Everyone seems to have an opinion on the sleeved jerseys the Cleveland Cavaliers wore to the 2016 NBA Championship. Ideas on the sleeves are as polarized as national opinion on Lebron James himself. Who knew that sleeves could send the whole internet into an uproar. People made definitive statements like, “you can’t wear sleeves in the NBA finals,” and asked important questions like, “what do these sleeves mean?” In all the buzz, it’s only natural that we should take look back at all the jerseys that led up to these controversial sleeves.
At Game Gear, we’re proud of the custom uniforms we create. Whether you’re looking for a classic appearance or something more modern and flashy, we can design high-quality team apparel that matches your desired aesthetic. Before calling our office for custom uniforms in West Valley City, Utah, join us as we explore the evolution of the Cleveland Cavaliers jerseys.
Early Uniforms: Cleveland Cavaliers Jerseys
The earliest Cleveland Cavaliers uniforms were a sight for weary eyes (we mean that in a good way). They were simple and sharp. The way a jersey ought to look. Using their classic red and gold colors, the jerseys had a Cavaliers logo across the chest, with a feather coming out of the C, spanning under the rest of the word.
For the next decade, the Cavs seemed to undergo a series identity crises. For a short time, like the jerseys of Marquette University, the Cavaliers wore horizontal colored stripes down their sides. And then in the 1980s they changed their color scheme completely, opting for a Syracuse-esque burnt orange. An odd decision, no doubt.
1990s Until Present
The 1990s fostered some of the strangest jerseys for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Most notable are the uniforms they donned between 1994 and 1999, with the blue swoosh running horizontally underneath the Cavaliers logo. Compare these jerseys alongside any other Cavs uniforms and you’ll hear the words, “identity crisis,” quietly pang about the room, spoken in the voice of an out-of-shape Shawn Kemp.
From the blue swoosh onward, you could argue that each new jersey was just another brick in the cobblestone road to the 2016 NBA championship. To those controversial sleeved jerseys that the Internet is so upset about. While we at Game Gear might have our own opinions on these jerseys, we have the utmost respect for innovation. So kudos to you, Cleveland Cavs, for doing something new and interesting.