The concept for Deroy Peraza's radial brackets—a clean, clear way of organizing playoff matchups that he envisioned during the 2010 World Cup—came about in a thunderclap of inspiration. "It was really one of those rare ‘aha’ ideas that came almost fully formed out of my brain," he says. "It just clicked." In some ways, though, the longtime designer and forever sports fan had been training for that exact moment his entire life—to capitalize on and combine his talent and passion in a way that makes it look so damn easy (just like they do in the big leagues).
After a successful Kickstarter campaign brought that original World Cup poster to the masses, Peraza is back with The Champions Ring, an exhaustive print series featuring 427 radial brackets for the entire history of each and every MLB, NBA, NHL, MLS, and NFL season.
Officially sanctioned sports memorabilia is not generally known for its subtlety or grace (usually emblazoned with logos and sponsor info all akimbo), but these manage to evoke a strong sense of team pride through an incredibly minimal style; it’s winners and losers and nothing else. Despite their simplicity, the info conveyed can still elicit an emotional response. "One of my favorite things about the brackets is that, regardless of their visual economy, they bring back tons of memories," Peraza tells Co.Design. "I grew up in Miami, so I remember being heartbroken watching Dan Marino and the Dolphins lose the Super Bowl in '85 with my dad. I remember the Marlins win two underdog World Series against much better Indians and Yankees teams. I remember watching every World Cup since 1990 from start to finish. My favorites though, would have to be the three Champions Leagues with Barça in the middle."
For aficionados, browsing the site is as much a history lesson as it is a means to select a souvenir (the earliest NFL prints from 1920 only represent a single team!), and scrolling through is a way to learn more about the dynasties that reign over the playoffs.
Fab will be offering a special selection of recent tournament prints for the next five days at a third of the regular price, including larger prints featuring each league’s entire archives.
[Images courtesy of Deroy Peraza]