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My lettering budget dream team


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Have you ever tried getting a custom VHL jersey with your name on the back, but then opted for a generic one with no name when you realized your commoner name added like 50 bucks to the total price? Letters are hella expensive man. Now imagine if you were in charge of the equipment for a new team. The owners send you to the local proshop, telling you "hey, can you go buy us 6 new jerseys? Oh and make sure they get their names and their numbers in the back. We'll totally pay you back when you come back with the receipt." Man, you're gonna flip when they tell you the price for 6 jerseys with custom name plates and numbers on all of them.


Fuck that.


My dream team is for those like me who don't want to pay for these expensive custom lettering jobs. I'm buying one full alphabet set at the proshop and spelling the names of my 6 players with these 26 letters. We're even gonna have some leftovers, but I hope they have names with no vowels. Oh and I tried to do with only current players but I couldn't get it done, so we're getting some all time greats back from the retirement home for this. They're gonna get so confused when I suit them up.


LW [S54] Fook Yu @Baozi
Yu never broke the 100-point mark, but there's nothing wrong with that. I never broke it either and I got a Hall of Famer. In his prime he was a world class power forward, winning the Scott Boulet Trophy in S55, and the Daisuke Kanou the very next season. More importantly, we only use two fairly uncommon letters for him, leaving 24 more letters for 5 players.


C [S61] Podrick Cast @Victor
Cast scored 174 points in his sophomore season. Only Scotty Campbell ever scored more than that but he played against kids that didn't even know how to skate. Cast > Campbell. Checkmate. He was also a first ballot hall of famer, thanks to him winning more awards than you could count on a reasonable number of fingers. We use 4 common letters here, but only one vowel, and Cast is worth it.


RW [S74] Lee Xin @Blazzer
Xin never won a single award, but they won a Continental Cup and had 4 straight 100-point seasons to finish their career. Cast only had 4 100-point seasons in his career too. Xin = Cast? Possibly. We only need to use three letters, including the X. I was ready to throw it out as soon as I bought the set. Good thing I didn't. I'm throwing the Z out though.


D [S35] Conner Low @Smarch
The man won five straight Sterling Labatte Trophies from S36 to S40. Need I say more? If this alone doesn't put him in contention for best defenseman in the history of the VHL, I don't know what would. Plus he's an all-star when it comes to only needing three letters in the back of his jersey, including the dreaded W. All-star!


D [S75] R @Kylrad
Is R an amazing player? I mean, he scored 100 points once as a defenseman, and he won three total Continental Cups. Individually, he's the lesser player of this dream team, but he knows how to win and we need that. I'd be lying if I pretended that he's here for any other reason than the fact that we need players with few letters, especially few vowels in their name. But we're happy to bring the wins to the team too. 


G [S25] CAL G @JardyB10

And we go from a player with a single-letter last name to an even better player with a single-letter last name. CAL G is a legendary memeworthy non-bot goaltender, from a legendary memeworthy non-bot member, who played for Seattle and Vasteras, but never for Calgary. He's a living meme. Actually, I'm not so sure he's still alive, he retired like half a century ago. Either way, we need a solid man between the pipes, and in his prime, few did could beat G.


So far, we have used A C G I L N O R S T U W X Y, leaving us with only B D E F H J K M P Q V Z, meaning we could have a backup on the squad, but they'd probably need to be called Kemp, Zed, Me, Dvebjz. All actual names, probably.


Now for the numbers. Our set of letters also came with a single set of 10 digits, so let's use them, I guess. I know the numbers of three players from their HOF articles. CAL G was #69, because obviously, he was #69. Low was #34. Cast was #13, but we're using the 3 for Low already, because veterans have the first choice. So let's say Cast switches to #10. It's a good superstar forward number. I have no idea what numbers the others used and I'm just a shy equipment manager, so I'm not asking them. Yu will have #8, Xin will have #27, and that leaves #5 for R.


YU 8 - CAST 10 - XIN 27
LOW 34 - R 5
G 69


When I was trying to make this budget dream team happen, the first version of the forward line was Bentz, Su and AK47, which would have given us two Hall of Famers (Bentz and Su) instead of one (Cast), but I felt like the line was overall much worse because of the addition of AK47, who was basically only good for one season, during which he scored like 70 goals and 140 points. The rest of his career was uninteresting, and I felt kinda cheap about adding a player with numbers in his name. Also because I didn't check, but I'm pretty sure this letter set didn't come with nameplate-sized numbers. So I would only have the AK for the name plate and then we could have made his number 47, but that means the legendary Conner Low would have had his iconic number 34, so I felt kind of bad about it and decided to find another way to make it work, which is how we ended up with Yu, Cast and Xin. I'm happy about it.


// 1,000+ words

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