Cleveland Cavaliers Uniform A Nod To The Great Lakes

Four Cleveland Cavaliers players pose in their new "city" uniforms.
The Cavaliers' new "City" uniforms [Cleveland Cavaliers]
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Each year NBA teams get a chance to design a new “city” uniform that says something about their hometown. The Cavaliers this year will be featuring the script Cleveland on the chest of their new gear.  Plus, a nod to fresh water.

The city uniform this year is blue and orange — a nod to the team’s 1990s look — and carries the script “Cleveland” wordmark that can be seen in various sites around town.

“Our players, when they saw it, they actually knew instantly what it was and that says a lot,” said Cavaliers Chief Marketing Officer Tracy Marek.

“I think people really identify with that mark. I look around our office and I see that logo all over the place just because people have their own photos in front of that sign.”

The question is can people under 30 read cursive?

“I have confidence that people under 30 will understand,” laughed Marek. “Can they actually not read it?”

Much less noticeable on the uniforms is the small orange map of the Great Lakes worn on the leg of the shorts. Lake Erie is in white.

A map of the Great Lakes and a label says "1 out of 5 Greats"  (Cleveland Cavaliers)

“Obviously were so proud of the five Great Lakes in the first place,” said Marek, “and to be sitting right on the edge of one of them is something we take a great amount of pride in and really recognizing how much those lakes mean to our region but also nationally.”  

Cleveland appears to be the only one of the five NBA teams (Milwaukee, Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, and Toronto) on the Great Lakes embracing the water.

“I think the Pistons are doing some auto concepts,” Marek said. “I believe Chicago is more connected through their city flags and the Bucks, I believe, are doing something inspired by the Mecca, which is their old arena. So those are some of our regional plays. I believe we’re the only ones using the Great Lakes and we’re excited to be the first.”  

Cavaliers floor in blue and orange

The blue wave-like design on the front of the Cavs uniforms is meant to represent Lake Erie and above a label is written “1 out of 5 Greats.”

The uniforms make their debut Tuesday night at the Q.

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