Will Charlotte Hornets’ New Uniforms Harken Back to Original Design?

Pinstripes and pleats from the 1980s?

The Charlotte Hornets told fans in an email Friday the team will unveil new uniform designs Monday. The NBA is switching uniform makers for next season, from Adidas to Nike.

The changes could be as simple as adding a “Jumpman” logo patch, as it was previously announced the Hornets would be associated with Jordan Brand, a Nike division built around the marketing power for team owner Michael Jordan.

A remaining question – and it’s unclear if this will be resolved Monday — is if the Hornets will be one of eight NBA teams allowed to wear “Classic Edition” uniforms as an alternate next season. That could make way for a version of the original look clothing designer Alexander Julian created before the Hornets debuted in Charlotte in 1988.

Those uniforms – teal-and-purple with pinstripes and pleated shorts – were among the most popular in the NBA for years. There has been chatter on the Internet – including pictures purporting to be a new pinstripes-laden design with a “Jumpman” patch – that would suggest the Hornets might be one of the franchises granted the “Classic Edition” option.

Julian recently contacted the Observer, saying he’d volunteer to update those uniforms if the Hornets and NBA desired. Julian also played a hand in designing the North Carolina Tar Heels’ argyle uniform look, and Jordan was consulted on that design.

The NBA is making some uniform-rule revisions, with the switch from Adidas to Nike. Teams will no longer be asked to wear white for home games. Instead, the home team can decide game-to-game which uniform to wear. The Hornets have previously worn white primarily at home, purple primarily on the road and teal as an alternate look.

Bonnell: 704-358-5129: @rick_bonnell

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