The Arizona Coyotes will be taking their fans back in time on Thursday night, and goalie Mike Smith is going to top off the fun.
When they face the Canucks in Glendale, the Coyotes will wear the same jerseys the team donned during its inaugural season 19 years ago.
Smith will wear a mask painted by famed artist David Arrigo that's an homage to the team's multi-colored Kachina jerseys. The lid features the Coyotes head as the main part of the mask with the logo on one side and the trademark jersey striping across the other. The back features Alice Cooper, one of Arizona's most famous—some might say, notorious—characters.
Jeremy Roenick, one of the finest players to have worn the original Coyotes jersey, is excited about it, though he noted that not everyone has shared his sentiments:
"I know that jersey gets a lot of grief but I liked it. I liked it from the first time I saw it," Roenick said. "Not everyone liked them and it was about 50-50 in the dressing room. There was a lot of 'I can’t believe we have to wear this thing.' I don’t think Keith Tkachuk liked them very much, but he doesn’t like anything, so what’s new? But to me, they were creative and unique and they were colorful. They stood out."
The team will also be giving away Roenick bobbleheads, all 5,000 of them decked out in—you guessed it—those distinctive 1996-97 throwback uniforms.