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1979-80 NHL Edmonton Oilers # 16 & # 47 Game Worn Jersey
# 16 Dan Newman 10 GP
# 16 Bobby Schmautz 29 GP
# 47 Don Murdoch 10 GP
This jersey is an original 1979-80 NHL Edmonton Oilers game worn jersey that began it's journey at the start of the 1979-80 NHL Season with Dan Newman as # 16. Newman played a total of 10 games with the team before he is traded on December 10th, 1979 to the Boston Bruins for Bobby Schmautz. Bobby Schmautz then wears this # 16 until he is traded to Colorado Rockies for Don Ashby on February 25th, 1980. Schmautz played a total of 29 games with the Oilers. The Oilers then acquired Don Murdoch from the New York Rangers on March 11, 1980 for Cam Connor. Murdoch plays a total of 10 games for the Oilers. He wears this very same jersey even though his number was 47. The outline stitching of the former # 47 along with the original # 16 are clearly visible on the jersey. The # 16 that is currently sewn to this jersey was put on after it's use as a # 16 initially and then a # 47.
The number font for the 1979-80 season was very distinct. The # 1 for example had a very wide top and stem. And they were shorter than the numbers used for the 1980-81 season. The outline of the original # 16 is apparent on both the back of the jersey and the sleeves. I have been able to discern the distinct form of the original # 1 and # 6. The # 16 was then changed to # 47 for use by Don Murdoch. The outline of the # 47 is clearly visible.
The current # 16 that is on the jersey is the exact same style that the team used for the 1980-81 season. I surmise that the following took place after the jersey finished as a # 47 with Don Murdoch: The jersey was kept with the team for possible use as a # 16 in the 1980-81 pre-season and the # 47 was removed and replaced with a # 16. In 1997, Mike Wexler purchased the collection of 1979-96 Edmonton Oilers jerseys from owner Peter Pocklington. At that time, many of the jersey name plates were no longer attached to the jerseys. With the # 16 sewn on to this 1979-80 jersey, I presume that it was decided at that time to re-attach the SCHMAUTZ name-bar to the jersey as he was the last player to wear # 16 for the 1979-80 season.
When I acquired this jersey it was advertised as only having been worn by # 47 Don Murdoch and that Bobby Schmautz nor anyone else for that matter ever wore this jersey. Upon first glance at the jersey, I found that to be highly unlikely due to the extremely heavy wear on the jersey and the fact that Don Murdoch only played 10 total home and away games for the Oilers in 1979-80. There was just too much wear to suggest that it was only worn by Don Murdoch. When I finally had the jersey in my hands to examine closer, it became very obvious that the jersey had in fact originated as a # 16, was changed to # 47, then back to a # 16 with a 1980-81 font. I have included photos of the interior which show the outline of both the former # 47 and # 16.
The jersey has very heavy wear in the form of sweat and equipment stains, black tape stick marks and multiple team repairs. Based on my experience in viewing game wear, I conclude that this jersey was worn for a full season. There are 10 heavy material backed repairs on the jersey sleeves and back, with a few more sewn repairs in the shoulders and hem. The jersey has actually been photo matched to an image of Don Murdoch. All of the stick marks on the jersey and the repairs to the right sleeve match up.
This jersey was conclusively worn as a # 16 by Don Newman and Bobby Schmautz before being changed to a # 47 for Don Murdoch and then to a # 16 with a 1980-81 style number font and the original Bobby Schmautz nameplate from the 1979-80 season.