With the countdown to the year 2020 underway, we are approaching the 50th anniversary of the Buffalo Sabres franchise.
That means we could be seeing the team rock a new jersey, which is something they did for their 40th anniversary.
They honored the Buffalo Bisons team with the script logo on the front and royal blue uniforms. Additionally, for the first game of the season at home against the Montreal Canadians, the Sabres brought the entire 1970 roster onto the ice for a ceremonial honoring and puck drop.
For the Sabres 50th anniversary, it is expected they will have a different 3rd jersey again for the year.
— Jordan Santalucia (@jsantalucia96) January 8, 2019
Some of the other things that could happen to commemorate the season would be larger opening night celebration, more fan events in and around the arena, the return of many Sabres alumni, and perhaps a red carpet affair.
There have also been some talks that Buffalo could potentially host the Toronto Maple Leafs in an outdoor game at New Era Field. For the Maple Leafs’ 100th anniversary, they were gifted a centennial game outdoors, and given the TV draw Buffalo vs. Toronto can bring, it would seem like something that could happen.
The bigger, more exciting, piece of a Sabres 50th anniversary is the jersey side for legions of Sabres fans. For the last few years, fans have clamored for a return to the royal blue jerseys Buffalo wore from 1970 through the 1995-96 season.
— Jordan Santalucia (@jsantalucia96) February 13, 2018
Fans have been teased with two Winter Classic jerseys that used the royal blue color, the 40th anniversary jerseys that were royal blue, and recently, the 2017 uniform updates by Adidas.
— Jordan Santalucia (@jsantalucia96) November 10, 2017
It has been heavily speculated in media circles that the Sabres will switch back to the royal blue uniforms for their 50th anniversary, at least for the third jersey.
The great folks at Icethetics have stated that Buffalo is “expected” to debut a new third jersey.
The previous third jersey the Sabres had was the half blue, half yellow uniforms that former Sabres president Ted Black proclaimed as a “turd burger.”
— Buffalo Sabres (@BuffaloSabres) September 4, 2013
Many believe that the Sabres will use the third jersey as an opportunity to bring back their classic royal blue uniform as a lead up to their 50th anniversary when they make the big change. The Calgary Flames currently do something similar, using their thirds as retro throwbacks to the 1980’s bright red look, which is very popular with fans.
Make that FIVE third period comebacks this year ¯_(ツ)_/¯ pic.twitter.com/EQidGkLcCW
The NBA has a different uniform program that the NHL should follow. The NBA has four unique jerseys that teams can wear, with none designated as home or away, rather different styled jerseys based off a team’s preference and history.
The NHL could do something similar, keeping the home and away look for traditionalists, but adding a third jersey and vintage/retro look. The majority of NHL teams have multiple looks from the past and this would be a slam dunk for selling merchandise.
In this situation, the Sabres could switch back to royal blue completely for their home and away uniforms, create a new and unique third jersey, and bring back the black jersey from the late 1990’s/early 2000’s that is popular with many fans.
They could theme the nights with the black and red throwbacks as 90’s nights which could create a really fun arena atmosphere. Additionally, they could honor various players and events from those teams for it.
We’ll follow this closer in the coming year, but that fans may finally get their wish for a royal blue throwback come next fall.
What would you like to see Buffalo do with their 50th anniversary jerseys? Comment below!