Black, Sometimes Brown, and Yellow: The Evolution of the Boston Bruins Uniform Part 2


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Here we have one of the most fondly looked back on uniforms of the Boston Bruins; having been worn by the likes of Terry O’Reilly, Cam Neely, Ray Bourque, and briefly by legends Phil Esposito and Bobby Orr. The colored shoulders are gone and were blank at first before a secondary logo was added in 1976. Referred to by fans as the crack bear; this always looked more like a tiger than a bear to me. The stripes are also adjusted a bit including black added to the ends of the sleeves on the white jersey. I think this will be another jersey that Boston pulls out for an alternative or a Winter Classic uniform when the time comes again.


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With the move of the Fleet Center, now the TD Garden, the Bruins would redesign their uniforms yet again. Colors would be added back to the shoulders, but now would stretch all the way down to the ends of the sleeves. The striping at the bottoms of the jerseys would also be altered. We would also see one logo used on both jerseys; a black B with yellow spokes. The crack bear would also be replaced by what is affectionately called the Pooh Bear logo. This is the uniform I remember the Bruins wearing while I was growing up.


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Here it is the one you’ve all been waiting for; the Pooh Bear jersey. So many people hate this jersey and I can understand why. It’s gaudy, gimmicky, and a product of it’s time. Here’s the thing though; I really like this jersey. It’s unique and did something different, it embraced the ’90’s. The striping is so different and I don’t think I’ve seen anything like it on any other uniform in the NHL. Normally I don’t like yellow jerseys, but this one does a great job balancing it out with black. I love this logo as well. It’s not better than the spoked B, but it is still a good logo; better than the crack bear that’s for sure. Most say that it looks melancholy and disinterested, but to me it looks content. Content in knowing that if you poke the bear it will bite back. Unfortunately I don’t see this one making a return, but it’ll always be a favorite of mine.


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That brings us to our current Bruins uniforms; which takes cues from many different points throughout the Bruins history. The B is now serifed like the original B logo the Bruins used in 1932. The striping and shoulders take cues from different uniforms from 1948-1995. On the shoulders we see a modernized version of the Bruins original bear logo as well. To me this is the best uniform the Bruins have ever worn as it is the culmination of over 80 years of uniform designs.


In 2008 the Bruins would introduce their replacement for the Pooh Bear uniform; one that definitely went over better with fans. It is a modern take on their original uniform showcasing a more detailed bear logo with Bruins above and Boston below. Yellow is also taken to a minimum with this uniform; which led to it getting the nickname of the Men in Black uniform. A great modern take on a classic.


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In 2010 the Bruins entered their first Winter Classic and for the game they wore a take on the gold uniforms introduced in the 1950’s and utilized the teams original color of brown over the modern black. The uniform would also feature a variation of the original spoked B logo from the 25th anniversary uniform. While the Bruins haven’t had a bad Winter Classic uniform this one might be my favorite.


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The Bruins would return to the Winter Classic in 2016 with a look inspired by their original uniforms; this time using their current colors. Another solid look and fixes the main problem with the teams original uniform; the use of the color brown. This uniform would also be used for the rest of the season as a third uniform.


The Bruins would play in a Winter Classic for a third time in 2019. This time they would wear uniforms inspired by Milt Schmidt, the Kraut line, and the rest of the 1930’s Bruins. It seems like they couldn’t figure out if they wanted to go with the original brown variation or the black that would be introduced a few years after. At first glance these uniforms look black, but if you look hard enough or in the right picture it is actually a very deep brown. This kind of bothers me and I wish they had chosen one or the other and not this hard to discern color. I personally think this would’ve looked great as straight black and I do like how the B is a felt like material. It’s a nice callback to how jerseys back then literally were sweaters; made of similar soft fabrics.


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The final and most recent uniform to be added to the Bruins history is their new third uniform. Essentially the dark version of their 2019 Winter Classic uniform; this is an homage to the first black uniforms worn in the 1940’s and ’50’s. It is is a sleek and simple throwback with a light modern twist. While I love this design; I think it should’ve been held onto until the Bruins would play in another outdoor game. This uniform got a LOT of flack when it was introduced so I guess we’ll have to wait and see if it sticks around or is replaced by another alternate.

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