And where does the jet pack go?



The more astute of you have probably already seen photos of the new uniforms that will be unveiled at the All-Star Game next week and then be used by the entire league next season.

I guess they’re OK since I originally had visions of something out of the movie “Rollerball” (minus L.L. Cool J and Co.).

But seeing how I’m a hockey traditionalist — wooden stick, no shield, even a blood stain down the front of my jersey — I never had a problem with the old ones (and by the way, if you just read my description of myself and think I’m sort of tough guy, I should probably also mention I’m afraid of roller coasters and recently rented “Must Love Dogs” with the Mrs.).index_html_01.jpg

It’s all about growing the game, or so I’m told, and if this is another stab at getting hockey to the masses, then I suppose I’m for it. And if that doesn’t work, I say we then go for LL Cool J.

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  1. i read that they dont retain water like the current jerseys, so they are significantly lighter…especially late in games.

  2. Stan Fishsticks saying that the NHL is quietly acknowledging now that they have taken too much of the tough stuff out of hockey, and that they are quietly letting more hitting back in. I sure hope so. John Tortorella of Tampa is one of those who has lobbied the league to put the aggression back into the league. good for Torts.

  3. nothing gets their attention faster than thousands of empty seats, which are showing up all over the league this year.
    I am not talking about tickets sold, which the NHL uses, I am talking about turnstile count, people in the house.

  4. Sam, and anyone else,

    Much like the original NHL was probably tougher, more exciting and just flat-out better, I strongly recommend you check out the old-school “Rollerball” if you’ve never seen it. I’m sure the Ladies Love Cool J, but he ain’t got nothing on Jimmy Caan.

  5. Doodie Machetto on

    I’ll say what I’ve said before, I remember reading, possibly on ESPN’s Uniwatch, that Reebok originally suggested the slimmer designs in order to put the bodies of the players on display for the ladies.

    I really don’t care much either way. Who cares if the jerseys are slimmer, so long as they don’t affect the players, which they don’t.

    The thing that should be made slimmer is goaltending equipment.

  6. HossaMVP

    if they really want higher ratings they should shoot Bettman out of a cannon.

    Funniest line of the season.
    I wish it could happen.

  7. Hi Rangers fans. I’m butting into Sam’s blog because I miss you guys. No, seriously, I miss hockey and I always remember how rabid you guys are about your team.

    Anyway, I just did a short blog about Adam Graves, and I’d like to know what you think.

    So check it out on my “According to Carp” blog. And please stop by now and then. I promise I will write about hockey once in a while.

    Rick Carpiniello

  8. But if they really want better ratings they should get rid of the instigating penalty, Cut down on the TV timeouts(which have taken all the flow out of the game) and revoke the team away from New Jersey (I dont even think what they play is considered real hockey. Since 1993, the Devils and Bettman are the two worst things to happen to the NHL. In 1994 the NHL was at its highest popularity, Now where is it?
    I love Hockey (and the Rangers) no matter how high or the ratings are. But the NHL does need to be tweaked.

  9. Slimmer uniforms. Only Bettman would do this. Completely unnecessary. How about lower ticket prices? Wasn’t that going to be a benifit of the cap? Gues that hasn’t worked out has it.

  10. I really hate Bettman. Two lockouts and an entire season gone and now new uniforms. Great job Gary.

  11. The Jerseys are a joke. Here’s what I would highlight/change about the game.

    1) Get rid of the instigator rule. Fighting is a good thing. Big hits are great too, so keep out the clutching and grabbing.

    2) Too many boring announcers that talk about the game too simplistically. (See Rosen and Michelletti). John Madden is a genius because he’s exciting and insightful about the strategies of the game and has a grasp of its history. We learn about positioning, schemes, blitzing, passing routes, check offs, coverage… and a game doesn’t go by without him mentioning a name like Fred Biletnikoff and he’s filled with passion about it too.

    The NHL has it backwards. They get these loud, voicestrous play by play guys who know nothing about hockey. Then they get these boring former players to do COLOR. It’s called COLOR for a reason. See Don Cherry and hopefully Brett Hull. Melrose is ok, but he too shies away from explaining the game. At least the color guy in buffalo talks out of his a** to keep it interesting. Let the color guys be homers and play favorites more… stop forcing them to hide their allegiances and pose as impartial analysts. It’s just not interesting because they’re not particularly insightful.

    Frankly, you can watch the NHL for decades without learning a darn thing about the game and how to play or coach it. Ask Discovery, TLC and other cable channels, Men like to understand how stuff works. They haven’t just scrubbed the game of violence, they’ve scrubbed it of knowledge to appeal to god knows who and it’s not working. I miss ESPO in the booth.

    3) Develop new camera angles. The side view keeps us at arms length. When you go to a game and can see the whole ice and you see a wide open winger flying down the boards and no one seems to see him, you’re suddenly filled with dread and anticipation. You know what’s going to happen before it happens and it crushes or excites you when it does. Find a way to mimic the camera angles that are used in video games. But don’t get too close, cause that’s just plain hard to watch.

    4) Get rid of talking to coaches and players during the game at the bench. The information is scrubbed and the coaches and players are trained not to say anything interesting. Most hockey players are not incredibly fascinating. So don’t think giving us access into their thoughts is going to somehow be interesting.

    5) Build up the grudges. Other announcers have made villians of the rich rangers coming to town, but who do we make into villians? No one. Even a guy like Brashear gets by. Heck, i remember when Dave Brown almost destroyed Thomas Sandstrom’s career witha crosscheck to the back of the head. I never forgot that. Grudges are good. Bring back the grudges. Focus on the rivalries. Make me never want to step foot in Philadelphia. Let Color guys show some passion and frustration and call out the players on the team they cover, because they care and fans get that.

    6) Bring back some history. It’s not just stuff people don’t understand, it’s substance. You watch hockey night in canada and for some reason it feels like there’s more substance. It feels like eating a steak as opposed to devil food cake. As a kid, I loved just how much there was to learn about the game and its history. The names of the divisions. The canadian anthem. When guy lafleur came out of retirement. The rivalries with the flyers and islanders and eventually the devils. The backstories. It was such an interesting, textured, edgy sport.. with missing teeth! Who the hell is Clarence Campbell? I didn’t know, but then i found out… and there wasn’t an internet back then…

    I’m sick of this clean, boring, subdued, nutured league that thinks it needs to run from it’s history and pretend its the future. Okay, done with that…

  12. Doodie Machetto on

    “John Madden is a genius because he’s exciting and insightful about the strategies of the game and has a grasp of its history.”

    HA! Madden is a buffoon who says the least insightful things in history! “McNabb, here’s a guy, when he practices he gets better.” That’s a Madden-type comment. Watch some Frank Caliendo stand up.

    I really don’t understand what the beef is with the jerseys. They don’t add/subtract anything if they’re cut differently, it’s like people are just trying to find something to complain about.

    And for those of you who hate Bettman, I’ve got his response to you: “I don’t give a flying *&!%” He works for the owners, and he has made the game better for them. His job as commissioner is to make them money, not for the fans to enjoy the game more.

  13. Bill Daly should be the commissioner in charge of business.
    and Don Cherry should be the asst. commissioner in charge of hockey.

    Cherry would put the aggressive passion and toughness back in the game.

    It has become too antiseptic, too friendly, too European.

    the guys on the Devils and Rangers should be bitter rivals, not local area buddies. the fans should not be subjected to a passionless chess match like the Devils-Rangers game.

  14. You can click on Rick’s name and it will take you to his site.

    In fact, any name in blue is also a link.

  15. Doodie Machetto : Caliendo dose a perfect Madden…and you a right…he jsut states teh obvious….in hockey a Madden would be like, ” When he shoots…he shoots the puck, and it goes in, thats a gaol, and the red light goes on” thats just what the NHL needs!! LOL

  16. i think jsut putting teh instigator rule back in th box they got it out of will help. It seems that players and teams slow down the rough stuff knowing that if the other team retaliates with some physical play, and “hits below the belt” that they cant respond unless they send their goon out to go fight the other teams goon. I dont think the NHL NEEDS more fighting, but it dose NEED to give the ability back to the palyers t go after a Rutoo(sp) who wil hit and talk but not act on it. I think they can at least modify the instigator rule. If a player goes after someone 3 times in a game, he prabably should get an extra 10 on the 3rd time. But that would jsut keep things in control…thats not bad, takeing it out is. But anyway, I am affraid that with the cast of charachters in charge now it wont happen.

  17. I was in Dallas at the Stars game last night, and I saw the replica versions of the all-star jerseys. They are quite a bit smaller than the traditional jerseys. They are also much thinner. They are stretchy and acrylic. Over the current shoulderpads, these guys will look like the Michelin man. If they are indeed to be all tucked in, it will ruin the Rangers traditional blue unis….as there won’t be room for the diagonal letters on the front.

    As for toughness, remove the instigator rule and this crap about the last 5 minutes of the game.

  18. Bob: Although I agree with removing the instigator rule…players should NOT be going out at the end of the game jsut to muck things up. I tihnk thats still OK. That kind of crap is what isnt wanted in the NHL…teh fighting and going after a punk who likes to paly dirty but never fight is one thing…going out at the end of the game because you are loseing and going after a guy for throwing good hits, thats another story all together. I dont think it shoudl be last 5 min, maybe last 2 min, that way at least palyers wont be going out jsut to try and hurt someone in a fight. Thats not good hockey…

  19. BLT: alot of teams are in tehat boat right now…the Rangersa yes are 6 points from 14th, but 6 points from 5th as well…glass half full or half empty. Or if you are like me, its half full or half full….you see, if the Rangers drop like a stone…well they get better draft picks…if they dont we get to see playoffs and more wins during teh regular season…glass half full, or half full..

  20. What Don Cherry says is dismissed as background noise and much of it deservedly so, but Brett Hull made the point that the instigator rule must go. It encourages cheap shots and then the perpetrator laughs as he skates away knowing if someone wants to challenge him, he just has to decline the invitation, and the guy gets two minutes plus, plus. I doubt if the Bertuzzi incident would have happened without the instigator rule. Someone would have punched Moore in the face, there would have no point in running away, and the matter would have been settled. The last five minutes rule with big fines on coaches in another case of Bettman’s smothering the life out of the game. If teams want to settle accounts, let them settle accounts, and clear the air. Otherwise the cheap shots will come in the next game. Too bad like-minded hockey fans, which I think is the vast majority, couldn’t organize a one-game boycott to drive home the point. Anyone who plays professional hockey in North America knows what he is getting into and if he can’t stand the gaff, he should go into something else. If Bettman is squeamish, he can apply for a job as commissioner of a European league or women’s hockey.

  21. ivrydov : I think a team can find a way of getting some revenge at the end of a game withough instigating, or geting an instigator penalty…I think the only time something extra should be tacked on is if a guy cases someone down to go after them…really it shouldnt take till the end of the game to decide to go after a guy…if its worth going after him, do it beofre the last 5 min…or like i said earlier…it should only be teh last 2 min or someting…not 5…but in any case…if teh instigator rule was gone it would be taken care of earlier in the game, and the last 5 min thing would be just about ponitless anyway.

  22. stf: I am worried as well..I am affraid that the tie up jersey will be a thing of the apst…and I like it…as well as the “Rangers” writen across the front…

  23. Bob that last 5 minute rule is completely discretionary. Colon Campbell didn’t use it against Wash vs the NYR . He just suspended Orr for hitting Ovaltine. ;)

  24. The old jersey’s become “classic” and either sell for a little more or a little less. Regardless, you now need to go out and buy new Malik jerseys which raises the league’s merchandise revenue and makes the owners happy.

  25. Doodie Machetto on

    Exactly. Everyone blames Bettman but he’s just a pawn. He’s a lawyer. He works FOR the owners. Anything that “Bettman” does is just thw owners getting together, boting, and telling him what to do. He does nothing in his own capacity. That’s his job. I’ve met him and had a conversation with him about it. He’s nobody.

  26. Doodie Machetto on


    Any update on your son’s health? Any chance on getting the Lundqvist quote on his brother’s first NHL goal coming against Miikka Kiprusoff?

    By the way, check out these numbers:

    1 shot(goal), 4 hits, 6-3 faceoffs in just under 10 minutes. maybe we should trade Hall.

  27. Man, some of you guys are really friggin’ stupid. Get rid of the instigator rule?? The Rangers can’t defend themselves now, with the rule in place. What, do you think Hollweg is going to become Tie Domi once the restraints of the instigator rule are removed? And another thing: toughness means more than dropping the gloves. It involves taking the body, playing disciplined hockey, and, having a real physical presence on the ice. Mark Messier hardly ever dropped the gloves, but he was one of the toughest players in the history of the game. And, I’m sorry to say this, as I too detest the Devils and their style of play, but if you want to see team toughness, look at how their teams have played since about 1993. Have they even had an “enforcer” on their team since Peluso or Oliwa?

  28. update on his sons health? this is a ranger blog lets give the guy some privacy yeesh. next we’re gonna be asking him what he had for dinner every night :)

    jerseys won’t be tucked in that was an old idea they did away with. im curious to see what the jersey looks like on pronger or malik or guys like that actually but these little 12 year olds like crosby look fine in them don’t know if the MEN will be to comfortable in these.

  29. What!? That’s the new uniform that everyone is making a bid deal about? There are only slight cosmetic changes. Get rid of the shorts. Why are they keeping the shorts???!

  30. Doodie Machetto on

    “Mark Messier hardly ever dropped the gloves, but he was one of the toughest players in the history of the game.”

    In his early years he dropped them with some frequency.

    “Have they even had an “enforcerâ€? on their team since Peluso or Oliwa?”

    Oliwa was out last year as Janssens came in. So yes.

  31. Shame on you Sam, the only ROLLERBALL is the one with James Caan, not the dreadful LL Cool J flick which is unwatchable !

    Carry on good sir……

  32. ivrydov –

    I disagree about the instigator rule making the Moore incident not happen. What most people forget is that he already fought once in that game, and probably thought the issue was over. Bertuzzi wanted a piece of Moore because he wasn’t the one to get to fight Moore. Moore chose to ignore and so Bertuzzi mauled him. If Moore were a fighter (or even a tough guy) he could be expected to fight more than once in a game, but he’s not. The incident is completely on Bertuzzi’s shoulders.

  33. Thanks for the compliment — I think!? — Sam. Actually, you meant experienced and intelligent, not old.

    I agree that shooting Bettman out of a cannon is perhaps the hockey line of the young year. It might even stand up through 2007.

  34. rangers for life on

    nothing wrong with the new jerseys, get over it. if you have a problem you probably need to lose a few pounds. are you guys against helmets, goalie masks, and ankle support in skates as well?? I mean the hockey jersey has gone under many changes. its used to be wool, you guys want that back as well? i dont hear any baseball guys clamouring for their old cotton and wool jerseys any more!! see george costanza about that one.

  35. For some reason I doubt its the owners pushing this new crappy jersey. This has Bettman written all over it. A gimmick. I doubt old man Wirtz pushed for new tight jerseys.

  36. rangers for life on

    kara yorio was a devils beat writer and claims that stevens was a better leader and player then messier. anything that comes out of her mouth is pure idiocy. please dont post her articles. larry brooks has more credibility. women writing about sports is a joke.

  37. rangers for life

    A) I didn’t really post her article only a link. If don’t like her don’t read the article.
    B) I don’t really like or dislike her – just thought it was an intersting take on the Devils game plan and counter play
    C) Brooks aint the patron saint of credibility
    D) What do you have against women???

  38. rangers for life on

    i was just clueing the other posters in on who wrote the article and not to put so much weight on it. i know brooks isnt the patron saint of credibility…but he has more then her and that says a lot which is what i tried to point out. i have nothing against women….. but i have yet to find a good female sportscaster or sports writer. its science.

  39. “i have nothing against women….. but i have yet to find a good female sportscaster or sports writer”

    completely agree.

  40. Doodie Machetto on

    Linda Cohn at ESPN is actually not bad.

    tsalad: I don’t think you’re understanding me. NOTHING can have “Bettman written all over it” because Bettman is just a pawn. What probably happened is Reebok came to the owners saying, “one of our ideas is to make the jerseys slimmer. It will make you more money if we switch.” I’m sure the phrase “more money” got old man Wirtz in line VERY quickly.

  41. that’s crosby in the photo?? anyway, I really disliked the nike olympic jerseys and socks. didn’t look like hockey. these jerseys and socks look better, though I don’t know why lighter and loose would be at odds (anyone ever use Kobe [not Bryant, the canadian co.] jerseys?).

    I know football and baseball went tighter, but basketball just the opposite. Remember the shorts that players like Walt Frazier or
    Bernard King wore? they look way uncomfortable.

    Regarding the comment on oliwa. He was a case, and there are many, of a goon more willing than able. and no, the devils have had plenty of tough guys since peluso, except that unlike him and especially unlike oliwa, they could play. To name a few:

    Jim McKenzie
    Randy McKay
    Colin WHIte

    Finally as far as the fairer sex and hockey media, I’ll leave you with the words of the Sherry Ross, who is good and is occasionally humorous:

    [quote/The NHL is reviewing some options concerning the schedule and realignment. Here are some proposals that never made it past the suggestion box:

    1. Have 30 one-team divisions, and everyone makes the playoffs. After a 29-game regular season, playoffs begin in December and end in June.

    2. Divide players into 12 teams according to astrological signs. Sydney Omarr named NHL commissioner.

    3. Relocate entire league to Canada, replace Southeast and Central Divisions with Maritimes and Plains.

    4. Rename the two conferences for Donald Trump and Rosie O’Donnell.

    5. All games to be played in Las Vegas and Hawaii.

    Originally published on January 14, 2007/endquote]

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