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LA Clippers’ City Jersey Leaks; NBA Player Doesn’t Like It

We have another NBA City leak, this time for the Clippers.

The lettering, but not the numbering, appears to be loosely based on what the team wore from 1978 through 1982, when the franchise was based in San Diego:

Interestingly, a current NBA player on another  team — Wizards forward Kyle Kuzma — has issued an opinion this one, and he seems to feel the same way that so many of us do about the NBA’s uni program:

The NBA season tips off next Tuesday, Oct. 24, and I’ll have my annual Uni Watch NBA Season Preview, with a rundown of all the new designs, this Thursday, Oct. 19. You can receive that piece in your in-box on Thursday morning by becoming a paid subscriber to my Substack.

(Big thanks to Mike Chamernik for making me aware of this one.)

Comments (40)

    It’s a bit sad the league doesn’t take more pride in the aesthetic history of each franchise. I know it’s been said many times here, but brand identity is one thing the NFL shines at. Wish the NBA would do the same.

    Young fan here, and usually like teams having an alt jersey or two. I also like to see teams take risks with them too. But they can’t overdo it, and those jerseys still have to somewhat fit into the brand. Stuff like the flames Blasty jersey. It’s very different from their usual home and road jerseys, but is still on brand with the flames. They keep it around so that it become a part of the flames brand. It’s also not worn all the time, maybe only for 10-13 games. When you watch the team, they usually are in their usual home/road sweater.
    The problem with the NBA right now is that due to the nike contract, each team has four jerseys, all that have to be worn a certain amount of times. So now instead of an alternate being a fun, special occasion, it’s more of a surprise that both teams are wearing their “normal” jerseys. This is amplified by the city jerseys now being super focused on completely random “inspiration” that has nothing to do with the team. The Bulls wearing their black alternate is far less visually jarring to what the bulls are than them wearing a powder blue jersey. When I think Minnesota Timberwolves, the color purple is one of the last things I think of. Now, I do like it when teams take risks with designs on their alternates, but those risks still have to fit in the overall brand of the team. Honestly, the nhl alternates are good examples. The bruins pooh bear jerseys were kinda out there, but makes sense because its a bear. The Vancouver Canucks used to have an alternate that used the main jerseys shoulder logo. Even the lightnings questionable storm alternates. Some of them were uglier than others, but you could see the jersey and still know the team.

    I get it…Lots of Uni-Watchers (sure some of Da Staff) agree that if a team has to explain what a uniform element means, by 1000-word essays or dim-lit videos, they should probably simplify it and make it more brand recognizable…since I don’t really keep up with City uniforms but I’m sure there are tons of examples

    Not sure I agree with that anymore. NFL teams now have multiple helmets, mono “color rush” uniforms, and throwbacks that look nothing like their primary set. Add the random socks and cleats and it takes me a few moments to determine who is playing whom.

    I’d be more than okay if the NBA limited teams to a white home/colored road and ONE alternate uniform that has to be used for 3 seasons (at least). Unlike many of you, I actually love the dynamic nature of these City Edition uniforms, the only problem is there are simply too many and on the rare occasion when a team absolutely nails a look (Wizards Cherry Blossom, Suns Valley, OKC Memorial, Nets Biggie) they get wiped away the next year for something worse.

    The NBA is NOT the NFL or MLB and that’s perfectly fine because its core demo is different from both of those sports. But there’s a such thing as too many damn uniforms.

    Dear Adam Silver:

    Please look at the New York Yankees. Green Bay Packers. The Penn State Nittany Lions. Carleton Football Club in Australia. FC Barcelona. All Argentina national teams.

    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

    I don’t think Barcelona fits into that category. They’ve had some shocking home kits in the past several years.

    Came to say the same thing–they keep the very basic home kit essentials but they’ve taken some big swings recently.

    Exactly. For me it doesn’t get better than the 2014/15 kit – YMMV.

    I think Celtic would probably be the best example for soccer. A distinct design that doesn’t get messed with too much despite being updated every single year.

    Nike and the NBA are trying to appeal to the international market, and for better or worse this is the style of World Football. New uniforms every single year, and it’s a shame because there’s been a number of solid designs released by Nike over the years, but they get lost in the shuffle because they’re scrapped every six months. I potentially see this playing out with the MLB as well.

    Exactly right. With all the possibilities that they run through, every team eventually gets a really nice looking alt that they immediately drop. It’s maddening.

    One more reason to dislike soccer. “The world’s game” yeah with the absolute worst uniform aesthetics that track with it being the world’s lowest common denominator sport. If the rest of the world jumped off a bridge, well, I wouldn’t follow!

    “Clips” instead of “Clippers” makes me think I’m at a franchised barbershop, not a basketball game.

    Plus the name is..yeah…did they not remember why Washington changed their name to the Wizards?

    Funny enough this is one of the *better* city editions that has been leaked.

    That’s saying something.

    It’s bound to happen. Nike burns through multiple new designs for 30 teams every year. There is only so much material to be mined there. Elements from historical jerseys, melded with a piece of local history or architecture, and some graphics or new colors.

    I like alts generally but most of these have no relation to the established identity of the franchises AND they change way too often. I think TPTB are trying to make the NBA a bit more like European soccer but all these new replicas are super wasteful from a production standpoint and really does water down the visuals.

    Kind of crazy to think this, but I actually think the NFL does throwbacks and alts the right way.

    But soccer primary shirts rarely change their design and change colors even more rarely these days. The clash kit was always meant to a big departure from the primary shirt because the primary shirt looked too similar to the opponent’s primary but teams wore their primaries as much of the time as possible. It’s different now but there’s still some continuity with the primaries.

    Kuzma’s tweet is great. But ironically, it looks like he is wearing a city edition uniform in his twitter avatar photo.

    I’ll tune into an NBA game and half the time I can’t identify the teams playing by the uniform. It’s over kill. It’s also pure greed. How many sets of uniforms can a team have?

    And don’t forget the different courts that must match all these constantly changing looks. Such a waste.

    I feel for these designers that are mandated for all these uniforms. Similar to MLB with their hats. There’s only so much you can do. The NBA was so much better 40 years ago. I could tell who was the home team. They wore white (a few yellow) at home. Now it’s nuts, you have the Celtics wearing black at home vs some other team wearing red. So no home team. Adam Silver ruined the league.

    I try to quit paying attention to the constant drivel of these NBA uniforms. It ruins my former enjoyment when an NBA team was announcing a uniform change and it meant something. This Clippers jersey isn’t good.

    Kuzma is right. US teams looking to go wild with non-team-color uniforms need to take more care, and pay attention to how the most visually successful European soccer teams do away and third jerseys. The third by definition must differ significantly from a team’s preferred colors and patterns, and there are a lot of crappy throwaway third kits out there, but a good number of teams manage to execute away and third in a way that builds, rather than dilutes, the team’s core brand identity. The best MLB City Connect unis are operating at a level closer to the better EPL/Bundesliga third kits, whereas the NBA at the moment seems to be operating its City uniform program at about the level of a high school coach whose booster club just raised way too much money. Black and white “Clips” jersey? Come on. That’s basically an insult to fans: “Guys, we think you’re exactly this dumb and gullible, you moronic suckers!”

    “Guys, we think you’re exactly this dumb and gullible, you moronic suckers!”

    It’s been pretty evident for some time that that’s the organizing principle behind all of this, no?

    Always cool to see when a current athlete Gets It™. You should send him an invite to join (if he isnt a Uni Watch member already).

    Clippings, as in toe nail clippings. I am pitching an idea to you, Nike and NBA. Feel free to follow it up.

    This looks like a branded jersey that would be featured in a commercial for “extreme” breath mints in the late 90s.

    Typically I’m into city editions if only because many are decent and a few are gems, but this year… WTF?

    I’ve always enjoyed the Clippers font from their early years in San Diego but to place it on such a dreary, dull shade of blue jersey leaves me cold.

    Can’t believe I’m the first to address the 800-lb. gorilla, but isn’t there another team…. in the NBA…. based in California…. that wears Black and Purple? Someone REALLY needs to put a stop to Nike’s brand of BS.

    The ‘L’ and the ‘I’, along with the ball as the latter’s dot, gives me strong Baltimore/Washington Bullets vibes.

    But put the “Clips” jersey in aqua and orange (like the SD years) and we might be on to something.

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