WIN WITH THE WINTER CLASSIC
In-person and television viewers of the January 1st NHL Winter Classic between the Blackhawks and Red Wings at Wrigley Field will be eligible to be part of a contest co-sponsored by the NHL and their contracted uniform supplier, Reebok.
The contest is called “Find the Lost Logo”, and will requires fans to identify the one player on the ice (could be a Chicago or a Detroit skater) whose game sweater is missing the Reebok logo on the back of the neck. Fans attending the game will be given binoculars to assist them in participation. The complete promotional rules and terms can be found on both www.nhl.com and www.reebokhockey.com .
PAYTON AS #17 FOR THE BEARS
Yes, it did happen, but, no, it wasn’t Walter.
As I write these words, I am watching the end of regulation time in the Thursday night Bears-Saints game. The NFL Network, who broadcast the game, showed a film clip of Saints head coach Sean Payton in uniform number 17 for the Bears, in Sweetness’ final year in the NFL. Hall of Famer Payton wasn’t playing at the time coach Payton was wearing Bears navy and orange, however…Sean was the quarterback during the 3-game run of NFL contests involving replacement players during the mid-season strike. So, if you see a Wilson Bears jersey with a NOB of PAYTON and a “17” on the front, back and sleeves, it’s not a fake constructed by an idiot…it’s just not the Payton most collectors would want in their collections.
NEW RED SOX DESIGNS
The Boston ballclub has added one new style and updated a couple more to their 2009 uniform arsenal.
The existing red alternate jersey will now be a home-only alternate jersey, with a dark blue road alternate being added to the team supply. The blue will have the fancy BOSTON front in red trimmed in white.
Meanwhile, the standard road grays will be scaled back in color, with a new BOSTON front using the 1990s/2000s ornate BOSTON road front, but with a 1979-89 single toned dark blue lettering.
Also on the agenda is the return of the Hanging Sox logo, without the circular border, to be added as a left sleeve logo patch on at least 3 of the 4 styles (not sure about the home whites on this. The Hanging Sox logo will also adorn the front of a new alternate cap the team is adding to the longtime B front lid. The Red Sox team website has photos of the new road grey and blue alternate road jerseys.
NBA HARDWOOD CLASSICS
Some retro NBA styles have shown up again in 2008-09 Hardwood Classics uniforms made by Adidas for NBA game use.
On December 5th, the Washington Wizards broke out a home white design patterned after the unies of the Wizards’ long-ago predecessor, the Chicago Zephyrs of 1962-63. The design was part of the team’s 45th Anniversary celebration during the current season. Also, on December 10th, while the Cavs again wore their bright yellow early 70’s throwbacks, the New Orleans Hornets turned to the old ABA for inspiration with a retro New Orleans Bucs style. Kudos to all three for adding something new for game-used hoops collectors.
CHARLIE DIDN’T HUSTLE IN THIS ONE
Another eBay lot has come and gone which was so far off the beaten path in terms of authenticity, but still drew some bidders.
The item was purported to be a 1980s Reds home knit of Pete Rose. As is often the case when items like this one are highlighted, problems were multiple in nature. The NOB and numeric fonts bore serifs, something the Reds gamers of the era (home and road) did not. Also, the jersey was made by Wilson…fine for 1972-84 road knits, but not for home pullovers, which were the work of Rawlings from 1972-84, and by Goodman for the ’85-’86 time frame.
Of course, while assuredly not game-used, jerseys like this have a purpose for some hobbyists. If you want to get a jersey of decent quality autographed for display, don’t care about whether the item is a gamer or a game-issued piece, and keep the spending down, then you have a hobbyist-correct purpose for an item of value…just not a game-used one.
CHICAGO BASEBALL CONVENTIONS
For game-used equipment collectors and autograph seekers; the two Chicago baseball team off-season fan conventions will be two weeks apart. The Cubs event, at the Chicago Hilton & Towers, will be January 16-18. Two weekends later (January 30-February 1), the White Sox will have their turn. The Sox have tickets available as of this writing; the Cubs event, however, will require eBay bidding, a ticket broker, or trolling exhibitors for a pass, as the public sale of ducats sold out in 24 minutes. Closer to the time, I’ll cover what to expect at each event in the way of game-used items and autograph availability.
For someone willing to travel and not be intimidated by possible lousy winter weather, one could plan a long 4-day weekend by hitting the Cubs show on Friday and Saturday, and then heading down to St. Louis for the Cardinals fanfest, which runs from the 17th through the 19th, finishing up on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, a Monday.
TWO VOPATS, ONE NOB
An eBay listing showed two NHL Kings sweaters of Jan and Roman Vopat, dated to 1996-97 or 1997-98, when both were part of the Kings roster. The Kings equipment guy apparently decided that no first initial identifiers were needed, as both Jan (33) and Roman (12) went with just VOPAT as their NOBs.
Chris “Flash” Richardson, a UNLV hoopster who went on to play with the Harlem Globetrotters, died in his sleep of what was believed to be natural causes. Richardson, 28, was on a tour of Japan with the legendary basketball entertainer team.
OBAMA: I DIDN’T VOTE FOR HIM, BUT I LIKE HIS THOUGHTS ON NCAA FOOTBALL PLAYOFFS!