By Phil Hecken
[Today, we have a special post featuring the NBA design concepts of reader Greg Seher, who had contacted me back in August — during Paul’s hiatus — about a guest entry; time and space limitations didn’t let me get to these at the time, so I’ll be running them today. Enjoy — PH]
NBA Uniform Concepts
By Greg Seher
Finally getting around to a set of NBA uniforms. Though I really like NCAA basketball, it seems like the quality of play in the NBA continues to have gone down hill since the 1990s, so I am just not as into as I was when I was younger. Anyway, Here is a set for 28 teams. I cut out the redundant teams in NY and LA, as I think fewer teams would work for basketball, consolidating talent, and working against the trend of superteams by making all teams a little better. And it seems the Knicks and Lakers dominate their in city rivals in popularity probably more than what you see in the other three sports.
Not a fan of the color vs color and no clear designation on what home and road teams wear. My solution is color at home (home team would want to wear their team colors for the fans), with white on the road. Much like with baseball, there would be the nickname on the home jersey, and city name on the road jersey.
For realignment, if you wanted to keep an Eastern and Western Conference set up you could go with Boston, Miami, New York, Orlando, Philly, Toronto, and Washington in the Atlantic, with Atlanta, Charlotte, Cleveland, Detroit, Indiana, Memphis, and New Orleans filling out the central. The Midwest would be Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Milwaukee, Minnesota, Oklahoma City, and San Antonio, and the Pacific featuring Denver, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Portland, Sacramento, San Francisco, and Utah.
Click on any image to see the full size.
They have always been a red and yellow team in my mind, so applying those colors and the current logos to their early 1970s side stripe design. Has a good retro vibe that works.
Going with a simple and traditional look for one of the NBA’s most historic and prominent teams.
Going back to the original design of the hornet logo, though it is the slight modernization from when they went to New Orleans. As far as uniforms, something modern but simple.
Classic design, nothing to change here.
I think the maroon and yellow they have had lately is a good color combo for them. I’ll keep in some black elements since that has become a thing since they won a title with black. A pretty traditional, no frills design fits the city of Cleveland. Bringing back their original logo too.
[It’s wine and gold — PH]
I really prefer their old cowboy hat era days. Bringing it back to those bright blue and green colors, with a very traditional design.
I like their recent rebrand, I would say I identify them as a navy team with gold and red from their 1990s design, but that the mountains logo on the jersey is their signature look. Trying to combine both here.
Going back to their original logo is okay and all, but it is so generic, better as a secondary logo. Found this logo concept on the internet, with a few tweaks I think it works great. Blue uniforms with red side panels are their staple.
Their current logo and design just looks like a bad temple for reebok apparel or something. Found another great logo concept online. But going to red and light blue (evoking the Oilers), so they don’t look too similar to Atlanta. Using the old early 90s era wordmarks, and making use of the con trail of a rocket for the shorts stripes.
An update of the Reggie Miller era uniforms here. That Knicks/Pacers rivalry was one of the best parts of the NBA, makes sense to evoke it here.
Los Angeles Lakers:
I always assumed purple was the Lakers main color, but since they choose to wear yellow now all the time, I guess that would be their home color jersey. Using the throwback Los Angeles wordmark on the white jersey. Also using the minor league South Bay Lakers logos, a nice modern update to the Lakers logo which is a bit stale and boring now.
Pretty simple idea here. Using columbia blue as the main color to help them stand out from other navy blue teams. Then applying the current color scheme to the original logo set, which I think has more character.
When I think of Miami and I think of heat, warm colors like orange and red come to mind. So switching from black to orange as the primary color. I think it is more vibrant for a place like Miami.
Keeping most of their current design in place. A good look for them.
Various parts of their recent rebrand work well, but the attempt to color block the top of the jersey just makes them look like a copy of Washington. A unique, if simple striping pattern around the neck, shoulder, and waistline help them stand out.
New Orleans Pelicans:
Not a fan of their current logo, so I found this one online, and paired it up with the old NOLA logo they had when they were the Hornets. Green, purple, and yellow should be the color scheme.
New York Knicks:
Not much to change here, just giving them a Knicks wordmark at home, and bringing back the NY apple logo.
Oklahoma City Thunder:
Needless to say their current logo is the worst in sports, and the color scheme just feels like a rip off of New York. So I found a couple of good logos online, and used gray and yellow as a color scheme. Evoking storm clouds and lightning, and also standing out among NBA color combos.
Bringing back the original pinstripe design but using the modern logo and font.
Much of their current uniform works, but switching to red, their original main color and associated with their Barkley era days, as well as standing out from traditional blue teams like New York and Detroit.
Kind of like with Miami, if you are talking the sun and the city of Phoenix orange definitely comes to mind as a primary color. Updated the primary logo and based the uniforms on the popular 1990s design.
Using the original font and uniform design with a modern update of the logo.
I like a lot of the recent redesign. But going with black as the primary. Not big on purple as a primary color.
San Antonio Spurs:
A really simple look for an organization that has, aside from some crazy alternate designs, been fairly simple and classy. Bringing back the old fiesta colors for the secondary logo.
San Francisco Warriors:
Moving across the bay to a new arena soon, going by the name Golden State always seemed weird to me. Also not particularly a fan of the logo on the jersey, I actually prefer something similar to the Chris Mullin look of the 1990s, but splitting the difference and keeping the front jersey numbers in a more understated circle.
While I am not a fan of purple uniforms, for the Raptors I had to go back to that color from when they were founded. Bringing back the awesomely 90s dinosaur logo, but keeping it off their jersey.
Going with green as the primary as a nod to their history in New Orleans, but then switching from purple to navy, and yellow to orange as accent colors. Their old snowflake secondary logo works for the mountains and cold in the state.
Thought about going back to the Bullets name, but decided to just keep Wizards, and going with a navy jersey version of their color block design.
Thanks for sharing, Greg.
I had the distinct pleasure of featuring the wonderful artwork of artist Graig Kriendler on two occasions over the summer and fall of 2017, and more recently, in August of 2018.
For those who don’t wish to click the links, Graig paints baseball heroes (and regular guys) from the past, and is an immense talent.
Occasionally, I will be featuring his work on Uni Watch.
Here’s today’s offering (click to enlarge):
Title: “Chavez Steals Show”
Subject: Endy Chavez, 2006
Medium: Oil on linen
Size: 50″ x 25″
After crushing the Los Angeles Dodgers in the first round of the 2006 playoffs, the heavily favored New York Mets were poised to plow into the World Series. On that road, they faced the same team they beat in the 2000 NLCS in 5 games, the St. Louis Cardinals. Though St. Louis barely made the playoffs with a record of 83-78, they would play competitive ball with New York throughout. Each game, both sides would shine, with brilliant pitching by Tom Glavine and Jeff Weaver, as well as potent offense by Carlos Beltran and Albert Pujols; however, no team was able to catch enough momentum to win consecutive games after the third contest. The result was a Game 7 in which a trip to the Fall Classic hung in the balance. There, the Mets found themselves in a position they had been in only once before at Shea Stadium – their series clinching game against the Red Sox in the 1986 World Series.
With a hungry, energized Flushing crowd, the Mets struck first, with David Wright hitting a bloop single in the opening inning to drive in Carlos Beltran for a 1-0 lead. The next frame would see the Cardinals tie the game with Jim Edmonds coming home on a sacrifice bunt by Ronnie Belliard. The score remained deadlocked into the sixth. With one out and trouble brewing on base, Cardinals third baseman Scott Rolen came up to bat against Oliver Perez. Jim Edmonds had walked during the last at bat, which prompted Mets Manager Willie Randolph to approach the mound to talk things over with his starter. Though right-hander Chad Bradford started to warm up in the bullpen, Randolph stayed with Perez in the hopes that his high fastball would prove to be too much for Rolen. It seemed like a foolish move when the third baseman lifted a ball into leftfield that seemed destined to clear the fence, and give the Cardinals a 3-1 lead.
It was then that leftfielder Endy Chavez, who until Game 1 of the series had ridden the bench in the playoffs, feverishly ran to the warning track. Leaping from his right foot and raising his glove over the fence, he was able to snag Rolen’s drive as it cleared the barrier on the way down, pulling it back to earth from the tips of his glove for the second out. The catch brought back memories of 1969, during which the Mets outfielders Tommie Agee and Ron Swoboda turned in diving plays to stymie the hopes of the Baltimore Orioles. Or, going back even further, one could think of Dodger Sandy Amoros in the 1955 World Series, plucking Yogi Berra’s sure-fire double from the corner in leftfield at Yankee Stadium, then doubling off Gil McDougald at first base moments later. Like Amoros, Chavez fired a rocket to his shortstop, Jose Reyes, whose relay to Delgado doubled up Edmonds to end the inning. For the aforementioned Dodger leftfielder, the catch proved to be the play of the 1955 series. It seemed as if at that moment, the cheers of 50,000 Yankee fans were stuffed back into their throats, and the old adage of ‘Wait ‘Til Next Year’ would finally give way to bedlam in the borough of Brooklyn. Three innings later, the Dodgers had their moment.
Though history seemed ready to repeat itself more than half a century later, the auspicious play of Chavez would not end up favoring the Metropolitans in the end. With the score deadlocked into the top of the ninth, Cardinal catcher Yadier Molina hit a two run homerun off of Aaron Heilman into the leftfield stands – not far from where Chavez had turned the play of the series a couple of innings prior. With a 3-1 deficit, the Mets were able to load the bases in their half of the inning, and with Cardinal killer Carlos Beltran up to bat, it seemed that hope could ignite the flame from which the magic of Endy’s play had sparked. Unfortunately, armed with a blazing fastball and devastating 12 to 6 curve, Cardinal rookie reliever Adam Wainright caught Beltran looking at a called third strike, thus, ending the game, as well the Mets improbable season. It was most certainly the Team, but for the Mets and their woe begotten fans, it would not be The Time. And though there were seasons that ended better than 2006, few could say that there were any more enjoyable than that magical baseball year. Fans could only hope that there were even better times ahead.
Thanks, Graig! You can (and should!) follow Graig on Twitter.
And now, a uni update on my “favorite” NCAAFB team…
As most readers know (and probably hate/roll their eyes over), I have had a love/hate relationship with the Oregon Ducks uniforms for the past decade-plus. I’ve probably “covered” them more and had more features on the team than any other…and with somewhat good reason: the team basically invented the alternate uniform (and certainly contributed to its popularity), BFBS, GFGS, and more, which makes them a central figure in a uniform watching blog. I’ve had three readers devoted to tracking the Duck uni-machinations over the years (Mike Princip, Tim E. O’Brien, and our current Duck Tracker, Dennis Bolt, who also assists me during College Football season tracking all the uniforms of the PAC-12).
This year, you may have noticed, the Ducks are breaking their own mold: instead of mixing and matching their uniforms to create a bazillion different combinations, they’ve stuck to wearing mono (be it white, black, green or yellow). And over the past couple years, they actually repeated a uni combination during the season. Shocking!
Today, Dennis is here to explore the Duck-tendencies for uni choice this season, and he’s got a couple of interesting observations (and now possible predictions). I’ll let him take it from here:
By Dennis Bolt
Seeing that Oregon is going predictable so far this season, I did a post examining the last 2 years and my prediction for the next games this season. You can see that here.
Once the bastion of the “It’s a new uniform for a new week” mentality, Oregon has seemingly gone predictable! After seven weeks, the Ducks have “only” worn four unique uniforms. And to top it off, they have been the same mono-color sets that were unveiled in August. In two blog posts this week (one above, one linked below), I examined the last three years of Duck uniforms and looks ahead to possible mix-match sets for the rest of the 2018 season. Just when you thought that Oregon could not find a way to set the trend in college football uniform design, they may be blazing a trail back to “normal” while the rest of CFB is trying to ride the trend that Oregon has seemingly given up.
So, will the Ducks go beyond mono?
Thanks Dennis — please take a couple minutes to read both of those (start with the first link then read the second). For those of us (and I can’t be alone) who remain fascinated by the sartorial choices of the team from Eugene, these are must-reads!
MLB Playoff Uni Tracking
A few years back, reader Alex Rocklein tracked the MLB Playoffs by uniform — you guys may recall this. Here’s what his 2010 Uni Tracking looked like. Alex also tracked the playoffs for Uni Watch last season as well. Here’s how the 2016 World Series looked, and here’s how the 2017 Playoffs shook out.
We welcomed Alex back two weekends ago, when he began tracking the Wild Card and Divisional Series games, and he’ll be tracking the unis through the Big Dance. Here we are so far (with the Dodgers/Red Sox game going late into the extra innings last evening, the results of that game are not included in this tracker. Alex will be back one last time next weekend with the full wrap up of all the playoff games and maybe some bonus extras!).
Wild Card & Divisional Series
NLCS & NLDS
By Anthony Emerson
Baseball News: The bullpen cart lives! (from Stephanie Suarez). … It was Friday, so the Red Sox wore their blue softball tops during the World Series last night. Shame. … While their arch-rivals may be playing in Game Four of the World Series tonight, Pinstripe Alley has a great article on how the Yankees came to wear pinstripes in the first place (thanks, Phil). … @BSmile tweeted the 1959 Dodgers World Series pin, celebrating their first World Series appearance in LA with the famous Los Angeles City Hall. … According to FiveThirtyEight, the Dodgers are one win away from creating a Los Angeles “Super Sports Equinox” — that is, if the Dodgers can force a Game 5, almost all of Los Angeles’s sports teams will be playing on the same day. (from Colin, who declined to give his last name). … Rafael Devers was sporting a “Do Damage” decal on his bat knob last night (from Ted). … It must be his good luck charm now: Last night, David Price was still sporting the Ouch Button (squatchee) on his cap (thanks, Brinke).
NFL News: The Seahawks have added a Paul Allen memorial patch (from Michael Princip, David Haberman and everyone else who sent this in). … The Panthers are going with electric blue jerseys and white pants on Sunday (thanks, Phil). … The Bills are going with their standard home uni on Monday night against the Pats (from Brad Belstock). … USA Today tried to figure out which NFL team has the best uniforms, in an article that will get pretty much everyone riled up (thanks again, Phil). … Oh man, these satin throwback-style jackets players participating in the London games just keep getting better and better (from Jeremy Pashak). … Speaking of London, Wembley Stadium has installed an NFL logo made out of broken seats and recycled materials as a permanent fixture to remind patrons to use recycling bins in the stadium (from Mark Johnson). … And speaking of both London and the Iggles, Princess Diana was a huge fan of the team from Philly (from Kary Klismet).
College/High School Football News: AL.com has a great look into UAB’s equipment team (from Ted Chastain). … Ohio State is going full BFBS today (from @purduepete09). … Virginia is going blue-orange-blue today (thanks, Jamie). … Colorado State will be going green-white-green against Wyoming (from Kary Klismet). … Georgia State is sporting pink-accented helmets today as part of pinktober festivities (from Doug Hazard). … Texas A&I is going with throwbacks against Western New Mexico (from Cody Barker). … The following are all from Phil: Syracuse is going all blue today. … South Carolina is going all black. … Brice Wallace sends along these images of Fairland (Oh.) High, and their very unique helmet stripe. “The nickname is the Dragons, so I’m assuming it must have been a dragon tail?” says Brice. … West Sioux (Ia.) High has poached the Falcons’ logo and desecrated the flag all at once (from Jacob Russo). … Haslett (Mi.) High goes with white numbers on their white unis (from Burrill Strong).
Hockey News: Every year, the Capitals are forced to go on a road trip as Capital One Arena hosts the Washington International Horse Show. To honor one of their primary tenants, eventer McLain Ward wore an Alex Ovechkin jersey during his event. Also check out the NHL logo on the horse’s blinders and the Capitals-inspired fence (many thanks to our own Jamie Rathjen for sending this along). … The AHL’s San Antonio Rampage is having a Hispanic Heritage Night, and wearing pretty much some of the greatest hockey unis I’ve ever seen to celebrate it (from Steve Johnston). … The USHL’s Omaha Lancers have some pretty awesome sweaters for their ‘Scare Away Cancer’ promotion (from Ben Martukewicz). … In other amazing Halloween hockey promotion news, the ECHL’s Orlando Solar Bears are going skeleton-themed. … Paul, shield your eyes. The ECHL’s Wichita Thunder are going with purpled-out sweaters for their Hockey Fights Cancer promotion (from Steve Johnston). … The Devils celebrated their new William Hill advertising with pretty much the worst nameplate you’ll ever see (from Steven Woj). … The Philadelphia City Council has officially welcomed Gritty, the greatest mascot of all time, with a formal resolution (thanks, Brinke).
NBA News: There are two makers marks and two NBA logos on this early-90s Magic practice jersey, which also lacks any official marks from the actual team that was wearing it (from Drake Wikstrom). … Chris Creamer has a retrospective on the earliest proposed Raptors logos (thanks, Phil).
Soccer News: Brazilian side Santos FC has new kits, paying homage to their 1963 team that dominated the world, led by Pelé (from Joe Dvorak). … With the final weekend of the MLS season upon us, Sports Illustrated is offering critiques on every kit this season (from Josh Hinton).
Grab Bag: Carnegie Mellon University’s new president, Dr. Farnam Jahanian, is getting custom-made robes for convocation (from @nick_navy12). … Oh man, check out this vintage out of order sign, still in use in Brad Loliger’s building! … Evidently our fearless leader has a beer — with a beautiful can — named after him (from Pete Woychick).
Greg, kudos to you on the NBA concepts! I like a lot of what you have designed for many of the teams.
Re: NBA redesign
Completely setting aside the horsesh*t rationale (play being worse… home team in color and no alts , so every game is home dark versus road white), a couple of these are improvements (Hawks, Pacers, Nuggets, Mavs, Magic, Wolves) and he generally had the sense to leave the classics alone. I wish there were more new designs – the Pistons’ new logo is awesome! The Rockets are a downgrade, the Lakers need their traditional numbers instead of Block Varsity, the Hornets need their stripes, the black numbers on wine for the Cavs is illegible, the Pistons need the asymmetric side striping. Strong work overall.
Blue and orange? Syracuse really IS New York’s college football team!
“The Devils celebrated their new William Hill sponsorship”
Changed to “advertising.”
Also, the first link in the soccer section is missing, but it may be a tweet and difficult to find.
I find some of these concepts problematic because the designer admits to “finding logos online” but doesn’t credit the appropriate people. If it was my design being appropriated, I’d be pissed. Don’t just take others’ work as your own.
Was not my intent , as I linked to the source and noted they were not my own. I’ll edit my website where I have all of these designs to specifically cite the logos creators.
Wait …. our fearless leader is named “Florida Weisse”?
I dig that Nuggets design.
My main critique of the redesigns (and it’s weird to say this since it’s my favorite color) is that there is too much green. I think of green, purple, orange, etc as “special colors” in sports and that each league can handle about 2 or 3 teams per special color per league. The Bucks and Celtics kinda corner the green market in the NBA. With that said, I really like the Pelicans design.
If they’re going to use a “special color,” the Jazz should be purple. They were purple in NOLA, and Utah is enough of a Rocky Mountain state to pull off the purple mountains majesty effect. Actually, I think their late nineties/aughts looks said Utah better than the retro revisionist thing they have going on now.
I’m with you on special colors and only a few teams being orange, purple, etc. I simply think green shouldn’t be a special color, I think for some reason it is just neglected and should be used as much as red, blue, black, and navy.
I had considered making the Pelicans purple and the Raptors red, but that would add yet another red team, and when I think of the Raptors I think of their original purple uniforms. Like Paul I can really only handle so much purple, so one team was enough.
I like the idea of the fleur di lis shaped pelican but my eye is drawn to its cow skull shaped feet which takes away from the overall design.
Any link for that Santos 1963 info?
Thanks, Greg (Kriendler), for reminding me of this wicked curve:
Basketball uniforms are a little boring, but those logos are the boss. Nice work!
Great work Greg. I think the NBA has gone the furthest in the way of making uniforms more like costumes with all their alternates and a return to simple, great designs like these would steer the league in a better direction.
The NBA uniforms were almost perfect.
Light blue isn’t one of the Rockets colors though. So what if Atlanta has them too?
White at home, dark on the road.
Lakers need a purple jersey. So does Utah.
Correction-Ohio State has a bye today. They will go BFBS next Saturday.
Correction: Ohio State does not have a bye today, a bye is earned. You could say they have an off week, an open week in their schedule, or that they are idle.
The LA equinox is happening since the Dodgers won last night. There is a Game 5 on Sunday. Might want to fix that.
Thanks for the MLB uniform tracker. Since baseball players are such a suspicious lot, I found it weird (and irritating because yes, I’m a Sox AND Uni fan) that the Red Sox decided to go with their blue softball tops for their game last night. Yes they wore them on Fridays during the season, but you’d think since they’ve won every road playoff game in their greys, they might’ve made an exception. I expect the grey tops back this evening.
Why is an artist who found some of these logos online getting this kind of platform? Let’s save these posts for people who have real ability other than Googling and copying and pasting.
I’m a fan of the way the Carolina Panthers are mixing elements of their uniform in new ways. Creative, and always makes me want to tune in!
I love seeing concept uniforms/logos. Thanks for sharing. Some of these are really good and a simple answer for some bad current unis (looking at you Atlanta). I don’t share the purple bias w others, I think it has a place especially with so many teams in the four major sports leagues.
Nice job with the NBA uniforms.
-I really love the Atlanta Hawks uniform design.
-Hornets are better than what they have now, but I agree some pinstripes would be good.
-The Nuggets jerseys are awesome and it’s a thousand times better than what they have now.
-I like the Rockets new logo, but not the colors. Atlanta may have yellow and red, but that doesn’t mean the Rockets can’t have that too.
-Lakers just don’t look right not having a purple road jersey.
-Nice job with the Grizzlies.
-I understand what you’re aiming for with the Heat, but I think their colors are too nice to change.
-I agree with you the Pelicans should have the purple/green/white colors. I love the Pelicans fleur de lis logo.
-Thunder is the biggest improvement out there. The colors and logos are so much better.
-Magic is aces.
-I agree with the other poster that the Jazz uniforms need to be purple. A green alternate works though.
Overall, great work and it’s a huge improvement over the current state of the NBA, which is an absolute mess. The only think I think I would change is that some of the uniforms need to have some change in the font rather than the plain font. Of course good, legible fonts with no funkiness like the TB Bucs.
The NBA designs are fine from a purely aesthetic perspective for the most part, but why pigeonhole yourself by insisting that all home jerseys have the team nickname and all road jerseys have the team location?
And eliminating two teams for non-uni-related reasons seems either petty or lazy.
For the S.F. Warriors redesign, they probably wouldn’t use the same bridge depicted on their current logo. That bridge represents the Eastern span (Oakland side) of the Bay Bridge. They’d probably be more inclined to bring back the Golden Gate bridge instead, as their name reverts back to San Francisco Warriors.
I think they’ve decided to keep Golden State.
That OKC Thunder redesign is wonderful, but does remind me of Buffalo Wild Wings with that stampeding logo and color scheme. Perhaps grey with blue instead?
Someone who “gets it” at Legoland.
I’m not sure I posted that right.
To each their own but I think it is insane for someone to seriously think the average quality of play in the NBA today, when most teams aim to play a positionless version of total basketball relying on skill, ballhanding, movement and precision shooting, is significantly worse than it was in the 1990s, when many teams still adhered to the “put a bunch of your biggest guys in the post for an iso opportunity every time down and 3s are only for special occasions” strategy.
The Thunder concept is awesome. Just awesome. Way to go!
He got rid of my Nets. You want fewer teams, get rid of the Magic and Grizzlies. Move the nets back to nj and the clippers to sd
Light blue in the Lakers logo? That’s blasphemy, you might as well add black side panels to their purple jerseys! Oh wait…..
Some of the NBA concepts are interesting, but there is too much inclusion of the “basketball shape.” There are a few historic applications (see “Seattle SuperSonics” for a good example) of use of the ball as a graphic element, but far too many of the examples shown are screaming “Look! We’re a BASKETBALL team!” instead of relying on strong typographic treatments or iconography fitting the brand. ( i.e. The Chicago Bulls logo does NOT need an orange basketball behind it). If you don’t know who the Chicago Bulls are you need to go be a fan of a different sport.