NBA teams are continuing to roll out their "City Edition" alternate uniforms, which are due to start being worn in-game on Nov. 9. All 30 teams will have a City uniform this season, and all but one of the designs will be new. (The Jazz are sticking with last year's design.) Late last week we assessed the first round of this season's new City alternates. Today we take a look at the latest wave, from best to worst.
Wizards' new City alternate. pic.twitter.com/wu60hTBccM— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) November 2, 2018
Sigh, yet another black alternate. But while this design may not be particularly creative, it gets the job done. Simple, sharp, effective. Grade: A-
Comparison of Heat's "Miami Vice" alternate uniforms. Last season on left, this season on right. pic.twitter.com/HpSWS2XDpl— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) November 5, 2018
If you accept that proposition that NBA teams have essentially become lifestyle brands, then it's hard to argue with the Heat's second consecutive "Miami Vice"-themed uniform. Last season's was white, this season's in black -- will next season's be pink? Docked a grade for essentially repeating last season's design. Additional info here. Grade: A-
Bucks have just released their new CIty alternate, based on the old Mecca floor design. pic.twitter.com/5XRG8p13kJ— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) November 5, 2018
This one seems destined to end up in lots of "Worst Uniforms Ever" roundups a few years from now, which is a shame, because it could have been so much better. The uni is based on the Bucks' old Mecca court design by the artist Robert Indiana -- a great idea for a uniform theme. But the execution feels more a hodgepodge of elements than a coherent design. And why go with vertically stacked lettering (topped by the Harley-Davidson ad patch, ugh) when the Mecca's center court lettering was circular? A designer at the Chicago branding firm Gameplan Creative came up with a much better execution that gives a tantalizing view of what might have been:
The sad thing about the Bucks' Mecca-themed alternate uni is that it could have been so much better. A senior designer at @GameplanChicago came up with a much better execution of the same concept. pic.twitter.com/IDHdto2Yjf— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) November 5, 2018
As for the version the Bucks are going with, your friendly uniform columnist suspects it may one day achieve "So bad it's good" status, as people look back on it as a piece of endearing kitsch. But it could have been so much more than that. Additional photos here. Grade: C-
ICYMI over the weekend: Here's the Suns' City alternate. pic.twitter.com/G83yYNq06C— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) November 5, 2018
Comparison of Suns City Edition alternates. Last season on left, this season on right. pic.twitter.com/ISALtAzJv5— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) November 5, 2018
It's bad enough that this is essentially a do-over of last season's City alternate. Even worse, the tightly kerned lettering makes it easy to see the word "LOSS" on the chest -- a word the Suns are already too familiar with this season. Grade: D
Thirteen teams have unveiled their new City uniforms so far. That leaves 16 teams still to go before the uniforms begin their on-court rollout this Friday, which should make for a busy week.
Paul Lukas really, really wishes that Bucks uniform had turned out better. If you like this column, you'll probably like his Uni Watch Blog, plus you can follow him on Twitter and Facebook and sign up for his mailing list so you'll always know when a new column has been posted. Want to learn about his Uni Watch Membership Program, check out his Uni Watch merchandise, or just ask him a question? Contact him here.