Which Jersey Will the Rangers Bring to the Winter Classic?
If this tweet from Larry Brooks is true, then the New York Rangers will in fact be playing a Winter Classic against the Flyers in Citizens Bank Park. But what jersey should they pull out of the mothballs and use for this special occasion?
I think it should be this beauty:
Back in the 1946-47 NHL season, the Rangers became the first team to to televise their home games. When Rangers fans tuned in to watch a game for the first time, this is the jersey they saw. This design was only used for one season before they went back to the design we know and love.
This is the jersey I want them to wear, will they? First, let’s take a look back at the jerseys the Rangers have worn over the last 85 years.
While it may have changed slightly over the years from the font, to the shade of blue, to the number of stripes, this is the Rangers jersey we all know and love:
Aside from the 1946 jersey mentioned above, the only other time the Rangers deviated from the current design was from 1976 to 1978:
The Rangers already brought this jersey back a few years ago as part of the NHL’s Vintage Jersey program and I was never very fond of it.
Now we have the alternate jerseys. These two jerseys were worn by the Rangers as a third jersey. The first came in 1996 when the NHL decided to allow teams to have a third or alternate jersey.
They used this jersey for select games from 1996 all the way until 2007 when the NHL made the switch to the Reebok Edge jersey and did away with third jerseys. For one year they also had a white version of the Liberty jersey.
From 1926 until 2010, the Rangers had only worn four different jerseys. Then the Rangers announced that the 2010-2011 season would be an 85th Anniversary Celebration! With that celebration came a new jersey: The Heritage Jersey.
This is only the fifth jersey the New York Rangers have worn in their existence.
So which jersey will the Rangers wear for the Winter Classic? As I mentioned earlier, I’m am really hoping that they bring back the 1946-47 jersey. I mean, it’s the only one they haven’t worn since the Original Six days. It makes sense that they would do that.
But what other options do the Rangers have?
- Wear the regular old Rangers jersey. This would be their way of saying, this jersey has so much history that we don’t even need to wear a different old jersey. It is our old jersey.
Why it won’t happen: Every team that has played in the Winter Classic has played wearing a jersey different from their regular jersey. They’ve all worn a “classic” jersey. In fact, the Penguin had two different jerseys for the two different times they played in the Winter Classic.
- Wear the late 1970′s jersey. When this jersey was first unveiled, it was not well received by the fans.
Why it won’t happen: The jerseys were never popular. They were brought back as “vintage” jerseys just a few years ago and they have not sold very well. People just don’t like them.
- Wear the Liberty jersey. History? What history?
Why it won’t happen: The only thing the Rangers were good at while they wore these was losing and overpaying for over the hill athletes.
- Wear the Heritage jersey. These jerseys have been wildly popular since they were introduced last season. All they would have to do is switch the 85th Anniversary patch with a Winter Classic patch.
Why it won’t happen: Every single team that has played in the Winter Classic has designed a new jersey specifically for the game. This jersey has been a new take on an old jersey. For the Rangers to just use the Heritage Jersey as their Winter Classic jersey would go against what the previous eight teams have done. Including the Penguins who wore two different jerseys in their two Winter Classic appearances. Let’s be honest. Why do teams release new jerseys? So they can make money. If they reused the Heritage jersey, they wouldn’t make money because everyone and their mother bought the Heritage jersey last season.
I think the choice is pretty clear. The Rangers will be wearing something very similar to this (perhaps a white version?):
Which I have no problem with. What do you think?
About the author: Eric is a lifelong Rangers fan and is currently studying Computer Engineering at Hofstra University. You can follow him on Twitter: @5holeEric
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