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MLS Begins Its Jersey Week

MLS began its weeklong jersey-unveiling promotion last week, with the Colorado Rapids, New York Red Bulls, and Houston Dynamo all debuting new kits. Videos about the thinking that went into all three of the new designs are shown above, plus here’s some additional photos and info for Colorado, New York, and Houston.

“Colorado was the most innovative of the bunch,” says reader Christian Sinclair. “The stripes on their jersey are actually made up of their season ticket holders’ names.” It’s also worth noting that Colorado’s away/secondary has a “bleed-out” effect similar to what we’ve seen in Adidas’s recent NBA and college hoops designs. Let’s hope they that doesn’t start spreading throughout MLS (or beyond).

As for the other teams, I really like the stripes and wraparound collar on Houston’s third jersey (and I like the idea of the contrasting sleeves on their secondary/away jersey, although I have misgivings about how it may look in action). Not as fond of New York’s design, but it’s not terrible. All in all, not a bad start for MLS’s uni-centric week.

Today’s MLS unveilings will be for the Philadelphia Union and Toronto FC. You can see the full schedule of this week’s unveilings here.

(Apologies for the fairly brief treatment of these new kits — I’m still catching up on stuff after having been away for the weekend. Should be back up to speed tomorrow.)

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OMFG: My latest “One-Man Focus Group” column for The New Republic is about the new Monopoly token.

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Uni Watch News Ticker: I’m quoted fairly extensively in this piece about the Warriors’ sleeves. … Even if Daniel Snyder wanted to change the Redskins’ name, there would apparently be significant logistical hurdles to overcome. … New soccer uniforms for the Chinese Super League (from Jake Verbiest). … Here’s an article on the Oregon golf team’s shoes (from Jay Sullivan). … A New York State Assemblyman can’t understand why everyone’s upset over the tasteless costume he wore over the weekend. Key uni-related quote: “Someone gave me a uniform, someone gave me the hair of the actual, you know, sort of a black basketball player” (thanks, Phil). … Oregon State basketball wore turquoise uniforms on Saturday, as a send-off to senior Joe Burton (from Eric Fisk). … Who’s that in a “The City” T-shirt? None other than a young Bruce Springsteen, circa early 1970s (from Bradley Wasserman). … “My mom made a scrapbook for me,” says Will Scheibler. “One of the photos, from the 1970s, shows me in bed with a 1970s NHL pillowcase. Another one shows hockey player wallpaper in the background.” … This is pretty amazing: a floor pattern made from logos (thanks, Kirsten). … Looks like the Mets have added orange rear-helmet numbers this season (from C.B. Ciullo). ”¦ Further proof that the Braves were indeed planning to use the Indian head BP cap until the backlash forced them to backtrack: That cap design is included in MLB 13 The Show. Also, if you go to the Braves’ site, the new BP cap doesn’t ship for retail orders until March 15, while all the other teams’ caps are available now (from Chris Wheeler). ”¦ New leg pads for Blackhawks goalie Ray Emery. Here’s his previous set (from Tim E. O’Brien). ”¦ New logo for the NHL Entry Draft (from Paul Richard Cook).

Comments (119)

    I was disappointed that the cat won the Monopoly vote. I was hoping for the helicopter. But honestly, I didn’t really like any of the options. I thought the artistic nature of them didn’t fit with the current pieces. But I guess it doesn’t matter.

    I’m going to guess that the iron will become a collector’s piece now.
    I’m pretty sure that my family has an older copy of the game with the horse & rider piece. I’d better go find that thing.

    I definitely agree with you.

    I voted for the robot, or the helicopter. I don’t remember which, but either one was fine with me in winning. The cat is a disappointment, only because the scottie dog always falls over on the board…so the cat will to. Now Monopoly players have to make sure they continue standing up two pieces.

    I am not against the iron leaving. Some people make a good argument that the thimble should’ve gone.

    Agreed: I don’t mind the cat as a concept – I never chose the iron, and so I’ll comfortably continue never to choose the cat – but the execution just didn’t match the style of the old pieces.

    Frequently since the 1980s, special Monopoly editions have included a train engine. Best piece in the set, and should have been added permanently. That, or either a jumbojet or a drone aircraft.

    Im not sure if this has been discussed here before, but what if the Redskins changed their name but kept the uniforms the same?
    This way the tradition and history could stay, but the nickname could go.
    Something along the lines of the Warriors?
    Or is the image used offensive as well as the nickname?

    Almost every proposal I’ve read online suggests changing the name to Warriors. Doesn’t this seem rather foolish from a brand identity standpoint given the presence of the Golden State Warriors? Yes, I know there are already some pairs of teams with the same name, but those are relics of the past. In today’s world it doesn’t seem like a smart move to me to intentionally do that.

    This isn’t to say I’m not 100% on board with getting rid of “Redskins,” I am. I just don’t think Warriors is the solution.

    The Florida Panthers and Carolina Panthers started in the 1990’s. Plus, the Winnipeg Jets brought back that nickname despite the New York Jets using it. Even the original Jets got the blessing from Leon Hess to use the name.

    Why change the team identity in fits and starts? Sure Washington Warriors is better than Washington Redskins but if you keep the Native American head on the side of the helmet eventually you’re going to have to adjust that as well since the tide is a turning.

    Dov Hikind, the NYS Assemblyman wearing a stupid Purim costume, is one of my all-time least-favorite New York pols. A reliable jerk. But, really, it’s just a stupid once-only costume, isn’t it? Or is it that white people can never dress up as black people? Certainly the reverse can be hilarious: Dave Chapelle’s white guys are fabulous. Now the answer to my question may be No, or at least Not Yet. But I’d be interested in other people’s reactions, and most especially, the reactions of African-Americans.

    I would think dressing as Kobe or MJ or someone specific might have lessened the blow.

    What if he had dressed as an, Native American, or wore a sombrero and mustache? I imagine someone would have been upset with those choices too–though they were likley costumes at many a Halloween party this past year I feel certain.

    It’s not that white people can’t ever do black people (Fred Armisen has done Barack Obama with little apparent controversy, for one). It’s that the cultural baggage of blackface is so heavy that chances are, it’s going to come off as minstrelsy and set off alarms.

    Like Dumb Guy says, referencing specific people isn’t as problematic, while “Pimps and Hos” parties and afro wigs are pretty much accepted on college campuses. But generic black people, especially combined with blackface are a no-no.

    Good points. I like the particular/general distinction. But jeez, those “Pimps and Hos” parties sound terrible; they offend me, anyway.

    Remember, this is the guy who tried to have homosexuals removed from a Holocaust memorial in his district, saying that their inclusion would be an insult to all the Jews who were also killed by the Nazis.

    I think we’re all missing the point here. The man said,

    “Someone gave me the hair of the actual, you know, sort of a black basketball player.”

    The problem isn’t that he dressed in blackface. It’s that someone scalped an actual black person and then gave the scalp to the assemblyman to wear. That’s a felony! Several felonies! Assault, malicious wounding, trade in illegal goods, aiding and abetting, and in many states simple conspiracy.

    Or, alternatively, the assemblyman is one of those people who uses words like “actual” to mean “figurative”, which is sufficiently offensive on its own as a crime against the English language.

    I was initially surprised to see a Democrat say “political correctness to the absurd,” then I read some of his political stances.

    hmmm. while I am a Blackhawks fan, I will say I liked his previous leg pads. the new ones are nice, but the other ones matched Emery’s arm pads.

    It makes sense, though the Big 3 North American sports don’t come out with redesigned uniforms every year (Nike had a big launch for all 32 teams last year, but I’m guessing that’s a one-off event coming after switching from Reebok), and non-American leagues don’t have league-wide jersey supplier contracts like MLS does with adidas.

    Yet another color combo in the mix for Rapids. Started as Green/White, then Blue/Black, then Maroon/Sky Blue, then Maroon/White, now Maroon/Royal. On the video the red trim on the royal jersey looked orange, but a closer look reveals that orange is still one of few colors not yet worn by the local side. Perhaps it will become part of the palette in 2017 when they change the colors next – maybe even with fringe as homage to the Caribous of Colorado.

    I think their primary kit is a pretty good match with what the Rapids have been in the past few years.

    Their secondary (or change) kit is just an ode to Colorado. I don’t see why that is much of a problem. The kit has actually garnered a lot of praise from many people.

    I would love to see a throwback night for the Caribous…maybe I’m the only one on earth that would say that too…

    On their secondary jersey, I wish the Rapids didn’t remove the red and yellow on the circular C. It would have a been winner for me instead of the “bleed out.”

    As someone has once mentioned on here, the Red Bulls are missing an opportunity to create a jersey based on their can design.

    While I wish soccer jerseys never had advertising, I find the Red Bulls one of the few who have a design that isn’t completely tasteless.


    I think you’re overthinking the alternate unis. Or rather, you’re still thinking of home/away uniform sets where the away is basically the inverse of the home. MLS has been switching to the Europe-like primary/alternate sets, where the alternate kits don’t necessarily use team colors.

    Anyway, the Rapids have been wearing maroon as the primary color for 7 years, longer than they’ve worn green/white or blue/black. Maroon is pretty much established as the team color for the foreseeable future.

    Seeing that screaming-Indian cap in The Show only confirms what I’ve been saying all along: I’m not concerned about the Native American thing, it’s just an ugly hat, period.

    By which I mean, c’mon, who is gonna hit a base run then flash the crowd their gloves while screaming “REMEMBER WHAT TEAM I PLAY ON??”

    The sports world is slowly slipping into mass hysteria.

    I’m usually a non-confrontational kind of guy, but I really hope the first person to flash these things after a base hit gets drilled in the hands next at bat.

    Hands? Shoot, I hope pitchers aim for the head at any batter who flashes gloves like that on the basepath.

    “It’s possible to brush a guy back without throwing at his head. Lots of pitchers forget that.”


    I don’t think they forget. I think they’re just incapable of proper execution.

    /Oops. My bad.

    Which is worse, the Rays gloves they’ll be wearing in 2013, or the Lay’s gloves they’ll be wearing in 2023 (while the franchise plays it’s home games in Las Vegas, of course)?

    You’d think they’d have put the logo on the back of the fingers so it lines up while the player is actually batting.

    Maybe that’ll be next year’s design.

    I’m just not a fan of putting things (words, Houston’s stadium facade) on the inside of a collar.

    “Red Bulls” embossed on the inside? Really?

    This has become pretty standard fare on soccer shirts. Most of the Premiership clubs do it. My favorite was Man City a couple of years ago: Umbro recreated a popular fan scarf on the inside collar of the team’s shirts, alternating vertical stripes of maroon, sky blue and white. It looked really classy. I think Liverpool’s shirts say, “Never Walk Alone” on the inside collar.

    As a Colorado native, I have a mixed feeling towards the Rapids jersey. I like the concept, but the execution sucks. Even in pictures yesterday, you can tell the subtlety will be lost the moment they hit the field and it turns into a boring blue jersey.

    If you’re going to incorporate the flag, either go all in with the red C and white stripe, or just don’t.

    I can’t stand the yellow contrast stitching on the jersey. I agree that it would look better with the flags colors in the middle of the jersey instead of the “bleed out”. The NHL Rockies retain the title for the best nod to the Colorado state flag.

    For some reason the blue Rapids jersey reminds me of the Cubs with the C and the blue. I agree the colors of the flag would have looked better than the blue on blue. Also the red badge color on blue just doesn’s seem to fit right. If they wanted a monochromatic shield, then I would have chosen yellow or maybe white.

    “It’s easy to go overboard with one of those things, but that’s tasteful without being gaudy.” – Captain B.F. ‘Hawkeye’ Pierce

    Can the Civil War get another sponser?
    “when the Beavers travel to Eugene to play Oregon at 8 p.m. in the 339th Civil War, presented by PacificSource Health Plans, NW Ford Dealers, McDonald’s and Wells Fargo”

    Holy crap I remember that commercial. Even way back then, I couldn’t imagine paying close to $600 and waiting more than 2 years to buy a friggin’ chess set. Yeah, you could buy the whole set at once, but who wanted to spend that kind of cash?

    /BTW, the History Channel has probably done more than FM to promote the Civil War.
    //PBS too.

    I think you’ll find the rest of the world does. You do know there are other countries, don’t you, AK?

    I am not a fan of the new Dynamo set. There are a lot of nice elements — orange is a great, underused color, the “Forever Orange” slogan is sort of cool, they have a nice-looking badge — but it’s all sort of splotched together. And the white sleeves look like sad, stunted vestigial wings.

    Not sure why but Red Bulls, plural, stood out as awkward. I had always thought of them as New York Red Bull like everything that Red Bull sponsored as well as on the team crest. A little look and it seems the plural is common but somehow I overlooked it until it showed up on something like the jersey. Am I crazy?

    They were always kinda weird with their nomenclature. The club is named “Red Bull New York” but the team on the field is “New York Red Bulls”.

    That Tiro 13 template jersey has something that looks just like the infamous “Nikelace” (albeit just on a cosmetic level)

    Heh. I had to use my old account with the Washington Post to read the article on the Potomac Drainage Basin Indigenous Persons. Something I only signed up for in college because I had to for class actually came in handy today. At least its free. :)

    Michael Vick made the cover of Madden 2004, and he did so the year that the falcons switched to their current design (Madden 2004 came out in 03, just like Madden 13 came out in 2012). But before they did the cover shoot all they had were pics of Vick in the old uniform set so a few promotional items featured photo-shopped uniforms.

    EA’s facebook has been promoting the upcoming cover vote by posting stuff from older games and today they posted this featuring a Photoshopped Vick.

    Those Met orange-rear helmet numbers bring back memories of the late seventies. I used to paint the numbers on the back of my Helmet Day helmets. Alas, didn’t keep them.

    The Catch Of The Day reinforces that I’ve never smoked. I can now understand why people drive down to Virginia to load up on cigarettes. So much so, that cigarette stores limited the number of cartons people can buy in one day (so that there will still be some cigs for the locals). The travelers will buy the maximum, sleep in their car, then buy the maximum the next morning before heading back.

    “New logo for the NHL Entry Draft”
    new logo this new logo that, the new NHL logo sucks as do its colors

    The fact that you can fit ALL of your team’s season ticket holders on an 8-inch wide strip of an undershirt says it all about “football” in the US.

    Because shit-talking a sport that is trying its damndest to improve its standing in this country is really helpful. You stay classy.

    If you don’t like the sport, shut the fuck up and don’t watch it.

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