Washington Wizards/Bullets Uniform History
History of Wizards/Bullets Uniforms
The WashingtoN Wizards have gone through some changes over the past 50+ years. From Baltimore to Washington and the Bullets to the Wizards, there's been a bit of change that fans of the Washington basketball franchise have had to deal with. But it's been change for the good, especially when it comes to uniforms.
Here's a look a the different uniforms the team has deployed since 1974.
Good-bye Adidas, Hello Nike
For the first time in 11 years, there will be a new brand to carry the NBA jerseys. Nike jumps on board for the association, replacing Adidas, starting the 2017-18 season.
Instead of the traditional 'home' and 'away' jerseys, Nike has selected 'Association' and 'Icon' looks in addition with two other jersey options and a handful of throwback 'Classic' looks for each team. Select teams have already released their new swag and many other teams, including the Wizards are following suit.
Washington Bullets: 1974-87
To many this is the traditional look when thinking about the Washington D.C. basketball franchise. This is also the look that brought the team their only NBA Championship during the 1974 season.
With horizontal stripes, this look was a clear nod to the times relating to many other teams jerseys in this period. Certain features include three red stripes starting at the shoulder that then widen to the lower chest. In the center of the jersey is the 'jump ball' logo that was popularized with the Bullets.
Throughout the decade plus this was a popular jersey there were several alterations and addendums to the look. The base of the uniforms, however, never changed.
The Bullets made the playoffs 11 times in these jerseys.
Photos by Getty Images.
Washington Bullets: 1987-97
Unveiling new jerseys in 1987, the common change across the board for the NBA was longer shorts. For the Bullets they really scaled back their design and went more simplistic. The jerseys kept White and Red as the two primary colors but the stripes were eliminated.
Definitely with a cleaner look, the name logo was cleaned up as well. The 'B' was capitalized in Bullets and the hands in the logo transitioned away from a cartoon design. The best feature was was outlines on the shoulder and neck that made the jerseys pop.
Scaling back the look also seem to scale back the franchise who then only made two postseasons in 10 years.
Photo by Getty Images.
Washington Wizards: 1997-2011
Throw out the name, throw out the colors, throw out the jerseys. In 1997 there was a complete over hall of the team that had struggled to maintain success season to season. Of course though, when creating a new nickname, you need fans to buy new apparel hence the new everything.
The colors now are white, a slightly lighter shade of blue, and bronze. The bronze, to many known as the gold jerseys, were the alternates that gathered both positive and negative attention. Simply you love them or hate them, no in-between.
Using a new more hip font in the two primary logos, the identity of the Wizards with a jump-ball was replaced with a crescent moon of the 'i' in Wizards. Unfortunately the font did not work that well with numbers and the name logo forced the numbers to be smaller. The only thing that was kept on these jerseys from the last is the accenting outline on the shoulders and neck.
The controversial bronze jerseys are where we see the basis for the stars and stripes design that has become popular as of late.
Four postseason appearances in these uniforms.
Photos by the Associated Press.
Washington Wizards: 2011-2017
The last jersey never really caught on with the fan base. In 2011 the Wizards completely re-designed the jerseys again and used the old Bullets uniforms as a base.
This look clearly sees a mix of both the 1974-87 jersey with the stripes and the 1987-97 jerseys with a more reserved look and a color base. In addition to three basic color looks, the jerseys also alternate between 'Washington' and 'Wizards' as the name logo but both have the 1974-87 lower case first letter. More Bullets throwbacks include the ball now become the dot in the 'i' and the hand in the secondary logo on the shorts.
Now across the NBA, shoulder and neck outlines are here to stay and doesn't really add much value except on the home whites. A new feature is the slight V-neck cut which amplifies the muscles, but for this you can thank the Bronze jerseys in 1997-2011.
Three playoff appearances for the Wizards wearing this pair, all made the conference semi-finals.
Photos by USA Today Sports Images.
Stars and Stripes: 2016-Future?
With Nike taking over there should not be too much change for the Wizards in terms of overall look. One thing Nike cannot do though is get rid of the Stars and Stripes jerseys that were released as alternates this year.
Again some fans love them and some hate them, but if you hate them you're just wrong. These jerseys became the primary home uniforms during the playoffs this past season and clearly show the patriotic look.
If you go back and look this is a combination of all jersey's up to this point: 1974-87's lower case name logo, 1987-97's full color, 1997-2011 under the arm stripes and the stars that you see on the Bronze jersey, and 2011-2017 with the V-neck and overall base look.
Talk about the culture of a team in one jersey, please don't change that Nike.
Photo by USA Today Sports Images.