Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Review of "The History of the Hockey Jersey 1983-1993"

When I received a message from the vice president of the publisher of this book, I was very curious and excited at the same time.  Since the time frame would cover when my favorite hockey team, the Minnesota North Stars, were still in existence I wanted to see what would be written about the jerseys.  But that lead me to question just who would want to read about jerseys?  Turns out I was as well as many others.  Here is my review of "The History of the Hockey Jersey"

“The History of the NHL Hockey Jersey 1983-1993” by Chris Delorme

Ice hockey, collection, jerseys, history

Publish date:
September 29, 2015

160 pages

4 of 5 stars (very good)

The subject of this book was intriguing – an entire book devoted to hockey jerseys?  The topic is only covered for a ten-year period? How many different ways can one talk about jerseys?   These questions and more are answered with very positive results in this book by Chris Delorme.

Targeted mainly for memorabilia collectors, the book has illustrations of every style of jersey worn by all 21 teams that were in existence during the decade covered in the book and also a few by the three expansion teams that started play during this time. What is truly outstanding is that each style of jersey for each team is described in fine detail.  One example – the stripes on the collar of the Minnesota North Stars road jersey changed from a green-white-yellow scheme to yellow-white-green.  Very few fans would catch such a small detail, but Delorme has a description like this for nearly every team’s jersey.

He also does collectors a big favor by explaining some flaws that may occur when buying an “authentic” jersey, such as customizing with a player name that may not be done in the same manner that was done when the player was active.  There is also nice detail about the fabric and materials used as well as the stitching and striping.  For those who collect NHL jerseys, this type of reference guide is very valuable.

During this period, some of the popular features of today’s jerseys such as shoulder patches, alternate third jerseys, and player names being sewn onto the jersey instead of on a nameplate started becoming more prevalent on the sweaters. Delorme not only illustrates these changes, he explains the reasons why some teams made the change and also writes the timelines of companies that made these jerseys like Maska (the company that produced CCM jerseys, the dominant brand of the era) as well as local companies for the teams. 

Through the pictures and descriptions of the jerseys, a reader who is more interested in hockey history than collecting will also enjoy the book. There is a brief write-up of each team’s history and also stories and statistics on key players for the team during the 1983-1993 time period. These players’ jerseys are also the ones that are illustrated with descriptions of the sweater.

While I am not a collector, I did enjoy reading this book and looking at all the jerseys during this time as it brought back many good hockey memories. Therefore, not only collectors will enjoy this book but so will hockey fans that remember the teams and players of the 1980’s fondly and would like to take that stroll down memory lane. It is a very good read for anyone interested in hockey during that time.

I wish to thank Baico Publishing for providing a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. 

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