The Columbus Blue Jackets' third jersey design was so heavily protected, it may have been one of the only alternate looks for a team that did not leak via the Internet like the Anaheim Ducks' "burnt pumpkin pie" look, which was mistakenly listed on online retailer FansEdge.com before being pulled.
During the first period intermission of their game against the New York Islanders tonight, the Blue Jackets unveiled their third jerseys at a local mall with the team on the road on Long Island.
In the press release, the Blue Jackets explain two details that you can't see from the above photos:
"The neckline features three special elements. To honor Blue Jackets founder John H. McConnell during the team’s 10th season, the initials JHM adorn the back of the neckline.The JHM edition of the jersey will only be worn by the team during the 2010-11 season. For jerseys sold at retail, the JHM will appear only on the initial production run, making it a true collectors’ edition.
The phrase “We Fight. We March!,” which appears on the interior of the jersey’s collar, was first introduced during the 2008-09 season to describe the Blue Jackets’ first-ever march to the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The expression continues to represent the team’s intention each year to fight and march throughout the regular season and into the playoffs. Below “We Fight. We March!,” 10 stars commemorate the introduction of the jersey in the club’s 10th season."
You can view the full photo gallery on the Blue Jackets' website.
On Friday, Columbus will wear the jerseys for the first time against the Detroit Red Wings and then another 14 times the rest of the season.
Looking at these jerseys we can't help but think that navy blue is the new black around the NHL with the unveilings of the Florida Panthers and St. Louis Blues thirds the past two seasons and the Pittsburgh Penguins' Winter Classic threads last month.
Columbus' new look has sort of a retro vibe to it with the striping on the arms and along the bottom. The obvious theme is the Civil War with the 1857 Napoleon cannon and neckline inspired by the Union Army, but we can't help but feel a bit underwhelmed by these.
So while we're here and preparing for a turkey coma tomorrow in the U.S., let's have one more tonight ...
Pass or Fail: The third jersey for the Columbus Blue Jackets