A new season means a new look for the men of the NBA—fresh uniforms. adidas has introduced the Revolution 30 collection, gear that is 30 percent lighter and dries twice as quickly as the old uniforms. The company's innovative Formotion technology makes the jersey more form-fitting to optimize each player's natural movement.
Former NBA star Bill Walton checks out the new adidas uniform on Atlanta's Josh Smith.
Up until the 1970s, the NBA jerseys were made out of a polyester material. The shorts were made of satin, and some even had zippers! Players wore the same jersey every game, so durability and practicality were the focal points—a one-size-fits-all mentality. Later in the '80s, mesh-like uniforms with a cotton/polyester blend were introduced for more breathability, and the satin shorts were phased out. By the early '90s, shorts were (thankfully) longer and looser, and the NBA’s uniform partners started to offer different sizes and custom options.
NBA veteran Bill Walton described his early jerseys as a “badge of honor.” Today's jerseys, he said, are more of “a working tool and an advantage.”
Although the benefits of the new uniforms are clear, the jerseys will actually look pretty much the same. “I’d rather play good than look good,” says Hawks forward Josh Smith. “When I’m out there sweating and working hard, it helps the process.”