Ranking the NBA City Edition jerseys: One team (not the Lakers) will wear a work of art

The NBA and Nike unveiled their 2022-23 City Edition jerseys on Nov. 10.
(Nike / NBA)

The NBA and Nike really ask a lot of their jerseys.

According to a news release Thursday to go along with the unveiling of the 2022-23 City Edition uniforms, those items of clothing are expected to:

— “Represent the stories, history and heritage that make each NBA franchise unique;”

— Honor “the bonds between court, community and culture;”

— “Help break down barriers;”

— “Bring people together;”

— “Build community;”

Lakers’ LeBron James exited during the fourth quarter against the Clippers with left leg soreness and will undergo imaging on the injury Thursday.

Nov. 9, 2022

— “And expand sport for a new generation.”

Wow. That’s a lot of pressure to place on some cloth and thread.

But most NBA fans probably don’t think about that stuff too much when they pluck down their cash for a jersey — they just want to support their teams and look good doing it. And that’s the spirit of this list — ranking the unis from worst to best based solely on the eyeball test, with no thought given to the background of the design, team history or whatever.


Some teams really went all out and produced some fun, thoughtful, unique, fashionable outfits any player or fan would be psyched to wear. Others tried to do some of those things and failed to varying degrees. And some teams clearly had better things to do with their time.

Here’s how they rank (the Utah Jazz do not have a City Edition uniform; all quotes are from the Nike/NBA news release):


29. Lakers

Lakers 2022-23 City Edition jersey
(Nike / NBA)

“Los Angeles is a city where artists know how to transform a blank page into a world of possibility — and that’s the spirit behind this year’s Lakers Nike NBA City Edition uniform.

“Rather than including details that tell a story, the uniform has been intentionally stripped back to its most simple design. So unlike in years past, the uniform is not the story — it’s a vehicle to tell the stories behind individual Changemakers around Los Angeles.”


LOL. Sounds like someone forgot their art project was due today ...


28. Orlando Magic

So apparently if you squint really hard and place your nose right up on the chest of someone wearing this apparently black jersey, you will see “a metallic gray accent, evoking a suit of armor.” Way too much work.


27. Milwaukee Bucks

The Bucks have one of the NBA’s best logos. Use it!

What we learned from the Lakers-Clippers game Wednesday: Darvin Ham will not be frustrated, LeBron James wants more fouls calls, Troy Brown looks solid.

Nov. 10, 2022


26. Washington Wizards

Another one that requires too much work to see anything unique about it (in this case, some cherry blossoms).


25. Chicago Bulls

Supposedly, the city’s Municipal “Y” symbol has been worked into this design. But this is an eyeball test, and the only thing these eyeballs see is a boring Bulls jersey.


24. Philadelphia 76ers

Philadelphia 76ers 2022-23 City Edition jersey
(Nike / NBA)


Cool idea, but “City of Brotherly Love” is a bit long to fit neatly onto a jersey.


23. San Antonio Spurs

They tried. They really, really did. On this list, that counts for something.


22. Oklahoma City Thunder

Nothing fancy, but nice.


21. Denver Nuggets

Nice, but nothing fancy.

The Rev. Al Sharpton, who was accused of antisemitism in the 1990s, said it’s important to hold Nets star Kyrie Irving and others accountable.

Nov. 9, 2022


20. Boston Celtics

Tidy tribute to Bill Russell.


19. New York Knicks



18. Memphis Grizzlies

Memphis Grizzlies 2022-23 City Edition jersey
(Nike / NBA)

Even snazzier.


17. Indiana Pacers

A wearable conversation piece.


16. Portland Trail Blazers

Basically a sleeveless soccer jersey. There’s probably a market for that.


15. Cleveland Cavaliers

Cleveland Cavaliers 2022-23 City Edition jersey
(Nike / NBA)

Why is this so high on the list? “THE LAND”

Why is this so low on the list? “THE LAND”


14. Houston Rockets

“Bringing back last year’s design, this year’s Houston Rockets Nike NBA City Edition uniform reminds Rockets fans of the rich history of the franchise while pushing the team into the future.”

In other words, “we forgot too.”


13. Minnesota Timberwolves

Every jersey will have a unique color pattern. Cool idea.


12. Toronto Raptors

Simple but classic.

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Nov. 9, 2022


11. Charlotte Hornets

“CLT” obiously stands for Cool-Looking Threads.


10. Brooklyn Nets

The Jean-Michel Basquiat style always works, although maybe a little harder to see this time.


9. Detroit Pistons

A tribute to rapper Big Sean, just a nice-looking jersey.


8. Atlanta Hawks

Atlanta Hawks 2022-23 City Edition jersey
(Nike / NBA)



7. Dallas Mavericks



6. New Orleans Pelicans

Mardi Gras colors make these extra festive.


5. Miami Heat

Always loved this look. And even more fun — fans can customize their jerseys with 12,656 (!!!) possible font combinations.


4. Sacramento Kings

First time the Kings have had gray unis — very slick.


3. Phoenix Suns

Phoenix Suns 2022-23 City Edition jersey
(Nike / NBA)

Great, clean look. Love it.


2. Clippers

Clippers 2022-23 City Edition jersey
(Nike / NBA)


Now this L.A. team actually tried. So many nice touches, including nods to Drew League basketball and the Watts Towers.


1. Golden State Warriors

Golden State Warriors 2022-23 City Edition jersey
(Nike / NBA)

A work of art by Bay Area artist Allison Hueman. The rose is said to represent “women who change the game and lead fearlessly.” Just spectacular.