Worst to First Jerseys: The Anaheim Ducks
This installment of the Worst to First Jerseys features the Anaheim Ducks, and part of this series is hosting the full posts on a blog of the team that’s being featured. The full version of this post is on the blog Battle of California. You can check it out by clicking here. And much thanks to Nick and Jer from Battle of California for hosting this post.
Do you want your team featured? I’ll be contacting blogs for each team throughout the year, so keep a look out for it. Or, let me know which blog I should be contacting for your favourite team. For now, here’s a preview of my post about the Ducks:
The Ducks have been in the league for 20 years now, and haven’t always be the poster child for excellence in design aesthetics, as they came in during the ’90s which saw some of the worst designs (logos and jerseys) ever to grace the league. And while I rated the Ducks in last place in the BTLNHL (Best Team Logos in the NHL) Countdown, had I written the Countdown after they made the switch for their alternate logo to become their primary logo, they would have made a significant jump up those standings, so don’t crucify me just yet.
Here’s how this works: I’ll count down, from worst to first, all the jerseys the Ducks have ever worn. Homes and aways will be lumped into the same category (so, more of a jersey “era”) and I won’t worry about small changes (like slightly changed positions of piping for example). Third jerseys will stand on their own. And I’m focusing on the jerseys only, not the entire uniform. The jersey images are compliments of the fine people over at nhluniforms.com. For the Ducks, there’s 6 different jerseys/eras. And we’ll start with the worst one:
6. 1995-96 Third Jerseys
C’mon, was there really any doubt which jersey would take last place? The Wild Wing is not only the worst jersey the Ducks have worn, it’s one of the worst NHL jerseys ever. It’s not even a “so bad, it’s good” kind of thing.
That being said, I honestly wouldn’t mind owning one of them some day, because it’s so unique within the scope of NHL jerseys. The problem is, it’s definitely not unique within the scope of minor-league hockey jerseys, which often introduce bizarre, off-the-wall, non-traditional jersey designs. Anaheim was obviously tempted to do the same but it’s better to keep that stuff in the minors. Hey, kind of like Mark Fistric, amirite?
The main problem with the jerseys in indirectly related to design: corporate schlocking. At the time of this jersey, the team was the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim, owned by Disney, named after a Disney movie and featured a Disney-esque logo. Then they came out with the Wild Wing jersey, with Donald Duck on steroids bursting out of the ice wearing a Mighty Ducks jersey. It’s the closest thing that the NHL has ever coming to advertising on a jersey. Did you know they were making D3: The Mighty Ducks during the season, which featured them wearing Mighty Ducks uniforms? Convenient.
But while they were advertising their movie, they also threw out almost every traditional aesthetic of a hockey jersey. The shoulder yokes are circular instead of rectangular. The fonts are almost illegible at far distances, using an open and thin script-like font. I feel sorry for the guys calling the game when these jerseys were worn. Also, the stripes that are on the jersey don’t match at all, with purple and white on the yokes, white-eggplant-white-teal-eggplant on the sleeves, and just white on the bottom.
The team’s actual logo is relegated to the tiny shoulder patches and on the jersey on the jersey. #HockeyJerseyInception
Sorry Wild Wing fans, it’s a bad jersey with no redeeming qualities. Like a bad duckface, it’s a total fail. Luckily, it only lasted one season.
Jersey Recommendation: #8 Kilger. The fourth pick at the 1995 draft for Anaheim never came as advertised and got nixed early for something better: Selanne. Seems fitting for this jersey. Plus wearing a Ducks #8 jersey and it not being Selanne would be quirky and unique, in a bad way.
You can read the entire post on Battle of California by clicking here.