Paying homage to Detroit's long-standing reputation as a leading automobile center, the Pistons unveiled Wednesday a new jersey design with the words "Motor City" across the chest.
Josh Smith, Brandon Jennings, Greg Monroe, Andre Drummond and the rest of the revamped Pistons roster will wear the Motor City jerseys 10 times during the 2013-14 regular season. The jerseys are solid navy blue, boasting red numbers and trim and white lettering. The look is traditional and conservative, and not too far removed from the Pistons' usual road jerseys.
“We are pleased to unveil our new Motor City uniforms and display our pride in the metro Detroit community,” Pistons CEO Dennis Mannion said in a statement. “When you say Motor City -- no matter where you are in the world -- everyone knows you are talking about Detroit. We are proud to represent Detroit and hope these uniforms will serve as a source of pride for our fans and this region.”
The jerseys will debut on Sunday, Nov. 3 against the Celtics at the Palace of Auburn Hills. Detroit will then wear the jerseys on eight other Sunday games plus a Friday, Nov. 29 home game against the Lakers.
The Pistons' release offered these additional details on the uniform's design.
The navy blue and red uniforms feature “Motor City” across the front and mark the club’s first alternative look since the 2005-06 NBA season. The uniforms are the first of their kind, designed to celebrate the pride and character of metro Detroit while paying homage to the region’s automotive roots.
The Pistons worked in consultation with adidas and the NBA in development of the uniforms. Lettering and numbering style on the jersey is consistent with the team’s current home and away uniforms. To contrast the navy blue and red accents, lettering and numbers on the jerseys and shorts are white with hair-line red and blue trim. The club’s secondary logo appears on the shorts – similar to the primary home and away uniforms.
A shot of the back of the jersey and a schematic diagram of the design are below.
A look at the back of the Pistons' new "Motor City" uniforms. (Pistons)
A detail look at the Pistons' new "Motor City" uniforms. (Pistons)
The "City" theme is one we've seen before in the NBA, most famously with the Warriors' iconic "The City" jerseys but also with the Trail Blazers' recent "Rip City" uniforms.
(left) wears the Warriors' "The City" jersey in 2007; Brandon Roy (right) wears the Blazers' "Rip City" jersey in 2009. ( Rocky Widner and Sam Forencich/Getty Images)
Playing off of geographical or pop cultural themes with jerseys can theoretically be risky, but the Pistons played this one just about as straight as you can play it. No goofy lettering, no crazy lettering, no over-the-top logos and a nickname that does indeed have international name recognition. For a franchise that once produced the monstrosity below, this is a win.
Grant Hill models a Pistons jersey in 1997. (Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)