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A good Saturday morning, Uni Watchers. I hope everyone has had a good week. Happy Kentucky Derby Day!
A couple weeks ago, I featured two of today’s featured artists, Casey Vitelli and “Gav Swaps” as they concepted some “Reverse Retro” jerseys for the NBA. Those two gents were concurrently working on a project involving an additional 14 collaborators, which I’m pleased to bring to you today. The designers had some fun running a contest to pick the top jersey — in the same format as the regular playoff tournament — over on the Twitter, but I asked if each one could share his design with us and to give us a brief explanation of the thinking behind the jersey, now that the EE Tourney has ended.
“Earned” Edition jerseys were last featured in the NBA in the 2020-21 season. So what if the Earned Edition jerseys would make a comeback for the 2022-23 NBA season? Here’s a look at what the designers came up with (team by team), along with each designer’s Twitter handle. I’m sure you’ll recognize several of the names, as their work has been featured on UW over the years from time to time.
Enjoy and here’s Casey!
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NBA 2023 Earned Edition Project by Casey Vitelli and friends
I wanted to do an “Earned Edition” project, but I have done the same thing multiple times. I wanted to try something different.
I grabbed 15 other designers, randomly selected teams, and we each designed an “Earned Edition” for the 16 playoff teams. We mixed it up and kept each designer anonymous and had followers vote for their favorites in a playoff style that matched the current NBA bracket.
This jersey is designed to celebrate the Kings’ historic postseason appearance inspired by their victory beam. It also features a soccer-style logo inside the numbers and an intricate background pattern to signify the depth and cohesiveness of the Kings’ roster.
The main idea behind this was going back to the Dr. J days with those uniforms, and giving it a little twist influenced by the Sixers ‘Spectrum’ City Edition from 2021. Adding the off-white, and a gold drop shadow (nod to Iverson era) rounds out the uniform!
For this Earned Edition design, I realized the main Grizzlies logo had not been used as a centerpiece before, so I decided to let it have its moment. Accompanied by more usage of yellow and claw scratches down the sides, I wanted to stick to their current aesthetic while expanding it as well.
My take on the Milwaukee Bucks’ Earned Edition was inspired by the “Irish Rainbow” design element the team used from the late ‘70s until the early ‘90s, but fused with the modern-day look and typeface. This concept was meant to be timeless and classic, something the team could easily wear on the court, and a nod to the Bucks’ stories past and bright future.
My Los Angeles Lakers “Earned Edition” uniform is based off a mixture of the team’s “Black Mamba” uniform, with the reverse coloring for the collar and cuffs, and the team’s “Minneapolis Lakers” home uniform, which we saw as their Classic Uniform this past season.
Directly inspired by their 70th anniversary logo, this Knicks earned edition jersey celebrates one of the NBA’s most decorated franchises by giving them a more vintage look. The earned edition assembles some of their most iconic jersey elements throughout the team’s history, while adding a new “Knicks” wordmark and color scheme to give the jersey a refreshed look.
The Clippers Earned Edition features fan favorite “Clipper Red” as the base color and is accompanied by the iconic ’90s Clipper word mark. The side panel represents the sail design also seen in recent City Edition uniforms.
For my Earned Edition jersey, I did an era-combination of the current branding + the Pacman 1980s jersey. The Hawks 3 main uniforms currently lack an ‘ATL’ wordmark, so that was necessary, for one of the few towns that colloquially uses its NBA-designated abbreviation.
Slightly breaking away from the usual black/white, the Nets Earned edition is based on the current statement edition. Grey base with herringbone pattern to add depth to the uniform.
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Cool stuff! Thanks for sharing, guys. I’m sure all most of us feel the NBA probably already has way too many jerseys/uniforms, but the Earned Edition (bequeathed upon a team who makes the playoffs) was always kind of a fun alternate.
Readers? What do you think?
Seattle Mariners Debut Their City Connect Uniforms
The Seattle Mariners debuted their City Connect (CC) uniforms last evening. In case you missed it, Paul did an amazing preview of the uniforms when they were released last week. If you haven’t read that, I highly recommend that you do (and even if you did, it’s good for a refresher).
I really liked these when they were released, but as always, I said I would need to see them on the field and in action before I could render a final verdict. Prior to these being released, I mentioned that it was rare (at least IMO) for black and royal to pair well together, and most of the recent pairings (BYU Football, NY Mets and KC Royals being examples) haven’t quite worked. But the Mariners, by using gold judiciously, managed to pull it off.
My other concern was how the pants would look: players who went with proper cuffing and showed the CC socks looked really good, while those wearing their pants “pajama style” did not. The difference was almost night and day.
I thought the arched “seattle”, reminiscent of the 1969 Seattle Pilots roadies, looked tremendous, even if the “3D” effect was only seen at close range.
The jersey/pants looked sharp together, and I think this is due in no small part to the gold tying everything together, combined with the very limited use of black on the jersey (seen only in the block shadow) and royal on the pants (seen only bisecting the double gold stripe down the pants leg).
The back of the jersey had a big, legible NOB, and the numbers were crisp and gold. And that gold belt really ties everything together!
In fact the only uniform element of which I wasn’t particularly fond was the cap, which featured a royal crown and a black brim. The near 50/50 mix of the colors didn’t work well. I think the cap would have looked even better if it were solid royal, with the only black being found on the outline of the trident logo.
As with all CC uniforms, the team created a special helmet to be worn with this uniform.
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.
Guess the Game from the Uniform
Based on the suggestion of long-time reader/contributor Jimmy Corcoran, we’ve introduced a new “game” on Uni Watch, which is similar to the popular “Guess the Game from the Scoreboard” (GTGFTS), only this one asked readers to identify the game based on the uniforms worn by teams.
Like GTGFTS, readers will be asked to guess the date, location and final score of the game from the clues provided in the photo. Sometimes the game should be somewhat easy to ascertain, while in other instances, it might be quite difficult. There will usually be a visual clue (something odd or unique to one or both of the uniforms) that will make a positive identification of one and only one game possible. Other times, there may be something significant about the game in question, like the last time a particular uniform was ever worn (one of Jimmy’s original suggestions). It’s up to YOU to figure out the game and date.
Today’s GTGFTU comes from Charlie Schick.
Good luck and please post your guess/answer in the comments below.
Uni Tweet of the Day
Don’t love the number font/nickname, but the rest of this is suh-weet