This was harder than I thought because there aren't a ton of bad jerseys, but there are a few. Here are what I came up with as my least favorite jerseys of all time.
Honorable Mention: New Jersey Devils 1982-1993
- Before we really get started, here's a jersey that I really wanted to put in this list: the Devils jerseys with the green and red "Christmas Tree" jerseys. That was a bad jersey. Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, but it was never the most wonderful time of the year for the Devils. That was a color combination that I think everyone was happy it left the NHL.
5. The Calgary Flames in 1980
- There was not a lot of imagination here and nothing very innovative -- just a "C" with some flames on it. The white ones were especially poor I thought, but for lack of imagination and creativity, I'll give the white Calgary flames
jersey the nod at No. 5. I'm not a lover of Calgary's jerseys in general. I like them better now that they have black in them, but I've never been a lover of their jerseys.
4. The New York Rangers in 1978
- I hate that long stripe from one arm across the shoulder to the other arm. A lot of teams did this in the late 1970s -- including the Toronto Maple Leafs
-- when I played for them. The Rangers had it with that square crest on the front. The Rangers had the stripe, Philly started the stripe, Toronto went to the stripe, Winnipeg went to the stripe, and I just never really liked it. I like the Rangers jersey when it just has Rangers across the front much better than the crest.
3. The Gold L.A. Kings jerseys
- The purple and gold that they wore for a while they took because they had the same owners as the L.A. Lakers, and purple and gold just aren't hockey colors. They don't invoke fear and intimidation. I've never liked the L.A. Kings' purple and gold jerseys, but the gold jerseys with the gold socks and the gold pants were the worst. I just felt that was too much gold in any one area. Thank God they didn't bring those out when I was the coach there. It's good for basketball, but just not for hockey.
2. The Islanders Gorton's Fisherman
- If this one's No. 2, it's hard to imagine that anything is worse than this. That was a jersey that scared kids. That was a bad crest. I'm so glad to have seen the Islanders get back to their original jerseys. They should never have changed. They won Stanley Cups with it, it was a nice jersey and to do that with the Gorton's Fisherman was just bad planning. I'm a traditional guy. If you're lucky enough to have tradition -- so few teams have it -- that should be something you go towards, not something you go away from. You don't see the Leafs or the Canadiens making major changes, and the Islanders, say what you want, are one of the great franchises in our game. They've won a number of Stanley Cups, so I think tradition is what they should be striving for -- not being gimmicky.
1. The Vancouver Canucks:
Every jersey from 1978-1997 - It's not just one jersey. It's an era -- right from when they brought the "V" in to the goofy skate on the crest. That whole era is the worst collection of jerseys the NHL has ever seen. At first they had the Hockey Night in Canada jerseys with the stick through the TV screen, and now they're back to that with their alternate, but then they had so many jerseys that were ugly, from the "V" to the goofy skate. There is just no redeeming that group of jerseys.