By Phil Hecken
Three NBA franchises introduced their new uniforms for the 2010-11 season yesterday, on the first day the NBA allowed teams to officially break them out. The Minnesota Timberwolves, the Utah Jazz, and the Los Angeles Clippers were the first of (at least) five teams to introduce new threads, with the Cleveland Cavaliers expected to break out theirs today, with the Dallas Mavericks soon to follow (the Warriors have unofficially unveiled their new uniforms already).
Let’s take a look at the Wolves, Jazz & Clips.
Most dramatic of the changes is the removal of all green from the old uniform, which has now been replaced with white or black. Silver has also been added. This is, quite frankly, inexplicably stupid, since the green was necessary to depict the trees on the uni. Now? Black and white trees? What is this, a Charlie Brown Christmas? One of the very cool things about the Wolves uni is how the trees intersected with the “nighttime” to create the illusion of an “M” and a “W” on the uni. You’ll still have that with the black trees at home and the white trees on the roads, but the distinction isn’t nearly so clear. Bad move, IMHO.
Other changes are for the better and are more cosmetic. The neckline has also lost the green trees (which were hard to discern anyway) and the font has been cleaned up substantially. I know the original funky font (and subsequent iterations) and the treelined collar and waist were sort-of “trademarks” of the Wolves, but the new numbers and collar is a cleaner look.
Overall Impression: Totally unnecessary and a downgrade, except for the easier-to-read numbers. Grade C-.
Los Angeles Clippers: Like the Wolves, the Clippers have small, although significant, changes. Both the home and road uniforms remain white and red, respectively, but the new unis have new side piping. On the homes, the Clippers wordmark has gone from red to blue, while on the roads, “Los Angeles” replaces “Clippers” (in the same script as the old “alternate” blue jersey, which also said “Los Angeles“). The numeral font is narrower and more of an “assembly” font, versus the previous “university block.”
Other changes are small, but noticeable. On the primary logo, the orientation of the basketball has changed. The secondary logo has added a gray dropshadow, and the “C” has undergone serif-reduction surgery.
Overall Impression: Like the Wolves, I’m not sure this redesign was necessary, although I do like the subtle upgrades. I prefer “Los Angeles” on the primary road jersey, and the new fonts are more ‘unique’ to LA’s second team. I’m not a fan of the new side panel stripes, but the wide blue stripe they had previously was no picnic either. Grade: C+.
Utah Jazz: OK! Now we’re talking. Earlier this year, the Jazz released both their new primary and secondary wordmarks. They ditched the “sky blue” and purple from the primary logo (and sky blue from the secondary) replacing them with a throwback-ish navy-green-yellow colorscheme (harking back to the first wordmark they had in Utah and which they had brought with them from New Orleans).
The home whites have the navy-green-gold wordmark with green numbers, while the roads have a white-green-gold wordmark with gold numbers. So, in graphic form, they’ve gone from this to this. They have dumped the “Utah” from the roads (not such a big deal, but necessary, I suppose), and have gone retro while staying fresh. They incorporated the old wordmark with new colors, adding much more attractive side panels at the same time. It’s not quite Pistol’s Jazz, but it has that feel. A nice combination of old and new neatly wrapped up into one package.
Overall Impression: A fantastic upgrade to an already pretty good uniform. Blends old and new seamlessly. Grade A.
Well, there you have it — the first three official unveilings. Two of them unnecessary and not really an improvement, and the third a charm. What say you?
Today’s DIY comes from Bryan Justman, who actually has two DIY shirts: a Minnesota Twins T-shirt and a Milwaukee Braves Jersey.
Here’s Bryan to explain:
My two latest baseball shirts have rolled off the assembly line. This time, it’s 1965, which was a good and bad year in ball for my two favorite cities.
Both came from blank cotton jersies. For historical jersies, I prefer the 100% cotton.
Twins lettering, as always, made with felt. The sleeve patch came from ebay.
For my Milwaukee Braves (the presence of the hat is supposed to clarify that it’s the MILWAUKEE Braves), I used single-fold bias tape for the piping and felt for the numbers. I found a script patch for a jacket on ebay and altered it to fit the jersey. The sleeve patch also came from ebay.
Great job on those Bryan!
Uni Watch News Ticker Starting off today is Bill Kellick who has this great home movie of 1983 Mets Banner Day. … Resident UW Golf Pro and Cream City resident Johnny Okray (who had some choice words over the officiating at the past weekend’s PGA), noticed all the TaylorMade staff members have a cool logo on their bag and other apparel this weekend. Pretty sweet eh? Article about the logo is here. Turns out TaylorMade does this for a lot of stuff. “Digging a little deeper, I found that one of the links I sent you actually had a link to TM’s facebook page which has every commemorative logo, and the descriptions of them.” … Gil Garcia has lived Jim Vilk’s dream — and everyone else’s nightmare. He explains, “I was playing Madden NFL 11 and aparently there is an option when u get to the Super Bowl, where you could still choose any uniform (throwback or alt) and it still includes the falic Super Bowl logo! So I was playing the Seahawks and here is a pic of the snot unis WITH the Silver Penis Super patch!” … Pretty cool promotion from the Richmond Flying Squirrels “Last Saturday night with a domino theme. The jerseys had in place of numbers on the back. There was also a little face on the right shoulder, but I can’t make out who it is from this crappy photo I shot off my TV.” (Big thanks to Rob Ullman). … Ken Singer says, “When I saw the new Man U keeper jersey I could have sworn I have seen that before. Yes, I have.” … Davidson College has some new logos and wordmarks, notes Jamie Hall. Also from Jamie: This picture is from Carolina Panthers training camp. “It seems that Dwayne Jarrett (#80) is wearing a red wristwatch while practicing,” says Jamie. “Odd to say the least.” … Kenn Tomasch found this on a weekend trip to a small town in Northern Arizona: the 1920 Jerome (AZ) baseball team. … Neat find from Adam Trielser, who “had this pennant for quite some time, as you can probably imagine its very old. I guess I never really paid any attention to it. I finally noticed a couple days ago that the skater is wearing a blue helmet, something they had never worn until 2007.” … Changes to Auburn football unis? Maybe not. (thanks to Jeff McClendon). … Colin Wasiloff just noticed EMU’s new football helmet decal, and looks like they are going with a darker green and white face mask instead of black like the past few years. “Kind of odd being that the color combo of the mask and helmet along with the solid white decal mirrors MSU closer now than ever. Helmet bumpers now read ‘EAGLES’ instead of Pride.” Even better evidence here. … Greg Bringhurst says these belong to Maui’s independent Golden League team. “While somewhat loud, I think they actually do a pretty good job of incorporating Maui’s heritage into the design. I especially like the treatment of the islands on the back shoulder.” … Interesting find from Bobby Hill who came across this logo in a blog post on this Chicago-themed site. Says Bobby, “I don’t think there is any other sports seating group that has it’s own logo.” … Michael Becker reports the University of Iowa is selling the throwback football jerseys that will be worn for the Sept. 25th game vs. Ball State. (Also noted by Cody Dannen) … “You thought UCF had it bad,” says Jordan Guthmann, this is “not the kind of publicity USF had in mind.” … Check out the traveling attire for the Tampa Bay Rays this week, nice and plaid (thanks to Mike Edgerley). … Two pics from Jared Camden: “First picture is of Chris Johnson last year with what looks to be arm ties on his sleeves, dont remember seeing that last year or ever. Second is the new “2” on the New Gia-ets or Je-iants or whatever field, seems to be missing its back side.” … The ‘out of state’ tag parade continues, thanks to Alan Borock who notes New York has out of state plates for Indiana University, Notre Dame, and Penn State. … Michael Orr brings us the kit match-ups from the first weekend of the 2010/11 Premier League season. … And finally, to close down the show, Uni Watch Prexy Paul Lukas brings us this reason not to wear a cap at a presser.
There is nothing wrong with dedication and goals, but if you focus on yourself, all the lights fade away and you become a fleeting moment in life. — Pete Maravich