Friday, February 11, 2011

Collecting Hockey Jerseys IS a Sport and YOU Decide Who Wins

At least that's what two CBS11/TXA21 colleagues have proven the last five days during the unofficial "Wear Your Hockey Jersey to Work" week.

News assignment manager/Minnesota native Mike Pool along with 10pm producer/resident Canadian Tom Duerr came up with the idea last year during a discussion of mine's better than yours.  Hockey jersey collection, that is.  So, in effort to see just whose was more interesting, authentic and fabulous (my description) they threw down the gauntlet:  one week, 10 jerseys.  Could there be a winner?  You decide.

Mr. Poole went with the “NHL Hockey Teams Which No Longer Exist” theme.  "There has been some debate when a team moves, is it the same team or not," he says.  "I say 'no' because the atmosphere and fans change.  Even though the team recognizes its history in its previous city, the team is different."

Mr. Duerr went with something simpler:  "Simply the Best." 

"We didn’t start off with a competitive nature in mind, but it quickly degraded into one (and a fierce one at that)," Mr. Duerr discovered.  "Some teeth were knocked out and there were a few facial lacerations but what else would you expect from this week?" 

So without further ado, here are the jerseys each man brought to battle.  Strong choices, good design, interesting colors. Which one was better?

Check them all out, consider their stories and you be the judge.  Cast your vote in the comments section.
Day 1: competition remains friendly
Mr. Pool going with the crisp, reddish-orange of the Atlanta Flames.  Mr. Duerr pulling out one he calls "very special", Buffalo's Ryan Miller #30.

Day 2: still partners in hockey crime
Tuesday, Mr. Pool produced another strong old-school contender with his Cleveland Barons jersey.  They were only in Cleveland from 1976-78.  Mr. Duerr, sticking with the modern theme, sporting Alex Ovechkin's Capitals jersey.

Day 3: battle heats up so they take it outside
Mr. Pool, again, with the "team no longer there" mindset, sporting Hartford Whalers green.  Mr. Duerr breaking out the Canadiens' Patrick Roy red, a strategic move on his part.

Day 4: now it gets interesting
Mr. Pool was racked with bitterness wearing this North Stars jersey.  "Being from Minnesota and seeing the North Stars leave was extremely sad," he lamented.  "The team will always be the North Stars.  The North Stars jersey is by far the favorite."

Mr. Duerr, donned Wayne Gretzky's Edmonton #9.  "Pulling out the Roy and the Gretzky made this a special competition for me, and I think it helped boost Mike’s game as well," he said.

Day 5: the calm before the storm
Neither man pulled any punches on the fifth and final day of the jersey competition, with Mr. Pool donning Bobby Hull's colorful Winnepeg Jets jersey and Mr. Duerr opting for something more on-trend with a Blue Jackets number.

Even during their Day 5 interview, the tone was respectful.

"I would also like to say that Mike was tremendous competition this week," Mr. Duerr admitted with a hint of melancholy.  "He has a couple of jerseys of which I am very jealous.  I mean, when I saw him with the Gordie Howe Whalers jersey on, I just, I knew this was going to be a tough one." 

*But overcome with the emotion of being a North Stars fan on the Dallas Stars hockey set, Mr. Pool couldn't bring himself to comment.  And, well, just being an aggressive 10pm producer, Mr. Duerr couldn't help but taunt.  Then it got ugly. 

It was a challenging and exhausting week for both men.  So much so that it manifested into both dropping the gloves (actually clipboards) and going at it, appropriately so, in the Saturday Night Hockey studio.

Both men showing nice form, Sevy would be proud
While the competition was fierce, there can only be one winner.  Who is it?  Cast your vote in the comments section.  Vote for the first-ever "Wear Your Hockey Jersey to Work Week".  Their bragging rights depend on it.  

*The following account might have been dramatized for blogging purposes.

Photos provided by our resident Ansel Adams, web producer Ryan Crowe.
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