Sunday, August 31, 2008

Third Jersey Interpretations

A few weeks ago, the folks over at posted their interpretations of Howard Berger's descriptions of this year's new crop of third jerseys. I realized I hadn't written anything up about it yet.

These images are by no means official nor have they been created with any information beyond what Berger wrote — as far as I know. But I at least thought they made for an interesting discussion. Here are a few of the speculative designs.

For a complete look at what they've come up with, check out their web site. They have all 18 jerseys plus a couple of bonuses divided into two parts. Click for Part 1 and Part 2.

Remember, this is all speculation and nothing official has been confirmed yet. And for what it's worth, I understand NHL 09 is coming out soon and may feature the new third jerseys. If they do and someone can provide screenshots, I'd be happy to post them. But for official release dates, stay tuned to the Countdowns element in the sidebar.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

From The Ground Up: Picking Cities

This past week you all have been voting on the divisional boundary alignment for the Icethetics-created fantasy hockey league. Alignment A got the most votes, taking 733 of 2,208. For a quick refresher, here's what that boundary alignment looks like.

Obviously, not all of the cities listed will be included. Last week we completed a poll in which you guys determined our league would have 30 teams. That brings us to this week. We're going to be doing two divisions at a time over the next three weeks.

This week you'll vote on the cities to be included in the Pacific and Central Divisions. One from the West, one from the East. Five cities from each division — 10 total. Yay, math.

From the 12 cities listed, you can choose to vote for as few as 1 or as many as all 12. It's entirely up to you. You just choose the cities you think should be included. However, only the five with the most votes at the end of the week will be included in the division.

For reference, next week will be the North and Northeast Divisions. That'll be the weekend of September 6. After that we'll do the South and Southeast. Those polls will begin on the weekend of September 13.

My plan is to do a few things concurrently just to get through this quicker, but I reserve the right to change my mind if it becomes too much work for me. Next weekend we'll know which cities are getting teams so at that point I'd like to start taking nominations for team names.

IMPORTANT: I will not accept name nominations until the city selection polls are finalized — no matter how many votes any city is getting!

Now, about how the naming will work. When you make a nomination, you must include locator with it. In other words, don't just submit Lightning. Submit Tampa Bay Lightning. Or Florida Lightning or St. Petersburg Lightning. Like I said before, you'll be choosing a locator that goes with your name.

When these polls are finished, I will offer a complete list of acceptable locators for each city chosen. For example, if Tampa was one of the selected cities, your locator options would be: Tampa, Tampa Bay, Florida, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, and Lakeland. Orlando would not be accepted because it is considered a separate market for our purposes. However, if Orlando was selected instead of Tampa, Lakeland might still be included with it because of its proximity to both cities. But if Tampa and Orlando were both selected, Lakeland would only be available to one city or the other. Make sense?

We'll do the same name nominating process the week after for the next two divisions and so on. I'll accept nominations for a week and then have you guys vote on the final name. All nominations will be included in this process provided they fit within the guidelines I set up. More on those in the next paragraph.

I know saying restrictions sounds bad but it's basically what they are. I'm just starting to work on this so don't consider this final by any means. It's just a way of letting you know what to expect. A team name nomination will NOT be accepted if it breaks any of the following rules:
  • It may not use a name of any current or past NHL team.

  • It may not use the name of any current AHL or ECHL team.

  • It may not use the name or close variation of any professional sports team currently or previously within the same market or geographical area.

  • It may not use the name of any team from Project: IHA

  • It may not be vulgar or in any way inappropriate. (And I'll decide what's inappropriate.)

That should cut down on any potential similarity to the NHL or any other league. I'll have another list like this for when it comes time to choose colors and create logos. But again, this is not final. If you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them. Email me or leave a comment.

Happy voting!

Center Ice Championship

The final poll for the Center Ice Tournament has been posted in the pollbar. It's the Oilers and Penguins in the final round but don't discount the Bruins and Sharks. Both polls in the last round were extremely close. It'll be interesting to see who pulls out the win in the end.

The poll will be open until Wednesday. Happy voting!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Habs To Retire Roy's No. 33

According to CNN, the Montreal Canadiens will retire Patrick Roy's jersey No. 33 this November.

I have found no further information on the subject. However, TSN has.

Good for him!

IHA Poll: Toronto Knights

Cast your vote and leave a comment about your decision. Then tell all your friends to drop in and vote! The more voices heard, the more accurate the results!

Starts Fri Aug 29
Ends Mon Sep 1

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Sanford Picks Mask Finalists

A few weeks ago the Vancouver Canucks held a competition on behalf of Curtis Sanford to design his new mask. They received over 300 designs from fans and artists and now the finalists have been posted on their official web site.

You can see galleries of Sanford's Top 10 favorites and the staff's Top 40. Some of them are amazingly well done. Others not so much. Go see for yourself.

IHA Poll: Hamilton Generals

Cast your vote and leave a comment about your decision. Then tell all your friends to drop in and vote! The more voices heard, the more accurate the results!

Starts Thu Aug 28
Ends Sun Aug 31

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

'Canes To Debut Third Against Wings

An email that went out to Carolina Hurricanes season ticket holders today confirms the team's new third jersey will make its game debut on October 13 against the Detroit Red Wings.

Monday, October 13 vs. Detroit - The 'Canes will take on the reigning Stanley Cup Champion Detroit Red Wings in the Wings first return to the RBC Center since January 2005. While it already promises to be a thrilling match-up, the 'Canes will also be debuting their new alternate/3rd jersey on the ice!

That's as far as the email goes. It doesn't describe what the jersey will look like or make mention of the fact that the team has already said the sweater will first be unveiled at Caniac Carnival on September 21.

Thanks to Scott for the tip.

By the way, I fixed an error in the sidebar regarding Carolina's third jersey. The consensus of the rumors we've been hearing is that the secondary logo with the storm flag will be on the front of the sweater — not the primary logo like I had up there. The only difference I'm anticipating is that the triangle behind the flag will be white instead of black.

Poll Problems

Quick note. I've been looking into a problem with the polls. Apparently folks using Internet Explorer are not seeing the formatting of the polls on the blog properly. This includes colors, sizing, layout and most notably, the all-important vote button. I'm looking into a solution for this.

As a temporary fix, you can still vote by making a selection like normal and then clicking the grey box next to the View Results link. Not all of the polls in the pollbar are being affected. It's a weird problem. I'm working on it.

UPDATE (12:27 PM): Polls are back to normal now. The problem was the section with the results from previous pollls. I thought it'd be nice feature to have but I guess it was adversely affecting IE. So it's gone now. Anyway, problem solved. (But now the star ratings for each post seem to be gone. Working on it.)

Blue Jackets Honor Founder With Logo

The Columbus Blue Jackets have unveiled a new logo to be used this season to honor the memory of their founder John H. McConnell. It was announced on the team's official web site yesterday.

The link to the story about the new logo wasn't working for me, but this is it if you want to give it a shot.

IHA Poll: Detroit Legions

Cast your vote and leave a comment about your decision. Then tell all your friends to drop in and vote! The more voices heard, the more accurate the results!

Starts Wed Aug 27
Ends Sat Aug 30

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Wild Owner: Green Jersey Coming

Minnesota Wild fans longing for the return of the green jersey may have to wait only until next season. At a barbecue event for season ticket holders last week, I believe, owner Craig Leipold said the team was working on a green third jersey to celebrate their 10th anniversary.

You can listen to his comments in full via the latest PONDcast on the Wild's official web site. (If you're reading this in the future, it's #883.)

That reminds me. A couple of months ago, the Wild held a fan appreciation event where staffers were walking around with concept jerseys trying to get a feel for what folks would like from an alternate. Perhaps that had something to do with this. You can read more about it in the original post.

Thanks to Eric for the heads-up on this!

Jackets Also Without Alternate

The news just keeps coming. The Columbus Blue Jackets have become the third team to confirm they will not wear a third jersey this season. Eric Smith at HockeyBuzz interviewed Jackets Marketing VP Marc Gregory.

Smith: A lot of interest in regards to a 3rd jersey. Any plans for this?

Gregory: Not for this season. Last year was the first year for the new crest or the old 3rd jersey crest and we really want to leave time to have it build this identity. We have had several changes to the jersey in the past with different shoulder patches and really just wanted to give the current design time for the fans get comfortable with. Doing a 3rd jersey this early wasn’t something that we had planned. A 3rd jersey is on the radar but no time table has been set for a release.

So I'll keep an eye out for the possibility of a Blue Jackets alternate jersey in the future.

Habs Unveil 100 Seasons Logo

I've gotten about a dozen emails about this so most of you probably know already. The Montreal Canadiens released a new 100th anniversary logo that will be used this season. The announcement was made yesterday on their official web site.

The logo is described as "using the style of numbers found on the Canadiens’ current white jersey worn on the road." It will also be used at center ice. A rendering of what that will look like is on the team's web site.

For what it's worth, the logo says "100 Seasons" right? Correct me if I'm wrong, but in the last 100 years we have had at least one year without a hockey season. Did the Habs perhaps play two seasons in one year at some point prior to the formation of the NHL?

The article makes no mention of the vintage jerseys the Habs are rumored to be wearing throughout the season to commemorate their centennial.

IHA Poll: Columbus Brigade

Cast your vote and leave a comment about your decision. Then tell all your friends to drop in and vote! The more voices heard, the more accurate the results!

Starts Tue Aug 26
Ends Fri Aug 29

Ducks PR Confirms No Third

Not that this is going to come as a huge surprise to anyone, but the Anaheim Ducks will not be among the handful of teams wearing third jerseys this season. It was confirmed today on the team's official web site by PR man Adam Brady in his blog.

...there hasn't been anything official about this yet, but there is talk that several NHL teams will be adopting third jerseys for the 2008-09 season. I can tell you with 100 percent confidence that the Ducks will not be one of them. However, several clubs will apparently be following the Ducks' (and several other teams') lead by adding black jerseys, including the Kings (though they already have black jerseys), Bruins, Hurricanes, Sharks, Blackhawks, Senators and Coyotes.

Somebody's been reading Icethetics.

And in an effort to perhaps remind us why sometimes third jerseys are a bad idea, he shared the worst two in history.

But to that I have to add that I love that Kings logo and I actually own that horrible Ducks jersey. No shame here.

So you can now officially include the Ducks along with the Capitals on the list of teams that will under no circumstances wear anything but their home and away sweaters this year.

Bergeron Dons Bs' New Third?

A new video on appears to show Patrice Bergeron in what could be the Bruins' new third jersey — or something close to it.

First, a few stills from the video.

If you go watch the video — which is titled "Road to Recovery" — you'll find a few seconds of him skating in this jersey around 2:35.

Now, some background. Back in February, I posted a video clip from an NESN broadcast that showed a guy skating around in what was described as a third jersey "finalist" for the Bruins. Despite wearing a Bergeron jersey, it was not Bergeron. Here are some stills from that video.

The differences between these two jerseys are fairly obvious. Notice the crest. On the TSN video, there's a white stroke around the logo. Not so on the NESN video. There's also a yellow stripe around the bottom of the NESN jersey while there are no stripes on the bottom of the TSN jersey.

Just some things to think about as we anticipate the Boston Bruins' new alternate sweater. No word yet on when we should expect it. Thanks to Steve for the tip.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Hurricanes/Whalers Jersey Contest

This upcoming season will mark the 30th anniversary of the Hurricanes franchise — this includes their time in Hartford as the Whalers. The guys over at Hockeybums have a contest going to mark the occasion. It's something a lot of you might be up for.

They want artists to submit designs incorporating both the Whalers and Hurricanes jerseys. I'm guessing they also want some sort of hybrid logo as well to keep it from being too easy. They're also promising a "special prize" to the designer of the best jersey.

The contest runs until the start of the season.

IHA Poll: Buffalo Bison

Cast your vote and leave a comment about your decision. Then tell all your friends to drop in and vote! The more voices heard, the more accurate the results!

Starts Mon Aug 25
Ends Thu Aug 28

Sunday, August 24, 2008

From The Ground Up: Divisions

Check the pollbar. You can now vote on your preferred divisional boundary alignment for the Icethetics fantasy league.

Since I can't offer higher resolution images within the poll, I'm offering them here with a list of cities available to each division. All divisions here are named by geography.

Here are some things to think about with regard to the divisional boundaries. The larger the division area, the fewer teams you get out of that area in a way. Remember, every division gets 5 teams. Smaller divisional areas have a better chance of getting a city you want, for example.

So, if you think there should be more Canadian teams and fewer southern teams, you'll probably want to pick D. If you want more eastern cities than western, go with C. A has the best geographical spread. B and E rely heavily on northern cities. Just a few observations. There are plenty of other ways to look at each setup.

Happy voting!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

From The Ground Up, Part 3

Part 1 · Part 2

Today voting ended on the poll about how many teams our little fantasy league will have. Much to my disappointment, you all chose 30 — same as the NHL and same as the IHA. I know I run the risk of alienating readers by calling 34% of you a disappointment, but that's something I'm just going to have to live with. (Unless someone can give me a really good reason why we should be unoriginal and then I'll eat my words.)

I'll tell you I almost didn't include it because I wanted to stay off the beaten path. I used it more or less as a test to see how much you guys were willing to stray from what you know and move into new territory. Comfortable is comfortable but let's not make a habit out of recreating the NHL here. That's not the point, remember?

I've been reading the comments in the last two posts. A lot of you seem to like the idea of doing a league with all non-NHL cities (with an Original Six exemption, oddly enough). That's not a terrible idea considering what we've witnessed in the last two polls. But to do that would be an executive decision by me. Instead, here's the plan.

Instead of creating a giant list of cities and allowing you guys to pick your favorites, I have a better idea. First, you're going to choose the geographical boundaries for the divisions.

I've created five maps for you to choose from. I think they're each different and good in their own way. None of them are even close to being in line with the NHL's current divisional map. You guys can study them and pick your favorite. Once we have the divisional boundaries decided, everything we vote on will be done division by division. Makes less work for me.

At some point tomorrow the new poll will appear in the sidebar with the five choices.

The next step will be selecting the markets that will have teams. I say markets (or metropolitan areas) for a couple of reasons: 1) I'd like to avoid multiple teams from the same market like New York or L.A. (I know it's one decision I'm taking away from you. Sorry. Let's make this easy.); and 2) if, for example, a city like San Francisco is chosen, I want there to be the option of placing the team in San Jose or Oakland or something.

I'll pick 12 cities from each divisional area (based on market size, most likely) and the 5 with the most votes will be awarded franchises. Simple as that. If you don't think this is the good plan, present a better one to me either by email or as a comment.

I've also been planning into the future of this league and while I won't go into detail right now, I will offer a few tidbits. Once we have all the cities picked out for each division, we'll move on to naming the teams, one division at a time. We'll take nominations and every entry that meets the guidelines will be included in the voting. More details on that later.

To keep the rest of the process from becoming excruciatingly tedious, we won't be voting on things like logos and colors separately. Once all the teams have been named, I'll begin taking logo submissions. That means you pick the color scheme to go with your logo set. The team's colors will be determined by the winning logo. All entries that meet the guidelines will be included in the voting. More details on that later.

All of the accepted entries will appear on one page and you'll rate each logo from 1 to 5 stars. The logo with the highest rating wins. In the event of a tie, we'll hold a run-off poll. After we have logos, we'll do jerseys. After that who knows. But all that will probably take us several months anyway.

By the way, this league is going to need a name. Start making suggestions. The only criteria I have is that it must use the name Icethetics in it and it cannot have the acronym IHA or NIHL. Let's hear some creative ideas.

For what it's worth, I like the idea of the guy who said we should pretend we're creating a new league in a world 20 years after the collapse of the NHL. Let's say some Bettman-like character holds the trademarks to every team name and logo from the NHL and he's vindictive. You steal one of his logos or team names — even a little bit — and he'll eat your children. You don't want your children eaten do you?

Let's try to be original and, mostly, have fun!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Project: IHA Central

First, if you have no idea what the Icethetics IHA Project is then click here to get caught up.

Second, I apologize for the delay in getting you the final division. I've been a little preoccupied what with working at a television station that did 14 hours of continuous live coverage of Tropical Storm Fay. The worst is past us now but it just keeps dropping tons of rain here. Quite an ordeal.

Now, you've seen the Atlantic, West, Northeast, Pacific and Great Lakes Divisions. Today we move on to the final division — Central. Remember, your job is to take the name and colors and create an identity for a hockey team from scratch. Have fun with it!

You guys have been coming up with some great logos as you've seen with the first few divisions. This week we've been voting on Pacific Division logos. Next week will be the Great Lakes. I may wait an extra week before doing this division just because I posted the names and colors so late.

Here are the final five teams of the IHA!


CHICAGO TIGERS / Chicago, Illinois
yellow (ECB90A), blue (0A58A0) and grey (CCCCCC)

MANITOBA THUNDER / Winnipeg, Manitoba
white (F0F0F0), navy (03055C) and dark grey (404040)

MILWAUKEE CRUSADERS / Milwaukee, Wisconsin
yellow (E2A500), red (AA0606) and white (F0F0F0)

MINNESOTA MILLERS / Bloomington, Minnesota
brown (90906A), green (037703) and black (202020)

ST. LOUIS SPIRIT / St. Louis, Missouri
blue (465FA8), red (B40000) and white (F0F0F0)

I've supplied colors in hexadecimal format. Should you need RGB conversion, here's a decent resource. By the way, you aren't tied to the exact colors here. Feel free to alter them a little if need be. But please shy away from the standard colors like total black or total white or total red. Remember, be different! As similar as it might be to the NHL, it's not the NHL!

Once again, follow these guidelines when submitting your original IHA artwork or it probably won't have a chance at being a finalist (there, I said it):
  • Don't steal artwork. You guys have gotten better about this but I'm still saying it. This is supposed to be where you let your own creativity shine through. Send in something original!

  • Submit three (3) logos: primary, secondary and wordmark. Use a white background. If your logo requires a white outline (think Lightning or Capitals), then use a gray background with the white outline included.

  • Submit vector art if possible. I will accept .ai, .psd and .pdf files. If you cannot submit vector art, you must be able to provide high quality raster art in .jpg or .png files. No .bmp files, PLEASE!

  • Try to stick to the assigned colors. Change them only if you deem it necessary and then explain why you made the change. Remember, the "fans" chose these colors and they're who you're working for in the end.

  • Email them to with IHA in the subject line. Please include your first and last name (it will not be posted). Please also submit your nickname which will be public if you don't want your real first name used.

  • By submitting your own original artwork to the email address above, you agree to grant permission of its use for online or print publication by Icethetics. Do not watermark your logos or they will not be considered.

  • And finally, be prepared to accept feedback and criticism of all kinds!

As always, you can email me questions directly or post them in the comments area. Start designing your logos! I look forward to seeing what you all come up with!

Caps GM Says No Third Jersey

Washington Capitals fans may not be happy about this news — I guess, depending on your stand with regard to third jerseys. On Monday some information I received seemed to indicate the Capitals might be among the teams with third jerseys this season. But according to the team's general manager, that is not the case.

Washington Post writer Tarik El-Bashir wrote in his blog Capitals Insider that GM George McPhee said his team won't be wearing an alternate sweater anytime soon.

As you might have heard, the Capitals won't be among the 18 teams introducing a third jersey this season. But it might not happen next season, or the season after that, either, if McPhee has his way.

"We just came up with these jerseys a year ago and we're still building equity in them," he said. "Personally, I'm not a third jersey fan. Half the time, you don't know who is playing out there. So I'm in no rush to do it."

So if you were among those hoping for a blue "Weagle" jersey — keep dreaming. It sounds like there's no possibility of a third until at least 2010.

Thanks to James for the tip!

IHA Poll: Vancouver Dynamo

Cast your vote and leave a comment about your decision. Then tell all your friends to drop in and vote! The more voices heard, the more accurate the results!

Starts Fri Aug 22
Ends Mon Aug 25

Catching Up On News

It seems I've been slacking a little this week when it comes to news coverage. I really try to stay on top of this for you guys so here's a wrap-up some of what's going on.

The Buffalo Sabres became the first team in my book to bring the new third jerseys into their marketing campaign. This ad began appearing on their official web site this week.

This comes after Sunday's announcement of a sweater unveiling ceremony to be held on September 20.

On Monday the AHL's Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins — better known as the baby Pens to fans — unveiled their new third jersey. Yes, even the AHL is going that route this year.

No word on whether the green plaid shorts will be part of the official uniform.

The WHL's Prince George Cougars unveiled a new logo on Wednesday.

You may remember the Cougars saw a first-round exit courtesy of the Regina Pats in the WHL Tournament of Logos back in March. Perhaps this logo will give them a better shot at advancing further in the future.

Such a cute kitty.

There you have it. Sometimes I think it's just better to get it out all at once.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Finding Lost Logos

Tuesday's post about blogger James Gordon finding unreleased logos in public trademark filings and an email from JP at Japers' Rink got me thinking about what other hidden gems might be out there on the United States Patent & Trademark Office's web site. Now I think "gems" is misleading because, by and large, logos that were trademarked but never used probably weren't that good in the first place.

Even one that was trademarked and will be used wasn't that good. I'm of course referring to the Kings.

That got me thinking about the one other team who is supposed to be getting a new logo for their third jersey — the Blues. And we haven't seen anything from them yet. So I did a search. Unfortunately, it seems they haven't filed yet. However, I did find one interesting wordmark.

A Blues fan would have to let me know if this was used or not at any point. But I don't remember ever seeing it. I believe it dates back to the days of the trumpet logo you see on the right. That was a secondary logo worn as a shoulder patch during the Gretzky days when the team introduced red into the uniform.

I did like that trumpet logo a lot though, for what it's worth.

Moving on now to the Capitals. Here's a logo we have seen before here.

And here's one we haven't.

This is what JP pointed out to me in the first place. Last year he wrote up a post about these two logos. He didn't like either and while I know my opinion doesn't count for anything, I have to say I really like the one on the right.

Yeah, it has text in it and all that, but if you can look beyond it's major flaw, I think it's a very balanced and well-designed logo. Shame it never saw the light of day.

And finally, I have to bring it all back to my Tampa Bay Lightning.

This logo was trademarked by the Bolts but never used — thankfully. I first saw it at Boltsmag a few years back.

If you guys find anything else of interest, let me know and I'll post it.

UPDATE (8/22 1:02 AM): All right, this is incredible. Not only were both of those Blues logos used, a reader emailed in a picture of a banner that features both on a hockey mask — together!

How cool is that?