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The Wearin’ of the Green … and Orange!

If you were somehow unaware that today is St. Patrick’s Day, the sports world will certainly do its best to remind you. MLB teams will be wearing green for their spring training games, NHL teams will be wearing green for pregame warm-ups, and so on. Green, green, green.

Green has been my favorite color ever since I was a little kid, and it’s a color that’s way underrepresented in the uni-verse, so I’m happy to see more of it, even if only for one day. Still, the whole green thing long ago started feeling like a played-out cliché, no?

That’s why I really liked what the Celtics and Thunder did last night (see video above). Sure, the Celtics wore their gold-trimmed St. Paddy’s Day unis, but the key move was that someone had the smart idea of having the Thunder wear their orange alts. Green and orange — the colors of the Irish flag.

So much better than the default green option. Not sure if the NBA intentionally scheduled this game with the green/orange uni match-up in mind all along, but whatever — it looked great. The only blemish: Too bad they didn’t complete the flag-color trifecta by having the refs wear their alternate white jerseys.

A few other notes from that game:

• The Celtics wore some very nice St. Paddy’s Day socks:

•  The Celtics wore pregame shooting shirts in support of the Boston Marathon:

•  And in another pregame note, Evan Turner of the Celtics exchanged jerseys with soccer player Charlie Davies of the New England Revolution:

That’s a lot of uni bang for one game’s buck!

(My thanks to Phil and @zj100 for their contributions to this section.)

• • • • •

The Ticker
By Paul

Baseball News: Rice is wearing an “MG” memorial patch for university president emeritus Malcolm Gillis, who passed away in October. … Bit of a 1970s Padres-ish look for Appalachian State (fromRay Warren Jr.). … Not sure which schools are involved, but a high school game in Oklahoma yesterday featured green vs. green. … New uniforms for the Chico Heat (from Brandon Sparks). … I don’t care for the very dark grey that the D-backs and several college teams are wearing, but for some reason I do like these pinstriped dark greys being worn by Kent State (from Jason Tirotta). … The Durham Bulls are adding a new mono-navy alt with several old-school touches — high-cuffed pants, NNOB — and have showcased it on this very nice interactive page. … Here’s a good overview of the green St. Paddy’s Day gear that the Mets have worn over the years. … Chicago has become the latest city to ban smokeless tobacco at stadiums, and the Cubs aren’t happy about it. … Here’s a new one: The Stockton Ports will wear Asparagus Night jerseys on May 21 (from Chris Flinn). … Also from Chris: We’re used to seeing prospects wearing numbers like 89 or 93 during spring training, but Reds prospect Jake Cave took things a step further last night be stepping up to the plate in a jersey with no number! … The Germantown Red Devils — that’s a 16u ASA team from Tennessee — wear mono-red unis with white pinstripes. … This is pretty awesome: A pitcher for Spirit Lake High School in Iowa tossed a pitch that ended up in the umpire’s ball bag! Check it out (with big thanks to Chris Flinn):

NFL News: Giants DL Jason Pierre-Paul, who wore a thick wrapping over his injured hand last season, says he won’t wear the wrapping this fall. … The first rock show at the Vikings’ new stadium will be played by Metallica, which is promoting the gig with Vikings-themed graphics (from John Muir). … Denver fans aren’t happy about LB Shane Ray’s new tattoo, which features a Chiefs logo. … A startup in Seattle is trying to build a safer football helmet (from Markus Kamp). … In a related item, the family of former NFL player Paul Oliver, who committed suicide in 2013, is suing Riddell, claiming that the helmet manufacturer should be held liable for the brain damage that led to Oliver’s suicide. … A Broncos fan/designer has come up with a fairly detailed Broncos redesign concept (from Kary Klismet). … Some of the designer’s renderings for the proposed new ’Skins stadium included fans wearing RGIII jerseys. Now that he’s been cut loose, those renderings have been updated (from Tommy Turner). … Here’s another article on the current state of the L.A. Coliseum, where the Rams will be playing for the next three seasons (thanks, Brinke). … I heard on the radio yesterday that Merrick Garland, President Obama’s nominee to fill the vacancy on the Supreme Court, is red-green colorblind. Love to hear his thoughts on that first Color Rash game.

College Football News: Yesterday’s Ticker included a photo of a new South Carolina helmet. Here it is being worn in spring practice (from @willchitty4).

Hockey News: St. Paddy’s Day jerseys for the St. John’s IceCaps (from Jeff Pollock). … The Sabres wore these St. Paddy’s Day warm-up tops last night (from @bonesj0nes). … Very nice St. Paddy’s Day jerseys for the Cincy Cyclones. … Here are the jerseys for the NAPHL Top Prospects Tournament. You can click on the thumbnails to see larger versions. … Purple Alzheimer’s-awareness jerseys tomorrow night for the Tulsa Oilers (thanks, Phil). … A group of fans from Stockholm came to Anaheim last night and wore Ducks/Sweden Frankenjerseys to support Ducks C and Swedish native Rickard Rakell. Here’s how they looked from behind (from Kenneth Le, Chris Cruz, and Bejamin Kassel). … Dartmouth G Charles Grant is a lifelong Maple Leafs fan, so his mask design has a Leafs history theme.

NBA News: Here’s a day in the life of the Hawks’ equipment manager. … Nike has announced its latest generation of basketball uniforms with all the usual claims — lighter, moister-wickier, and so on (thanks, Phil. … Also from Phil: The Pacers’ Hickory throwbacks have been a bigger hit than the team expected. … The Rockets wore their red “Clutch City” sleeved alts at home, forcing the Clippers to look like shit as usual to wear white on the road (from @zj100).

College Hoops News: The First Four game between Holy Cross and Southern was color vs. color, and so was the Michigan/Tulsa game (from @LukeTesselink and Nathan Bryson, respectively). … A new study indicates that Notre Dame’s uniforms don’t much bang for the buck to Under Armour (thanks, Phil). … Speaking of Under Armour, several of their schools have striped side panels, including St. Mary’s and Utah (Phil again). … How could someone be so sloppy and careless to position this March Madness decal upside-down? (From James Gilbert.) … If you want to fill out your NCAA bracket based on the best- and worst-performing uniform colors, here’s how to do it (from Susan Freeman).

Soccer News: New jerseys for the Pittsburgh Riverhounds. … New uniforms for the New York Cosmos. I believe these are Under Armour’s first uniforms for a U.S. professional soccer team, yes? … Here’s Poland’s Euro 2016 kit (thanks, Phil). … Not sure who this keeper is, but note the “No to Racism” armband (from Tim Cross). … Also from Tim: Juventus’s Paul Pogba has joined Adidas, which has given him his own signature cleat. … New Estudiantes jersey. … Nike is debuting a new generation of soccer uniforms — lighter, faster, blah-blah-blah. Details here, and here’s a close-up of the new fabric (from Patrick Thomas).

Grab Bag: DC is getting a new arena football team. No name yet (from John Muir). … “Dale Earnhardt Jr, and Jimmie Johnson are racing Batman- and Superman-themed cars, respectively,” says David Firestone, “so NASCAR decided to show the evolution of Batman and Superman paint schemes over the years.” … Chicago didn’t give out “I Voted” stickers the other day, and people are pissed (with Jimmy Couto). … Albany lacrosse goalie Blaze Riorden wore last year’s matte gray helmet yesterday while everyone else wore platinum (from Travis Holland). … “I saw this amazing vintage golf photo on the wall of the restaurant bathroom,” says Bernie Langer. “I can’t find any source information, unfortunately.” … Remember when I recently wrote about how the uni-verse is behaving like part of the fashion industry? Now comes an article making it clear that Nike is playing to the fashion biz. Key quote: “While Nike may not overtly identify itself as a fashion brand, and while traditional runway names may not see it as a competitor, to consumers considering what piece of clothing to buy, it increasingly seems like one and the same.” Recommended reading. … Kings of Leon drummer Nathan Followill is a big Oklahoma fan and sometimes uses white tape to transform the “O” on his bass drum into Nathan Followill”>the OU logo (from Chris Davis. … A reader who prefers to remain nameless was doing scrolling through the channel guide last night and came across a listing for an adult film called 10 Hottest Uniforms. … Now that’s a curling club logo (big thanks to OVCAcurls). … Happy birthday to longtime reader/pal R. Scott Rogers, a St. Paddy’s Day baby. Have a great day, Scott!

• • • • •

By the time most of you read this, I’ll be on my way up to Bristol, where I’ll be spending the day taking care of some ESPN business. And since I’ll be on-site there, I’ll get to record this week’s Friday Flashback video in the ESPN studios, instead of via Skype like I usually do, which should be fun.

Because I’ll be off the grid for most of the day and won’t get home until very late, I won’t be up to speed on all the stuff that’s slated to happen today — the St. Paddy’s Day unis, the new soccer kits, etc. — and won’t be able to write about it tomorrow. Mike is on Ticker duty today and will do his best to include everything in tomorrow’s Ticker, but my apologies in advance for not having more in-depth coverage. Thanks for understanding, and I’ll see you tomorrow.

Comments (59)

    The goalkeeper with the ‘No To Racism’ armband is Gianluigi Buffon, captain of Juventus

    Nor is it unique to him. It’s the standard UEFA captain’s armband in use in the Champions League and Europa Cup.

    In prior years, the armband has said “Unite Against Racism”:

    Not only captain of Juventus, but the most-capped player in Italian history, World Cup winner, and arguably the greatest keeper of all time. When Paul says he’s not a soccer fan, he’s not kidding. :-)

    It seems almost impossible to me that anyone even remotely following sports wouldn’t recognize him. I realize LOTS of Americans don’t follow world football but it’s Buffon… he’s a HUGE star and legendary keeper.

    Sorry, Aaron. Never heard of him. I fully acknowledge that this says more about me than it does about him.

    As I’ve explained many times, I’m completely soccer-clueless. I follow sports, but I guess I do so in my own little bubble.

    – Paul, checking in from Bristol

    Totally understand Paul. I was just thinking I wonder how many people in Turin would recognize a photo of Peyton Manning or some equally iconic American sports star. Do Italians know who LeBron or Steph or Mike Trout is?

    “Do Italians know who LeBron or Steph or Mike Trout is?”


    How about Kobe?

    Maybe the NBA isn’t as good of a benchmark considering it’s international popularity for a long time now. Because of Kobe’s Italian heritage I would guess he’d be pretty well known there. Because Trout is still young, and not really marketed like a LeBron James is, and baseball isn’t nearly as international I would guess he would be much less recognizable in a country like Italy.

    Steven Gerrard says one of the reasons he likes playing in the US for the Galaxy is that he can walk around and nobody recognizes him, something he could never do in Europe, especially England. He said he took his kids to Disneyland and it was great that nobody bothered him.

    That sure was a lot of effort for a Broncos concept that’s basically just “wear the old uniforms with the new logo and number font on it”.

    I have a small issue with the Paul Oliver situation. I knew Paul from my time working with the Chargers, albeit briefly, but looking back through pictures of his career in San Diego and at Georgia, it appears he never once wore a Riddell helmet. He is pictured in nothing but Schutt. Seems a bit odd to choose to sue Riddell. Just my thought.

    While not strictly “athletic aesthetic” (frequently sports figures do pop up), link is up! There’s even a Paul Lukas catchphrase that is someone’s name, though spelled differently.

    Here’s something new: a link of original Mile High Stadium being built next to current Mile High.

    Here’s some history on the vintage golf photo: Vintage image of men playing golf while waiting for their suits to be pressed. The original photograph taken on October 3, 1930, captures clients of tailor, Harris Berger of Queens, New York, enjoying a round of putt-putt, while their suits are pressed.

    We appreciate the information.

    I love how the sign touts that “playing golf” in a decrepit alley is FREE. Imagine the balls it would take to charge a fee, especially during The Depression.

    More thanks for the info. That date would reflect the putt-putt golf craze of the time that was sweeping the east coast–at least New York and its environs. They even set up rooftop “courses” on some of the skyscrapers in the city.
    So basically it’s a picture of a clever merchant in the grip of the depression using a fad to somehow attract customers.


    I have been to almost every MLB ball park – I rank them on atmosphere, food etc. My buddy ranks them on smokability.

    Wrigley didn’t allow smoking in the park but you could go to the Captain Morgan tent to smoke and then head back in.

    Best park for smokability: Citizen’s Bank Park in Philadelphia. He could smoke hanging over the outside rails and along the ramps. (I expected Philadelphia fans to be horrid – they were awesome, a family even pulled us over to share their home grown onions they brought in for the hot dogs. One of my best ball park experiences.)

    I like Maddon’s statements, but that is Chicago for you.

    Those Durham all blues are bold. I want to see them in action.

    Kent State’s dark pin stripes are nice. I want to see Chicago bring back the those blues with white pin stripes from the late 70s.

    Those Germantown Red Devils are even better than described. Not just white pinstripes, but dark red and white pinstripes on bright red. That alternating-color pinstripe look is one of those things that some team in MLB should wear.

    Green is the color Catholics wear on St. Patrick’s Day. Orange is historically the color Protestants wear on St. Patrick’s Day. Some Presbyterians will wear blue on St. Patrick’s Day. I’m wearing my Presbyterian blue and Protestant orange tie to work today. I rather suspect the NBA didn’t intend the Thunder to be wearing Protestant orange, in fact they probably have no idea that the colors worn today historically meant something in Ireland and in some parts still do. Surely the NBA didn’t intend to make a political or religious statement.

    You see, the American version of St Patrick’s Day has nothing to do with Ireland. It’s all about green beer and leprechauns. Cultural misappropriation at it’s finest.

    It’s not quite that cut and dried. Protestants wearing orange dates back to protestant William III’s (aka William of Orange) defeat of Catholic King James II at the Battle of Boyne which is near Dublin. While the green beer and other nonsense associated with American St. Patrick’s Day (most of which was supplied and encouraged by the Irish) may be a little much there is a historic reason why Protestants wear orange. With Ireland divided between the mostly Catholic Republic and the mostly protestant loyalist North, these colors do matter. At least the orange does because it clearly identifies someone as protestant. On certain days of the year and in certain parts of Northern Ireland your color is the difference between safe passage and harassment. Here in the US, in keeping with the rest of St. Patrick’s Day, wearing orange or blue is light hearted.

    For Irish people or people with heavy ancestral ties to Ireland, go all out. It’s your day. But, at least in the U.S., the commercialization of this holiday is out of control and frankly pretty embarrassing to me. I love going to watch Irish music, I enjoy the cultural display, and sure, I’ll have a Guinness or a Smithwick’s or two, but I’m not going to pretend I come from that culture and garb up in a green outfit with a silly disposable hat and feather boa like many do. It feels disrespectful to Irish culture to me.

    I wouldn’t expect Paul to know that wearing orange on St. Patrick’s Day is pretty inappropriate. This day is for Catholics. That decision by the Thunder (or by the NBA?) was somewhat surprisingly out of touch.

    Excuse my ignorance, but how pray tell is it “inappropriate” to wear orange on St. Patrick’s Day?

    It’s the color of the House of Orange-Nassau and, by extension, the color of William of Orange (a.k.a. William III/II) and Protestants. The orange in the flag of the Republic of Ireland represents the Protestants, the green represents the Catholics and the white represents the (often absent) peace between them.

    William of Orange led the “Glorious Revolution” in 1688 in which he seized the British Isles from his Catholic father-in-law. As a result, Catholics lost the right to vote and sit in Parliament and were otherwise persecuted. They would not be emancipated for another 140 years. Members of the British royal family weren’t even allowed to marry Catholics until 2015. Also, the Williamite War in Ireland immediately followed in 1689, resulting in the deaths of 40,000 Catholics.

    Violence between the Catholics and Protestants has persisted for hundreds of years now and Orange has always been linked to British unionism/loyalism/Toryism (see the Orange Order, Orange Boys, etc.). You can see how the conflict between the Protestant monarchists and nationalist Catholics might be especially uncomfortable on a day meant to celebrate the national identity of Ireland.

    And if you’re not familiar with the finer points of Christianity, sainthood isn’t a thing in most Protestant religions. That’s a more or less uniquely Catholic thing. Protestants aren’t especially big fans of St. Anybody, never mind St. Patrick.

    St Patrick’s Day isn’t just for Catholics! it’s for Ireland and was originally a Christian feast that crossed boundaries. The Irish tricolour is meant to represent all people of Ireland. Green being linked to the Catholics and Orange the Protestants with the white between them symbolizing peace. Anyway, if we were really being true to St Patrick then Blue would be the colour and not Green.


    And he wasn’t even Irish! ;-)

    @Macca, it would appear that you didn’t read more than the first sentence of my comment.

    It’s public holiday on both sides of the Irish border. and plenty of protestants will be out partying tonight. The idea that it’s just a day for Catholics is a very outdated one, and completely out of step with Ireland (and Northern Ireland) in the 21st Century. This was a nice touch by the NBA, at least sartorially.

    “Protestants aren’t especially big fans of St. Anybody, never mind St. Patrick.”


    Granted, St. George (the Patron Saint of England), and the red cross (which is the flag of England proper) was adopted by Richard The Lion Heart and brought to England in the 12th century — before Henry VIII told the pope to stuff it — but he’s still the Patron Saint of England…of which the COE is still pretty much the *official* church of England (and “protestant”).

    Yes, COE was founded before Henry’s edict. Yes, it’s also a “catholic” (but not ROMAN catholic) church. But there are some ‘protestant’ countries who recognize saints. (Also, there’s St. Andrew in Scotland, another ‘protestant’ country, and St. David in Wales). Tis true all these became Saints when Christianity and Roman Catholicism were basically one in the same, so your points are all valid. But that doesn’t mean Protestants don’t recognize and celebrate Saints.

    Ergo, St. Patrick’s Day isn’t *just* for Catholics, but all Irish Christians (and everyone’s Irish today anyway, right? ;-)).

    Thanks for this Dennis.

    I tried to make the same points a few years back when I pointed out that having the Syracuse Orangemen wear green St. Patricks Day basketball jerseys was a little off-colour.

    I don’t have a good U.S. analogy for why this is wrong.

    My best Canadian example would be using the Maple Leaf to celebrate St. Jean Baptiste day in Quebec and pointing out that everybody celebrating is Canadian. Its technically correct but missing the point.

    So it’s “inappropriate” and/or “wrong” to wear orange on St. Paddy’s Day even if you have no dog in that fight? To quote Mike Tyson: “that’s ludacrisp.”

    And if you’re not familiar with the finer points of Christianity, sainthood isn’t a thing in most Protestant religions.

    Um, there’s the Nicene Creed, which all Western Christian churches believe in, which lists among the things Christians believe in “…the Communion of Saints.”

    Some of those swedes (on the back view photo) also seem to be wearing Sweden/Rangers frankenjerseys to support Jesper Fast.

    Possible weird bit of trivia: Devils-Wild tonight will feature both teams in green pants. Could be the first time 2 NHL teams wore green pants in the same game since 1992. Pretty sure Wild have been the only team in the league with green pants since the Devils and Whalers changed their uniforms in 93.

    Maybe in the 80’s.
    If I recall correctly, the Minnesota Stars “un-Northed” and went all black for the 1992 season. I don’t think they’ve had anything except black breezers since. Then this would be one year before 1993, when the Devils and Whalers changed to current red/black and navy/green/silver, respectively.
    So this doesn’t contradict anything BD said: the Wild are the only team to steadily have green breezers since that time, and that would put tonight’s Wild at throwback Devils game in line for the first green breezers vs green breezers in the same time frame, namely since 1993.

    Also, it’s a baseball team. ASA would be softball.

    Either way, that is one impressive uniform.

    I don’t remember EVER getting a sticker for voting and the first time I voted in the city of Chicago was 1996. They always just give out receipts.

    So the Yanks didn’t wear a green caps today. Good for them- BUT they did wear those asinine spring training caps so I won’t give them that much credit. Bucos wore all green.

    Cards went green-less too against the Tigers who went all in green with tops as well as hats. Looked like a Christmas tree game.

    Rays didn’t partake while the Phils had tops and caps.

    Houston went all green while the Jays didn’t become poster children for a certain green leafed plant.

    Those were the only games on this afternoon on

    Halos are green-less while purple and green just don’t go. What where the Rox thinking? Purple tops and green hats?

    Cubs have abstained- but DBacks went all in. I have to say- compared to their uniforms this year- the green tops are an improvement.

    Watching Cubs-Dbacks on ESPN. What are these pants that the Dbacks are wearing? Grey with red/black stripe that only goes 2/3 of the way up and the bottom 3 or 4 inches of the pants legs are black. Barf!

    Love love love that Bronco redesign!
    I never liked the navy blue switch back in the late 90’s. going back to light blue is the way to go. I’d change that annoying number font though.

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