Kingston junior hockey team reveals Tragically Hip jersey
by Luke Ottenhof
January 6, 2017
The Kingston Frontenacs pay tribute to the Tragically Hip and Gord Downie.
If you grew up in Kingston, you’re privy to certain memories that others never will be: A time when that shitty nightclub at the corner of Princess and Division didn’t exist; Wolfe Island without a windmill skyline (those windmills rule, though); Going to Ontario Hockey League’s Kingston Frontenacs games at the decrepit, hulking, romantic old barn called the Memorial Centre; And hearing new Hip songs on the radio and feeling that little tweak of pride and warmth that’s a unifying thread among Kingstonians; driving into work before the sun is up and hearing “My Music At Work,” and grinning that Kingston may not have much, but dammit, we’ve got the Hip and a hockey team.
Now, Kingston’s OHL club is marrying those two with a custom jersey dedicated to the city’s hometown musical heroes. The jerseys, replete with the band’s name on a classic black, yellow and white Frontenacs home jersey, will be worn during the Fronts’ game against Mississauga on January 28. Following the game, the jerseys will be auctioned off, with proceeds going to Sunnybrook Hospital’s Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research. Downie, the band’s iconic and beloved frontman, was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer last year before the band embarked on a wildly successful nation-wide tour.
Justin Chenier, the hockey club’s executive director of business operations, expanded on the design of the jerseys: “As a team, we’ve talked about honouring The Tragically Hip and when the reality of Gord’s diagnosis set in, we knew we could do something special to honour the band and help raise funds to help with the research for brain cancer.”
Chenier also explained that the team partnered with Ontario’s Catstitch to design the jerseys, which used the Boston Bruins’ 1964 home sweater as the template, a nod to Gord Downie’s favourite team and the year he was born. The back features “Grace” on the nameplate and the number two, a clever nod to the band’s hit, “Grace, Too,” once performed on Saturday Night Live.
The sweater also features the names of every Hip album and song printed all around it. An earlier idea of including every one of Gord Downie’s lyrics on it was overridden, supposedly because they wouldn’t fit, but it’s equally likely that they didn’t want sweaters riddled with the word “fuck.”
[H/T to The Score]