As the NHL remains on a pause Pro Hockey Talk is going to dive back into hockey history and remember some really wild jersey designs.
The Los Angeles Kings have been around since 1967, and they’ve had some good looks over the years.
The purple jersey with the crown, and the yellow strip below the crest is still the best jersey they’ve ever rolled out. There aren’t many people who don’t like that one, but the Kings didn’t always look that “clean”.
Back in 1995-96, the team used an alternate jersey that was so bad, it became known as “the Burger King” jersey because of the resemblance between the face on the shirt and the chain restaurant’s mascot.
Let’s deconstruct this uniform a little bit:
How about the “regular” logo on the shoulders? Yowza! The different shades of grey, black and white make it look like an art project gone wrong.
Also, the decision to put the king’s face over the heart was an interesting choice. Why not just put it in the middle of jersey like every other NHL team’s jersey? But let’s be honest, that wouldn’t make this jersey look any more appealing.
“I kinda remember though that a lot of us thought it was a pretty funky looking jersey, maybe ‘funky’ not in the best way,” said former Kings goalie Kelly Hrudey, per the Royal Half. “It was very strange in comparison to most hockey jerseys that you’ve ever seen before. And the color scheme was way different than something we had ever worn before, so it was an unique jersey, that’s for sure. I think, from what I remember correctly, there was a lot of chuckles. It was just so ‘unique’… I thought it was a strange looking jersey. It wasn’t what I kind of expected.”
Because of the two different tones that appear on the back of the jersey, it’s difficult to identify the second number when you’re watching on television because it’s on the darker part of the shirt.
Here’s the jersey in action:
Is that the worst-looking jersey Gretzky’s ever scored a goal in? It just might be.
You can find out more about the history of this jersey thanks to this awesome piece by the Royal Half. Dan Simon, who was the creative director at the Mednick Group when they were approached by the Kings about revamping their look, spoke to the Royal Half about the creation of the uniform. Different people worked on the project and it took some time for the Kings to approve it, but it ended up being approved eventually.
Here’s the thing: No matter what anybody says about this jersey, it’s become a memorable piece of the Kings’ history. Don’t get it twisted, it’s hideous, but it’s never going to be forgotten. Isn’t that kind of the point of marketing?