It’s been an oddly quiet summer in the realm of new NHL jerseys, but official reveals should start to ramp up in the coming weeks as we get closer to September. Until then, we’ll have to settle for whatever we can get. In this case, it’s a photo from Reddit.
The Boston Bruins are slated to add a new third jersey for the 2019-20 season. While the team has yet to confirm anything officially, it’s possible that new sweater may have leaked on Reddit late last night. A user posted the photo seen above. The caption read, “Got this jersey from someone who have acquaintances in Fanatics' factory (Indonesia) for 120,000 IDR (8.5 USD).”
Fanatics is the NHL’s official supplier of replica jerseys. The jersey pictured is one I’ve never seen before but it does have the hallmarks of a legitimate jersey. But before we assume it is, there are some things to consider.
- Could it be a prototype? Doubtful. If it were, we wouldn’t see the retail tagging.
- Could it be a fashion jersey? Teams sometimes release jersey designs they’ll never wear in a game. That’s harder to say at this point, but it doesn’t really fit with the Bruins in my opinion.
- Has the photo been manipulated? From what I can tell, no.
On the subject of photo manipulation, I should point out a small difference between what you see here and the original photo on Reddit. There was a slightly red color cast on the original which made the jersey look like it could be brown. However, the original poster did confirm the jersey was black. I did a little color correction here to remove the reddish tint.
Some details of the design give me reason to think it is a genuine item. It shares its crest and collar design with the 2019 Winter Classic sweater from last season (pictured above). The Bruins’ previous third jersey was a copy of their 2016 Winter Classic sweater, so there is precedent.
So if they liked their 2019 Winter Classic jersey, why alter it? I’d just be speculating, but, like most teams, they probably prefer to wear their thirds at home, so they need to be dark to avoid a logistical nightmare. And the heavily striped sleeves could be problematic for contrast in a regular game. This would be the Bruins’ third black alternate uniform, so again, precedent.
Furthermore, if you look back through Boston’s uniform history, you’ll find they wore something very similar to this in 1948. And NHL teams do love their throwbacks.
I reached out to a confidential source with knowledge of the jersey who was able to corroborate. That said, nothing is “official” or “confirmed” until the team says so. Until they do, let me know what you think.
Turns out this post could’ve gone up about six weeks ago. One reader just pointed out the same Reddit user seems to have shared an even better image of the jersey via Twitter way back on June 22. Icethetics is even tagged in that tweet so I can’t believe I overlooked it all this time.
This shot offers a much better view of the jersey, certainly under better lighting conditions. The black base is clear—though I’m with the contingent of fans wishing they had gone with a dark brown sweater. It’s something the Bruins haven’t done since their inaugural season in 1924. Maybe they’re saving it up for their centennial in a few years.
I also would’ve been happy with a new gold jersey not unlike their first Winter Classic look from 2010. But it’s always easy to say what they “should’ve” done. That being said, this is by no means a bad sweater. The lack of shoulder patches make it a little barren up top, but I’m sure it’ll be fine once we see it with numbers on the sleeves.
Anyway, I probably can’t wrap up this update without addressing the vaguely visible jerseys hanging behind the Boston one.
Directly behind it appears to be a navy blue jersey with orange trim on the collar. If you know your Adizero jerseys, you know that fits the Edmonton Oilers. Question is, are we looking at the rumored blue third jersey? Or is it simply the current road sweater, which has the collar and shoulder design we see here? Without more visible, there’s no way to say for sure.
What really intrigues me is the bit of yellow material visible just below the Bruins jersey. At first glance I thought it was part of that Boston sweater. On closer inspection, I’m not so sure.
Is there a third hanger we can’t see holding a yellow jersey? Or perhaps one with a yellow stripe at the bottom? All three current Pittsburgh Penguins jerseys fit that bill. As does the Nashville Predators’ road sweater. Could it be something new? I am expecting a lot of yellow in Nashville’s forthcoming Winter Classic jersey. They also have a new third on the way.
Time will tell.