Seahawks day-glo unis: Orlando Thunder retro?

September 28, 2009

GreenJerseysorlandothunder

Those of you recoiling in horror at the site of the Seahawks’ gaudy neon green uniforms last night may have been experiencing deja vu from the dark days of the old World League of American Football.  The Orlando Thunder wore similar jerseys in their brief 2 year stint in the old WLAF from 1991-1992.

Ah, the LAF League, hahaha.  If you thought that NFL Europe was funny (and it was), then don’t forget that the Frankfurt Galaxy used to have fly across the Atlantic to slug it out with North American teams such as the Sacramento Surge and Raleigh-Durham Skyhawks.  The league suspended operations after the 1992 season and relaunched as NFL Europe in 1995, depriving North American fans of any rooting interest in the World Bowl, and thus also the chance to see the career highlights of World Bowl MVP’s such as Barcelona Dragons QB Jon Kitna in 1997 or Rhein Fire QB Danny Wuerffel in 2000.

The American teams decided to follow the flawed credo of “There’s no such thing as bad publicity” by sporting the tackiest uniforms possible.  Sadly the dayglo retro craze which first made it in to “professional” football in Orlando 18 years ago found its way in to the NFL last night in Seattle.

Leave it to a hipster town such as Seattle to try (and fail) at this gamble.  Unlike the hopelessly uncool strawberry popsicle monochrome uniforms currently sported by the Houston Texans, the bright green is likely to be embraced by many Emerald City sports fans for a couple of reasons.

First, its the same color scheme used by the wildly popular Sounders FC soccer team, which has taken Seattle by storm in its first MLS season.  I was up there over Memorial Day, and by noon on Saturday we had seen no less than two dozen hipsters eating brunch Capitol Hill sporting their neon green Sounders jerseys.  And they weren’t even playing until 7:00 pm that evening.  On the road, in Colorado.

The Seahawks may be on to yet another very questionable craze, as illustrated here by Thunder QB Kerwin Bell – the mustache.  More specifically, the old gay porn mustache that hipster douchebags have embraced with a fury, and that used to only be seen on cops and NFL coaches.  Perhaps the Seahawks were browsing the interwebs looking for old Thunder photos (as I was) and came across this image of Bell (as I did) and thought to themselves, “Hmmm…we could probably somehow use this.”bell-thunder

Back to the Thunder, if their uniforms weren’t bad enough, how ridiculous is that logo?  It looks like it was drawn by a 6 year-old girl.  The only things missing are rainbows and unicorns.  If there was an “i” in the name Orlando Thunder, then you can be assured that it would’ve been dotted with a little heart.

The Golden Age of Jewish Soccer in America

June 24, 2009

Being funemployed, I’ve been watching every US game in the Confederations Cup.  And as both a longime US Soccer supporter as well as a Jewish sports fan, I couldn’t be more proud of Jonathan Spector, Jonathan Bornstein and Benny Feilhaber, my fellow Tribesmen who were all part of today’s historic 2-0 upset over Spain.

2009 is shaping up to be a banner year for Jewish athletes in many sports.  In addition to my 3 favorite new soccer players, there were the dramatic clutch goals scored in the NCAA championship game by Boston University hockey players Zach and Colby Cohen (not related – seriously?), as well as 4 Jews likely to make this summer’s MLB All-Star game; Kevin Youkilis, Ian Kinsler, Ryan Zimmerman and Ryan Bruan.  Even Gabe Kapler has been playing well lately.

But today belongs to soccer.  Let’s start with Spector.  The only starter in the group, he was part of one of the best US backfields that I’ve seen in a long time – maybe ever.  Howard was brilliant in net (and I was all in favor of benching him after the Italy and Brazil debacles), Onyewu had some big stops, and Demerit was stifling.  Even a mediocre outing from Carlos Bocanegra (forgivable as he’s recovering from injury) was offset by great defensive play from the midfield, notably Michael Bradley.

Bornstein was admittely only on the pitch for the final 2 minutes and didn’t do anything notable individually, but was key in an overall team effort that really controlled the ball well and withstood Spain’s desperate onslaught at the end of the game.

Feilhaber, who’s known for his ball-handling skills, was key in both setting up the USA’s second goal and also defended well in his 21 minutes off the bench.

Overall, I’m still more proud as a US Soccer fan for the fantastic overall team effort, but the Jew in me can’t help but be giddy to have 3 of my boys take part in such a notable victory.