The NBA has always been known to have a colorful array of basketball jerseys. Unlike other sports leagues, like the NFL for example, NBA teams like to mix up their uniforms, sometimes every game. Which, when there’s 82 games on the schedule, it makes sense to have more variety. With so many memorable uniforms in the history of the game, we thought it’d be fun to have a countdown of the best NBA jerseys of today, and all-time.
Of course, a list such as this is subjective and cannot be taken as fact, but it can still be an interesting walk down memory lane, while also stirring up some mixed emotions for some.
25. Denver Nuggets’ mountains belong in the top 25
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the powder blue Nuggets jerseys in the ‘Melo days, but looking back, they were nothing special. Their mountains on the other hand, were a genius idea. They wore these from 1982-93 and have worn various alterations over the years. In my mind, the Nuggets’ mountains belong on a list of cool NBA jerseys.
24. More Magical pinstripes
There have been many Magic jerseys that, to me, are great creations, but their black pinstriped jersey in the Dwight Howard heyday have earned some strong consideration to be among the greatest.
23. Dr. J made Philadelphia 76ers jerseys into stars
There’s really only one Dr. J jersey in consideration here, and it’s the Stars & Stripes edition from 1976-77. It’s an iconic and everlasting look, even to this day.
22. Sacramento Kings’ black alternates crack the list
With a great color scheme like the Kings have, most of their jerseys are hard to botch. They’ve had several strong designs, perhaps my favorite of theirs can be seen here, titled the “black script” alternates.
21. Boston Celtics’ incorporation of black into color scheme
Green with black letters or black with green numbers, they’re both absolute fire. The Celtics found some good jersey combinations during Paul Pierce’s heyday with the rest of the Big 3.
20. Charlotte Hornets pinstripes are a timeless classic
The Honeycomb City Edition uniforms also garnered some consideration, but they wouldn’t even be possible if it for the OG pinstripes. White, teal, doesn’t matter, it’s a sweet jersey.
19. Charles Barkley’s Suns were iconic
Sure, the Round Mound of Rebound never won an NBA Title, but at least the Suns had one of the better uniforms during his tenure.
18. Latest City Edition for Knicks might be among the greatest
With a color scheme featuring orange, blue and black, it’s pretty hard to mess up a jersey design. Still, give the Knicks credit for the slam dunk here.
17. Milwaukee Bucks silhouette is the team’s best
Milwaukee’s jerseys are getting better and better in the Giannis Antetokounmpo era, but they already nailed it from 1995-99, when they had the big Buck featured on the front.
16. Miami ‘White Hot’ jerseys were simple, but polished
The white hots are awesome, giving the Heat their second jersey on this list. In addition to the white-outs, the black-on-black versions are almost just as good. Meanwhile, their current ransom note City Editions are far from ideal.
15. 1996-1997 Atlanta Hawks jerseys were ahead of their time
These may not be the most remembered jerseys out there, but having that Hawk coming at opponents had to be intimidating, as if Dikembe Mutombo wasn’t enough. The Hawks wore these from 1996-97. They’ve recently busted out a yellow version for their 2021-22 City Edition uniform, which is still a really clean look in the modern day.
14. New York Knicks’ color scheme is a classic
It’s hard to argue against any of the historic NBA franchises’ color schemes. The Knicks’ orange and blue has always stood out, but there was just something about their design from 1998-2012 that popped even more.
13. Golden State Warriors’ ‘The Town’ jerseys are spectacular
Specifically, the jerseys with the yellow trim are the choice here, but the Warriors have had several clean looks over the years. It’s hard to go wrong when shopping for a new Stephen Curry jersey with so many great options, you’ll still end up with one of the best basketball jerseys in the game.
12. Indiana Pacers jerseys from 1997-2005 were on point
We’re going to call these the Reggie Millers, for that’s how they’re best remembered. How can both the blue and yellow pinstriped Pacers jerseys not be considered legendary NBA uniforms?
11. Vancouver Grizzlies’ jerseys were some of the best
The biggest shame here is not being able to see these in action for longer than just from 1995-2001. Everything about the Vancouver jerseys were done well, from the 3D font to the jersey edging and even the Grizzly on the shorts, they were awesome. Fans were thrilled to see the Memphis club bust them back out, with a twist in 2019.
10. Timberwolves’ Prince ‘Purple Rain’ editions were out of this world
Prince was a musical icon. He also happened to be a Minnesota native and a humongous basketball fan, particularly of the Timberwolves. So, in 2019 when the team decided to honor his legacy by designing uniforms that represented his adoration of purple, they instantly became one of the coolest NBA jerseys in the history of the sport.
9. Allen Iverson’s 76ers uniform was always a hit
Admittedly, I’m a sucker for a black NBA jersey, but their blue versions were just as good. Maybe it was just Allen Iverson’s swag that helped make them seem like one of those cool basketball jerseys every kid wanted to get their hands on.
8. ‘The Valley’ Suns uniforms belong in the top-10
These jerseys have grown on me. Somehow the two-bit design depicting the Arizona sunset and sunrise is just beautiful. They nailed it.
7. Utah Jazz hold claim for best mountain jerseys of all time
It’s hard to say any era was better than the rest, but there was just something different about 90s NBA jerseys. The Jazz were part of that group, and though there may not have been widespread love for the design at the time, looking back, those Jazz mountain uniforms were some of the best.
6. Los Angeles Lakers’ ‘Hollywood Night’ jerseys shine bright
There are several Lakers jerseys worthy of making such a list. The purple pinstriped kit with the black lettering and gold outline is just about as good as it gets.
5. Orlando’s pinstripes are pure Magic
The original Magic pinstripes are certainly one of the best NBA jerseys of all time, and not just because of who all wore them, from Shaquille O’Neal to Penny Hardaway and Tracy McGrady, the Magic were a good-looking bunch thanks to their stars in stripes.
4. Minnesota Timberwolves’ trees are special
Ever since the Timberwolves initially busted out the trees during the Kevin Garnett days, they had a gem on their hands. Unfortunately, they went away from them, trotting out simple layouts that look very amateur. However, the modern rendition, their “City Edition” jerseys are straight fire. Tying in the old school Wolves logo, incorporating the trees, while having a modern logo, amazing. The only mistake was not using the bright blue all around, instead of fading to a drab navy blue on the back.
3. Michael Jordan’s pinstripes with Chicago Bulls rank among best NBA jerseys
Don’t get me wrong, nearly all Bulls jerseys are a great look, but some are better than others. Many enjoy the cursive lettering from the 1984-85 season, but I’m more partial to their pinstripe edition. In my opinion, they’re probably one of the best NBA throwback jerseys to date.
2. Miami Heat ‘Miami Vice’ look stands as one of the hottest yet
For me, it’s No. 1. Well not on the list, but of all the iterations of the Vice City editions, the one in the upper left corner is their best. It’s the perfect amount of both blue and pink, while setting on a black background for an appealing look. Might be the best modern jersey in basketball. We’d love to see them somehow brought back on a permanent basis.
1. Toronto Raptors Dino jerseys rank No. 1 all-time
It’s what made the Raptors the Raptors. How can anyone not love the Dino version of Raptors jersey? To me, it’s the greatest NBA uniform of all time. Bonus points for being ahead of their time, coming up with this design in the 90s.