Tampa Bay vintage

New Lightning jersey

The Tampa Bay Lightning Leaf-style look is still great, despite more mixed reviews than a Super Bowl anthem singing.

News sites, blogs and fan polls about the flash digs differ in their views with those in favour hardly overwhelming the detractors.

I find this strange because the new jersey is all class. I’m no Armani but I don’t know how you could conjure something better – even with Giorgio himself leading the design team. Some fans are tough to please I guess.

The two-tone uniforms with simplified lightning bolt logo hark back to another era. And that can only be a good thing. Let’s face it, the old jersey was caught in that early 90s design vortex that has hurt so many hockey team identities – as well as teen idols like Luke Perry and various R&B stars.

General Manager Steve Yzerman and the club consulted strategic brand development firm SME to develop the new brand, with an emphasis on a “classic” and “iconic” look.

And I think they succeeded. The blue and white incarnation is reminiscent of classic Maple Leafs uniforms, which hopefully for Tampa’s sake, inspires classic Leafs-like victories.

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Rome’s gladitorial arena

Rome Foro ItalicoAustralian tennis great Paul McNamee gives a poetic account of what it’s like to play in Rome’s Foro Italico, in a recent online article.  McNamee, who was the world’s best doubles player back in 1981, describes the Roman experience as if he were a gladiator entering the Coliseum: “Firstly, you depart from the locker room into a long, winding and lonely tunnel, in which you can’t help but think of the ancient Christians! You emerge into a sudden burst of light and sunshine, and if you’re playing an Italian, quite possibly into a nightmare. ” Great stuff.

Super Saver has a super rider

Super Saver in Kentucky Derby 2010Super Saver won the Derby, yes, but is there enough acclaim for both horse and rider? Well Jason Gay of The Wall Street Journal wrote a great piece today about why Super Saver’s jockey, Calvin Borel, needs to be considered as America’s coolest sports star.

Our favorite paragraph: Do you know what kind of steel gut you need to plunge a thoroughbred through a narrow, fleshy aperture at 35 miles per hour? Let’s just say it’s a bit more stressful than knocking off the Charlotte Bobcats.

Can’t argue with that folks. If you think a 6’8 forward hitting a half court lob is cooler, then good luck to you. Who hasn’t seen a fat guy make that shot at a local fun park, anyway?

Saluting The Saturday Evening Post

NY Yankees Yogi Berra

The Saturday Evening Post published some of the best magazine covers ever, like this one, illustrated by Earl Mayan in 1957. It features New York Yankees catcher Yogi Berra waiting on a pop fly, while the crowd looks on anxiously. And to think you could once pay just 15 cents for this calibre of product.

Football by Mort Drucker

Mad Magazine football cartoon

If you love MAD Magazine like we do, then you’ll know Mort Drucker. Drucker is to the caricaturing world what Montana was to Super Bowls – a master. We especially love his sports pieces for their wit and originality, but also their poignancy. Mort turned 81 last month – we salute you sir!