November 19, 2014

Wednesday: Fishermans and Mighty Ducks?

Welcome! We have concepts to rate and enjoy today! This Sunday Ryan will be hosting a HJC podcast so check that out. Also, Ryan mentioned it, but there is only two more spots in the Fourth quarter vote. Which means only two more spots in the running for COTY. Speaking of COTY, Ryan let the writers pick a concept to bring back from the dead and nominate it for COTW so it has a chance at COTY. So I will reveal my pick ( it was really tough just picking one but ) ... 

MY Revive COTW nomination goes to this concept by Tom V : *feel free to second*


I just love this concept. Pure gold! I couldn't decide between Tom's calgary concept or the one below. After 1 hour of staring at my screen I chose Calgary over Ottawa. 


 Dylan has been one of my favourite artists this year, so it was tough not rewarding him.

Voting is simple this week, we have the CHL competition, and the regular COTW vote.

COTW Nov 10-16 vote (ends Friday @ 11:59pm Eastern)
CHL ReDesign Top 3 League votes (end Wednesday @ 11:59pm Eastern)



Now on to the main stuff!


CPM - NY Islanders


Positives: The islanders are bringing this classic logo back on a practice jersey before a game. Colin suggests the Islanders bring it full time. Its interesting, and goes well with the striping. Colours are balanced really well! Shoulder patch = awesome. All the details tie in really well together, so great job.
Negatives: I'm not sure I would want to see this replace their full time set. It would be perfect for an alternate.
Overall: Really good jersey, but I'm on the fence of wanting to actually see it full time. (8.5/10)



Dion S. - Tampa Bay Lightning


Positives: Anything beats the boring jersey introduced by the Lighting a few weeks ago. I like this logo better than the BOLTS word mark.
Negatives: Not sold one the arm striping, It gives me a "classic"feel that I don't really want for a lightning alternate. Execution is good, but it could be better by adding a helmet logo.
Overall: You have a good base, but playing around with the stripes, trying to make it more modern could really kick this concept up a notch. (7/10)



Matt Mc. - Anaheim Ducks



Positives: Matt uses the template he used in the Mallards competition for a mighty ducks revival. This logo is a classic, so why not bringing it back! I pretty much like everything about this concept. The pant striping looks neat with the jersey striping.
Negatives: I saw on Twitter Matt posted a bunch of different options for this concept, and my favourites were the orange and gold ones. I think the logo would look better with that scheme. Also adding the back of the jerseys would be nice. 
Overall: I like bringing back the old logo, but I'd prefer the current colour scheme as it would go better with the modern template Matt has given us. (8.5/10)




Nate F. - Auburn U (NCAA)



Positives: Love the orange used in this concept. The logo looks awesome on a hockey jersey. 
Negatives: This is a Minnesota Wild alternate jersey. I get a university wouldn't want to spend money on a custom template but still, its a concept, be a little more creative! Stitching should go under, and end at the hem. The numbers on the back are a tad small. 
Overall: Get a little more creative! (7/10)




Patrick G. - Calgary Flames



Positives: Patrik suggest this as an alternate. The lack of black really makes this jersey look vintage. I'm all for Calgary using more yellow in their jerseys!
Negatives: The shoulder patch is alright.. I'd prefer it on both shoulders, or none at all. The Jersey itself is a little plain, but sometimes thats alright. Maybe adding collar laces would add to the vintage effect.
Overall: I think this has potential, not just as an alternate, but maybe full time. Just needs a few tweaks. (7/10)


Scott D. - Columbus Vs. Buffalo




Positives: Scott suggests a Stadium series with no angled stripes? No chrome logos? No elongated numbers? What is this? Kidding, i'm all for more classic jerseys for the stadium series games. I like the return of the buffalo word mark. Execution is spot on. 
Negatives: The buffalo striping isn't the best. Maybe adding a blue stripe in between the two yellow stripes. The old Columbus logo isn't to bad either but I feel like it should stay in the past, or at least wait a bit so you can call it a vintage logo.
Overall: Very solid, but maybe more could've been done. (8.5/10)


Taylor R. - Gatineau Olympiques



Positives: Yes, you didn't copy a LA Kings jersey, props! I don't mind not having bright colours, since all the different shades of grey create a cool effect. Yoke stripes are a nice touch.
Negatives: A black NOB would be better on the white jersey (I can't read the name currently). A thicker black outline would be nice to see on the numbers on the grey jersey. Stitching should end at the hem striping (See concept above from Scott). 
Overall: Better than what they currently have. (8/10)


Check out the podcast that will be featured this weekend, Vote and maybe second a concept here and there and your HJC duties will be done! 


November 18, 2014

Tuesday: Snow Day

****** ATTENTION ******
I (Ryan) somehow missed Michael G's OHL and WHL entries into our current competition!!!! They are there now. Go check them out and if they make your Top 3 you are entitled to change your votes if you have already made them. Please indicate that you are doing so in the comment. Thanks.
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Click HERE for details

Hey guys! I'm writing this on Monday, as it is a snow day for all the area schools due to 2 INCHES OF SNOW! Having been in Ottawa for over 6 years, and Michigan for another, I find this hilarious. There isn't any ice, no current precipitation, just the current 2 inches of snow on the ground. Any one from the north may laugh, but the people here are head over heels freaking out buying bread and milk for when they "get snowed in". So have fun with all the extra work caused by a snow day kids. Saving the days off for actual snow (not this little stuff) would have made since.

I'm currently working on plans for an outdoor hockey rink at a park near my house. The area is about 100' by 25' so it's big enough for skating or 2 on 2. I'm getting everything lined up, my only concern is that the temperatures rarely drop below 20 degrees (Fahrenheit) in Evansville so I don't know if it would be cold enough to keep the rink frozen. Can you guys (and females) let me know in the comments if a skating rink would work with highs sometimes as high as 35/36 degrees? If it comes together I will definitely post pics of the goings on. I hope to host a Winter Classic party on new years with a 2 on 2 tournament, food, and a projector and screen playing the game. There aren't any outdoor skating rinks in Evansville and ponds rarely freeze thick enough for skating, so it should be a big hit. I'll keep you guys updated as it goes along.





COTW Nov 10-16 vote (ends Friday @ 11:59pm Eastern)
CHL ReDesign Top 3 League votes (end Wednesday @ 11:59pm Eastern)
COTW Mailing List (Click here for details)





Buffalo Sabres: Colin M


Buffalo needs a yellow jersey. Not a superhero costume. A jersey. I'm a big fan of the classic design. The old shoulder patch from the buffaslug days looks pretty snazzy as well. I know this is the "Brights' series, but I wish the blue was darker. It doesn't look good how it is. This was a great series, and I'm sad to see it end in the next few days. 

I'm "blue" about the blue. Still a solid A-






Calgary Flames: David P


David brings back the classic for the Flames. I love that you kept the same style for the Flames. It took me a second at first glance to notice what was different. This really keeps the current branding for the team intact. I wish you would have added some kind of design to the pants like a logo or stripe. It would definitely complete the uniform when worn as part of it.

Would be a great look for the Flames. If not Calgary, Adirondack should definitely consider these. A







Calgary Flames: Justin S


Another Flames concept? This one is definitely a step in the opposite direction, Making Calgary more modern jerseys than they already have. The large yoke is something we don't currently see in the NHL, so it would definitely be unique. I'm not into the random swooshy piping, or the colored ovals of red behind the TV numbers. 

You could take this best of this and rework something, but as is I have to give it a D-







Tampa Bay Lightning: J3


Since Tampa forgot the blue on their last alternate jersey, J3 was nice enough to fix it for them, I like the classic look and the inclusion of grey. The extra drop shadow on the logo is spectacular as well. The addition of a shoulder patch would have made this concept, but unfortunately for you, it isn't there, and the jersey looks boring without it. The namebar is too small and should have an outline.

With a shoulder patch, a A-, but without one a B is all you are getting.






Pittsburgh Penguins: Nate F


Nate follows my hockey concept Instagram page. He submitted a bunch of concepts to me and Jake Miller there and it was the first time I saw his work. So Nate, If my Instagram page was what introduced you to HJC, awesome! I like this jersey for the Pens. It would be better with a bit more black. Currently it suffers from yellow on white syndrome. I'm also not sure about the wordmark on the shoulder. The skating penguin would be better.

B-





Team Canada: Stephen T


Stephen makes this based off the old flag of Canada. The idea behind the concept is great, but it wasn't executed well. You have the crest from the old flag, but I don't see any elements from the Union Jack which was a big part of the old Canadian flag. I feel like if you put a bit more though into this and tried to incorporate more of the old flag elements, then you would've had a much better concept.

Just a recolored template with a new logo. D-







Chicoutimi Sagueneens: Taylor R

The second non NHL concept of the day comes from Taylor. One thing I always notice when I look at Chicoutimi's jerseys is the yoke striping. I was part of a design group for a team and we had to pick from a preexisting template for the alternate jersey. The current Chicoutimi jersey was brought up and shot down pretty quick, but the design works for the Sagueneens. Thanks for keeping that intact. I'm a sucker for double blue as always, so I have to like that. 

The font brings an A down to a B+







If you haven't seen, you need to get your eyes checked. But you should go submit your questions for the HJC podcast soon, if you want them to be featured in the pre-recorded HJC 5th Anniversary podcast to be aired in the Saturday post. Go do it!

-Caden


November 17, 2014

Monday: Going Global

Happy Monday everyone! It's been teased for a while but HJC's fifth anniversary falls at the end of this week!

Before I jump into everything, let's cover the usual business...

We have our usual COTW vote and the first phase of voting for the CHL competition

COTW Nov 10-16 vote (ends Friday @ 11:59pm Eastern)
CHL ReDesign Top 3 League votes (end Wednesday @ 11:59pm Eastern)

Don't forget to check back this Saturday for the HJC 5th Anniversary Podcast!

Team Canada Concept - Phil B.
Phil creates a set of jerseys based on Canada's flag. The idea isn't bad but the result is a boring set of hockey jerseys. The white jersey is the best of the two, but it's just so bare. It looks like a set of practice jerseys. The white sleeves on the red jersey just doesn't work in my opinion.

Rating: 5/10


Team USA Concept - Phil B.
Phil creates a new set of USA jerseys as well. As with his Canada set, I think the white jersey is the better of the two. I think the USA hasn't used a red jersey because it's kind of Canada's thing, so why not own the blue? I think the red would be better if the sleeves matched the white jersey and didn't swap the colors. The yokes are fantastic and would leave them. I think ultimately though, there needs to be some blue added to the sleeves and something done with the hems on both jerseys.

Rating: 6.5/10


Eisbaren Berlin Concept - Stephen T.
Stephen moves Eisbaren Berlin into the KHL for this concept and I think this jersey definitely fits the bill for a foreign team. I think overseas is the only place a jersey like this gets on the ice. I'm not putting the jersey down in anyway, but it's just way out there. I don't understand the white jerseys left cuff being red while the blue jersey's cuffs stay blue. The German flag stripes on the right arm is a neat idea to make the team's origin a part of their identity but it's strange considering the rest of the jersey is red,white, and blue. The gate and tv tower on the back is a neat touch but I'd make it look sublimated by taking the opacity down and making it subtle. Take the red out of it on the blue jersey and just make it white, so it's a swapped version of the light jersey.

Rating: 6.5/10


GHL All Star Game Concept - Mario A.
Mario's back and has an All Star Concept for a league of his. The Global Hockey League? What is that? Well before we get into that, let's look at the jerseys here. Despite the jersey basically being a giant star, this is one of Mario's tamest jerseys. Based on the NHL All Star jerseys of the past, the gold trim is a nice touch for an all star jersey. Way to cite the use of the logo, but I think if you really wanted to set your concept series from others, definitely create your own league logo.... I'm assuming this will be a series if you're introducing your league to us with all star jerseys and... a video?!?

Well as we can see, you guys are all pretty young so I don't see the crudeness of the video, but I see a lot of promise coming out of Mario here. He's got this idea for a league and he's putting it all together. I think he's got a lot of drive, I don't see many of our other artists putting together videos.

I like to think every hockey fan as a youngin is coming up with ideas like this, but Mario is taking it that extra step and putting it together in a way to show if off. Mario, If you keep at this as you get older your skills and ideas will continue to grow and grow and you'll be putting together really good things.

The jerseys I'll give a 7/10 based on Mario's execution with jerseys improving.


Washington Capitals Alternate Jersey Concept - Ben S.
I didn't know this was a Ben concept.... I can't see his ID on the image anywhere... hmm.......hmm... that aside, Ben tries to find a balance between the current Caps' identity and their past. Stars are featured heavily on the arms and shoulders but left absent from the hem. Normally I dislike blank hems, but that's best for this jersey. The stripe under the yoke is pretty great. I still think there's just too many stars. Luckily this would be an alternate so maybe, just maybe, it gets away with it.

Rating: 7.5/10


Carolina Hurricanes Concept - Brights Series - Colin M.
Colin's Brights Series moves onto Raleigh. Colin, like many others, including myself, thinks the flag pattern needs to come back. I know there's been a point brought up that the sublimated fabric for the flag pattern wouldn't work on the elbows, or ...something like that... but I think a compromise could be reached and it could work. I'm a fan of how the arm striping on both jerseys is actually the same but it looks different because of the color of the jersey. I think the stripes are just too thin overall, maybe try thickening them up a bit.

Rating: 8/10


Blainville-Boisbriand Armada Concept - Taylor R.
Blainville has one of the more bland identities in the CHL, minus their slick new alternate. Their current black and white jerseys feature one thick stripe on the arms and a thick chest stripe. It doesn't look bad, they wear it well, but it's still kind of boring. Taylor livens things up a bit by adding more stripes and a yoke. Not a lot to work with the color scheme, or lack of color scheme. I think this is either between a lateral move or very slightly better than their current set. The best thing about these though is that white hem on the dark jersey, you all know I'm a sucker for that.

Rating: 8/10


And there it is, the last concept of the day....it's always a little sad isn't it?

November 16, 2014

Sunday: Mallards News

The winner of the COTY-October vote was Dylan N!


Full Results
Dylan N. - 7
CPM (HRT) - 3
CPM (MTL) - 2
CPM (KC) - 1

Dylan's concept will now wait until we have COTY-November and COTY-December. Wow, it's amazing how close we are getting to crowning the 2014 Concept of the Year!

The winner of the COTW for November 3-9 was Jake88 and his Penguins concept!


Full Results
Jake88 - 5
CPM - 3
Dylan N (ROC) - 3
Alan H. - 1
Dylan N (WSH) - 1
Christian L. - 0

The COTW nominees for November 10-16 have been listed in the black banner on the side of the page. Click that banner to see the concepts or go to the CONCEPT OF THE WEEK tab. Then email in your vote before it all ends on Friday at 11:59pm Eastern time.

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Or you can join the COTW Mailing List and make it really easy on yourself. All of that above info is emailed to you. All you have to do is respond to that email with your vote and you're done. It's as simple as that! Simply email HJC with the subject line "COTW Mailing List" and you'll be placed on the list. As you can read above, the voting numbers are increasing. Lets get them higher.

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The CHL ReDesign entry phase is over. We now have the League Votes. They are Top 3 votes. So you'll be placing three sets of Top 3 votes. Again, I've tried to make voting very easy, as you can just leave your votes in the comments section. Click the CHL banner near the top of the page or just go to the CHL COMPETITION tab.

Voting ends on WEDNESDAY @ 11:59pm Eastern. Once we have a winner from all three leagues, they will come together for the final "Memorial Cup Vote".

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On Thursday I was informed by the Quad City Mallards what concepts made their Top 5 for their Fan Designed Jersey Competition.


Based on the people that I heard from, reaction was mostly negative. Just remember that this was the Mallards' competition and without any guidelines as to what they were looking for, it's quite fair for them to choose whatever concept they wish. The winner is scheduled to be selected during the Mallards' November 21st game.

On another note, this was the concept I submitted.


Apparently the team liked it. They liked it so much that a version of it will be used for the Mallards' January 31st "Original Six" game! That's all I'm going to share right now as I don't want to give away too much. I'll post more updates if any come in. However, you can be sure that I'll be making the 10 hour drive to Moline, Illinois to see my jersey in action.

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This is the last Sunday that I will be updating everyone. My update post is moving to Saturday, beginning this Saturday. This Saturday is also HJC's official 5th Anniversary!

As we are set-up right now, a week for COTW starts on Monday and goes until Saturday. Then there's the Sunday update. Now a COTW week will begin on Sunday and run until Friday and you'll get your update post on Saturday. The time doesn't change though. We'll still have a new post everyday at 4:30pm Eastern.

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COTW Nov 10-16 vote (ends Friday @ 11:59pm Eastern)
CHL ReDesign Top 3 League votes (end Wednesday @ 11:59pm Eastern)

November 15, 2014

Saturday: Playing Favorites

Hello everyone! In today's post we have concepts for the AHL, ECHL, QMJHL, the IIHF, and naturally, the NHL. It's a varied post, with lots of great artwork.

Tonight I'll be heading to Bridgestone Arena in Nashville to see my first NHL game of the season. It's been a long time coming, as I haven't been to a Preds game since Pekka Rinne went down with the hip injury last year and we got trashed by the Blues. Tonight's game against the Jets is fitting then, because Rinne is back, and it just so happens to be Pekka Rinne Bobblehead Night. I didn't even realize that when I bought the tickets, but if I were to have a bobblehead of any Preds player, I would pick Rinne. That got me thinking about who my favorite Predators were. I thought I'd share my top three with you.

3. Shea Weber

The Captain has a very rare skillset. Defensive ability? Check. Puck handling ability? Check. Nasty side? Check. Wicked slapshot? Triple check. The majority of defensemen in the league don't make an easily observable difference on the ice. With many, it seems the less you notice them, the better they are playing. They aren't driving possession, and they aren't scoring the goals, but they aren't losing the game for you, either. Not so with Weber. He's one of those generational blueliners that you notice on every shift, in a very positive way. Our typical powerplay strategy is fondly called "Pass it to Shea, and Get Out of the Way," and for good reason. Webs can put the puck in the net, or through the net with his slapshot. Heck, he even put it through the boards. The best part? He'll be under contract until I'm in my mid-30s, and no...he won't be going to Philadelphia. 

2. Filip Forsberg

Yes, I know Forsberg is very young, and this might seem like a bandwagon pick, but Prince Filip, or "Scoresberg," if you will, is the first player we've had with legitimate offensive superstar potential. When the Forsberg-for-Erat/Latta (everyone forgets Michael Latta) trade happened, I knew it could be the beginning of the end for the gritty Trotz era. Martin Erat was an alternate captain, a player who seemed to be the embodiment of a Barry Trotz forward. Forsberg seemed to signal a shift in priorities for GM David Poile. Since then, we've acquired several offensive prospects in Kevin Fiala, Vladislav Kamenev, and Victor Arvidsson, and added James Neal, Mike Ribeiro, Derek Roy, Calle Jarnkrok, Matt Cullen, and Olli Jokinen in trades and free agent signings. We even have a new coach for the first time ever. The roster turnover has been dramatic, but it has produced great results so far. The movement simply doesn't happen without the Forsberg trade and subsequent emergence as an offensive threat. He is the catalyst of a culture change in Nashville.

1. Pekka Rinne

Pekka Rinne, "The Finnish Fortress," is the cornerstone of the Predators organization. I've seen Pekka steal a game for Nashville when we were getting outplayed more times than I care to admit. The last time Peks was truly healthy (his hip injury originated in Finland during the lockout) was during the 2012 season, when the Preds defeated the Red Wings in five games, ending the career of the great Niklas Lidstrom. Go back and look at the Preds roster for the playoffs that year. It's a joke. A top line of Erat, Fisher, and Sergei Kostitsyn is a 3rd line on just about any other team. Roster acquisitions were Andrei Kostitsyn (flamed out to the KHL), Hal Gill (retired), Alex Radulov (he of the perpetual hangover), and Paul Gaustad (4th liner). The defense was weak past Weber and Suter. Pekka Rinne was the difference maker. When all else fails, he doesn't. He currently has a GAA of less than 2 goals per game. Basically, if the Preds can get him three goals, we usually win. He's back to his Vezina form. Do yourself a favor and watch him play sometime. Watch how he uses his glove and swallows pucks up like a tractor beam. I honestly believe he is the best goaltender in the world, and he is my favorite Nashville Predator.

So who are your top favorite players for your team?

Here are the last of the CHL entries (and there's a lot)

Brendan P.


Brendan P.


Christian L.


CPM


CPM


CPM


Danny R.


Danny R.


Danny R.


Emil Z.


John O.


John O.


John O.


Mark M.


Matt Mc.


Scott D.


Scott D.


Scott M.


Zach W.


Now let's move on to today's concepts.


Los Angles Kings Concept - Center Ice Design


Positives: I miss the purple. It made so much sense for the Kings, and they could take ownership of the color as part of their brand. Their current brand aesthetic is just boring. I like the use of the LA monogram logo on the shoulders. That's a good alternate logo. Striping pattern works well.

Negatives: Pixelization is a big issue here. The muddied pixels makes it difficult to discern any detail. White numbers on a white jersey doesn't work. Some details of the template have been colored over or erased. NHL and Reebok branding is needed.

Overall: The design itself isn't bad. Cleanliness is the issue here. (6/10)


Team Sweden Concept - Phil B.


Positives: I want to see Sweden in a jersey like the blue one shown here. These jerseys are very clean.

Negatives: I've seen a few concepts like this over the years; even made one pretty similar to this that won a COTW. To be clear, I'm not accusing Phil of copying. I just feel like I'm not seeing anything new. The flag striping just stops arbitrarily in the middle of the yoke. That wasn't well thought out. That stripe should end where the yoke stitching begins. Sweden's jerseys typically don't have yokes, so the design here reminds me of recent Team Canada designs. The blue background is not working well with the blue and yellow jerseys. A muted, neutral tone would work better. A smaller ID would help with presentation as well.

Overall: This has been done enough times that it would need perfect, flawless execution to stand out from the crowd, unfortunately, it doesn't. (7/10)


Utah Lakers Concept - Coby S.


Positives: Interesting choice to put the AHL affiliate of the Canucks in Utah. The striping pattern is good. I like the emphasis on green.

Negatives: The stick-in-rink is a stretch here. I see the 'U' in the logo, but that's it. Nothing about it says "Lakers" to me. 

Overall: Logo notwithstanding, the design is pretty good. I respect making your own teams, but the branding isn't strong here. (7.25/10)


Halifax Mooseheads Concept - Taylor R.


Positives: Very effective use of the color scheme here. With these colors, it could be easy to unintentionally make it look like a Christmas jersey, but this is balanced very well. I really love the striping pattern. Execution is very good, as the details are done right. 

Negatives: The dark gold name could be hard to read on the white jersey. I think green would be more easily readable from the stands.

Overall: Very solid set for one of the best brands in junior hockey. (8.8/10) COTW nomination from me!


Winnipeg Jets Alternate Concept - Jarrett T.


Positives: This is an interesting angle to take, drawing inspiration for an NHL team from their minor league affiliate. The striping pattern looks great. Greater use of gray helps draw a definite distinction between this and what the Jets wear already. 

Negatives: Contrasting cuffs don't help a jersey. I'm not sold on that Jets wordmark as a primary logo, also it's up too high on the jersey. There's not enough room for a captain or alt. captain patch. The number on the back is too small in proportion to the rest of the jersey.

Overall: The overall design is strong. Some minor adjustments would make this a great alternate. (8/10)


Quad City Mallards Concept - Jacob S.


Positives: The striping colors look great together. Execution is pretty good. The concept is very clean, and presentation is excellent. I like Jacob's ID logo as well.

Negatives: Two roundel logos? From far away, the primary looks like a duck with a life preserver around it, and there's not enough color on the logo, especially against a beige jersey. The name bar is too big on the back. 

Overall: A lot of great concepts were sent in for the Quad City contest. Unfortunately, this concept, and many others that were even better, didn't make it to Quad City's top 5 (as picked by Stevie Wonder, I guess). I would have preferred this to any design they picked. (8.25/10)


New York Islanders Concept - Tyler G.


Positives: This is a pretty conservative concept, but it looks good. The casual fan would hardly notice the difference if these were introduced over what they normally wear, but you don't need to modify the Isles' aesthetic too much. The NY Stadium Series logo looks great on the shoulders. Presentation and execution is very good. Tyler's Presentation has gotten much better recently.

Negatives: I don't like the pants striping. I'm of the opinion that the Isles won't win another cup until they stop referencing the four cups they have on their jerseys. You know, karma, etc. It feels too forced.

Overall: A good set for the Islanders. (8.5/10)


That's all for today. Sign up for HJC's Mailing List to make COTW and COTY voting even easier!


See you all later!