Everyone in the NBA is all excited about throwback jerseys, and that makes perfect sense. Why wouldn’t a capitalist entity dust off some old designs, remarket them, and have legions of fans buying back clothes? There’s a delicious Scrooge McDuck quality to it all.
The Pistons are bringing back their mid-’90s teal, Golden State is paying homage to the Warriors of the “Run TMC” era, and on Thursday the Bucks showed off their “classic” look from…2006. Alright, whatever if a rollback is not this old as long as people like it.
The problem is that colors and logos are really only a small piece of the puzzle. It’s not just what a uniform looks like, but How? ‘Or’ What it was worn out — and that’s what gets lost when you do that sort of thing. It just wouldn’t be the same to see Utah’s classic Malone-era jazz jerseys without at least one player wearing shorts so small you’d half expect to see a testicle fall out of a pant leg without warning.
So we need these teams to not only commit to their old look, but convince their players to do it like before. This is where this concept becomes truly magical. I’m not a sadist, I don’t expect players to wear Reebok pumps from 1989 when there were advancements in shoe technology, but at least something like that.
TJ Ford’s comically wide shorts
It was the closest thing to capris in the NBA. I need shorts that say hello to socks like “hi neighbour, we just moved into shins and wanted to introduce ourselves.” Hell, I bet TJ Ford was rocking 5 XL to make it work and he was 6’0. If Giannis tried to succeed, I need to see the XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXL needed for it to work, then have them donated to turn into blankets for the needy.
What always amazed me about the Pistons of the mid-’80s was how they chose the tightest uniforms possible for a sport that inherently required such freedom of movement. Damn, look at Dennis Rodman here, one flex and he comes out of this thing like The Incredible Hulk. I know some might say it’s a competitive imbalance, but fashion waits for no one.
Tiny shorts, long socks and knee pads on huge people
I know it’s not photoshopped, but man, it feels photoshopped. What we have here is the complete reverse of the giant TJ Ford shorts situation. Manute Bol killed in his absolutely tiny shorts while playing for the Bullets, and I know they were absolutely normal sized human shorts because look at Muggsy Bogues in the same ones.
Anyway, I want more extremely tall people in shorts who look tiny.
Magic Johnson’s pants
I know this is from a celebrity game from 2002, but the Lakers should wear pants, damn it.
I know it’s kinda against the rules because Kobe was wearing a glove after he broke a bone in his hand, but still, it’s a basketball glove. I’m not going to ask everyone to wear a transparent Rip Hamilton or LeBron mask, but I will ask all Lakers to wear one glove for one game.
Who knows, maybe they’ll love life with just one glove? You never know if you don’t try.