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The Mavs’ new Nike uniforms are more of the same

The “new” unis finally dropped, and as expected, nothing has really changed.

From the press release.

On Twitter yesterday, the Mavs teased some close up glimpses of their new Nike uniforms, letting us know that we’d see the full uniforms “soon.” Soon apparently meant this morning, but not before the NBA beat them to the punch. The NBA’s Twitter account dropped a series of photos and videos of the 2017 rookie class photo shoot earlier this morning, with Dennis Smith Jr. featured prominently in the Mavs’ new “Icon” Edition uniform (that’s the blue one for those not hip to the Nike speak).

So the Mavs went ahead and dropped the press release for the uniform “unveiling,” with a high resolution photo of DSJ in the Icon Edition in their tweet:

That is .... all the Mavericks posted about it, as of 10:00 a.m. Central Time, but their website includes a formal, flashy release with all the details.

As expected, no major changes were made to the home and road uniforms (now “Association” and “Icon” Editions), save for the changes to the cut of the jerseys and shorts present on all the Nike uniforms.

Oh did I say “no major changes?” Well... does a slightly different shade of blue count as major? Let’s take a look at the difference.

Here’s Harrison Barnes in last season’s road uniform:

NBA: Dallas Mavericks at Sacramento Kings Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

And here is the new Icon Barnes uniform, from the Mavericks’ website:

The change in the royal blue shade was announced previously, but it was hard to tell what it would look like until seeing it on the away uniforms. The difference is fairly minimal, but on first blush, I’m not really a fan. Maybe I will feel differently seeing them in action, but the previous shade of blue looks more vibrant to me. This one just doesn’t pop as much.

Otherwise, the only real difference is the cut on the back of the shoulders, and the new NBA championship patch on the neck. (Also the “wishbone” collar is gone, for those of you who are sticklers for detail.)

I actually really like the cut of the new Nike jerseys generally, but this doesn’t look great with the Mavs’ existing shoulder stripe design. I don’t at all care for the way the new “performance” seam cuts off the shoulder stripe above the name plate.

Still, these are more or less the exact same uniforms the Mavericks have been wearing since the 2010-11 season. Sorry if you were hoping for a big shake up, but there are a couple of new uniforms yet to be announced. Interestingly, the press release uses the names “Statement” and “City” Edition for the third and fourth uniforms, which to my knowledge had not been previously announced by the NBA or Nike. The original NBA and Nike press release explained that there would be two more “editions” (after Icon and Association), one “inspired by the athlete’s mindset” and the other “inspired by the community.” I don’t know why they didn’t just call them Statement and City Editions right off the bat, unless the geniuses at Nike hadn’t come up with those names yet. Regardless of what you call them, I would be absolutely shocked if the City Edition isn’t a nearly identical version of the existing navy skyline alternates the Mavs have worn the past two seasons. As for what the Statement Edition will look like, that is the truly fun mystery.

It’s been notable that the NBA teams and Nike have been making a big deal of releasing the teams’ Icon and Association uniforms, with nothing but leaks and rumors about the Statement and City Editions. And there’s still no firm announcement as to when those editions will be released. However, we now have some indication that they might not be released until sometime during the 2017-18 season:

I’m kind of dumbfounded by this possibility. “Before the conclusion of the 2017-18 season.” Seriously? Either Nike and the NBA want to draw this out to increase suspense and interest, or Nike isn’t finished designing the additional editions for all the teams. Either way, this smells fishy.

Or maybe I’m just being petulant because I want MOAR UNIFORM REVEALS NOWWW.

Anyway, there is one final point of interest to note from the Mavs’ release. Nearly all of the photographs are of Harrison Barnes’ new uniform, with a couple of DSJ unis thrown in also. Not a single one is a Dirk Nowitzki uniform. There’s no way this is coincidence. Dirk may be sticking around for another couple seasons before retirement, but the team is clearly moving to Harrison Barnes as the focal point of their marketing. Something to keep in mind as the season approaches.