Many Decades, Many Threads
There are many iconic symbols to associate with Detroit and its sports. Symbols such as Joe Louis’ fist, the Old English D or the Winged Wheel. Along with these symbols, there are iconic jerseys and uniforms to go along with them.
In addition, with the release of new uniforms for the Lions and Pistons we thought it would be a good idea to look back at some of Detroit’s best jerseys. Below we have figured out our top 10 favorite Detroit Sports jerseys of all time.
10. Detroit Lions’ Color Rush (2017)
Coming along with the reveal of new jerseys for the 2017-18 season, the Lions also released their Color Rush uniforms. Color rush jerseys being jerseys that feature one main color. The color rush concept debuted in 2015 with only 8 teams getting color rush jerseys.
But, in 2016 the NFL decided that every team that played on Thursday Night Football, would receive a color rush uniform. Every team would wear theirs except for the Colts, Lions and the Redskins because they didn’t have a color rush game. This year, the Lions do have a color rush game on December 16th. They play the Bears at 4:30 that Saturday afternoon.
9. Detroit Pistons’ “Teal Boys”
The entire NBA went through a phase of teal jerseys throughout the 90’s. The phase did not pass over Detroit without having a lasting impact. From the first time you see the jerseys a few things stick out. For starters, the teal, the red and the gold. The color scheme isn’t bad compared to some modern day ones such as the Miami Marlins’ electric blue, neon orange, yellow, black and silver; Arizona Diamondbacks’ red, teal, purple and black; or the San Diego Padres’ brown and yellow.
The color scheme looks nice especially when you notice the exhaust pipes coming from the S’s in the watermark. These pipes acknowledge Detroit’s rich history in the automobile industry (but more on that later). And lastly, you will notice the stallion front and center. The horse is boasting its chest and showing Detroit’s pride and grittiness that it’s shown throughout the years.
8. Detroit Pistons’ Motor City Alternates
With the addition of a few new jerseys in the past couple of years came an alternate jersey that represented what Detroit is about. The simple words “Motor City” sprawled out along a field of blue represented more than the Detroit Pistons or Detroit sports.
These words represented the effect that the automobile revolution had on Detroit, and they highlighted some of the Pistons’ greatest moments. Moments such as winning NBA Titles in 1989 and 1990 with the bad boys, or in 2004. The idea of this jersey is that the history of the Pistons, much like the history of Detroit, has had its ups and downs.
7. Detroit Lions’ Thanksgiving Throwbacks
Every Thanksgiving the Lions are one of the NFL teams that play on Thanksgiving Day. The past few years they have worn their jerseys that the Lions wore before the NFL and AFL merger in 1970.
These jerseys feature a plain silver helmet with a black face mask, a minimalist Honolulu Blue jersey with silver numbers and letters, and plain silver pants. The jersey offers a clean look and takes the Lions back to the mid-20th century where they won a NFL Championship in 1957.
6. Detroit Red Wings’ 2009 Winter Classic Throwbacks
In 2008, the NHL introduced an annual exhibition game that would take place on the first day of every new year (except for 2012), would be played outside and would feature a classic rivalry match up. Well, in 2009 the Chicago Blackhawks and the Detroit Red Wings were scheduled to face off at historic Wrigley Field. Another feature of the Winter Classic game is that each team has to wear a classic and realistic throwback jersey.
The Red Wings picked their jerseys that they wore from 1926-1928 and they did a great job representing the Original 6 team. The front of the newer jersey had the same style as the older but, the Old English D was enlarged. On the back the team added names and a red outline on the jerseys but, other than those two adjustments, the jerseys remained the same.
5. Detroit Lions’ Black Alternates
The Lions have had a number of jersey changes throughout the past 10 years and for a short while from 2005-2008, they had a black alternate uniform. This jersey highlighted the introduction of black into the team’s color scheme.
Including the Honolulu Blue and Silver the black was a nice accent and update to the Lions’ uniforms. These jerseys are some of the Lions Fan’s favorite even though Detroit didn’t have much success while wearing them including a 0-16 season.
4. Detroit Tigers 1980’s Throwbacks
One of the best true MLB throwbacks belong to the Detroit Tigers. They probably fall in third behind the White Sox’ and the Astros. These jerseys are clean and exude 1980’s era baseball. Starting with the sprawling Detroit across the chest.
The block front spelling “DETROIT” across the front combined with the navy letters and the orange outline are the perfect recipe for a good jersey. Next, there’s the elastic waist and the navy, white and orange stripes around the neck, around the sleeves, around the waist and down the side of the pants.
3. Detroit Red Wings’ 2014 Winter Classic Throwbacks
These Wings’ jerseys are just like the other ones just cleaner and more classic. These jerseys feature an even more retro Winged Wheel than the current one.
The slight off tone cream adds a vintage feel to the jerseys. And, the jersey strings, stripes and socks tie the jersey together to create a clean yet, classic look.
2. Detroit Stars’ Throwbacks
The Detroit Stars’ throwbacks are great in the sense that the look great and represent something great. On the first hand, the navy blue collar and stripe down the front looks great and seems like a design from the early 20th century. Even the subtle things such as the white R on the navy stripe help put the jersey together.
But, what sticks out is the pinstripes and the hats that show a red star on a white field with a navy blue bill. On the other hand, these jerseys represent the Detroit Stars. The Star’s were a negro league team from 1920-1931 and these jerseys honor that team.
1. Detroit Red Wings Home/Away
I’m sure you could’ve seen this coming, right? No Detroit sports jersey will ever beat the Red Wings’ home or away (depending on which season you’re looking at) jersey. No matter the place (preferably the Joe) or the time, these jerseys always look clean and stand our from the rest.
The Winged Wheel is one of Detroit’s most recognizable symbols and it looks even better on the front of the jersey over a field of red. The plain yet, clean striping just adds onto the legacy of the jersey. Many great players have worn these threads. Players such as Gordie Howe, Steve Yzerman, Nicklas Lidstrom and Pavel Datsyuk.
Featured Image from Stacy Revere/Getty Images
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