The NBA season tipped off this week. It's the most wonderful time of the year.
A few games into the season, it would be easy to fire off a few hot takes about how the Celtics are winning the championship, Devin Booker is winning MVP or the Knicks are going undefeated. I'm not here for that. I'll give you guys more in-depth basketball breakdowns once things really get going.
Instead, I'm here to break down the NBA uniform outlook for 2018-19. Let's go.
These were widely criticized when they were introduced a few years ago, but they're kind of starting to grow on me.
The Dominique Wilkins-era throwbacks are still the class uniforms for this organization, but the new ones aren't as terrible as they once looked.
One of the best in basketball. There's something about a team wearing the same uniforms forever that just has a charm. And odds are, if a team never changes its uniforms, that means the set works. Don't look now, but the Celtics are about to add another gem to their collection, too.
Another strong set here. The Nets classy black and white look has the chance to become a classic if they are ever relevant, which doesn't seem likely for a while. But hey, at least they get their first round pick this season.
We're on a stretch of some great uniforms, and it doesn't stop here. Charlotte made the fantastic decision to switch from the Bobcats back to the Hornets a few years ago, and their new uniforms didn't disappoint. They're even bringing back the 90s-era Hornets jerseys for select games this season.
Another team, another classic uni set. It might seem like I like every uniform, so just stay tuned because we have some stinkers coming up. The Bulls uniforms have undergone very minimal changes over the years. Seeing the same uniform that Michael Jordan wore in the modern day will always work – no matter how bad the Bulls are.
And now we've reached the first stinker. The Cavs have so much uni potential. So much. Great color scheme, solid inspiration from the past, but the current set just doesn't work. The lettering is weird, the number font is strange, and now they don't even have LeBron to fall back on. Cleveland needs a rebrand, but these were only introduced last season. Yikes.
The Mavericks have kept the same uniforms for a while now, and its getting a little stale. Not that I hate them, because they are solid. Not great, but solid. Once Dirk Nowitzki retires – if he ever does – the first thing on Dallas' to-do list should be a redesign. For now, I guess these work.
Why, Denver, why? The powder/baby blue uniforms in sports will ALWAYS work – just look at the Chargers. They also ditched this sweet yellow set with the Denver skyline. The new set isn't bad, but it isn't great either. It's just a little boring and it feels like they could be doing a lot better.
I like the Pistons uniforms, but I think they underuse the red. They used to have a full-red set that was a nice change-out-pace, but they've pivoted to the gray color scheme in their alternates. Most teams have been using gray for their "statement" uniforms, which is usually not great but this one passes as solid. The Motor City jerseys are sweet, though.
Golden State Warriors
The current Warriors uniforms are becoming a classic because they are one of the best teams in NBA history right now. That doesn't hide the fact that they need to bring back their "The City" uniforms. Last year I felt like the Warriors fell in love with their black "Statement" uniforms, so hopefully they mix things up more this season.
Similar to the Warriors, it felt like the Rockets overused their black uniforms last season. And of course, on opening night, they broke them out again. Hopefully thats not a sign of things to come. Their current set is strong, but it feels like they could use a throwback edition to the Hakeem Olajuwon-era. Or, you know, just wear them full-time.
Great uniforms. One of the few redesigns that has worked over the past few years. It has the feel of Indiana basketball but still the professionalism of an NBA team. I really love each set equally, but the yellow ones are an instant classic.
And we're back into the stinker category. My main problem here is the font. The design of these jerseys are necessarily terrible, but the lettering is tough. It's better than what they had before these, but they still cold be improved so much. The black set is one of the worst in the league.
Los Angeles Lakers
Amazing. The Showtime-era new uniforms are amazing. That is all. Also, the new Magic Johnson-inspired Statement edition are looking sweet. The only place these uniforms got messed up was with the black panel down the side of the purples. Drop that and you have probably the best or second best set in the NBA.
The Grizzlies redesigned their set completely for 2018-19. Something about it just doesn't look right. I really like the new letter and number fonts, but I think its too small. The wording and numbers look tiny on the jerseys. Memphis is blessed with a great set of colors, almost similar to Quinnipiac's, but they could do better with just some small tweaks. So close, Memphis, so close.
The Heat are inching toward the Celtics/Lakers/Bulls category of timeless uniforms. Miami hasn't been around as long as the aforementioned franchises, but the longterm success that Pat Riley has brought since the early 2000s is notable. Also, the Miami Vice City edition uniforms are the best alternate uniform in basketball – and its not particularly close.
These are the uniforms the Bucks need to stick with for the Giannis-era. They look clean, and they're not overdone like some of the other recent redesigns that we've seen. The touch of blue under the arm and in the collar is a classy addition to an already strong set. The cream-colored fourth set is also one of the better ones in the sport.
New Orleans Pelicans
These are some of the league's worst. The side panel is awkward. The colors are overdone around the league. It just lacks creativity. Not much else to say, sorry.
New York Knicks
The Knicks traditional home whites and roads blues are great, probably top-five in the league. They finally ditched the 2000s-era unis that always looked a bit off – it was probably the black side panel that the Lakers now have. The Statement jerseys last season weren't my favorite, as the Statement edition was basically the same as the home whites with more white.
Oklahoma City Thunder
Uniform overhaul needed. The Thunder have gone through what feels like dozens of alternates since they moved to OKC, but not many of them have worked. Last season's navy blue ones were decent, but not the best. Just a complete reset here would be nice. Thanks.
The Shaq-Penny throwbacks are finally here, and they should stay for as long as they want. They are so so so much better than their traditional uniforms these days. The City editions looked cool last season, but the other three sets would be better served as the white/blue/black versions of the throwback above.
As much as I despise Philly (or maybe just Philly fans), I am a big fan of these jerseys. The traditional whites and blues are strong. The lettering on the reds give it the throwback feel. And the cream City edition, which they used as their primary homes in the playoffs, are perhaps the best of the four.
This is a team that has changed its uniforms a lot over the years, but it almost always works. My only gripe with the current set is that I wish there was an orange version. Also, please give me a Charles Barkley-era throwback set soon. I need it on Devin Booker immediately.
Portland Trail Blazers
We've almost got another one in the Celtics/Lakers/Bulls/Heat category here, but Portland falls just below that cutline. The new letter font they used beginning last season is sort of plain and boring, but I'm a huge fan of the new red alternate. It's different, no other team in the league has a set like it. They found a way to kept their traditional design while still getting a fresh, modern look.
I absolutely love the color scheme that the Kings have. It's not gaudy like the Lakers' purple and gold or the Suns' purple and orange, but it's a more classy purple and gray/black. I'm low-key a huge fan of what the Kings have going for them, especially in their white and purple sets.
San Antonio Spurs
This traditional set is becoming increasingly boring to me. I know I just said how much I enjoyed the Nets' black and white uniforms, so I don't have a great explanation for this one. Maybe it's because the Spurs have been so good for so long and now they're finally regressing, but it might be time for something more modern.
HUGE fan of the Raptors set. All three uniforms are clean and sharp, and the Drake-inspired fourth jersey is straight fire. The only thing I need is a 1990s-era throwback to the Vince Carter days. Please, Toronto.
The Jazz took the league by storm with their City edition uniforms last season, but those are probably changing this year. Their traditional uniforms are solid, but unspectacular. Nothing really needs to be changed here. Solidly average work here, Utah.
Finally, we get to the Wiz. This is your classic middle-of-the-road set. Nothing great, nothing horrible. They're one team that I'm fine going with the red, white and blue color scheme because of their geographic location, but they could probably do a better job. Heck, they did just a few years ago before the league switched to Nike and those got ditched. Bring 'em back.