Friday September 6th, 2013

By Allan Muir

Check out that mug on Jonathan Toews. Poor guy looks like he was just forced into working a fashion show by Joe McGrath. Only instead of modeling Ensemble No. 32 ("the Omar Sharif"), it looks like he's wearing an oversized pajama top.

Only . . . wait a minute . . . that's a Nike logo. And there, right below the neckline. Those look like the fake laces we were all laughing about on the American sweater. . .

Good lord . .  .tell me those aren't Canada's Olympic jerseys!

A poster on Reddit speculated as much after discovering this image tonight on the Getty Images web site. It apparently was taken early today at a photo shoot in Newark.

It has since been pulled down. That tell you anything?

The leak probably didn't go over too well with Hockey Canada officials, a group that tends to run a fairly tight ship, especially when it comes to managing a license to print money like a new national team sweater. They avoided a reveal during last week's orientation camp, so they probably had a date in mind that would have maximized the marketing opportunity. So much for that now. Expect them to issue a statement, and some official photos, on Friday.

As for the look . . . well, it's further evidence that Nike's designers aren't afraid of striking out as they swing for the fences. It's not as gaudy as the Team USA design with the starry shoulders or as comically ill-conceived as those Buffalo Sabres thirds, but with the white band limited to the left sleeve only and the logo laid flat against a broad white field, it's a pretty dull look. Sort of practice-sweater chic. Not as disastrous as they could have been, but I'm guessing they won't be on as many Christmas wish lists as those sweet 2010 numbers. But that's just me. What do you think?

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