The days of the Islanders' black-and-white third jersey appear to be numbered.
NHL teams will not have alternate jerseys in 2017-18 in order to ensure a smooth transition for Adidas, who is taking over as the league's uniform supplier next season, according to a report in the Minnesota Star Tribune that was later confirmed by Sportslogo.net's Chris Creamer.
Newsday's Art Staple said a source has told him this will indeed be the last season for the current third jersey. The traditional blue and orange sweater will remain the primary home uniform.
This is very similar to what happened when Reebok took over the supplier contract after the first lockout. While the league was transitioning to the first version of Reebok's new Edge template -- which resulted in this unsightly uniform -- the NHL did away with the third jersey program. It returned shortly after, but the Islanders' orange third jersey was permanently mothballed.
This looks like it will have a similar effect. The Isles' primaries will remain unchanged, which makes me breathe a sigh of relief, while the black jersey will just ride off into the sunset.
Don't get me wrong, the Isles will have a third jersey at some point. Once Adidas gets their feet wet, you can bet there will be some new designs in the works for every team, and I wouldn't be surprised if some of the early concepts and prototypes for the Isles keep black as a base color. But, at least for next season, the Islanders will be all blue and orange, which I know is a welcome development for many fans.