It’s no secret that I’m interested in history (check out some of my galleries from Imperial Beijing), and hockey history is no exception. In fact, it is one of the reasons why I really enjoy writing these Mail Day posts which examine a little bit of the the sport’s history through its uniforms.

These uniforms were originally worn during by the Vancouver Millionaires of the Pacific Coast Hockey Association. Founded by the Patrick Brothers in 1911, the team won the PCHA championship 6 times, including a Stanley Cup win in 1915 over the National Hockey Association’s Ottawa Senators. That year, the Millionaires wore the uniform style featured in this post: burgundy with cream-striped sleeves, a cream bottom hem, and crest which features the word “VANCOUVER” written inside the letter “V”.

The modern recreation of this style was originally introduced during the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season to celebrate 100 years of hockey in Vancouver. The next season, a practically identical jersey was worn during the 2014 Heritage Classic at BC Place against the Ottawa Senators. The uniform was then worn one last time in 2015 to celebrate the 1915 Stanley Cup win before being retired.

Over the course of these three games, the team came up with exactly 0 wins, scoring 5 goals while surrendering 13. To add insult to injury, the team also lost cornerstone players such as Daniel Sedin to injury and a disgruntled Roberto Luongo to a trade.

Yeah, maybe it’s a good thing they were retired.

Materials & Cut

The materials on the Edge 2.0 are pretty straightforward, with a heavy air-knit front panel and stretchy Edge fabric on the back and sides. The crest is made of felt – giving it a vintage fuzzy look – while the Heritage Classic patch is embroidered twill. The collar’s NHL crest is the newer felt version seen on jersey styles post 2013, which is the change from the 2013 and 2015 versions which used the standard twill crest.

Comparison of new, felt NHL shield and the older twill style. Picture courtesy of /u/Jerk_Colander

The Heritage Classic edition Premier is a Made-in-Canada jersey, which means that it is made completely of air-knit. In contrast, the standard retail version is made of lighter Xtrafil and Edge-material back and sides. On both versions, the felt is fuzzy like the Edge 2.0. However, my Heritage Classic edition crest is not sewed on.

One major (or minor, depending on how much of a stickler you are for details) difference between my Heritage Classic Edge 2.0 and Premier is that the latter’s arm consists of five cream stripes as opposed to four on the former. Curiously enough, the standard Premier has four stripes.

However aesthetically similar, the two jerseys are nothing alike in cut. The Edge 2.0 has baggy, short arms and a tapered torso which is wider at the bottom – all for the sake of accommodating equipment underneath. The Premier, however, is designed to be worn casually, and is much tighter. The arms are longer (which may explain the extra stripe), and the body is more-or-less straight-cut.

When buying the Premier, I made sure to grab the Heritage Classic edition as opposed to the standard for two reasons: First: I wouldn’t need to buy a patch, and second: the air-knit material which meant that I wouldn’t have to deal with the dry, snaggy fabric. As for the Edge 2.0, I don’t plan on wearing it out too much (if ever) due to its rarity. The material is very pleasant and modern nonetheless, and you can tell there is some serious technology especially in the Edge panels.

More: My Hockey Jersey Collection

Player Spotlight: Henrik Sedin

Although the Sedin Twins were very highly-touted as prospects, neither were chosen 1st overall during the 1999 NHL Entry Draft. Why? Because of some sharp business acumen from Canucks GM Brian Burke.

Going into the draft, the Vancouver franchise held the 3rd overall pick behind the Tampa Bay Lightning and Atlanta Thrashers. With the Twins preferring to play for the same team in North America, however, Burke knew he needed to obtain one more pick while ensuring that no team took the two Swedish superstars before him. Therefore a series of trades unfolded: first, obtaining the 4th overall picks from the Chicago Blackhawks which was then traded – along with two third-round picks – to the Lightning for their 1st overall.

Now the Canucks held the first and third overall picks in the ’99 draft, which guaranteed at least one of the Sedins. However, there was the possibility of Atlanta taking the other Twin with their 2nd overall. Therefore, Burke swapped the 1st overall for Atlanta’s 2nd on the condition that they use it to pick Patrik Stefan. They did, and the Vancouver Canucks consequently picked Daniel and Henrik Sedin 2nd and 3rd overall, respectively.

Burke said he would walk away with both Twins that day, and he did. For a more in-depth play-by-play of the trade, check out the Historical Hockey blog post.

His hard work didn’t pay off immediately, as both Sedins took a few years to adjust to North American hockey. During that time, their cycle-based style resulted in relentless physical abuse, to a point where Burke had to clarify that “‘Sedin’ is not Swedish for ‘punch me, or headlock me in a scrum.”

By the time the West Coast Express era came to an end in Vancouver, however, the Sedin Twins were ready to receive the torch. First breaking out with Anson Carter in the 2005-06 season, the dynamic duo lead the team in points in 10 of the next 11 seasons.

Henrik Sedin received the team’s captaincy immediately before Vancouver’s 2010-11 season home opener. During the pregame ceremony celebrating the 40th Anniversary of the franchise, Canucks’ original captain Orland Kurtenbach passed Henrik a jersey with the C on its chest to replace the one he was wearing. Take a look:

Next Steps

Given the rarity of these two jerseys (and especially the Edge 2.0), I want to do them right.

But right ain’t gonna to be easy.

Because the jerseys have been out of production for the past few years, materials like nameplates are harder to come by. In this case, I wasn’t able to get a Edge-material one at all, so I had to go a slightly unconventional route: Find another jersey in the same colour to butcher.

I was able to get a good deal on a Pro-stock QMJHL practice jersey in the same colour as the Millionaires, which I took to my customizer who cut a few nameplates out of the material: one in Edge and one in air-knit for my Premier. I then had both serge-stitched similar to the Reebok factory plates:

After that, I took off the silver jock tag on my Premier jersey. It wasn’t hard though; all that was needed was a seam ripper and about 10 minutes of time:

Next, I needed a customization kit. While Premier kits are plentiful around here, Edge kits are not. That’s why I turned to the reliable Game Day Sports Archives, who carries many older materials (such as air-knit and ultrafil) and is able to custom-cut the pieces I need.

Now all I need to do is wait until my kit arrives…

In the meantime, make sure to check out the rest of my hockey jersey collection, which features jerseys like my 1981-82 Stan Smyl Vancouver Canucks jersey and my Team Canada jersey worn during the Sochi 2014 Olympics.