NHL logo rankings No. 20: Columbus Blue Jackets

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The Columbus Blue Jackets are a 21st Century NHL team – entering the league in 2000-01 – so they don’t have a long track record of redesigns or touch-ups. But the Blue Jackets are all about history. The team name is a nod to American history and the region’s role in the Civil War, which made Ken Hitchcock a perfect fit for the franchise.

So don’t let Stinger the hornet mascot confuse you. This team is named for the Blue Coats, not the buzzing Blue Jackets.

But did you know the Columbus NHL franchise was almost called the Justice? When majority owner John H. McConnell’s team was figuring out a name for the expansion franchise, the two finalists were the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Columbus Justice. That name would have been way worse and, we imagine, the logo would have been awful, too.

A Justice logo would surely have ranked lower in our rankings than the current Blue Jackets logo does at No. 20. There were some mixed opinions in the THN office about this look. Some like the color combination and the slick design that ties it together, while others saw a very basic and bland design fit for No. 30. Do you think you can design a better look for the Jackets?

(Aside: I would rank Columbus very high if they would use the blue cannon as their primary logo.)

Try your hand at coming up with a new design for the Columbus Blue Jackets logo and submit your entry to editorial@thehockeynews.com. At the end of our rankings, we’ll share all our favorites redesigns of the 30 NHL logos. And if you had fun creating one for Columbus, you can send us more art work for the other NHL teams, too.

HISTORY OF THE BLUE JACKETS LOGO
If I had to rank the two primary logos Columbus has used in its decade-and-a-half of existence, this one would rank miles behind the current look. This one is too “Saturday morning cartoons” for me and includes a touch of neon the NHL was pushing for. Yuck. Here’s what the Blue Jackets’ website says about the first logo ever used by the franchise:

“The primary Blue Jackets logo that was selected features a star-studded red ribbon unfurled in the shape of the team’s initials, CBJ, with an electric green hockey stick cutting through the center to represent the “J.” The 13 stars represent each of the original 13 U.S. Colonies and signify patriotism. The star on top of the stick signifies Columbus as the state capital.”

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Like a lot of teams did, Columbus went through a redesign phase shortly after the lost 2004-05 season. Gone was a tacky looking “CB” with a neon hockey stick and in came a smoother, big league look to start the 2007-08 season.

The flag you see wrapping around the star in the background is the Ohio state flag, which is fitting for the only NHL team based in the state. And the way the flag swooshes around the star makes a subtle “C” in the logo to stand for Columbus. To me, this logo represents what the team is supposed to be about. The look not only nods to the state it resides in, but it’s very patriotic. And since the Blue Jackets are named in honor of the area’s civil war past, why do anything besides wrapping a star in red, white and blue? The argument against it (and why it’s been pushed down these rankings) was that “it’s only a flag.” There’s nothing new or terribly different about this look that makes it stand out, so overall, it was judged as fairly average.

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Dissenting opinion: “Newer logos always get a rougher ride, but it’s cool how Columbus worked the state flag into their crest. It even swoops into a ‘C.’ The logo looks good on their sweater and it’s certainly better than the ‘cribbage board’ crest that they started off with.” - Ryan Kennedy


Think you can do a better job creating a logo for the Columbus Blue Jackets? Get your creative juices flowing and submit your attempt to editorial@thehockeynews.com. At the end of our rankings, we’ll post our favorite reader redesigns. And who knows, maybe we’ll rank those too!

Which Columbus logo do you like most?


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