Monthly Archives: November 2019

Utica Comets honor seven seasons with Copper 7 Series

The AHL’s Utica Comets will pay homage to their hometown, their seventh season, and the 50th season of their parent club, the Vancouver Canucks, with specialty uniforms that they’ll wear twice in 2020. The uniforms and a commemorative logo designed by Comets VP of Creative Services Eric Kowiatek highlight the team’s Copper 7 series.

“The meaning behind it [is] that copper is the traditional 7th year anniversary gift,” Kowiatek said, “so everything would be based around the warm colors of the metal.”

The design of the uniforms evokes the Canucks famous “flying skate” jerseys, which they last wore during the 1990s, and which will reappear as throwback uniforms for three games in Vancouver this year.

“With the idea of the Copper 7 Series established, all it took was Vancouver to release their anniversary jerseys and it didn’t take much after that to see how perfect the color scheme of that jersey fit with our theme of the Copper 7 Series,” Kowiatek said. “So we reached out to Vancouver with some design ideas for their blessing.”

While the design is familiar to Canucks fans, Kowiatek worked to make it unique to Utica.

“My goal was to honor their mark but modify in a way that made it something our own,” he said. “It was a very fun project for me to work on, trying to dissect Vancouver’s Flying Skate and see what about it I could keep true to form while respectfully modifying it to modernize it and incorporate our own unique twist on it.“

The uniform set includes one element completely unique to Utica and the Comets, a logo that will serve as a sleeve patch and that will appear on merchandise.

“This was a completely custom logo showing a comet with 7 lines in the tail for the 7 years of Comets hockey flying over the Adirondack Bank Center (home of the Utica Comets) encompassed in the shape of our primary shield logo,” Kowiatek said.

The Comets will take to the ice in the Comet 7 Series uniforms February 29 and March 11.

What PSG! Rihanna Is A Huge Juventus Fan And Got The Custom Jersey Too

Rihanna is a “Gobbo” and Juventus just gained a million more fans because of her.

Just when we thought that Rihanna is a PSG fan, she came out strong for Italian giants Juventus. It’s safe to say that she is a “I gobbi” which is the Italian term given to supporters of the Juventus football club, of which Rihanna is a big fan. Founded in 1897 in the Italian town of Turin, the club has won almost every European league title imaginable and holds 35 official league titles, 13 Coppa Italia titles, and 8 Supercoppa Italiana titles in its trophy cabinet.

The team is currently taking part in the Champions League, and “the only girl in the world” was present at the Allianz Stadium in Turin. The boys in black and white stripes took on Atletico Madrid in the home game, which ended 1-0 to the Italians. This is what she came for!

Proving what a massive fan she is, the “Love on the Brain” singer was gifted her very own football jersey, making her one of the boys. Emblazoned on the back of the signature striped top was her nickname Riri and the number 20 to reflect her date of birth in February.

“Enjoy the game, @rihanna!” the club’s official Twitter account wrote alongside pictures of the star. It also included a video of the 31-year-old arriving at the home stadium with her brother in tow. He was not left out as he was given his own jersey that included the pair’s last name, Fenty.

‘They mean everything’: Meet some of the Tucson Roadrunners’ biggest fans

Bob Hoffman has a ritual for the first Saturday in February.

The Tucson Roadrunners president starts his night in front of the Tucson Arena box office, waiting to greet some international visitors in town for the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show. For the past three years, several groups of businessmen from far-flung places like New Zealand and Japan have made the Roadrunners game a part of their annual visit.

Hoffman said it’s fan experiences like this one that make Tucson unlike any of the six other hockey markets in which he has lived and worked. And the Roadrunners’ biggest fans, their season ticket holders, have exceeded his expectations in more ways than one.

The Roadrunners had 1,082 season ticket holders for the 2016-17 season, their first in Tucson. That number has grown steadily each year and now sits at 1,519, Hoffman said, a 50% increase from Year 1.

Hoffman and the Roadrunners have a marketing and sales staff, but it’s the season ticket holders, he said, who deserve the credit for growing the Roadrunners audience.

“They come to the games, they come each and every night and are passionate about it. They live and die with our players and our team and they want to see us succeed,” Hoffman said. “They’re talking about us, whether it’s at work or in the neighborhood or to friends, and they’re our best advocates because they bring people to games — and many people for the first time.”

During the Roadrunners’ first season, Hoffman conducted a 90-day review to determine who the team’s fans were. Hoffman and his staff targeted everyone with promotions and marketing, and soon learned that the largest group was families. The team responded accordingly, keeping the games affordable for families in terms of ticket and food pricing, offering giveaway and promotional events geared at kids and teens and providing in-game entertainment that’s family friendly.

Attendance on promotional nights is always strong, Hoffman said, but it kicks up to another level on the team’s annual youth jersey giveaway. Hoffman said that for that game, a line starts to form outside the box office 30 minutes before the doors open and by the time people are allowed in, it’s typically 100 fans deep.

“That loyalty and that affinity to us, you can’t gauge it when you come to town and you can’t beg for it,” Hoffman said. “It’s amazing, and we’re certainly grateful that it happened.”

Hoffman said that when he meets people who have never been to a Roadrunners game, he issues them a challenge: Come to a game (sometimes on the house) and try not to love it.

“I truly believe if you’ve never seen it before and you come and try it once you’re going to love it, and if you come back a second time, you’re addicted,” Hoffman said. “That’s what we’re trying to do: Come back that second time.”

Some of the Roadrunners’ season ticket holders were all-in on the team before it even arrived. Others needed a game — or maybe two — to fall in love. Here’s a look at the Roadrunners’ loudest and most loyal fans:
“It’s unlike any other game that you’ll watch in person”

Katie and Steve Ferencik purchased season tickets on a whim at a June 2016 event announcing the name of Tucson’s soon-to-arrive AHL team. The couple was attending a home show at the Tucson Convention Center and accidentally stumbled upon the event.

“It was a little like fate,” Steve said. The couple had heard Tucson was getting a team, but didn’t know much more at the time. “We got our seats and never looked back.”

Steve, 51, grew up in North Dakota and Minnesota, where, he says, “they start you on skates when you’re a toddler.”

He says he was never really dedicated to a professional team growing up, but adopted the Colorado Avalanche as an adult.

Katie, 36, lived in Michigan for six years, and was a Red Wings fan by default.

“There was a rivalry when we first met,” Steve said.

“But now, we’ve united over the Coyotes,” Katie chimed in, laughing.

“Since we started going to the Roadrunners game, you watch the players go from the Roadrunners and up to the Coyotes, and you kind of naturally become a Coyotes fan,” Steve said. “It’s so much fun because you remember watching them down here in Tucson and they’re so accessible at the (Roadrunners) games.”

Katie also played ice hockey growing up, but hasn’t been on the ice since she returned from a deployment in Afghanistan about eight years ago. A tech scout in the Army, Katie is in her 18th year of service. Steve retired from the Army a few years ago following 28 years of service.

The couple lived in Las Vegas during Steve’s last tour of duty. They made the decision to move back to Tucson after he retired, shortly after which it was announced that Las Vegas would be getting an NHL team, the Golden Knights.

“All of our friends are buying season tickets and we were just completely devastated because we were leaving,” Katie said. “But, when we got here, the next year they announced that they were getting a professional team and we were so excited.”

The Ferenciks initially went to the games by themselves. Last season, they added two more seats and started taking Steve’s granddaughters to the games. The couple formally adopted 4-year-old Dani and 7-year-old Olivia in September. Steve says the girls are now hockey lovers.

“The little one is crazy about it,” Katie said. “She wears her hockey gloves to the games. It’s so cute.”

The Ferenciks took their places behind the visiting team’s bench Friday night, both girls wearing bulky ear protection and Dani (as promised) sporting her hockey gloves. The family’s enthusiasm did not waver, with Kate and Steve lifting the girls on their shoulders to celebrate the first goal of the game.

Steve says it’s been great to be in with the team from the very beginning.

“It’s really fun to see our friends or strangers who have never been to a game before come and discover hockey,” Katie said. “Tucson is a super-small town … and I think that’s one good thing we have, is a really strong community. I think (the Roadrunners) have positioned themselves really well as community partners and it’s just going to grow from there.”

Steve and Katie agree that it’s better to be a hockey fan in Tucson than in Phoenix because of cheaper parking, easier access to the arena and better seats.

“Everywhere you sit (at Tucson Arena) is close to the ice,” he said.

The perks for Roadrunners’ season ticket holders, which include player signings, blankets, jerseys and more, are icing on the cake for the Ferenciks.

“I love sitting at the bench and watching the changes, watching the coaches and players get heated,” Katie said. “I just love the intensity and fire in these young guys who are just really going for it.”
Tickets “work wonders all over the place”

Daniel Butler was raised on the Chicago Blackhawks, but is quick to say that Roadrunners games are hockey at its best.

“The first year, I went to maybe seven games. I was buying them through Ticketmaster and I was buying two tickets at a time and it was costing me so much money that the next year, I just bought season tickets,” Butler said. “I’ve bought them for the last three years.”

Butler is a member of Dusty’s Force, a season ticket membership group that’s 175 fans strong, and he says, the perks from the club pay off. Members of Dusty’s Force get Coyotes tickets and extra giveaways.

“My favorite part about the Roadrunners is that they’re a bunch of young kids trying to make their dreams come true,” Butler said. “They always have a great team, they’re always a bunch of great guys. They’re right on the cutting edge and it’s great hockey to watch.”

Butler goes to most of the season’s 34 home games, taking hockey-fan family members and friends. On occasion, he’s even given his tickets to clients of his home repair business, saying, “they work wonders all over the place.”

“Even when I give them away, I still just buy myself tickets and go,” Butler said. Like many Roadrunners fans, Butler is still a fan of former Roadrunners forward Conor Garland, who was called up to the Coyotes last December. Garland returned to the Roadrunners at the end of last season to help the team in an unsuccessful bid to make the playoffs. Now that Garland’s gone, Butler says his favorite player is right wing Nick Merkley.

“I like his enthusiasm. He’s young, he’s a good guy,” Butler said.

At Friday night’s game, Butler sat in the stands with his niece, daughter and his daughter’s friend. Wearing a throwback “Roadrunners Fight Cancer” T-shirt from a previous season, Butler served as an informal concierge for his guests, making the trip up the steps to buy snacks and stopping to chat and exchange high-fives with other season ticket holders seated in his section.

Butler’s advice to Tucsonans who’ve never been to a Roadrunners game?

“You’ve got to go: it’s hockey at it’s best,” Butler said. “The NHL has calmed down a lot and it’s more of a skills game, so for the folks that like to see full-style hockey, the AHL is where it’s at. They still bring all the flair, and these players are on the cusp of making their dreams come true.”
“You get to know them on a personal level”

It’s easy to spot Jana Salcito at Roadrunners games. She sits right on the ice, next to the penalty box, and always holds a posterboard sign with Tucson’s kachina logo and all the players’ names. Last year, she got 95% of the team to autograph the sign. This year, she’s hoping to get everybody.

Jana, 47, says her love of sports started when she was a 3-year-old child living in Maine. She played floor hockey in elementary school; it was decades before she attended a professional game.

In 1997, Jana met her husband Dwayne in New Hampshire. After they got married, they began following the AHL affiliate in their town, the Manchester Monarchs.

Dwayne, 55, had also been a lifelong hockey fan, having been born in Connecticut.

The Salcitos moved to Tucson in 2007. They said they were “thrilled” when the Roadrunners came to town.

Despite their love for hockey, the couple admits it took them a little while to get to their first game. They’ve made up for their tardiness with nearly two years of loyalty as season ticket holders and unofficial ambassadors for the team.

“I remember seeing people wearing the jerseys the first season and I thought, ‘that’s cool, we need to go to a game,’” Jana said. “Well, we never got out to a game that season.”

The next season, the Salcitos’ church held a hockey night — and they went.

“That got us hooked,” Jana said. They went to another game, then a third and then the playoffs.

“We started talking to the reps at the Roadrunners. Our son was still living at home at the time and he wanted to enjoy it with us, so we decided to do it and we haven’t looked back,” Jana said. “It’s been the best thing.”

Jana hasn’t missed a home game since they signed up for season tickets and Dwayne says he’s only missed one.

Jana paused to show off her customized jersey autographed by center Lane Pederson, her favorite player.

“He’s a fan player, he loves his fans. He’s always approachable,” Jana said. “But they’re all like that. They’re so humble, they love their fans and they appreciate their fans coming out.”

Between the two of them, Jana and Dwayne own nine jerseys. Jana wears a Roadrunners hat to work every day and has enough team T-shirts to wear every day for two weeks straight.

Jana and Dwayne are planning a hockey room in their new house for all their Roadrunners memorabilia. They’re collecting more than just gear: A person who was sitting several rows back two seasons ago moved next to the Salcitos this year, as did another couple. Jana has also made some friends that she lovingly refers to as her “hockey sisters.”

At Friday night’s game, Jana and Anna Jones, one of the hockey sisters, exchanged impromptu gifts: a jersey for Anna and a custom-made eyeglass holder adorned with Dusty the Roadrunner for Jana. The two talked excitedly about plans to attend a Coyotes game in Phoenix later in the weekend, a perk of their Dusty’s Force membership.

Their son is away at college this year, meaning it’s Jana and Dwayne at the games. It was clear Friday night that Roadrunners games still feel like a family affair.

“It’s our second home,” Dwayne said.
“Part of the community”

Cathy Soltero has her very own wall of fame inside her Chandler home. Two walls, actually. The right side of her hallway is reserved for photos and jerseys associated with Roadrunners players. Once a player is called up to the NHL, Soltero moves their stuff to the opposite wall.

“I’ve spent more money on jerseys than anyone,” Soltero, 66, said, adding that her most expensive purchase was a $3,100 Conor Garland jersey that she bought at a charity auction. The purchase price set an AHL record, but for Soltero, the purchase was worth it: Garland addressed his signature to his “#1 Fan.”

“The AHL is special because of the interaction with players,” Soltero said. “They’re people, and you’re people to them.”

Soltero said she’s always loved hockey, but had a minimal understanding of the sport until 2015, when she attended a Coyotes prospect camp in Chandler. That’s where she saw Garland, who she calls “The Conor.” Soltero bought her season tickets after a Roadrunners representative assured her that Garland would be with the team.

“The Conor is what turned me into a total fanatic and student of the game,” Soltero said.

While Garland has since moved on, Soltero’s allegiance to the team has not.

Soltero is a former juvenile probation officer. Never having children of her own, Soltero said that her probationers used to be her kids.

The Roadrunners “have replaced my caseload,” she said with a laugh. “I don’t have pictures of my kids to put on the wall, but I have jerseys.”

She and her husband made the 210-mile round trip from Chandler to the Tucson for games for awhile, then purchased a time share in Tucson so that they could stay in town on weekends with back-to-back games.

During the break between first and second periods at Friday night’s game, Soltero took photos and chatted next to the food vendors with a group of men decked out in Roadrunners jerseys. During breaks in the game, she talked to season ticket holders seated nearby. While the puck was in play, Soltero’s eyes were glued to the ice.

“I love the culture of hockey, it’s unlike any other sport,” Soltero said. “When someone scores a goal, they give accolades all the way down. In hockey, the individual is never as important as the team.”

Soltero said she treasures her relationships with the players. Last year, she had to thin out her jersey collection after it became too large, and decided to send jerseys back to players who had since left the Roadrunners. She could’ve made some money by selling her prized possessions, but opted to give them away.

“The Roadrunners players live in Tucson’s neighborhoods and they’re part of the community,” Soltero said. “With the Coyotes, the likelihood of living next door to a player is slim to none.”
“They mean everything”

The love coming from Roadrunners’ die-hards is felt — and often reciprocated.

“The fans here have been great. I’ve been here for four years now and every year they seem to be getting better and better with more people in the stands,” defenseman Dysin Mayo said. “They’re really invested in us, you can tell. They’re always standing out here after games and talking to us. It’s nice to have that kind of support.”

Left wing Michael Bunting, who is in his fourth year with the Roadrunners, said that he appreciates the dedication of the team’s biggest fans, and that it’s nice to continue to see the same people that were coming to games during his first year.

“They mean everything. They’re like the seventh man out there when we play,” Bunting said. “When they’re going, it kind of gives us a little energy, and it’s good to see familiar faces come back every weekend.”

Utica Comets to wear Canucks Flying Skate inspired jerseys

The marketing geniuses behind the Utica Comets have come up with another gem, as the Vancouver Canucks’ farm team unveiled a new specialty jersey today.

The Comets will wear Canucks Flying Skate inspired uniforms twice this season, on February 29 and March 11, with the jerseys auctioned off on March 11.

Utica’s version of the classic 1990s logo replaces the boot with a streaking comet, while the word “Comets” replaces “Canucks” on the skate blade.

Vancouver’s farm team is following in the footsteps of its parent club, as the Canucks wore the black version of their Flying Skate uniform on November 16. They’ll wear black, red, and yellow twice more this season at Rogers Arena — on January 4 against the New York Rangers and for Legends Night during Sedin Week against the Nashville Predators on February 10.

The Comets are incorporating their version of the black, red, and yellow uniforms look into the “Copper 7 Series,” paying homage to the city of Utica, and for some reason, their seventh anniversary.

This isn’t the first time the Comets, who usually wear Canucks colours, have introduced a popular alternate jersey. Utica debuted a green third jersey in 2015, which has been the envy of some Canucks fans ever since.

Local graphic designer creates soccer jerseys to honor typefaces (yes, even Comic Sans)

Mark Jenkinson loves soccer, graphic design and typography, and has long merged all three into .

Just last week, that creative blend prompted him to launch TypeKits, which the 47-year-old Liverpool native who moved to the area in 2006 describes as “a mash up of football (soccer) jerseys inspired and influenced by famous typefaces, designers, and typographers.”

On first blush, soccer kits created in honor of like , , , , and (of course) the seems like a rather niche pursuit.

If the he launched from his Montgomery County offices last week hits the $16,000 goal by October 11, though, you could soon see an initial run of 800 of the unique creations out and about both locally and – hopes – internationally. From there, the market will decide how far the concept will go.

It hasn’t exactly been the smoothest of starts since taking the idea public.

For one thing, when he told a couple friends about it, they reminded him of his disdain for similarly minded thought exercises when Major League Soccer franchises are “reimagined as NFL teams” or “.”

For another, he’s been sidetracked with the due diligence of confirming there aren’t any

“‘What a pile of crap: you’re getting into the territory you hate,’” he recalled during a Monday morning phone interview of one friend’s reaction. “But, there’s nothing arbitrary here. I’m not just making up the design without some relevance to the history of each typeface. I love soccer, typefaces, and design, so I thought it might resonate.

“I’d always been playing around with the idea, and I have a bunch of half-finished designs sitting in a folder, ones that I don’t know what to do with at that moment in time. Every now and then, I go back and look at them with fresh eyes, since I work in a vacuum.”

Jenkinson, of Narberth‘s ., said those fresh eyes got the ball rolling one free April afternoon. Having long created designs for shirts and other apparel, he rattled off a list of projects with which he’s been involved.

Among them are , and his work with Asbury Park F.C., the soccer team that “.”

The path bringing soccer and typefaces together clicked when he thought about how he mashed-up the history of Helvetica with the design for Metallica’s “” cover-art concept, complete with track listings.

“If I can get a proof of concept going – to show the market’s there – and at least get to full funding, I think this has got some legs here,” he said. “I think it might resonate.”

Courtesy/Mark Jenkinson

The “Franklin Gothic‘ design includes many local references.

He’s already created 12 designs, a home and away kit for each of the six typefaces involved, and has spoken with vendors who could create them once they get the OK from him.

Should it take off, the grand vision is connecting with design, transportation (as one is inspired by the London Underground system) and art museums to see “if they would like TypeKits to make apparel for you.”

“I know the hipsters will like it,” he joked after mentioning how he’d ask companies like Urban Outfitters the same question. “The fun thing is trying to make it look good, and the crests to seem credible.”
‘EVERY ONE OF THEM TELLS A STORY‘

As it pertains to Comic Sans – a typeface that people often mock – he initially had four stars on the design, to represent the curse word starting with the letter “F.”

“Take the ‘U’ and the ‘K’ out, though, and it becomes F.C. Comic Sans,” he laughed. “I wrestled with the ‘Johnson’ font. I knew it was something I wanted to do. I lived in London for 12 years and every summer, it seemed like the tube drivers went on strike. On the sleeves, it’s the tube map. The idea was the ‘London Tube Strikers.’”

With another design – that for the typeface Optima – he knew he wanted it to reflect “optimism, something sunny,” which is how the radial sunburst concept came to be, with creator Hermann Zapf’s name written in “dingbats typeface.”

Courtesy/Mark Jenkinson

Mark Jenkinson

The design with the most local ties is Franklin Gothic. It includes a “Liberty or Death” badge reminiscent of the Philadelphia Union’s mantra, with numerous nods toward Benjamin Franklin – lightning bolts, a kite and a key – along with the Betsy Ross U.S. flag star formation and colors from Philadelphia’s civic flag.

Sure, those details might be a bit too insider-baseball for lay people, so Jenkinson included information about both the typeface and design for each style on the Kickstarter page. Consider it Typeface Soccer Jersey 101.

“I couldn’t just make up the design without some relevance to the typeface or history of typeface,” he said. “I’m building history into each of them. Every one of them tells a story.”

Should the Kickstarter goal be met, the first run will be 100 of each design, and 200 with the shirt/scarf “supporter’s pack” combo.

Those who pledge $45 or more will get a jersey and $65 or more will get the combo. There’s also packages for $1,500 and $3,000 or more, which he envisions as typographers or type foundries seeking 25 or 50 custom shirt-design services “to promote your own typefaces.”

So, what are Jenkinson‘s favorite typefaces? “because it’s so functional and utilitarian” along with (even if it’s “kind of overused now”) and .

Least favorite? , of course, and “because it’s absolutely shocking.”

For now, though, Jenkinson will wait and see if the demand is there, and if the trademark reviews allow him to proceed. If it is, and they do, he’ll be ready to meet those orders, and hope it blossoms from there.

“I’d like to see it grow, to appeal to bulk buyers,” he said of . “This could have global reach.”

Winter season Typical 2020: Dallas Stars’ jerseys showcase custom of Texas hockey

Deep in the Heart of Texas, the Dallas Stars unveiled their 2020 Winter season Classic jerseys on Wednesday.

The expose will come a number of days after their opponent, the Nashville Predators, unveiled the uniforms they’re going to be sporting when the groups satisfy in the annual New Year’s Day NHL game. Of training course, those came with blended reviews across social media

For the Stars’ element, the gloves are a good contact as they depict the previous times of hockey when every person wore leather-based gloves but the NHL nevertheless has not uncovered that mild-colored trousers just don’t operate (yeah, who will not don’t forget, Roberto Luongo’s tweet from 2014’s Heritage Basic).

But let us target on the jerseys. Just about every large-stage sweater always comes with Easter eggs that link to the franchise and region’s history. Let us consider an in-depth glimpse at the Stars’ Winter season Typical basic glance that they’ll don at the Cotton Bowl.
Victory inexperienced

A solid eco-friendly sweater that harkens back again to the franchise’s origins in Minnesota when the Stars ended up the North Stars. Granted, back again then, they wore the environmentally friendly on the street and not at property, but it is the 1st time considering that the franchise headed south that they will not have black in the jersey. And of study course, it is victory inexperienced.

STARS with a Star

An additional spin back again to the old days — but this time when the workforce was by now in Dallas. When the Stars moved to Texas in 1993-94, the chest was emblazoned with the term Stars and the ‘A’ as a star. While the font is distinct, and the star might not be as big as it was 16 decades in the past, it truly is normally sound when teams use classic, perfectly-recognized designs.

Texas shoutouts

Another peek back to the early days (see higher than photo), this jersey has the condition of Texas on the shoulder. Again then, the logo had a “D” for Dallas situated where by the town lies this time it truly is just a smack-dab in the center.

The collar really has 1 of the nicest touches of the total uniform as it is lined with the Texas state flag.

Background of hockey

Hockey has a deep-rooted background in the point out of Texas, and the Stars paid homage to the teams of yesteryear with the crest. Back again in the working day, the Dallas Texans roamed the American Hockey Association (1941-42) and United States Hockey League (1945-49). The team’s jersey’s experienced the word “Texans” jogging through the letter “D”. Let’s be sincere, who doesn’t adore tradition? Fantastic to see the 2020 jersey is established up in a comparable vogue.

Can we talk about Yankees jerseys with names for a minute?

If you’ve ever watched a Yankee game, you may have noticed that the players don’t have their names on the back of their jerseys. At the beginning of the sport, players didn’t even have numbers. In the early 1900s some teams experimented with numbers on uniforms — just on the sleeve. It wasn’t until the 1929 season when the Yankees were planning on wearing numbers on their back, but due to a rainout, the Indians were actually the first team to wear jerseys with numbers on the back. When numbers were first introduced, a player’s number normally corresponded to the player’s spot in the batting order. This is why Babe Ruth was 3 and Lou Gehrig was 4. The addition of numbers made it so players could be easily identified, and if you didn’t know who they were, the team would sell you a program.

Jerseys pretty much remained the same until 1960 when the White Sox added names so that the players would be easily identified on TV. Many teams followed suit and added names to their jerseys over the years which really impacted the game program market, but one team has not. That team is the New York Yankees.

Never in the history of the team has a player — aside from those stupid Player’s Weekend jerseys — worn a jersey with his own name on it. The idea here being that the pinstripes speak for themselves and the logo on the front is more important than the name on the back. This thought process has led to 27 World Championships, so it seems to be working. The area where it isn’t working is off the field.

Unless you are born and raised in the Bronx (I am) it is very easy for someone to criticize your fandom. With so many fans around the world, the Yankees have a ton of bandwagon fans that decided to support the Bronx Bombers the day that biracial angel took over at shortstop in 1996, or when Jay-Z put on the hat, or a million other times there was an opportunity to hop on the bandwagon. While it may seem great to have more people supporting our team, I believe it sets us up to be criticized more by opposing fan bases, and the best way to identify these people is by the name on the back of their jersey.

Since the Yankees have never worn their names on the back of the jersey, why would you? Many people give a variety of excuses and I want to shut them all down now, so we can live in a better world.

Excuse 1: The jerseys with names are cheaper

This just isn’t true. If you go to Modell’s they have the jersey’s right next to each other for the same exact price.

Some people like to point to prices at and around the stadium. To that I ask, why would you buy a jersey outside the stadium in 2019 when you can buy one online and have it shipped for free? It’s not like you get to the stadium and they won’t let you in without a jersey. That’s just poor planning, leading to unnecessary poor decision making. Plus, why the hell would more fabric cost less money? I mean think about that for one second.
Excuse 2: I really want to support this specific player

I mean what the hell are we even talking about here? If you buy a 99 jersey, everyone knows it’s because you like Aaron Judge. He’s the only Yankee to wear 99 and EVERYONE LIKES AARON JUDGE. But you know who people don’t like? You, because it looks like you bought your first Yankee jersey when you became a fan in 2017. Also, it makes financial sense to buy a jersey with no name, because you get to wear it again. If you bought a 25 for Giambi, it worked for Tex and now for Gleyber, and that frees up money for you to buy additional jerseys, THAT YOU CAN WEAR FOREVER.

On top of that, the players don’t give a flying fuck that you got their jersey with the name on the back. They never look in the stand and think “Wow he got my name instead of a real jersey, we should be friends.” The players don’t care about you and they will all likely play somewhere else at some point.

Even worse is getting a first name, which is too dumb to get its own category. Like what was this old fart thinking?

Excuse 3: I want a jersey with my name

Puke city. I mean do you think they might sub you in the game and having you name on the back of the jersey will help all your new fans figure out who you are? They aren’t short on players today and even if they were, you wouldn’t be in the proper uniform, because of the name. On top of that, people just think you’re a jerkoff. Look at my co-host on George’s Box, Keith. A zero with his own last name? Impossible to see that and not just hate him before knowing anything about him. (He’s a good guy).

Excuse 4: My boyfriend/girlfriend got it for me

That’s very nice of them and I guess “it’s the thought that counts,” but that thought should come with a receipt to be able to return this gift and get something good. If there is no receipt or they got the jersey in some shady way that won’t let it be returned, just explain that you can’t wear it and hope they get better for next year. Plus, you need to take a little ownership here and educate your significant other on you interests properly.

If none of this will work, just end it. This person clearly doesn’t understand tradition or values, and this won’t work in the long run. They will only make you worse. Plus, its 2019 and you can get a new boyfriend/girlfriend in likes 20 minutes on an app.

Excuse 5: I buy my jerseys cheap from China and they come with names

You can’t afford to be a Yankee fan. Just buy a shirsey, because that’s in your price range. You should own that rather than try and pretend you have jersey money. Or just don’t buy anything and save up for a real jersey and now not only do you not look like an asshole, but we’ve worked on goal setting, and now you’re a better person.
Excuse 6: It’s none of your business what I wear

Yes, it fucking is. If I saw you doing heroin, you would want me to stop you. (Yes, I am trained to use Narcan and hope to one day save a life on Periscope). If I saw you drunk walking into traffic, you would want me to stop you. If I saw you doing anything stupid, you would want me to try and stop you. That is what I’m doing here. I am trying to stop you from looking like an asshole that other fan bases can easily criticize and call a bandwagon fan. There is no logical reason to wear a jersey with a name on the back of it other than “I just want to,” and that is just you wanting to make a stupid decision. So as a humanitarian, I am here to help you. I’m a community leader and what many would consider a hero.

Those are 6 common excuses I get on Twitter when I look to tear down people wearing jerseys, and I knocked down every single one of them. There is no excuse to be wearing a jersey with a name on it if you want to be considered a real fan of the New York Yankees.

With next year’s new Nike jerseys coming, many people are up in arms about the Swoosh on the jersey, so go out now and buy a jersey with no name and you will have that forever with no swoosh and everyone can be happy.

If you disagree with anything I have said here, check me on Twitter and I will gladly set you straight.

Also, I would like to dedicate this blog to Frank Marco’s girlfriend Teela. I’ll see you July 20th babe. (Buy tix)

I’ll see the rest of you at the parade.

Duke joins pro sports leagues, other universities in fighting counterfeit goods

It’s gameday in Cameron Indoor Stadium, and you want a jersey to fit in with the Crazies. You can either go to Duke Stores and spend over $100 on an authentic Duke Basketball jersey from Nike or scour the Internet for much cheaper counterfeit apparel.

Duke wants to make sure that you show up to Cameron in the official version and has taken legal action to ensure it. The University—along with the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL and IMG College Licensing—won a significant legal victory against counterfeiters in a lawsuit decided May 1.

The plaintiffs sued three websites—customcheapjerseys.com, teamjerseyscustom.com and sportsjerseyscustom.com—for trademark infringement. The websites failed to respond to the lawsuit in time, so Judge Edmund Chang of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois ordered a default ruling.

“This Court further finds, in light of the default (which triggers the finding that the allegations are true), that Defaulting Defendants are liable for willful federal trademark infringement and counterfeiting…, false designation of origin…, and violation of the Illinois Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act,” the order stated.

Now the websites are banned from using the plaintiffs’ trademarks, and the court order required that the domains be turned over to the plaintiffs or disabled altogether—along with financial compensation for damages. The judge also ordered any companies that the websites relied on for their business—like domain name registries and credit cards—to dissociate with the defendants and help shut down their operations.

The three websites sold non-licensed clothing, jewelry, jerseys and other goods, and each one awarded Duke $50,000. The judge offered several ways for Duke to recover that money, though it’s unclear how much will eventually find its way to Duke as a result of the lawsuit.

The case is only one of the latest in the fight against counterfeit athletic products. Duke is one of several universities, along with professional sports leagues, that have sued Chinese counterfeiters in an effort to stem the flow of fake goods that are sold online.

“This was the outcome of one of a series of lawsuits filed over the past several years by major league sports associations and universities to combat counterfeiting of licensed products coming from China,” wrote Michael Schoenfeld, vice president for public affairs and government relations, in an email. “The universities rotate as lead plaintiffs, and it was Duke’s turn in this particular case. Any funds that are recovered get divided up among the participating schools.”

The lawsuit also fits with Duke’s reputation as one of the most active trademark litigants in the country, though the University usually sticks to opposing legitimate—though still potentially unlawful—trademark applications.

The Chronicle found five additional cases where six other universities, along with the four professional sports leagues and IMG, a sports marketing firm that represents NCAA-affiliated university, sued a web of counterfeiters. The other universities include Oklahoma University, University of Alabama, Louisiana State University, Auburn University, West Virginia University and University of Nebraska.

The plaintiffs use the same language across cases. The defendants are “individuals and business entities who, upon information and belief, reside in the People’s Republic of China and other foreign jurisdictions,” and they create thousands of online stores that appear authentic but consistently sell counterfeit products.

In each case, including Duke’s, the plaintiffs were represented by Grier, Burns and Crain, an intellectual property law firm based in Chicago. Attorneys from the law firm that represented Duke and the other plaintiffs did not respond to a request for comment from The Chronicle.

Reviewing the leaked Avalanche and Kings Stadium Series jerseys

The Colorado Avalanche and Los Angeles Kings Stadium Series jerseys have seemingly been leaked. The internet, of course, has opinions.

The addition of Stadium Series has allowed nontraditional hockey markets to receive their own outdoor game, although that looks like it might change since the “nontraditional” teams of the Dallas Stars and Nashville Predators will face off in this year’s Winter Classic. Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Kings and Colorado Avalanche are facing off in this year’s Stadium Series. Colorado will be the home team, as they skate at the United States Air Force Academy.

With the opportunity to play outside comes the opportunity to wear special jerseys for the occasion. The Avalanche and Kings were expected to roll out their new digs, but haven’t officially done so yet.

Still, pictures of the supposed jerseys were leaked out to the internet, and the internet isn’t necessarily thrilled.

Right off the bat, both teams decided to use their traditional color scheme. When given the chance at these outdoor games, teams sometimes revert to classic sweater designs and color schemes. The Chicago Blackhawks famously used their red and black design in the 2009 Winter Classic.

The Montreal Canadiens went with an entirely different design and logo scheme in the 2016 Winter Classic that came all the way from the 1920’s. Even if this year’s Nashville Predator’s Winter Classic Jersey hasn’t drawn rave reviews, it pays tribute to the hockey teams of Nashville past.

The Colorado jersey isn’t as much a departure from the Avalanche normal jersey. As Wyshnski pointed out, the Stadium Series jersey is supposed to be a more cubist, modernistic and abstract addition of the same logo the Avalanche have used since moving to Denver. It reminds me of the Kachina style of the Arizona Coyotes original jerseys they’ve started to come back to. Don’t hate on the Peyote Coyote, though.

The Kings decided to stay with their same silver/white and black color scheme they’ve had since the Wayne Gretzky days. Now would have been an interesting time for the Kings to maybe throw in some of their original colors of gold and purple, but that idea didn’t pan out. A bit of metallic purple accents on the crown were mixed into the Kings jersey in their first Stadium Series appearance back in 2014.

This is also the first time the main logo for the Kings is only “L.A.” instead of the traditional crown emblem. As far as I can tell, the crown is nowhere to be seen. We can safely assume the white powder the “L.A.” is skating across is snow, and not a banned substance that Evgeny Kuznetsov is too familiar with, as Wyshynski joked.

It seems the NHL completely missed the mark with these jerseys. While at least the Avalanche jersey looks like an interesting take on their classic look, the Kings jersey looks cheap and rushed through. Basically half the jersey is a bland and blank white.

These jerseys may serve their purpose when the teams take the ice in Colorado Springs, but it’s hard to imagine fans rushing to the gift shop to buy them.