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Five things you need to know about Canada's Olympic hockey jersey

(NC) For generations, kids have grown up dreaming about putting on the Team Canada Olympic hockey jersey and representing their country.

At the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, Canadian athletes on the men's, women's and sledge hockey teams will realize their dreams when they slip on any of the three new jerseys that were designed by Nike to showcase Canada's national pride and unique passion for the sport.

Here are five interesting facts about the new Olympic hockey jerseys that you can share with friends while cheering on Team Canada this February:

The jerseys are incredibly light: With lighter-weight crests, numbers and letters that are heat transferred instead of stitched, the Team Canada jersey weighs just 448 grams and is 15 per cent lighter than those worn in Vancouver in 2010.

The jerseys are green: Don't worry. While the actual jersey colours are red, white and black, all three versions are made from 73 per cent recycled polyester as part of Nike's commitment to produce performance apparel with reduced environmental impact. In fact, each jersey is made from up to 17 recycled plastic water bottles.

The jerseys celebrate Canada's rich hockey history: Inside each jersey's collar, you will find 12 gold maple leaves to represent Hockey Canada's total number of Olympic and Paralympic gold medals – eight in men's hockey, three in women's and one in sledge.

• The jerseys are inspired by the past: To help design Canada's jerseys, Nike employees combed the archives of the Hockey Hall of Fame in Toronto. In addition, the jersey Team Canada wore in the 1920 Olympics was even brought to the Nike Campus and was one of the inspiration points for the black jersey.

• Prepping for the Gold: The gold piping on the badges and gold maple leaf on the shoulders were included to remind the world of Canada's goal to win gold medals in Sochi.

More information is available online at www.nike.com.

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