Fri Jan 14 10:09am EST
Jersey Fouls is our ongoing exploration of the rules and etiquette for proper hockey jersey creation and exhibition. If you spot what you think may be a foul in your arena, email a photo to us at email@example.com for inclusion in future installments.
This Florida Panthers FAIL was captured by reader David W. Some Fouls are group shots. Others are solo efforts.
I text'd it to all of my bros. By accident, I sent it to my mother as well. Oops.
Her response: "What a loser."
Look, you're all obviously going to judge this guy for his "MASTERB 8" sweater, either because it manages to misspell its pun or because it's so crass that even 10-year-old kids in the right corner of the image are stunned. But honestly: If your team hasn't made the playoffs since 2000, how would you find satisfaction during the off-season? Some golf; others don't. Different strokes for different folks, you know?
That said, we genuinely feel bad for the person who has to take this guy's ticket at the front gate. Yuck.
It's a goalie variation of that old "Jesus saves, Espo scores on the rebound" bumper sticker.
(Or insert Gretzky in the phrase if you so desire.)
In some ways, Jesus and Luongo are quite similar. The hair. The carrying of all the hopes and dreams of their followers. The fact that they both fear Mike Keenan.
But as the jersey points out, they're also very dissimilar. Example: Canucks fans never expect Jesus Christ to be Roberto Luongo.
(Coming Up: Sharks murder bees; Lyle Odelein honor Foul; Brendan Shanahan(notes) Blues Foul; Winter Classic conundrums from the Capitals and Penguins; spelling goofs in Chicago and Philly; a patriotic Jagr Foul; Max Power loves the Canucks; and a pair of Kings Fouls that really need to be seen to be believed. And even then you may not believe them.)
And here ... we ... go.
"Spotted this jersey foul at the USA/SUI game on NYE. Being a USA fan: you're doing it wrong."
We'd say this was some kind of freaky New York Rangers one-off that someone handcrafted, but that No. 7 has us convinced there's a backstory here. Hit us on email (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have any insight.
Meanwhile, we'll simply lament the fact that there's a Jagr jersey that celebrates all that's great about America ... and yet, no mullet.
UPDATE: Chris Nelson with a theory:
Going to take a wild stab and say it's in reference to the 7 year contract extension that Washington gave him without him even playing a game for them when he signed it as a PENDING UFA.
But what about the red, white and blue?
Oy vey, more misspellings. On the left comes a Jonathan Toews(notes) Foul from Arnold Penguin. Our theory: The guy wearing the jersey is named "Toevs," and figured it would be cute to put his name on a Toews jersey because they're so similar. He figured wrong.
"I can appreciate a tribute jersey to "The Hammer". I can *kinda* see using a jersey he never wore, since black is a good color for an all-time NHL ‘bad guy'. But, for crissakes, SPELL THE MAN'S NAME RIGHT."
In fairness, Bobby Clarke had the 'C' when The Hammer was playing.
OK, that was terrible. Moving on ...
Via Tom P., another mystery that needs some backstory:
I doubt this will qualify for the Jersey Fouls section, as it was not seen in an arena, but I was just wondering if you had any idea what this one is? My buddy was given it as a present, and neither of us have any idea what it is. Thanks!
What a weird present. "Here's a San Jose Sharks jersey in which the Shark is murdering honey bees. Wait, what, you wanted to know where it came from? Obviously from the creators of the NHL Guardians Project ..."
This has the slight whiff of Japanese knockoff and/or streetwear. Any context would be dandy.
UPDATE: From reader Daniel Donovan:
I'm gonna go ahead and say this is a jersey made to mock the Bruins (bees - B's?) from the Thornton trade? Maybe once Sturm left for LA they decided to make up this spiffy number to show that the Sharks totally owned the Bruins on that one..."
Hmmm ... not a bad idea.
One of the greatest defensemen of all-time, a future Hall of Famer and a Detroit Red Wings legend.
Guess what? HIS NAME IS NOT [EXPLETIVE] "DAMBLASTER." (Via K. Maxwell.)
Reader Greg sends in this interesting Foul from a Columbus Blue Jackets game:
The below came straight from the Dispatch Puckrakers blog where Lyle Odelein was honored before the game as first captain. Yes, he was the first captain, however, does this go back to the old adage of "it's a jersey the player never wore"? Who knows, maybe he wants to forget the horrible "bug" and committed the partial jersey foul on purpose?
We need a ruling on this one. No, Odie never wore this style of jersey; he wore this style. But it's a night of commemoration years later, and the team is rewarding him with a current model.
Pass or Fail? Should old school stay old school, or is giving him the new model a nod to the fact that his contributions to the franchise are timeless?
On the other hand, this Brendan Shanahan jersey for the St. Louis Blues is a total FAIL. Never wore it, and the number is so sacred that both D.J. King(notes) and Stefan Della Rovere(notes) have worn it in the last few seasons. (Via Andy Sites)
Both Mike. W. and Reid A. sent in images of this Vancouver Canucks Foul. From Reid:
As an avid reader of your blog, I was thrilled to encounter this fool at Saturday night's Leafs/Canucks game in Toronto. This clown caught my attention as he was balking at the cheese curd content on his Poutine Burkie Dog. Luckily, he was more than accommodating by allowing me to snap a photo of his silly jersey. (Just so you know, it reads MAX POWER, not "AX POWER" which would be marginally cooler.)
Ax Power cooler than Max Power? Clearly, someone is unfamiliar with Max Power:
Still a foul.
Terrible quality on this one, but you get the point of JHoppis's image. Now the real question: Is a Mario Lemieux Winter Classic Jersey a Foul considering he (a) took part in the alumni game, but didn't wear this exact sweater and (b) owned the Penguins team that played in Heinz Field?
Pass or Fail?
Saw this Foul walking out of the Winter Classic. My thoughts:
2) Somebody took that same number for Brashear and put a pun on it as the name
3) That pun is a derogatory name of another player
4) That other player plays for the Penguins!
This seems to show a lack of feeling about their own team, instead their emotions are channeled into simply disliking another player/team. I wonder if they even have a favorite Caps player (If it is Brashear that might be worse).
Somehow we doubt it's Brashear.
Finally, two from the Los Angeles Kings. Strap yourselves in:
Via CrownedRoyal.com, what they claim is the Mother of All Jersey Fouls:
While I waited and watched the game, my mind spiraled out of control thinking about what could possibly be the reasons for creating such an abortion of an NHL sweater:
* He is cursed by birth to have the name Getzlaf, and in an attempt to reverse this misfortune that has surely ruined most of his life, expresses his Kings' loyalty.
* He sells jerseys for a living, since no self-respecting NHL jersey retailer would oblige such a foul request, and hopes to gain publicity for his pathetic small business of stitching abominations by creating controversial sweaters.
* He is a Sharks fan, and since urinating in public on both a Kings and Ducks jersey would be at the very least frowned upon, came up with this instead.
* He is a part of some kind of special needs program, and someone who doesn't know any better bought him that jersey from Goodwill for 89 cents.
Grounds for deportation. Finally:
Total, unmitigated, without-a-second-thought PASS. If only because we're pretty sure this guy is going to die with his sneakers on, in a room of other cult followers while a comet passes overhead one day ...