With championship caliber teams on the diamond, gridiron and hardwood, Baltimore seemed like a natural fit for an ice hockey franchise. And while support was sporadic in both the city and league-wide, the American Hockey League and World Hockey Association gave it a try in Baltimore. Donned by a member from one of the struggling versions of a professional hockey franchise whose home was the storied Civic Center (currently Royal Farms Arena), this Baltimore Clippers/Blades road sweater is a decidedly rare survivor! General Athletic durene knit: lots of history behind these gamers, which were worn by the Baltimore Clippers of the AHL in the 73-74, 74-75 and 75-76 seasons. When the WHA came to town the Clippers disbanded and the Blades got all the equipment, including the jerseys; they wore General Athletic and Rawlings durene knits. After the Blades folded, the Clippers reorganized and they reacquired all their original jerseys back. One of the rarest AHL/WHA jerseys to surface in the hobby. Only a known handful exist.
Tailored from black durene, this long-sleeved pullover garment features "BALTIMORE" angled downward across the chest in orange-on-white double tackle twill and "15" sewn to the back and sleeves in like fashion. Elsewhere (specifically, at the waistline, shoulders and sleeves), orange and white highlights strike a familiar “Charm City” chord, matching the hues of the city's vaunted (at that time) baseball team. Black-and-orange striped stretch ribbed cotton lines the collar. Sewn to the interior tail near the left side seam, a vintage "Rawlings" label denotes size “44.” Coupled with its team's long-since defunct status, this hockey heirloom holds inherent appeal in that it has absolutely outstanding game use attributes. Starting with a readily apparent team repair near the left breast, evidence of roughhousing continues with fabric tears throughout, fraying and puckering about the twill components and heavy color fading throughout. All told, this is a fleeting example from the first of three failed Baltimore franchises in the AHL. Based on the tagging and number, this sweater’s wear can be attributed to either Jim Higgs (1973-74 Clippers); Paul Curtis (1974-75 Blades); or Steve Richardson (1975-76 Clippers).
Huggins and Scott is allowing the winning bidder 45 days from the date when payment is received to have the item independently authenticated. Payment must, however, be made within two weeks from the end of the auction. Huggins and Scott is not responsible for any authentication fees or shipping charges incurred by the winning bidder but H&S will refund the hammer price and buyer's premium if the item does not pass authentication with a reputable third party company.