DISCLAIMER: I am from Connecticut.
This afternoon, the Carolina Hurricanes announced via their Twitter account (@NHLCanes) that they were bringing back the jerseys of the Hartford Whalers for two games during the 2018-19 season.
Here's the official announcement:
And here's another look at the new threads:
The jerseys will debut on December 23rd against the Boston Bruins, in an event the Hurricanes have dubbed "Whalers Night" at PNC Bank Arena. They'll also be rolled out on March 5th, also against the B's.
Before I get to my rant, I do have to say this. These jerseys are FIRE. I've always liked the blue-green combo; it's been synonymous with Connecticut teams since the 1979-80 season. The Hartford Yard Goats recently revived the blue and green pattern to pay homage to the Whalers.
The bright green pairs well with the navy blue, allowing the jerseys to strike a balance of being flashy, but not in-your-face.
The jerseys are also a MAJOR improvement from the current third jerseys the Hurricanes have.
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Okay, that being said...SCREW YOU, CAROLINA HURRICANES!
This is an absolute slap in the face of anyone that used to root for the Hartford Whalers. Fansided posted an article saying the NHL should step in to take the Whalers jerseys away from the Hurricanes. While this may be a bit of a stretch, I can't say I completely disagree.
Here's a little history lesson for you, boys and girls. In 1991, a bad man by the name of Eddie Johnston made one of the most infamous trades in NHL history, trading Ron Francis (5th most points in NHL HISTORY) and Ulf Samuelsson (not Cam Neely's best friend) to Pittsburgh for three "promising" players. All three sucked, and so did the Whalers.
Then, in 1994, a worse man named Peter Karmanos bought the Whalers, and moved them to Carolina a few years later. Johnston and Karmanos are both credited with ruining the Whalers franchise and taking hockey away from Hartford.
Needless to say, the vast majority of Whalers ex-fans want nothing to do with the Carolina Hurricanes. Some took shelter with another team, typically the Boston Bruins. Others just follow hockey casually. Most, however, just hope and pray for the 32nd NHL franchise to head to Connecticut.
Or for the Coyotes or Panthers to finally give up.
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So, the Hartford Yard Goats tweeted this:
Let's go live to Hartford, Connecticut, for people's reactions:
...and those are just the censored ones.
The Hurricanes continue to dance on the graves of the Whalers. At least, that's how Deadspin's article on the new jerseys phrased it. Using the logo and jerseys of a team that you trashed and ultimately relocated, with the goal of creating a PR buzz and selling tickets, is a slap in the face to all Whalers fans and CT sports fans.
Yes, I'm salty.
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Hartford fans, if I can give you one thing to ease your minds, let it be this.
The Hurricanes were third-to-last in attendance last season. They've been near the bottom of the league in that category since I can remember. Here's a particularly bad game in Carolina...
There were around 9,000 people at this game, according to Scott Burnside. That's roughly 10,000 less than the capacity of the arena. That's GARBAGE.
So go ahead and promote Whalers night, Carolina Hurricanes. You'll still probably end up with around 14,000 people, and now you've further pissed off the city that you called home for decades.
Also, if they try to play Brass Bonanza when the Hurricanes score, there will be another blog written. And it won't be nearly as civil.
Now let's rock.