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Bowen Hobbs Redesigns the NBA – Part I

By Phil Hecken, with Bowen Hobbs

Hey kids! Hope everyone is doing well this fine last Sunday in the month of July, 2020.

You guys will probably recall a couple weeks ago, I brought the art and artistry of Bowen Hobbs, via “posters” he has created. Bowen is obviously a talented graphic artist and designer, and he has also concepted some of the major sports leagues as well. Today, we’re going to take a look at some of his NBA redesigns (he’s done every team, plus a bunch of defunct teams), and there’s a LOT of graphics — so I’m going to divide this into several parts. For each of the images below, you can click to enlarge.

There’s a lot to get to so let’s get to it! Here’s Bowen:

• • • • •

Hi everybody! Bowen Hobbs here again. Today we are going to look at a collection of redesign concepts I developed for NBA teams. Each team has a handful of logos, a custom font, four uniforms, and a court design.

• • •

Atlantic Division

Boston Celtics

Facing one of the most iconic NBA teams head on, I developed a clover/basketball hybrid icon, a modernized leprechaun mark and a typeface that blends elements of Celtic lettering and athletic block fonts.


Brooklyn Nets

For some reason the Nets have never had a logo showing a net. My redesign addresses that and blends the ball-and-net icon with a mid-century typeface and a touch of argyle to remember the Kid-Carter Era teams.


New York Knicks

I decided to go with a Big Apple theme for the Knicks, combined with some Statue of Liberty and Empire State Building influences. The overlap on the shorts trim is reminiscent of the subway system.


Philadelphia 76ers

This Sixers redesign focuses heavily on the Liberty Bell and a ring of 13 stars that recall the Betsy Ross flag. The ring of stars replaces the seven and six stars that run down each side of their current uniforms.


Toronto Raptors

For such a young team, the Raptors have a lot of visual history. My concept features an updated dribbling raptor as well as a basketball/dinosaur/maple leaf hybrid icon. The uniforms use a version of their chevron theme while keeping the T on the shorts.

• • •

Central Division

Chicago Bulls

The Bulls logo is iconic and synonymous with the team’s ‘90s dynasty. My concept shows a bull charging forward with four six-pointed stars representing Chicago. Hints of powder blue are worked into a Pride uniform that celebrates the city.


Cleveland Cavaliers

The Cavs currently use wine, black and navy to complement athletic gold in their color scheme. One of my goals was to reduce the number of dark hues in the scheme. A cavalier hat, a basketball with crossed swords, and a C-shield mark rendered in multi-tonal wine and gold set the stage for a new era. Segmented trim and a black Pride uniform acknowledge the team’s multiple eras with Lebron James.


Detroit Pistons

While the Pistons currently employ a sophisticated take on their classic uniforms, I felt they could use more Motor City imagery. The primary logo is based on a vintage Ford hood ornament, while the crossed pistons give the team a Bad Boys feel. The scripts also recall classic car culture.


Indiana Pacers

For a team based on the state’s racing heritage, their identity has typically kept some distance from that world. My redesign changes that with a checkered motif, a winged P logo, and an open-wheel race car mark.


Milwaukee Bucks

Since 1993, the Bucks have relied on a front-facing deer to communicate their brand. I’ve always thought the front-facing deer communicated a dead, mounted deer on someone’s wall. My redesign places the buck in nature turning its head. The home uniforms are cream, and a modified Cream City rainbow is used throughout.

• • •

Southeast Division

Atlanta Hawks

The Hawks have played with their color schemes a lot since the 1990s, but red and athletic gold remain a fan favorite. To that end, I developed a stylized hawk holding a basketball in its claws. The uniforms are modernized from the Dominique Wilkins Era.


Charlotte Hornets

The Hornets currently have a one of the best logos in the Association. My version uses the legs to create a basketball instead of the stinger. A CH honeycomb mark complements the logo set. The uniforms feature a sublimated honeycomb pattern and stinger side panels.


Miami Heat

The Heat pretty much nailed their logo on the first try, with the exception of trading the gradients for solid colors later on. My redesign loses the hoop and adds subtle shading to the ball. The uniforms play off the Miami Floridians throwbacks the team occasionally wears.


Orlando Magic

To give the team more of an edge, I added a skeleton magician wearing a top hat to the scheme. The top hat also appears in the secondary logo. The uniforms opt for the pinstripes of the Shaq Era with stardust behind the player number on the front of the jerseys.


Washington Wizards

Since becoming the Wizards, Washington has yet to use a logo of a wizard that isn’t too abstract for its own good. My redesign shows a bearded wizard looking into a basketball/crystal ball with elements of the DC flag in the background. The DC flag elements are carried through to the uniforms.

• • • • •

Wow. Thanks Bowen — that quite a lot of effort! And it’s not even half of what we have in store for you. Readers, what do you think? Please let Bowen know (good or bad) in the comments below.

Guess The Game…

from the scoreboard

Today’s scoreboard comes from St. Stephen.

The premise of the game (GTGFTS) is simple: I’ll post a scoreboard and you guys simply identify the game depicted. In the past, I don’t know if I’ve ever completely stumped you (some are easier than others).

Here’s the Scoreboard. In the comments below, try to identify the game (date & location, as well as final score). If anything noteworthy occurred during the game, please add that in (and if you were AT the game, well bonus points for you!):

Please continue sending these in! You’re welcome to send me any scoreboard photos (with answers please), and I’ll keep running them.

Li’l Help???

I was recently contacted by reader Tanith Harley who has a question for the readership and was hoping you guys might be able to help.

Any assistance will be greatly appreciated! Here’s Tanith (click on any image to enlarge)…

Hi Phil.

I hope this email finds you safe and well. Alan Fillipczak passed on your email address to me after some discussions regarding researching baseball uniforms. Alan suggested I contact you in hope that you may be able to reach out to your audience on your Uni Watch blog in search of some identification on some baseball uniforms I have.

Firstly, it’s a great site, I have read a number of articles. I live in Sydney Australia so there are very few baseball collectors over on this island, let alone female ones. So I’m lucky that I can reach out to this wonderful community of baseball researchers.

I have two (at the moment) uniforms which I have been unable to find any further information on so far.

The first one, a women’s softball (possibly baseball) uniform from a woman in Cleveland, Ohio. I bought it online so I was unable to get any further info from the lady who originally sold it. What is interesting about this uniform is the Health patch on the arm. I am a collector of women’s baseball memorabilia and I have not ever come across a uniform with a health patch before. My question is, was it perhaps a charity match? Or even military, navy? It seems odd that a women’s uniform would have this patch on, considering it’s not from the AAGPBL. I would be so thrilled if anyone could point me in the right direction to track down some further information.

The second uniform is a recent purchase. A 1930s Spalding uniform with the word “Snyder” across the front. Being Australian, my geography of the United States is limited so I am a little stumped on this one too. I understand there is a Snyder County in Pennsylvania, so perhaps from this area… Again, any leads would be wonderful.

Thank you so much for your time Phil. I very much look forward to chatting with you further.

Warmest regards

Tanith Harley

OK readers, can you help Tanith out? Even if you don’t have an answer, perhaps you can point her in the right direction? Paging Chance Michaels…

The “BEST OF” Kreindler’s Korner

Hey guys & gals. You’ve enjoyed Kreindler’s Korner for several years now, mostly on the weekends, on Uni Watch, but with the recent coronavirus outbreak, Graig’s time is just too precious and he needs to tend to other things besides coming up with a new writeup each weekend.

So, going forward, for as long as the COVID-19 situation is bad in New York, I’m going to run a few “Best of’s” until Graig returns.

Here’s today’s offering (click to enlarge):

• • •

Title: “Sandy’s No-No”
Subject: Sandy Koufax, 1964
Medium: Oil on linen
Size: 24″ x 33″

This was a tough painting to pull off. With the background element of the lit scoreboard, I knew that most of the contrast had to come from those lit numbers, which because of that difference in value, was where the viewer’s eyes were going to go first. In this case, that was fine, though I couldn’t have them dwell TOO long there, as I still wanted Sandy to be the focal point. The best thing I could do to facilitate that was to make sure my edge control was just right. Each number had to stay on the softer side, with very few – if any – hard edges. And most of the nuance would go to Koufax and that mound he was on.

I had a good guide, as the photo the painting was based on (by the master, Walter Iooss) had some of that work done for me. Even though I changed elements of the scoreboard itself (making the scene from a later inning and including final scores from out-of-town games), it retained a lot of the original characteristics found as a result of his lens. But when these images enter the realm of color via paint, it can – and should – change some of those dynamics. I was able to separate Sandy from the background even more with the surface texture I could develop with the medium (while keeping the scoreboard flat and smooth by comparison), in addition to making him more three-dimensional with the manipulation of his edges. It also didn’t hurt that he was the most recognizable human element of the piece, as we are often drawn to that detail above others if one is presented in an image.

However, there was also a bit of an issue with the player in the background. This is one of those situations where if I had to do something over or make a change, I would have done so. I placed center fielder Willie Davis in the picture, which in itself was the right way to be, but I believe he’s probably a bit too big. Reason being, I made him that size as it would have been a bit more true to how we would see him with the naked eye, rather than how compressed he becomes because of the camera. Though as a result, and because we don’t see Dick Tracewski in frame, most viewers might assume that I mistakingly depicted a left-handed second baseman. I often have to explain that when I post the painting on social media, but even then, shouldn’t have made the decision that required me to do so.

A tough painting to pull off, indeed.

• • •

Thanks, Graig! You can (and should!) follow Graig on Twitter.

Li’l More Help?

Hey guys…

As you’re aware, Paul usually takes a month-long sabbatical from Uni Watch during August (sometimes he travels, and the remaining time he spends preparing his massive NFL and NCAA Football previews). This year, however, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, those plans have changed — he won’t be taking the entire month off, but will definitely be taking a much-deserved couple weeks off.

For the past four years, I’ve hosted the Griffins Jersey design contest, and I had hoped to again do so this August, but … also due to the COVID situation, the team will be taking a break from the contest this year (they will return to partner with UW next August). So, while that usually took up a couple of posts, I won’t be able to bring that content and contest to you this time around.

So, I will be doing several weeks (Paul and I haven’t quite decided on our schedules yet) during August, so without the Griffins contest and also the Olympics (which I’d also hoped to cover), I am in search of content. That’s where you guys come in.

I’d love to feature some articles from you, the readers, as I have during past Augusts. So if there is a uni-related subject or topic you feel passionately about, and would like to share with your fellow obsessive students of the athletic aesthetic, give me a shout at Phil (dot) Hecken (at) gmail (dot) com and we can discuss the parameters. Many of you have submitted guest pieces in the past, and some of them have been really outstanding. A couple of you have already contacted me to express interest, but I can always use more — so please HOLLA if you have a uni-related column idea!

OK? OK! Looking forward to running some of your guest entries next month!

Uni Watch News Ticker
By Phil

Baseball News: In the 7th inning of the Twins/White Sox game Friday night, Josh Donaldson lost his “RC” patch sticker on a swing (and miss). Then he picked it up and slapped it back on, only to lose it in a subsequent swing, grounding to third. He returned to the dugout without it. Submitter Chris Bruno says, “I’m guessing this is not a memorial for the entire season or there wasn’t time to properly sew them down?” … In an unusual move, the Orioles wore their black jerseys on a Saturday. They usually wear black on Fridays and orange on Saturdays. Submitter Andrew Cosentino adds, “Moreover, they wore their normal road caps instead of the “O’s” caps that they usually pair with the black jerseys. The Orioles never wore this combination last year.” … In Friday’s post, Paul referenced, without a clear picture, the initials for recently deceased umps. Here’s a clear picture (from Jerry Kulig). … During the Cubs/Brewers game on Saturday, we were shown a glimpse of the 2020 edition of Wrigley’s NL standings pennants. Good spot by Alan Filipczak who noticed “The Padres pennant needs an update. The brown is back!” … Sorry, no pic but reader Alex Moggridge notes, “Looks like Gabe Kapler is wearing his spring training/BP cap in (yester)day’s game. He’s sure not doing much right so far.” Check that — Jakob Fox to the rescue. … On Saturday, Angels reliever Keynan Middleton sported a glove with the team’s 1980s logo (from Chris G.). … Ross Stripling’s glove has “Chicken Strip” on it, his players weekend nickname (good spot by Jakob Fox). … “So this is new. Game 1 at Nats park was a #BLM logo. Game 2 is a PNC bank ad” says bryanwdc who asks whether there are new ad rules/space for the 60 game season? … Michael Lorenzen was wearing Vans on the mound (from Christopher Milz). … The short season has already produced a number of firsts, and here’s another: First time two players wearing #96 play in the same game and it’s not spring training! (Marlins: Alex Vesia, Phillies: Tommy Hunter) from David E. … “Cool tidbit from this 1953 book “How to Hit” – The section about how to avoid bean ball or wild pitch teaches that you never take your eye off the ball, step out with forward leg, and lean back. Totally different than what is taught today. Why? They didn’t have batting helmets.” Great tweet from Kevin Kozlowski. … Several people noted this yesterday: looks like road team bat boys are wearing the home team’s away uniforms this season. Here’s the Cardinals and Phillies — there’s more in this thread (started by Samuel Lam). The bat boys are not traveling with their respective clubs this year, so that explains why the home team’s road unis. … The six new members of the Astros Hall of Fame also have a display in the alley. The Class of 2020 is Lance Berkman, Cesar Cedeno, Roy Hofheinz, Roy Oswalt, Billy Wagner, and Bob Watson. They will be officially inducted next year (from Ignacio Salazar). New displays in the Astros Hall of Fame Alley include highlights of the Negro Leagues 100th anniversary, 40th anniversary of the 1980 NL West champs, and 15th anniversary of the 2005 champs. … Interesting observation from Joe Carrillo: “I don’t think I’ve seen this before, but I’m likely wrong. Typically border colors on baseball jerseys are *beneath* the lettering/number, but the Padres are using a soutache-esque piping *above* them.” Chris Covers offers an explanation. … The Nationals again wore their gold trimmed (WS Champs) unis last night against the Yanks. … If you read yesterday’s lede, you’ll recall Nathan Eovaldi ended up wearing Catcher Christian Vazquez’ jersey for an inning in Friday night’s Red Sox/O’s game. Yesterday afternoon he explained why. … A new service called Home Plates, will start delivering Dodger Stadium food favorites, including Dodger Dogs, to the Los Angeles area (from Timmy Donahue). … Last night, Gleyber Torres had a custom logo on his elbow pad, which has home plate integrated with the G for his initials (from Sal X Traction). … Frank McGuigan asks, “How many outdated logos can @CBSSports use in their standings? I count three definite; possibly five (Tigers, Phillies, Padres… Orioles, Twins?) Any others?” … Cleveland Baseball Club owner Paul Dolan says executives will meet with Native American groups to discuss name change. … Speaking of the Cleveland Ball Club: they wore red softball tops last night. Looks like the team is still The Indians.

NFL News: Here is your first look at new Seattle Seahawks safety Jamal Adams in his Seahawks uniform (from Nicklaus Wallmeyer). … Oops: when the Washington Football Team revealed their “new” uniforms and helmets, someone forgot to remove the image of a soccer goal from the graphic.

College Football News: The Alabama Crimson Tide won’t be changing their uniforms anytime soon (at least I hope not), but here’s an article ranking the top 5 uni concepts anyway. … SMU was the first team to wear one helmet at home and a different one on the road. From ’57-’61, they wore white helmet at home and red helmet on the road (from Blaise D’Sylva).

Hockey News: “Who says uniform ads are a recent thing?” says Wade Heidt. “Checking out the really unusual uni worn by the WCHL Winnipeg Clubs. Was a skating beer label for Labatt’s Club brand beer. Winnipeg’s junior team using this name ’73-’76.” … Flyers goalie Brian Elliott has a new mask for thr NHL playoff run, complete with his nickname “Moose” and antlers (from Timmy Donahue).

NBA/WNBA News: Here’s a list of the NOB’s the Toronto Raptors will wear in support of the Black Lives Matter movement in the Orlando bubble. … The Atlanta Hawks just got new (and much needed) uniforms this week, but this article takes a look at the 5 best and 3 worst unis in the teams long uni history. … Here’s a look at the court for the WNBA this season.

College/High School Hoops News: Several colleges and high schools have unveiled new basketball courts recently, including the University of New Orleans, Reinhardt University, Rock Springs (Wyo.) High School, Brenham (Tex.) High School, Columbia City (Ind.) High School, Northland Prep in Flagstaff, Ariz., and Hoover (Ala.) High School (from Kary Klismet).

Soccer News: Pretty neat article here on how U.S. Soccer turned old jerseys into new Coronavirus masks for frontline workers. … Louisville City FC wore their white away kit at home last night (from Josh Hinton). … In Keita Endo’s final match for the Yokohama F. Marinos they brought out all of his home jerseys (from Jeremy Brahm).

Grab Bag: Check out this amazing arrangement of Canadian Bacon in a pan (from Jeremy Brahm). … Also from Jeremy — there is a new logo for USA Team Handball. … The Indianola (IA) City Council voted unanimously to remove Native American imagery from city property, including the police department’s cars, badges & patches (from Timmy Donahue).

And Finally… big thanks to Bowen for sharing his NBA uni, logo and court designs with us! Please let him know your thoughts in the comments below.

That’ll do it for me for this weekend. I WILL be back next weekend (even though it’s August) due to the *new* August schedule, and then Paul will take the first week and I’ll take the second week (I already have some great stuff in the hopper, but can always use some more!) and we’ll figure out the rest of the month after that. Everyone have a great week and I’ll catch you back here next Saturday.



Comments (31)

    The Pacers should’ve been using that checkered flag motif 50 years ago.

    There is indeed a Snyder County in Pennsylvania but I don’t think they had a county high school. Seeing the tag being from Jersey City, I think it could be from Snyder High School. My Dad graduated from there in 1949.

    From some quick online research, Snyder HS is called the Tigers, which would match the colors, and as you said the purchase would likely have been made from the local retailer.

    The “health” shield on that jersey was featured on this site a while back:
    It seems to pinpoint the jersey age quite well to 1942 or just after, but doesn’t help identify it. Minor league and college teams wore it too apparently.

    The “health” shield on the first jersey seems to only date it to 1942 or just after.
    Paul said minor league and varsity teams also wore it.

    Yes, second jersey is most likely from Snyder High School, Jersey City, New Jersey. School colors, orange & black, appear to be a match. There are several high school class yearbook sites ( that might enable a specific match.

    Spaulding Tag dates between 1914 – early 1930s (see link). Best guess is the uniform dates in the 1920s to early ‘30s.

    Really enjoyed Bowen Hobbs’ concepts. A lot to like, including the hood ornament logo for the Pistons and the skeleton for Betsy DeVos’ team.

    Regarding the Winnipeg Clubs sweater; the 1970s radio commercial ditty for Club Beer is etched in my mind. “Club, the funky beer, brewed right here in Manitoba.”

    I will be very disappointed if the first player to wear number 86 is not a Met. Would be even better if it was Met with the last name Champion.

    I’m gonna take a quick stab at the GTGFTS, is it the July 22nd 2003 Padres- Cardinals game at San Diego that ended 3-2 in favor of the Padres? If it is the only notable thing I can find is that it was in the middle of Pujols’s 30 game hit streak

    That looks right to me. The lineups and score match. I don’t see anything notable about the game, although it is worth noting that the at bat taking place is Albert Pujols vs. Oliver Perez – pretty impressing to find an at bat from 17 years ago where the pitcher and batter are both still active.


    Great work on those concepts, Bowen. Many of them are better than what the teams are currently using. I am a Pacers fan and love the designs you created. Those racing motifs are awesome and are better than the fields motif the Pacers are currently using which I actually like as well. Some other favorites of mine.

    Knicks – I know their logo is classic but they have been so bad it may be time to refresh their branding. This would be a perfect nod to the city.

    76ers – Love the primary logo. I think it’s better than what they have now.

    Raptors – With how much that fan base and organization likes making nods to the “North” and Canada that Raptor/Maple Leaf logo is perfect.

    Bulls – The Chicago flag alternate uniform is great. Don’t know their alt off the top of my head but can’t imagine it is better than this.

    Pistons – That primary logo is amazing. Pistons should pay you to use that.

    Magic – Love the magicians hat motif.

    Wizards – Similarly to Magic comment, I love the crystal ball motif.

    I disagree with the assessment of the 76ers logos.
    The Phillies sorta own the Liberty Bell nowadays.
    On the concept logo, the headstock seems way out of proportion to the bell.
    And given the state of socio-political state of affairs in the NBA (and professional sports leagues generally), I think the proposed Betsy Ross Flag-influenced design element would not be too well received…And its’ current use by the Sixers may be targeted for removal.

    There are few mass redesigns that I like, but this one is different and quite honestly, spectacular. Most of these come off as soccer-like badges or crests, so they pack a lot of punch into them, and the colors are powerful. The Pistons’ redesign is awesome, for a team that otherwise has had very bland logos for decades. Looking forward to seeing the rest of the NBA, and perhaps other leagues, too.

    It was a weird move by Baltimore. They wore the O’s hat the previous night with the black jersey.
    Sometimes they wear Friday/Saturday alternates on different days if the game is televised nationally by Fox or ESPN.
    I don’t think that was the case yesterday.

    Bowen-interesting concepts. A couple of things re Celtics. Doubt they would go with your clover hybrid because they use a shamrock not a 4 leaf clover. And they wouldn’t use BC as secondary logo because in the area hat refers to Boston College Good job tho.

    Re: Bowen Hobbs’ NBA redesigns. A fun and fascinating project for the portfolio, but on the actual hardwood? Ugh, no. Over-reliance on trite, spiky bespoke fonts (which, in fairness, were a declared goal of the project), an unfortunate tendency to make every team look like the 2008 Atlanta Hawks, slavish insertion of basketball graphic into logos that don’t need them (Hawks, Bulls), and an over-proliferation of secondary logos till they spill out of your ears. Most basketball teams need condensed typefaces for their chest wordmarks to yield an oblong between 2-3.5 times as wide as it is high. Most teams get this right; a few (Raptors, Milwaukee’s road uniform) do not. Hobb’s Sixers, Magic, Pistons, and Hornets designs are particularly overdone. I’ve embarked on a lot of these missions to save the league, and the greatest lesson is what to leave alone.

    It’s funny that people would want to have Dodger Dogs delivered to them when you can pick up a pack of them at the market for the same cost of what one would be from Dodger Stadium. LOL

    There’s another delivery system for ballpark food. The Washington Nationals ballpark has a very popular sandwich called Steak Frites, and the provider (a place called Medium Rare in Bethesda, Md.) provided curbside service the day of the home opener.

    Disneyland is considering food delivery of their popular items for people who live close to Disneyland.

    After making a big deal about wearing the road Cleveland jersey on opening day, the next 2 days, they’ve worn the red softball tops with script Indians on it.


    It’s not that I dislike the Bucks display, but two big errors on the court – they no longer play in the Bradley Center and it’s”Fear the DEER, not dear.

    The scoreboard game is from July 22nd, 2003. Padres beat the Cardinals 3-2 at Qualcomm Stadium. As the biggest Padres fan there is, I was likely there as a kid. Go Padres!

    I watched a few innings of the Arizona/San Diego game last night. The new Diamondbacks uniforms sure are drab. That’s what happens when committees and complainers grab the reins.

    AZ’s jerseys are leaps and bounds better than the trash they had been wearing recently. They won’t look as good as possible again though until they return to purple and teal.

    Hello tanith,

    Here is another possible lead for the snyder jersey.

    I grew up in that town everyone calls it amherst. The high school team is the amherst tigers.

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