The teams — the New Westminster Salmonbellies and the Peterborough Lakers — both use similar shades of red and blue, making the game look like an inter-squad scrimmage. … Girls in Western Australia have gained the right to wear pants or shorts to school.