Thursday, September 27, 2007

Rbk EDGE Review: Devils

Part 4 of 30. All 30 NHL clubs have unveiled new jerseys under the new Rbk EDGE Uniform System for the 2007-08 season. Here at the NHLToL, we're going to review every one of them. Read up and then rate the new sweaters. We'll do a full ranking after completing all of the reviews.

Rbk EDGE Uniform System

New Jersey Devils

New Uniforms

Old Uniforms

The Unveiling
Thursday, September 13. Photos of various Devils players wearing the new sweaters began appearing on the team web site. No unveiling ceremony was held.

Home vs. Road
Home: Red. Road: White. The two sweaters essentially mirror each other in terms of overall design.

The red home jerseys feature white-black-white stripes around the elbows and waist with the black stripe being roughly twice the thickness of one white. The black shoulder yoke is squared and slightly curved at the ends. The black collar features a thin white stripe within. The primary mark is featured as the crest.

The white road jerseys feature red-black-red stripes around the elbows and waist with the black stripe being roughly twice the thickness of one red. The black shoulder yoke is squared and slightly curved at the ends. The black collar features a thin red stripe within. The primary mark is featured as the crest.

New & Old
There are no major differences. The design of the old sweater was merely adapted to the Rbk EDGE cut.

Standard FAQ
Numbers on the front? No.
Laces at the collar? No.

NHLToL Editorial by Chris
Given that the Devils have had one of the league's best uniforms since exchanging green for black 15 years ago, I'd say this would be among the last uniforms to need a change. I'm glad to see they didn't do any major alterations and that some of the more glaring EDGE elements (e.g.: piping) were left out of this design. The colors make the jersey simple and strong. A split-second look leaves you with no doubt that you are watching the New Jersey Devils. I can't think of a single thing that would improve it. 5/5

View the photo gallery

Buy your new Devils jersey!

EDGE Makes Flames Sweaty, Too

I recently posted an article from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about members of the Penguins whining over certain aspects of the new Rbk EDGE jerseys. Well now, according to the Calgary Sun, the Flames have jumped on board.

Randy Sportak wrote this article on Tuesday. You can read it below.

September 25, 2007

New duds judged a dud

By Randy Sportak
Calgary Sun

Traditionalists still call a hockey uniform a sweater.

Having now sampled the new, high-tech togs unveiled by all 30 NHL teams this year for a handful of pre-season games, Flames players are understanding why the word sweat is in sweater.

"My undershirt is just soaked," said forward Owen Nolan. "I find I'm changing them in between periods and a lot more frequently than before. I feel like I'm working out in a sauna."

The new uniform system unveiled by RBK has benefits. Sweaters are lighter, are apparently more wind resistant and repel moisture.

However, while moisture doesn't soak in from the outside, it doesn't release from inside the uniform. That means players are becoming saturated in their own sweat.

"With the other ones, you had holes and got more of a breeze in there — maybe that's why you got that drying out effect," said blueliner Cory Sarich. "These seem to heat you up more because there's not that two-way air flow.

"Besides, the jerseys don't feel much different than the old ones. I don't know if they've accomplished what they want. From talking to guys, I don't feel they're making a difference on the ice."

Moreover, players around the league are complaining their gloves are becoming so full of sweat they have to change them constantly.

Also, their skates are filling like buckets, and that's not a piece of equipment they want to change mid-game.

The complaints don't end there, either.

To be form fitting over equipment, the sweaters are made of a stretchier material. Uniforms are tied down in the back to prevent an opponent from pulling it over their head in a fight, but it's now possible to 'jersey' somebody in a brouhaha.

"I know with the old ones, my sweater could only be pulled about halfway up my neck, but these come up over my head," said Warren Peters, one of the few Flames to drop the gloves this pre-season. "It's like they're elastic."

Forward Eric Godard hasn't been in a scrap yet, so he hasn't experienced the impact first-hand.

"The old jersey trick has been around a long time," he said. "Usually in a fight, I'm not worrying about the jersey. I worry about the other guy. If I start getting beat up, then I'll be saying, 'It's not fair.' "

And then comes the aspect considered most controversial about the new uniform. Some players prefer the uniforms being tighter, but the majority are partial to the old unis. In the development stage, RBK worked with player input, but still skaters feel restricted.

"I feel skinnier, but that's not the look I'm going for," Sarich said. "It takes me longer to get my sweater on because the shoulder pads and the elbow pads get tangled up in the sleeves."

"They're really tight," Nolan said. "I used to wear a really loose shirt because I want the freedom."

But, nobody's expecting the league to go back to the old ways, so it's best to accept it.

"You're soaked. But whatever sells jerseys, I guess," said defenceman Anders Eriksson. "Anyway, just give me a jersey, and I'll work with it."

Besides, seeing as the sweaters are supposed to be 9% more wind resistant, players must be 9% faster.

"Oh yeah, can't you tell?" Eriksson laughed. "I almost feel slower because everybody was telling me I was gonna be faster."

So essentially, the moral of the story is you cannot please everybody all the time. Hopefully we all knew that already, though.

Oilers, Here's How You Fix It

The Fix It series trudges on tonight as we consider improvements to the new Rbk EDGE NHL uniforms. I told you yesterday that you'd be in for a treat on this one.

As far as I'm concerned, the Edmonton Oilers have gotten stuck with one of the worst new sweaters in the league. That's a personal opinion, but I stand by it. Many have complained that the Rbk EDGE jerseys look a lot like practice jerseys. I disagree with that statement as a generalization. But here, I find it appropriate.

I have several designs to show you and I'll save the best for last. We'll start out by making some very slight alterations that would improve the jerseys on a major scale.

By simply extending the stripes on the sleeves to wrap completely around the elbows and adding a shoulder patch — one borrowed from last year's third jersey — you already end up with a sweater that doesn't look quite so blank. It's disappointing to see that the Oil couldn't manage something as easy as this on their own.

Then we have another design very similar to this but with a brand new shoulder patch.

I think that's a very interesting logo and with a little work, it could be great. I also truly believe that fixing the elbow stripes and adding something to the shoulders is all this jersey needs to really make it shine.

But speaking of shining, this is what you've been waiting for. Personally, I feel like it's one of the best Edmonton concept designs I've seen this summer.

The pattern was borrowed, obviously, from the Florida Panthers' new duds, but these colors are what Oilers hockey is all about. Imagine Gretzky and Messier wearing this. You almost can't help it. I am very impressed with this design, but as a Bolts fan I'm not sure I really have a say. I'll leave it to the rest of you now to decide. Especially Oilers fans.

Tell us how you feel about these fixes in the comments.

Up next: Washington Capitals.

Poll: Canadiens vs Blues

St. Louis

If for no other reason than the support I've been getting from you guys, I'm going to give this thing another shot. All votes cast prior to today are gone. Please place your votes again and this time we'll all try to be mature people about it. I really want this to work out because I think it's really fun. I don't want to take away the voting because I feel like the best aspect of this site is the interaction I get with everyone via the polls. So vote and be merry!

We're now in the final round of the NHL Tournament of Logos. One of these two logos will be crowned by you all as the best in the NHL. It's been some stiff competition all the way through but the Montreal Canadiens have been proven the best in the East and the St. Louis Blues the best of the West. It's been a pretty exciting run so far!

I would like to encourage everyone to go out and get as many people as they can to vote. Post the link on blogs, message boards or wherever else you can. Let's get as many people as we can to vote on this final round!

As a side note, one difference you might notice in this poll is that while it still closes after one week, I've changed the closing time to 5:00 PM so we can announce the winner just prior to the first games of the new hockey season. Also, we'll have to count yesterday as a lost day. But I'm not worried about it because everyone who wants to cast their vote should be able to access the internet at least once a week. (Or so I would hope.)

By the way, once the season has started, I hope you guys will continue to return to the blog and vote on all the logos. I'll be starting up a new tournament as early as next Friday. If you have any suggestions that you think will keep you interested in coming back, feel free to let me know either by email or in the comments. Thanks, all!

Poll opening date
Sep 27 @ 5:37 PM
Poll closing date
Oct 3 @ 5:00 PM

07CHTRN | #5 | MTLvSTL

Jersey Concept Art Galore

Busy day today. Shame I'm only getting to my first post at 5 PM, but some days, that's the way it goes.

Always gotta kick things off with some good concepts. So let's dive in with the Boston Bruins.

I like these logos much better on a yellow jersey than the old bear head. Although, I say that now but to be fair, when it came out I thought it was pretty damn cool.

I also like the striping patterns on both jerseys. When the third jersey program is reinstated next fall, I hope the Bruins consider something like this. It's very sharp.

Then, one thing a lot of people have been contemplating is what the Atlanta Thrashers would look like if the road jersey matched the home jersey.

Perhaps it would look like this. That's really nice, if you ask me. I really love the asymmetry of that light blue jersey. The city down the arm looks great and it's so unique to this team. I'm really impressed and I only wish the Lightning had thought of it first.

One reader also emailed me a handful of concept designs. I wish I had larger images, but this is what was sent.

My favorite in that set is the Kings but I think the red Blue Jackets sweater is ironic and very sharp. Not a fan of the black Wings jersey and the blue Isles jersey reminds me of the Lightning's old black sweaters with the white along the shoulders.

Now it's time for your input. Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Poll Removed Temporarily

Dear NHLToL readers,

It's a really sad and pathetic thing when a handful of arrogant and uneducated people decide they have to ruin something that was only meant to be fun. I'm appalled by what happened with the Canadiens vs. Blues poll last night.

For anyone who is unaware, I've taken taken it down today indefinitely. In checking the results when I woke up this morning, I discovered almost 60,000 votes had been cast while just over 30,000 hits were logged on the site itself during the day. If you're thinking that those numbers don't match up, you'd be right. I've tried really hard to avoid this but since I know what was going on was a sham, I am unable to continue with the poll right now.

I will, however, still continue to write this blog and post other polls, but I don't feel it would be right to continue with the tournament at this time. I hope to reopen it soon and avoid a repeat of yesterday's events.

Now I'd like to address those responsible: I'm sure you think you're just the coolest right now. I would imagine many other people, myself included, would disagree. It was a childish and immature stunt that I hope will not be repeated. Everyone here knows this tournament doesn't have any real meaning. If that was your point, way to state the obvious. Congratulations.

All I was merely trying to do this summer was offer a simple respite to those waiting for hockey season to start up again. We're all hockey fans here and it seemed like this would be something fun to pass the time. So I set up this hole-in-the-wall blog and started posting polls. I'm saddened that you refuse to take it for what it is.

I would ask you to please avoid the temptation to do the same thing when I re-post this poll in the future. I don't know why you did it. I don't care. I would just like it to stop. It's entirely unnecessary.

If you would like to address me personally, you can email me at

Thank you.