By Phil Hecken
The “Timelessly Representing” series has proven quite popular. This week we have the NBA, and we’re going to begin with the NBA Eastern Division. The concept of the series is simple — pick a uniform and stadium (or in this case, arena or building) that, in your opinion, captures the “essence” of that team, as defined by uniform/arena. In this instance, our contributor sometimes picked unis and buildings that were from different eras (perhaps wistfully hoping the two could be forever paired).
If you’re not familiar with the concept, you can check out the most recent of the series, for the NFC (which includes links to each of the other three). I’ve already got plans to do one for the CFL (that’s football north of the border), and if anyone is interested in doing one for the NHL or College Football (that could get complicated, so maybe we need to concentrate on just a few conferences), please contact me.
Today’s submission, for the NBA (and we’ll do this in two parts) comes from Brandon Bush, who was decidedly brief in his writeup:
I enjoyed the “Timelessly Representing the Ballclub” articles very much. So, I decided to get in on the action and do it for the NBA. I have created a list of uniforms and arenas that I believe defines each team.
He then included what follows, with several links for each. Unfortunately, many of these links were broken or “404”ed, so I have substituted what I hope are adequate photos for his descriptions. So, without further ado, here is the NBA, Eastern Division:
Thanks Brandon. This completes the first half of the Timelessly series, for the NBA, and I’ll be back with Part II soon. As stated above, if anyone is interested in doing this for the NHL or for one of the NCAA Football conferences, please let me know.
Readers, how’d Brandon do so far?
OK, obviously the BIG TALK about the Marlins/Bears (Brewers) game last night was this egregious uniform name misspelling seen on Brewers Manager Ron Roenicke. The twittersphere (including yours truly — h/t to Craig Gardner for the photo) almost immediately lit up, and then I received a few e-mails about it. But…as Brewers uniform historian, and the man who penned the preview of the Bears uniforms yesterday, Chance Michaels explains, that wasn’t the only
screwup abberation in an otherwise gorgeous looking game. And I do mean beautiful. I’ll have a few thoughts of my own following Chance’s review, which is below. (Click on any embedded photo to enlarge) Enjoy:
A Brew Crew Review
By Chance Michaels
Yesterday, we discussed the Brewers’ 8th Annual Negro Leagues Tribute Game at Miller Park.
It proved to be a fantastic game, and not just because the Brew Crew managed to break their 0-2 TBTC losing streak. Both teams looked amazing, the Brewers in their recently-revised Bears uniforms and the Marlins in an outfit they really should have adopted if they were so keen on orange. Not to mention that marlin sleeve logo – oh, baby!
Not content with just old logos, the unis had the baggy fit common to the period. In his radio call, Bob Uecker joked that Brewer pitcher Yovani Gallardo (pitching a masterful game) would start requesting that looser cut in all his uniforms.
Another pleasant surprise was the lack of manufacturers’ logos. As the league-wide official supplier, Majestic has the exclusive franchise on logos, so we know where these didn’t come from. The Brewers have in the past turned to AIS to order Negro League throwbacks, and perhaps they did again. Phil and I are tracking this down and will have a follow-up report for you soon.
The batter’s box revealed another missing logo: the 2006-2008 version of this uniform had a white “M” on the helmets. Last night, they were blank (as they were on the 1913 and 1948 throwbacks).
Most of the Twitter traffic during the game, to say nothing of message boards and Deadspin, revolved around a curious uniform malfunction across the chest of Brewer manager Ron Roenicke:
— Borchert Field (@BorchertField) July 21, 2013
That wasn’t the biggest problem, to my eye. New Era made a small but crucial alteration to the Bears’ caps, swapping out the customary black squatchee for a white one. Throws the whole thing out of balance.
Still, it’s hard to be picky with a great pair of throwback unis (not to mention a Brewer win). If these are the Bear uniforms we see going forward every season, I’ll be a very happy Brewer fan.
Thanks Chance! Great job.
I happened to actually be able to SEE this game (thank you MLB Extra Innings free preview), so it was a treat. And I really enjoyed the uniforms as well. The Brewers tend to pull out all the stops when they do their Negro League tributes, and this was no exception. Everyone was impeccably tailored, and everyone showed socks. And can the Marlins PLEASE wear those road uniforms like, forever?
I mean, how beautiful are those? If the Marlins won’t adopt that look, maybe the Mets can. Please.
I didn’t mind the lack of a logo on the Brewers’ (Bears’) helmets, especially since there were no batting helmets for the era to which the Crew were throwing back. And, as is their wont, the Brewers updated their “mound” logo for this game, placing a blue “M” on the bump behind the pitcher:
I must admit, I didn’t catch the white squatchee like Chance did, but sure enough, they had them for their 2006 throwbacks. It’s funny because in their “BUY ME” cap promotional image, the caps did show the white squatchee. Definitely makes a BIG difference.
What say you readers?
And if you want to see more photos, you can check out my Flickr set.
We have another new set of tweaks, er…concepts today. After discussion with a number of readers, it’s probably more apropos to call most of the reader submissions “concepts” rather than tweaks. So that’s that.
So if you’ve concept for any sport, or just a tweak or wholesale revision, send them my way.
Please do try to keep your descriptions to ~50 words (give or take) per image — if you have three uniform concepts in one image, then obviously, you can go a little over, but no novels, OK? OK!. You guys have usually been good with keeping the descriptions pretty short, and I thank you for that.
Like the colorizations, I’m going to run these as inline pics — click on each one to enlarge.
And so, lets begin:
We begin today with Christopher Hall, who last weekend was featured, but I inadvertently included as his tweak the current Michigan FB uni. Here’s his actual concept:
First off, thanks for showing off my design in the Uni Tweaks section today! Unfortunately, only the original (current) templates are shown on the Uni-Watch feed, not my tweak. Would you mind adding my tweak picture under the original? Or even just changing the images? I included the original image to highlight the changes I made. Thanks!
I attached my design again in case it got lost in communication the first time.
Thanks again! I love reading your weekend columns.
Next up is Ben Hoskins, who tweaked the new Dallas Stars unis:
I enjoy the site. After seeing the Stars new uniforms, and hearing the enthusiasm for the Victory Green, I couldn’t help but think that they didn’t go far enough with it. The hated Red Wings are red. So with that, here’s my Victory Green take on the new stars uniform. Basically, instead of black shorts, helmets and gloves, they should be green.
I’m sure I’m not the first to this conclusion but I thought I’d submit it anyway. Thanks.
Fort Worth, Texas (no, we’re not Dallas)
P.S. I heard Mike Modano on a local Sport station say that they considered an old school version that had a “D” with a star in place of the “N” the North Stars uniforms. The idea is intriguing, but understandable that it would be an “eff you” to Minnesota.
We close today with Donald Connolly who has some slight tweaks and a new color for the New York Knickerbockers:
I took a stab at several variations of a Knicks alternate jersey. Gray jersey, with variations on ribbing, lettering and number colors. The blue white and orange stand out well against the gray. I figured this would be a good look as the Knicks introduced gray into their logo and uniform this past season.
Please publish! I’m an avid reader and fan of sport aesthetics. Thanks!
And that’s it for today. Back with more next time.
As you good readers may (or may not) know, beginning this coming Thursday (July 25), I will begin my month-long run of handling the weekday duties here at Uni Watch, taking over while Paul goes on his annual summer hiatus (a well-deserved rest, to recharge for the coming football seasons). He actually never really takes a vacation, and may make a guest appearance if or as conditions warrant, and of course he’ll still be doing his usual ESPN columns.
While I have a few ideas and columns lined up (and have a few guest features in the works), I can always use a hand from you fine readers. If anyone has any ideas for a column and wants to pitch me, I’m all ears. Send me an Email at Phil.Hecken@gmail.com and let me know what you have in mind. Please put in the subject line “Uni Watch Article Idea”. Many of you already submit me your ideas, but I’m opening up the floor to all the readership. I can always use the help — you guys are great, and I’d love to feature some of the finer readers if you have ideas for a lede. OK? OK.
As in past summers, I’m pleased to let you know that Morris Levin will be back with four Friday articles (always a big favorite with the readership). Also, I have a new uniform design contest to announce (soon, soon) that I think you’ll like, so there’s that too.
I probably will not run too many of the usual weekend features (at least not on a daily basis), such as the concepts or colorizations, and there will probably be only a couple of “Stirrup” bits. I’ll try to keep the columns as close to that you expect from Paul. Shorter, leaner and meaner.
And who knows, there may be a surprise or two.
Because we love the stirrup here at Uni Watch, this section is devoted to those of us who sport the beautiful hose on Fridays — a trend popularized many years ago by Robert P. Marshall, III. For many of us, it’s become a bit of an obsession, but a harmless one — a reflection of our times. Where we once had Friday ties, which has been replaced by Casual Friday — we now have Stirrup Fridays. It’s an endearingly simple concept — no matter where you work (or even if you don’t) — break out a fresh pair of rups to compliment (or clash with) your Friday attire.
Small set again this weekend, and a couple of these came in during the week (nice *game* action), but that’s probably because for a good section of the country, it’s just TOO HOT to sport the hose and support the revo.
On Friday I wore my Giants striped stirrups to Petco Park to watch the Gigantes stomp the Padres (who did happen to be wearing some beautiful throwbacks)! Too bad I missed Lincecum’s no-no by a day!
Joaquin of San Francisco on a weekend trip to San Diego
Here is a pic of the Riverdogs, Skaneateles (NY) Lakeshore Baseball Riverdogs Minors Division champs sporting their stirrups thanks to Coach Tony DiRubbo (standing, right without the sunglasses).
Not the greatest pic in general or of the stirrups, but hope it is usable. Thanks to Coach DiRubbo, an ardent Uni Watch fan.
Let’s go Bucs, beat the Mess.
Here’s my submission for Stirrup Fridays. I work for a collegiate summer league team, and broke out my blue and orange slump busters (with the orange sannies no less, my favorite part) Players and fans loved em. Go Lima Locos and Viva la Revolution!
The All-Star Game might have been earlier in the week, but these prototype Mets stirrups were my ASG stirrups this year.
James Huening (via Comrade Marshall):
James Huening sent me this image of a poster from Friday’s Pearl Jam concert at Wrigley Field which leads me to two questions. The Wrigley Monster is wearing 57 Reds stirrups. Did the artist know that the monster that was the lead Wrigley ball-hawk who would push over his own grandmother for a ball before the last bleacher expansion always wore a reads hat? Or is this monster in large opening stirrups a 7ist plot to destroy the right proper aesthetics of the revolution?
And that ends today’s look at Stirrup Friday — all of you who participate, send me your pics and a brief (~50 words) description of their relevance, and I’ll run ’em here on Saturday (and sometimes Sunday too!). Be sure to visit Robert’s House of Hose for news on rups.
And now…here’s …
The 45s and Pilots came in Friday evening and were shipped Saturday morning, and in true TCK fashion the the 57 Reds and Cubs ordered 3 weeks after them were shipped to me the next day. So I expect these Monday to turn around Tuesday. None the less, for anyone interested in the 1957 Cubs or Reds I will once again offer the later two up as “new” this weekend at a discount in an effort to make up for some of our longer wait times.
Now as always, I love the Stirrup Friday photos from the office place to the diamond, and I hope people continue to send them in for this post, but I have an idea for a project, so I am going to temporarily suspend the giveaways In the short term. What is the project? I want to send a pair of stirrups to a player on applicable major league teams and suggest maybe they could wear them during BP as a slump-buster or however they see fit. Perhaps we could even get an Athletics situation from last week to happen if someone actually wore them for a game for us to be treated to some nice on field stripes. What would it mean? Not a lot in the short term other then our amusement, but maybe in the long term it can help inspire a team to bring back some stripes like the Rays did a few years ago.
There is one problem, while I am an artist by day, I umpire weekday nights and weekend days, so I see very little actual MLB. I am completely unaware of who goes high cuffed anymore, and will never be the one who actually catches any player wearing them. For me Uni Watch is my daily sports page, so I will need some help in this endeavor. It would be nice if I had someone in-market to help me with each of these teams to increase our chances of catching them in action. Jason Bernard is going to help me with the Pirates Mike McKenry, and I figure Adam Jones of the Orioles, and David Wright of the Mets are obvious choices unless someone has better suggestions. Perhaps someone less known would yield someone more apt to have some fun with it? But what of the Red Sox, Astros, White Sox, Phillies, Cubs, Reds, Braves, or even the Sens/Twinks? I want to spread this out throughout the league as much as possible, so anyone who would like to help out with this project, please get in touch with me.
From each according their stirrvp,
to each according their strype.
College Football Uni News & Notes
This section may become a semi-permanent fixture during my weekday run for Paul, since the number of College football uni changes are coming fast and furious. In just the past day or so, some big news (for any images, click to enlarge):
• We already knew that UCONN changed up unis for 2013, and added these new awful helmet designs. But what they unveiled months ago was just the beginning — on Friday, they released ANOTHER new helmet design, and this one is um, well, judge for yourself:
Actually, I like this better than the other two helmets, although it does introduce red as a new color. Is this foreshadowing a special one-off uniform???
• New Chrome Helmets. This is clearly becoming the next “matte” fad throughout the game, as the technologies make it easier to apply the shiny finish. And hey, seventeen year olds like shiny things, right? Just in the past few days (and with the Huskies, a little while ago) we’ve seen more and more of these things introduced:
• And then there’s good old Penn State university:
Thanks to reader Ryan Progin, we have a look at the new jersey. He also sent along this nice writeup:
“New” Penn State jersey on an actual player.
Thanks to Donovan Smith’s twitter.
As a PSU Alum, season ticket holder, and obvious fan, I am OK with the change. However, I personally feel that the whole jersey scheme needs to be reworked and the whole athletic department needs to “unify the brand” like Michigan State and a few others did the other year.
I absolutely LOVE the tradition of the uniforms: NO NOB, Nike Logo, B1G Logo (if they must), Solid white pants, white helmet with navy stripe, etc. but I think after all that the school has been through, I think that it is time. Not time to forget Joe Paterno (as I have a tribute “JVP” magnet on my car), but it is time to move the brand into the 21st century. I’ve seen a few people “re-design” the uniform in the past, but they all seem too scared to deviate from the tradition. I understand that, but I want to see someone come up with a very nice uniform scheme that uses navy, white, and gray accents (ie: check out this link for the gray). I do not enjoy the “Primary Marks” PENN STATE spelling, I prefer the spelling like this. It should also be noted about the gray: the men’s volleyball team has, in the past, worn solid gray shorts, which I found to be rather ugly with the white tops, but decent with the navy tops.
Ryan J. Progin
• And then there’s South Alabama:
— Derek Westbrook (@thedwestbrook25) July 18, 2013
• And Chattanooga:
Introduce our new helmet for 2013! pic.twitter.com/C3dHsChy1c
— ChattanoogaEquipment (@GoMocsEquip) July 19, 2013
• And Kentucky:
Kentucky Football going Gray For Gray's Sake? New gray alt uni & helmet. I don't hate this. pic.twitter.com/nwoWvPKn29
— Phil Hecken (@PhilHecken) July 20, 2013
There will undoubtedly be MANY more uni changes and unveilings throughout the next several weeks, so if you guys would be so kind, please send them to me at Phil.Hecken@mail.com. Paul will also appreciate it if you can cc: him (or cc: me) on any new College football news for his annual ESPN preview (send those to UniWatching@gmail.com. OK? OK!
Phew — nothing like going out with a bang on my last weekend until after Labor Day, is there? But we’re not done yet. Couple more things before I go:
• Paul mentioned this in the ticker during the week, but it bears repeating. Chris Creamer, of sportslogos.net, has done (and continues to do) and ABSOLUTELY OUTSTANDING job tracking baseball uniforms this year. I’m happy to say, also, that that little article was picked up by a number of the major media outlets, and deservedly so. If you’re so inclined, make sure you give him a follow @sportslogosnet. Good guy doing great work with uniforms and uniform tracking (and history)!
• MORE on the Marlins: Received this email (with the picture below, on the left) from our own Terry Proctor with the following explanation — “Here’s a photo of the 1958 Miami Marlins road uniform after a game at Red Wing Stadium. The cap was solid Royal Blue with an Orange button. The shirt piping was solid Royal. IIRC the lettering and numbers had changed to Royal with Orange outline. I wish the kid blocking the front lettering had moved slightly. Then we’d know for sure.” Fantastic. Also pictured, on the right, is the sleeve patch for the 1956 Marlins from another uni god, Todd Radom. Look at that chain stitching!!! (click either photo to enlarge)
And that, dear readers, should do it for today. That seemed like enough for THREE posts! Hope you all enjoyed it.
Thanks to Brandon Bush, Chance Michaels and everyone else who made today’s post so chock full!
Everyone have a fantastic Sunday and I will catch you THIS THURSDAY when I begin my weekday run on Uni Watch. Have a great week until then.
Follow Me on Twitter at @PhilHecken.
“I trust Ebbets a hell of a lot more than the clowns running the Marlins when it comes to uniforms.”