As much as the NHL and hockey fans in general laud the “Original Six”, the Flyers have a rightful claim to be right up there in NHL history. The Flyers are a storied franchise, and like other clubs such as the Rangers, Blackhawks and Maple Leafs, are iconic in their own right. As with these teams mentioned, the Flyers can be considered somewhat to be a brand, with a distinctive image and identity. Nowhere else is this better represented than in a team’s set of jerseys.
The Flyers, in their 50+ year history, have had five waves of jerseys. In the beginning, from their inception in 1967 through the 1970’s, the Flyers dawned a simplistic orange kit with a single white stripe running through near the waist and white trimming on the shoulders and arms, which was inverted on the home iteration of the jersey.
From the 1980’s all the way to the mid/late 1990’s, the Flyers featured their now iconic “burnt orange” kit, with white trim on the shoulders and arms, separated from the main body of the jersey by a thick black line. Once again, for the home kit, the color scheme was reversed as the main body was white with orange trimming.
From 1997 onward, the Flyers introduced a black jersey as an alternate. This jersey quickly became a mainstay, and was the Flyers’ primary home jersey when the NHL switched teams’ home kits from white to color. This jersey maintained the white trimming, but used an orange line to separate the white and black components, and added an orange trim around the name and numbers of players.
Following the season long lockout which prevented the 2004-05 season from occurring, the Flyers kept the black and white home/away kits but refined the design slightly. The lines separating the shoulder colors from the main body were split in two, and now ran on a curve from either side of the neck through down to the armpit. The forearm now featured a differing color from the shoulder trim as well.
Lastly, for their first winter classic appearance, the Flyers would re-introduce a modernized take on their original jerseys from the 1960’s and 1970’s. It would become the main home uniform shortly after, and a matching away kit was made to go along for the 2010-11 season.
Now, that’s quite a lot of history covered, and during this time, the Flyers have had many alternate kits that they have worn in addition to their main home and away jerseys. Some were smash hits, and replaced existing designs. Others...well...fared less fortunately, perhaps none more so than the ill-fated and infamous 3D logo jersey of the mid 2000’s.
This jersey, without a doubt, is the Flyers’ worst ever jersey and is a contender in my opinion for NHL-wide infamy. Lettering was black with white trim, the shoulder/upper arm region split a white and orange color scheme with a weird tailing off toward the forearm, and most noticeably, the Flyers’ logo was made to appear 3D with a very odd, ugly metallic effect.
I don’t know what the team was going for with this look, and it just...never worked. This jersey was introduced during the 2002-03 season, and its run was fittingly concluded after the 2006-07 season when the Flyers finished as the worst team in the NHL.
We’ve all had calls for the Flyers to bring back some classic kits, but please oh please don’t bring back that one! Maybe instead go for a burnt orange. That would be very, very nice.