Was Kraken’s Winter Classic jersey leaked by NBA team, wrestling company?
Nov 19, 2023, 2:38 PM | Updated: 7:59 pm
(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
We’re just a little over a month away from the Seattle Kraken hosting the NHL’s annual outdoor Winter Classic at Seattle’s T-Mobile Park, and we’ve yet to see an official reveal of their uniform for the game.
Unofficially, though, the Kraken’s sweater has apparently leaked – in one of the weirdest ways you could possibly imagine.
On Friday night, two Utah Jazz players – Jordan Clarkson and Walker Kessler – arrived for their NBA game against the Phoenix Suns wearing conspicuously striped Kraken sweaters. The Jazz social media team understood the assignment, captioning a post with pictures of Clarkson and Kessler with “what’s kraken???”
The Kraken themselves have never worn these sweaters on the ice, and the look of them seems tailor-made for the Winter Classic, which traditionally features teams in special throwback-style gear.
— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) November 18, 2023
How does a team in its third NHL season turn back the clock? Well, the sweaters worn by Clarkson and Kessler feature two apparent nods to the Seattle Metropolitans, the hockey team that played from 1915-24, and notably became the first American club to win the Stanley Cup championship in 1917. The red “S” logo with “Kraken” written inside of it is very clearly an homage to the Metropolitans’ similar logo, while the navy, light blue and white stripes of the sweater are much like the Metropolitans’ famous red, forest green and white sweaters.
Lending credence to the assumption that these are what the Kraken will wear outdoors for their nationally-televised game at noon on New Year’s Day are two other apparent leaks.
First, in August there was a leak of hats for both Seattle and its Winter Classic opponent, the defending Stanley Cup champion Vegas Golden Knights, and the Kraken cap featured the same logo as the sweaters the Jazz players wore.
Second, the Jazz players weren’t the only people to get in front of a camera this weekend while wearing the Kraken sweater. On Saturday, All Elite Wrestling broadcaster RJ City wore the same thing during a preview show for the company’s Full Gear pay-per-view event. And wouldn’t you know it, his AEW broadcast partner (and fellow Canadian – because hockey) Renee Paquette wore a Golden Knights sweater that was in the same style as the hats leaked in August.
— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) November 18, 2023
Was this all a bit of planned viral marketing? It seems that way, and if I had to guess, I would think this has probably been in the works for nearly two months. That’s because the Jazz were at Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena, home of the Kraken, on Oct. 10 for a preseason game against the Los Angeles Clippers.
Do you know what else was at the CPA just over a week before? AEW, which was at the arena on back-to-back nights on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 for its weekly show Collision and the WrestleDream pay-per-view. All pretty good opportunities to make arrangements to get sweaters to people who would wear them on camera, don’t you think?
One other thing that adds fuel to the fire – the Winter Classic will air on TNT, which is also the home of NBA and AEW programming.
The Seattle Kraken (7-8-4) are currently tied with the Anaheim Ducks for fourth in the Pacific Division with 18 points in the standings, boosted by a 4-3 win Saturday night in Vancouver over the rival Canucks. The Golden Knights (13-3-2) lead both the Pacific Division and Western Conference with 28 points.
The Kraken have a three-game homestand this week with 7 p.m. games against Calgary (Monday), San Jose (Wednesday) and Vancouver (Friday).