On Sunday, Mar. 25, the Florida Panthers will wear their blue jerseys for the final time.
/pours 40 out
Yes, the 25th will be “Shirts Off Our Backs” night at the BankAtlantic Center, during which the Panthers players will wear their two-tone powder/navy specials against the Islanders. They’ll then give the jerseys away…and never speak of them again.
More, from George Richards of the Miami Herald:
So why do we call these jerseys the ‘JetBlues?’
Well, word is Michael Yormark [Panthers President and COO] was one of the few proponents of this color scheme and brought it in to help lure the discount airline to become a major sponsor.
If that was indeed the thought, it worked. JetBlue is a team partner to this day. I have never gotten Yormark to confirm this story, but I have heard it from a good number of people. So, whatever.
Anyway, Yormark liked the look so much the Panthers were on the verge of changing their official colors from the original red-blue-gold to the two shades of blue.
In the summer of 2010, the Panthers had changed everything to those colors and it looked like the team was going to go to those colors exclusively for the 2011-12 season.
Only Dale Tallon [Panthers GM], Mike Santos [Assistant GM] and Bill Torrey [former President/GM] hated the look and refused to wear anything with the Cat-In-A-Circle logo on it. They quickly made it known that they hated the blue look and the Panthers quietly started phasing it out.
The blue jersey’s final death knell was Florida launching the “We See Red” marketing campaign in June. (Red being the opposite of blue, according to most bathroom sinks.)
Rest in peace, JetBlue jersey.