Blake’s Takes: The Reverse Retro Jerseys Have Arrived

Last week and Monday were exciting days off the ice. The hyped reverse retro jerseys were finally released and they shook Twitter. In this week’s column, I’ll share my takes on my favorite and least favorite Reverse Retro jerseys!

I’ll also touch on a few smaller storylines across in the NHL and even one in college hockey.

1. Welcome Reverse Retro Jerseys

 

 
 
 
 
 
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The reverse retro jerseys are here and they’re scorching-hot. The NHL has been teasing these all fall and I’ve been excited to see which jerseys I might drunkenly order online and which jerseys I would consider using to clean up after my dog. Props to Adidas for doing a great job and giving me something to look forward to.

I’d say a good two-thirds of the teams have great Reverse Retros. I started to list out my favorites and after I had ten teams written down I stopped. But, gun to my head, if I had to pick a top two favorites, I would pick the Montreal Canadiens and Arizona Coyotes.

I love Montreal’s because it’s hard to put a new spin on a classic, and Adidas did just that. Since the inception of the modern-day Habs logo, Montreal has never had a blue jersey, other than a throwback worn during the team’s centennial season. Blue has always been in their color scheme, so it’s wild to think they’ve never released a blue jersey.

Adidas followed the same rules that apply when covering a great song. If you’re going to even make an attempt, the new song has to be good enough to do the original song justice AND the new song has to do something unique to distinguish itself. Think of Alien Ant Farm’s cover of “Smooth Criminal” or Motionless in White’s cover of “Somebody Told Me.”

These sweaters do exactly that. They didn’t reinvent the wheel here. The design is pretty much the same as the typical Habs’ unis. But, the change from red to blue is eye-popping. Adidas knocked these out of the park.

For Arizona, they were playing with house money. Everyone loves their ’90s throwback jerseys. The team brought them back in 2018 to high praise. It’s no surprise a fresh take on a classic worked out for Adidas. I love the coyote’s head logo and the purple POPs in all the right ways. They crushed it.

For those wondering, here are the teams that dropped the ball with their new unis and why I think they suck.

  • Philadelphia Flyers
    • They literally added a black stripe. Very boring.
  • Nashville Predators
    • They look no different than their normal jerseys.
  • Detroit Red Wings
    • They just recycled their Stadium Series jerseys, which were terrible.

2. Matthews Teams Up with Movember Canada

The most famous mustache in Canada may be on death row. Last week, Maple Leafs’ superstar Auston Matthews announced that he was teaming up with Movember Canada to raise money and awareness for men’s health. If Matthews can raise $134,000 (I wonder how they came up with that number?) Matthews will shave off his famous ‘stache.

For those that don’t know, Movember is a charity that aims to raise money and awareness for men’s related health issues. This is a statement from their website:

Movember is the leading charity changing the face of men’s health on a global scale. They are making change happen by investing in these critical areas: mental health and suicide prevention, prostate cancer, testicular cancer, funding ground-breaking health projects to help men live happier, healthier, longer lives.

It’s easy to love this from Matthews. He’s the most marketable player in the league playing in hockey’s favorite city. He has a large reach and there’s no doubt this will help Movember.

If you’re interested in donating, you can click this link!

3. Hintz Extended in Dallas

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Roope Hintz is officially locked in as a Dallas Star for the next three years. Hintz was an RFA so there was little doubt he would return to Dallas. Hintz’s deal is for three years with a $3.15 million AAV.

Hintz broke on to the scene in last year’s playoffs where he scored eight points in 13 games. This season, Hintz scored 19 goals in 60 games. He only scored two goals in Dallas’ run to the Stanley Cup Final but did dish out 11 assists.

I really like this deal for Hintz. For what he’s done and what he will probably do this year, $3 million-plus is a good AAV. Also, it will give him the opportunity to really cash in again at the end of this deal.

I will say, Tyler Bertuzzi, must be fuming. Bertuzzi only secured a one-year deal worth $3.5 million after going to arbitration. Bertuzzi’s numbers are better than Hintz’s and Hintz has more talent around him. If I’m Bertuzzi, I’m firing my agent and calling Hintz’s immediately.

4. Hanzal Hangs Up the Skates

Martin Hanzal has decided to retire from the NHL. This news broke a few weeks ago, but as I said last week, so much happened at the start of the offseason so I’ve been playing catchup.

Hanzal played for three teams over a 12-year carer in the NHL. He played parts of ten seasons in Arizona/Phoneix, two years in Dallas, and a half seasons in Minnesota. In 673 games, he scored 127 goals and added 211 assists.

Hanzal was a solid depth-forward during his career. He played huge at 6’6″ and helped the Coyotes to a Conference Finals appearance during the 2011-12 season. He never scored more than 41 points or 20 goals in a season but was still a great contributor down the middle for many years in the desert.

Congrats to Hanzal on a great career and I hope he surfaces somewhere in the hockey world again.

5. Golden Gophers Join the Uniform Party

Thanks to my good friend and number one reader Aaron, I learned that the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers hockey team also released new uniforms this week.

According to the school, the throwback jerseys were released in honor of the 100th season for the university’s hockey team.

MINNEAPOLIS – The Gopher men’s hockey program unveiled a commemorative throwback uniform combination on Monday in honor of Pride on Ice’s 100th season in 2020-21.

I’m a huge fan of the “GOPHERS” diagonally across the chest. I’ve seen a few schools do that and I’ve never seen it done wrong. Minnesota has one of the best programs in the country and their uniforms play the part. I wish they wore these unis when I saw them play Michigan State at Munn Arena back in 2017.

Regardless, it’s nice to see a college hockey team steal a little bit of sweater thunder from the pros. I especially love it when it’s a B1G team. Unlike Arizona State, Minnesota and the other teams in the Midwest don’t have the advantage of Arizona weather year-round, so they need something to bring recruits to campus. ■

Blake Isaacs is a die-hard Red Wings fan that doesn’t go to as many games as he should. He is also a big fan of 7-Eleven Slurpeees, Chipotle, and all things Michigan State. Follow him on Twitter @bisaacs1995.

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