Since the NHL returned to Winnipeg for the 2011-2012 season, the topic for what the team's name should be called has become a hot topic for discussion. There has been a lot of history with the Winnipeg Jets from 1972 to 1996, so calling them anything else would have been a mistake. We are grateful that the True North Sports & Entertainment have decided to rename the team the Winnipeg Jets on June 24, 2011, but once we have learnt that they didn’t want to use the 1996 logo and update it, we believe that the current military logo was not right and a mistake. There is no disrespect for the military but it is not meant for a NHL logo. Many fans feel that this logo is too military for hockey and that there should only be one Canadian city that has a maple leaf on its logo. The logo does not have a modern look to it and many would describe it as unattractive.
Some of us were lucky enough to have watch Bobby Hull (the Golden Jet) play live in the Winnipeg Arena in the 1970’s. Some believe that the owners from the 1972 team decided to use the Jets name in honour of the Golden Jet who inspired us. In 1972, it had nothing to do with the Royal Canadian Air Forces in regards to the Jets name. The airplane in the left hand corner of the old logo represented the flowering of exploration and internationalism in the burgeoning age of affordable air travel, and the players that wore its jersey were part of an exciting fast skating, multi-national team that played a beautiful, tough, and creative brand of hockey. Some of the Jets alumni like Joe Daley and Ab McDonald have also been disappointed with the logo.
The Winnipeg Jets have a wonderful and meaningful history which should not be overlooked. We were the first North American team to beat the powerful Soviet National team, the first North American team to use Europeans, and the first North American team to play tournaments in Europe and Japan. For those of us that have been around to see these great players play in person at the Winnipeg Arena, it is no wonder why we honour the blue, red and white.
This team has meant so much to us and to our city. The Winnipeg Jets name represents a unique history with lots of great players who represented us and is recognized all over the world. An updated logo, jerseys, etc, would also provide plenty of new merchandising opportunities while still preserving our cherished heritage.
In closing, the Winnipeg Jets logo represents a lot of pride that we had with those early teams that carried our city’s name on their chests. The retro jerseys from the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s have great meaning to us. This is largely because of our previous history. We would be missing a tremendous opportunity to re-establish a link to our storied past by not reviving the Winnipeg Jets logo and updating it. If the Winnipeg Jets never would have left Winnipeg, it would have probably had an updated logo today. It would only be fitting to continue the history of a franchise that was like no other.