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Tracking the Storm

Canes Launch New Storm

Tuesday, 06.04.2013 / 5:00 PM / Tracking the Storm
By Michael Smith
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Canes Launch New Storm
A New Storm has arrived.

Michael Smith
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The Carolina Hurricanes unveiled all-new home and road uniforms at a launch event on Tuesday, marking the first significant uniform alterations in the team’s 15-year North Carolina history.

“We just felt with the length of time that we had our jersey that we think has been very serviceable and people like, it was time to change,” said Jim Rutherford, team president and general manager. “Our logo is our identity, and it didn’t change. Our colors didn’t change. We really cleaned up the look of our uniforms and made it a more traditional look.”

The team’s home red sweater features a pair of white stripes along the base and arms of the jersey. White laces adorn a black collar, and the name and numbers are white with a black trim.

The team’s white away sweater features a red yoke that drapes over the shoulder and houses the nameplate, a unique feature among NHL uniforms. A bold, tri-color striping pattern is found on the base and arms of the jersey, and the numbers are black with a gray trim.

In creating a clean, timeless appearance for the home and away sweaters, the warning flag pattern once adorning the base of the sweaters was moved to the interior neckline and the shoulder patches were removed. Both sweaters contain new lettering and numbering with a rounded, sans-serif-based font. The crest on both sweaters has been reduced approximately 15 percent in size, weighs less and has improved moisture-wicking ability.

Beyond the sweaters, the pants and gloves also saw simplifications and alterations: the pants are now a solid red, highlighting the team’s dominant color, and the team’s gloves are red with white highlights, as black and silver have been removed.

The final product described above and revealed on Tuesday was the result of two years of handcrafted work from within the Hurricanes’ organization.

“It’s a good two to three year process because you have to make the league aware of it, you have to get approvals from the league, there are deadlines you have to meet before you even start down the road of designing it, and then of course the league is involved in approving the design,” Rutherford said.

After months of research, Rutherford and others, including Vice President of Marketing Doug Warf and Senior Director of Marketing and Brand Development Ben Aycock, pored over hundreds of in-house mock-ups from graphic designers Lauren Baxter and Andrew Roman.

“The thing that I’m very proud of, aside from how much I like the look of the uniform, is the people within our company did this. Lauren and Andrew did a remarkable job of designing this,” Rutherford said. “There were different phases of it where they came and had different ideas, and we eventually narrowed it down and did some fine tuning.”

Some of that fine tuning including adding white laces to the red uniform, an aesthetic touch to break up the dominant red of the sweater and the black of the collar.

“You have the group of people who put it together, and then you have another group of 8 or 10 people that have an opinion. When you have that many people, there are going to be varying opinions,” Rutherford said. “But as it got narrowed down, to me it was remarkable that it wasn’t just a consensus, it was unanimous about man, that really looks good.”

The players thought so, too. Eric Staal, who was in attendance for Tuesday’s launch event, modeled the new uniforms to the team before the conclusion of the season.

“It was important for the players to see it before they left and not just to see it on the internet,” Rutherford said. “It’s not just about the look of it, but it’s about the material and fit for the players and how comfortable it is. On one hand, people want to see how it looks, but then on the other hand, the players want to know is it useful? And it is.”

The new sweaters are expected to go on sale in September, and season ticket holders will have first access. For a detailed look at the new uniforms, including videos and photos, please click here.



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