Buy or burn? The best and worst NBA City Edition uniforms

Dec 2, 2019

This is the third season we're seeing the Nike NBA City Edition Uniforms, which means that basketball fans are playing fashion police again.

The process of coming up with these alternate jerseys is simple, according to "These designs honor the fans — those who, 41 times a year, take pilgrimage at their local arena, and whose passions help define each respective team’s identity."

Not all teams got the memo, though.

BUY: Brooklyn Nets

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"Featuring 'BED-STUY' emblazoned over a white background, Brooklyn’s jersey recreates last season's pattern down the side panels."

The Nets recalled the Notorious B.I.G.-inspired Brooklyn Camo, which proved to be a wise decision. Unlike the statement edition variant that was unveiled earlier this season, the graffiti text actually looked good.

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BURN: Dallas Mavericks

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"Deep Ellum, a vibrant city quarter in Dallas known for its colorful murals and eclectic nightlife, inspires the team’s uniforms through graffiti-style 'Mavs' lettering and a supercharged palette from the Dallas skyline."

The Mavs seem to be having an identity crisis, going from those smooth, Sans-themed fonts to a too-playful typeface. Seriously, just bring back either the classic cowboy hat or iconic wild horse graphic.

BUY: Chicago Bulls

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"This version is the first City Edition uniform to feature Chicago's famous bull on the front. The cool blue background and red trim take inspiration from Chicago’s city flag."

Chi Town's latest city edition uniforms has the same oddly satisfying effect as that of the green St. Patrick's Day jerseys from the Derrick Rose era. Also, you can never go wrong with that famous bull on the chest.

BURN: Minnesota Timberwolves

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"MSP lettering on the chest symbolizes the Minneapolis — Saint Paul metro area, while the soft blue background is an ode to the state’s famous lakes."

If not for the new Wolves logo on the shorts, we would have mistaken Minny's alternate unis for some practice threads. The mix of white and baby blue isn't exactly the most intimidating color scheme.

BUY: Los Angeles Clippers

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"Printed over a white base, the ornate 'Los Angeles' wordmark on the chest is inspired by Los Angeles tattoo art."

The minimalist approach sums up the no-nonsense makeup of the incumbent Clippers squad. The neutral combination is the perfect contrast to the electrifying plays courtesy of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.


    BURN: San Antonio Spurs

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    "The camo print expresses the city’s rich military appreciation, while staying true to the team’s iconic colors."

    The Spurs need to change for the better, not only in terms of play (7-14), but also their sense of style. But just like Pop's system, this black, white, and grey camo works for a while, and only for select wearers.

    BUY: Miami Heat

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    "The vibrancy of Miami-Dade County appears on the jersey in the soft, aqua-blue background and bright pink accents that light the city. It’s also an inversion of last season’s City Edition uniform."

    The Heat have fully embraced the Miami Vice aesthetic in their city edition uniforms, and why not? The refreshing blue and pink scheme returns for the fourth time and is still one of the best alternate jerseys out there.

    BURN: Charlotte Hornets

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    "The team’s home court nickname, the Hornet’s Nest, traces back to Charlotte's colonial history and finds its way again to the City Edition uniform. The shorts include a hornet’s nest honeycomb shape on the buckle."

    It didn't help that the designer placed the best detail (hornet honeycomb) on the hidden part of the shirt. The text "Buzz City" would have made the grey upper and Jumpman sillhuoette pop better than the shortened "CHA."

    BUY: Portland Trail Blazers

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    "For the team's 50th anniversary season, the Trail Blazers are wearing a mash-up of its first two uniforms ('70-'71 and '71-'75). Portland's 'Rip City' mantra is printed in retro font across the chest."

    At least Rip City's alternate unis are more memorable than their slipshod start to the season (8-12, 11th in West). Here's hoping the Blazers' throwback threads help them go back to their old winning ways.

    BURN: Los Angeles Lakers

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    "Continuing a theme of recognizing famous players in the franchise, the flush-gold uniform includes vintage drop-shadow graphics, a wishbone collar and vortex-like panels as an ode to the 7’2” center and his unstoppable drop-step."

    Purple and Gold legacy or just plain lazy? Outside the stars, pattern, and logo on the side, the Lakers' city edition uniform is basically the same jersey worn by LeBron and Co. — same colors, same font, same look.

    Check out the rest of the Nike NBA City Edition Uniforms 2019-20 here.

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