In a way, it seemed like rabid fans backed True North Sports and Entertainment into a corner and almost forced them to call their new team the Winnipeg Jets. It’s probably accurate to say that they’re wise to give the people what they want, but the name comes with baggage. (Just look at the confusion regarding Evander Kane wearing No. 9, the same number that Bobby Hull once wore.)
This time around, True North was backed into a corner to unveil their logo because it already (sort of) leaked on the Internet. Give their management credit for making the best of the situation, as they decided to officially share it with the hockey world at 5 pm ET on their Web site.
As you can see, the logo looks quite different from the old Winnipeg Jets logo. While the Jets went through three different primary logos in their first incarnation, let’s keep it simple and compare the new logo with the most recent one the Jets used.
One more shot of the new logo to make it easier for you to compare the two:
The team revealed that the logo was inspired by that of the Royal Canadian Air Force.
“True North Sports & Entertainment felt it was important for the new Winnipeg Jets to develop a strong new identity,” said Mark Chipman, Chairman & Governor of True North Sports & Entertainment. “We felt it was important to authenticate the name Jets and we believe the new logo does that through its connection to our country’s remarkable Air Force heritage, including the rich history and relationship that our city and province have enjoyed with the Canadian Forces.”
The Jets also shared their alternate logos, which I must say, are quite spiffy in their own right. (Click on the images for a full view of the logos.)
While the leaked logo implied an overly sterile look, the official logo really “pops.” (To steal a phrase from “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.”) The Jets incorporated colors from the old logo but give it a sleek, modern feel. My guess is that proponents will use words like “modernized” and “sophisticated” to describe the new logo. Detractors might say that it’s too “corporate” or maybe even “cold,” especially compared to the classic look of the previous logo. The biggest point of deliberation might be the inclusion of the maple leaf, something that Chris Creamer of SportsLogos.net touched on in this post.
I hate that there’s a maple leaf in it – I just do… I don’t see the point in showing off that you’re a Canadian team in a league where there’s several. It’s like when the Ottawa Renegades CFL team launched their logo with a big maple leaf — it’s the Canadian Football League… who are you representing here? Everyone?
Overall, I’m impressed with the output, especially in an age in which sports teams try to beat us over the head with how “extreme” their logos can get. There might be a certain blandness to it, but it looks sharp overall.
My favorites might be the alternate logos, though. They’re both simple and eye-catching, which is what I imagine most graphic designers hope to achieve. That being said, the most important branding matter was settled earlier this off-season: they went with the name Jets, which in my mind was really the only choice.
Anyway, enough of what I think about the new logo. What’s your impression of the Jets’ new look? Since your responses might be a little more nuanced than simply liking or disliking the modernized logo, I factored in the old logo into the poll as well. Let us know what you think by voting and also sharing your thoughts in the comments. If you don’t mind, please keep your comparisons to the primary logos to avoid confusion.
(Note: As you may have noticed, this release includes just the logo. We’ll keep an eye on updates regarding what their actual jerseys will end up looking like and pass that information along when it becomes available.)