Since 2017, Nike has been in charge of creating jerseys for all 30 NBA teams, While fans of most teams have complained about certain elements of the uniforms, the Utah Jazz have largely been unscathed. In most iterations of the jerseys since the Nike takeover, the “J-Note” has been very prominent on the front, or “Utah” was at least sprawled across the chest. The Jazz even had sunset-colored city edition jerseys and purple mountain kits to pay homage to the teams of the 1990s.
Overall, it has been a good tenure for Nike in Utah. But that time has come to a close. It’s safe to say these jerseys are some of the worst in modern NBA history.
Two of the uniforms are just atrocious. I’ve seen plenty of social media posts attributing the black and yellow “Utah” Jersey and the yellow and black “Jazz” jersey as just being electrical tape on a tank top. Honestly, that’s not a bad take.
The classic “J-Note” uniform is also lackluster. Plain black and white, it ignored the cool color schemes of the past. The last uniform is the purple mountain, which is a fan favorite and has made Salt Lake sports cool.
Back in my day jerseys were better and we should embrace that
I’m sick of minimalism. Nike decided that the only way to make no one mad was to create jerseys that don’t say anything. Last year, the Thunder wore all-white jerseys. Why? Because if Nike made a statement with that jersey, some people wouldn’t be happy.
Modern minimalism is ensuring that no one is mad, but no one is happy, either. It’s a conscious design choice to not put anything of value on a jersey, in case some fans don’t like the color or designs. These new Jazz uniforms are a victim of this minimalistic design movement. So are Cleveland’s.
It’s worth noting that Nike is bringing back classics this season, like the purple mountains, black-on-black for the Spurs, the teal horse for the Spurs, and the Minneapolis Lakers uniforms. All of these are cool, but it’s worth noting that Nike did not design any of those uniforms–Adidas did.
At the end of the day, a jersey should say more about a team than just where they’re from or their team name. There needs to be a logo or some bold design. The minimalism trend should be over soon, and I hope it sweeps the NBA jerseys with it. There’s nothing worse than shelling out well over $100 for a jersey of your favorite player and having people ask you what team that is. The plain white Thunder uniforms do that, as do plenty of other ones that are taking the league by storm. It’s a shameless cash grab. Instead of having three really good and bold uniforms, Nike is feeding fans five terrible ones because they know some fans will buy them up, although not with any degree of enthusiasm.