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Tuesday December 13, 2005 4:23 pm

Throwback or Throwup?

Posted by Jeff Chan Categories: Editorial, NBA,

I’m guessing the trend started back in Boston during the mid 90’s, Celtic fans bringing back their old Larry Bird jerseys off the shelves,  yearning for the good old days, realizing they haven’t won a title since 1986.  Famous director, Spike Lee was often seen rocking his Earl “the Pearl” Monroe jersey in the front row at Knick games.  This possibly sparked the “street-cred” and the popularity of fans wearing the old-school jerseys. 

While I enjoy fans respecting the games history and giving the ex-greats their due respect, some of these trends have gotten out of hand.  Most of these articles of clothing belong only on ESPN Classic.  The National Baller’s Association has truly taken over.  Come along as I try and answer the question: Throwback or Throwup?

Though some items for fans are just MUST HAVES:

old school jordan

The old Chicago script lettering jersey, when Jordan dropped a Playoff record 63 points against the mighty Celtics back in 1986.  Prompting Bird to say: “There’s Michael Jordan and then there is the rest of us”, and about Jordan’s game “God disguised as Michael Jordan”.

old school wilkens

Dominque Wilkins’ #21 Atlanta Hawks retro jersey, since Hawks fans haven’t had much to be proud of from their franchise.  I still cannot fathom that Dan Dickau was for a short time wearing the #21 in a Hawks jersey.

womens jerseymariah carey

And last but not least the extra long jerseys that turn into one-piece skirts for the ladies.  Nothing gets my attention more than a confident looking lady with a passion for her sports team.

Aside from those exceptions, these other items should go back into the time capsule, to look back at and laugh about later, not to be seen at NBA arenas.  People pay good money at the stadium and for cable TV; they shouldn’t be tortured for 3 hours looking at these things.  I know that the clothing is being manufactured for one reason: money.  People are actually dumb enough to purchase these atrocities.  C’mon people, can we get better taste than this?  Hence, I’m going to showcase some clothing items that I don’t understand its appeal or its historical significance.  Let’s go down the list of NBA teams alphabetically, shall we?

Green Hawks uniform

Atlanta Hawks:  Why would they bring these back?  The Hawk is an animal that flys and soars gracefully through sky presumably for dunks and rebounds, not for joggers running at night wearing bright clothing to avoid incoming cars.  Once again they are the Atlanta Hawks not the Atlanta Bike Messengers.

Boston Celtics: Keeping it real.  Thank god, otherwise thousands of drunk Irish-men would attack Director of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge.

Cleveland Cavaliers: God bless you LeBron James, you saved the Cavaliers of their old jersesys.

Mavs retro

Dallas Mavericks: This jersey is on sale at finish line for 19.99, go figure.  This jersey reminds me of the era of Fat Lever, Roy Tarpley’s drug supsension filled career, and let’s not forget Brad Davis’ Ron Burgundy Anchorman-esque mustache.

retro denver

Denver Nuggets: Ah yes,  the main rival to the Dallas Mavs during the games that ended up being scored 130-125 in the late 80’s.  Remember #8 seeded Nuggets beating #1 Seattle Supersonics in these uniforms back in ‘94? Nope, because it didn’t happen.  We don’t need to remember Doug Moe’s real bad suits that went with these uniforms worn by Alex Enlish and Michael Adams.

retro pistons

Detroit Pistons: C’mon you guys are cream of the crop in the NBA these days, why would you need to wear these?  This looks more like your sister team,the WNBA’s Detroit Shocks uniform with that thunderbolt.

retro warriors

Golden State Warriors: Thank god you guys don’t wear these too often.  I want to remember slam dunk champion Jason Richardson in the current uniforms, not in the Rick Barry era.

houston rockets retro

Houston Rockets: Their old jersey is not that bad, maybe it is because that is what they had on when they had Hakeem Olajuwon and won the title.  But then, they wear this.  What is up with the yellow lettering, that wasn’t on their old uniform, it was white lettering.  Sigh you guys disappoint me.

la clipppers blue uniform

Los Angeles Clippers: You guys haven’t had an identity since day one. You guys can wear that extra blue jersey or whatever you want, no one will complain, because they are just insignificant until hopefully this year.  Yes, the Clippers were so bad at one point, even a guy named Your Name was on the roster.

Lakers white uniform

Los Angeles Lakers: Not a retro, but a new edition.  The Lakers are a storied franchise.  What comes to mind first? Magic, Kareem, Worthy starring in SHOWTIME, Away colors are Purple, Home colors are Yellow, everyone knows that.  And though this new jersey looks fantastic, the bottom line is money.  The Lakers sold out.

retro Shaq

Miami Heat: Ok you guys have only been around since 1989 and had the same nice uniform since day one. White, Black, Orange, makes sense, a logo with a flaming basketball on fire. The headlines read something like: The Heat are en fuego en route vs Opposition. So tell me what the heck is this jersey that you guys wore the other day? Christ sake Pat Riley, you’re the GM do something.

retro NJ Nets

New Jersey Nets: Good grief, one of the inspirations for this article. First off, let me say, this jersey is bad luck.  They wore this last week versus the 76ers and lost, and wore it when they made the Finals for the first time since the Dr. J ABA days and finally gain national exposure, and this is what you want the American public to see. Oh… My… Lord… This is the era of Buck Williams as the only good player and ‘Why did we draft Dennis Hopson at #3 in the draft instead of #5 Scottie Pippen, #7 Kevin Johnson, or #11 Reggie Miller? Dennis Hopson!’  This jersey almost ruined the franchise if it weren’t for the Jason Kidd resurgence.

old knicks

New York Knicks: If they are going to go retro,  why not the Walt Fraizer, Willis Reed era? No, they go all the way back to the origins of the NBA.  This should never be worn again.  I don’t dare to guess what the opponent is wearing.  I would like to think it’s a CBA uniform.


Phoenix Suns: Like I stated earlier, the Lakers should be the only purple NBA team. The “sun” is supposed to be hot,  not the color of your skin after getting a bruise.  Last time I checked when we were little kids, we used to draw the sky blue, and the sun yellow or orange, not purple.  Why couldn’t you handle that rebound Kurt?  That Purple Sun get in your eye?

retro Kings

Sacramento Kings: Hey Sacramento, you guys have only been good since the Webber/ Bibby era, everything else you should be ashamed of, including these Reggie Theus- era powder blue memories we’d would like to forget.

retro Wizards

Washington Wizards: Yup no one wants that loose ball, just like they don’t want these uniforms.  D.C. area people are so ashamed of their past, they not only changed uniforms they changed the name of the team.  Yes, it’s true, that didn’t even happen to the NJ Swamp Dragons.

bullets retro

I also remember the Bullets wearing these when Chris Webber, Juwan Howard and Rod Strikland made an appearance in the playoffs one year.  I’m sure the Michigan Fab 5 fans weren’t happy to see this uniform on Webber and Howard.

So NBA players, here’s the memo from the league office and from End Score, wear the nice jerseys on the court, and wear your suits off the court.

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