To celebrate the NBA’s 75th anniversary, Nike has outfitted each NBA team with four staple jerseys for the season: Association, Icon, City and Statement.
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While in recent years Christmas Day has featured some iconic looks over the years, with distinctly festive jerseys marking the holidays for each team that takes the floor, in 2023 all ten teams will sport their City Edition uniforms to the holidays.
The league hasn’t seen Christmas Day jerseys since 2016 after Nike replaced Adidas, but there is something about unique uniforms that makes the day very special. Playing on Christmas Day in a marquee showdown is a big deal.
Before Christmas Day action 2023, let’s take a walk down memory lane and relive some of the best … and worst Christmas Day t-shirts throughout the years.
2012: full color uniforms
Clean and simple. The 2012 unis were the first year the NBA brought in the holiday jerseys, and while they didn’t give off much of a Christmas vibe, more of a clean alternative, they’re still one of the best.
2013: City of Manga!
While the sleeve jerseys were hit or miss during his time in the league, the Christmas Day versions were really good.
The Heat’s all-red jersey stands out, not only as the best look, but also because of the fact that LeBron James threw a couple of monstrous alleys against the Lakers who wore them, etching them in memory forever.
Regardless of where you are in the sleeve basketball jerseys, these were a hit.
2014: the first name jerseys
I can only give these 5 out of 10 – the back with the player’s name below the number in the color block is perfect, but the front of these jerseys lets them down.
Only the logo and player number look more like a soccer jersey.
These had soaring potential and I hope they bring them back with a little more pop up front.
2015: festive fountain
These aren’t terrible, but they aren’t great either.
I’m a fan of festive typography, but they didn’t take too much of a risk in these uniforms.
Shout out to the Cavaliers and Warriors versions of these jerseys. I know they are exactly the same as the other teams, but they came out a bit more than the other teams.
… which brings us to n. 1.
2016, Festive Fountain, Part II
Granted, these aren’t much different than the 2015 versions, which didn’t quite land, but the 2016 edition is the best Christmas day jersey ever.
The festive font gives you the holiday vibes and the simplicity of the jersey made each team’s versions a hit, something we haven’t been able to say about versions from other years, making them the group’s pick.
Once again, iconic moments add to the legend of a jersey and the winner of Kyrie Irving’s game against the Warriors in the day’s marquee showdown says it all.