The Cleveland Cavaliers debuted their new jerseys for the upcoming 2022-23 season on Monday. With the release, Cleveland elected to keep things simple, a direction many NBA teams seem to be headed these days. Prior to the Cavs, the Utah Jazz most recently unveiled new jerseys, ones that also embrace minimalist concepts. Fortunately for Cleveland, its jerseys are much better than Utah’s.
As for a power ranking of these kits, the white ones strike me as the clear winner. The wine pops on the white backdrop, while the hints of gold in the Nike Swoosh are elegant complements. The V serving as a net with a ball dropping in is a snazzy touch, drawing back to their classic look from the 90s but with a cleaner look. The lone downside is the sponsorship lettering being blue and green. It sticks out like a sore thumb once you notice.
The wine and red jersey is, like, fine? It feels incomplete, though. It’s too simple. It needs more to beat the Summer League Jersey Allegations. The white jersey rules because of the aforementioned details. This wine one is lacking those subtle, creative intricacies. There’s room for growth here.
Lastly, the black jersey with the massive Cavaliers C stamped across the chest isn’t doing it for me. I don’t love that logo in general, let alone as the centerpiece of a uniform. Black and gold is typically a rather challenging color combination to botch, but I think that’s what transpired here. They’re clearly paying homage to the sleeved unis they wore en route to their 2016 championship, but they didn’t look great then when they were winning titles in them and still don’t look great now.
Despite these milquetoast kits, the team donning them next season should be quite enjoyable, which always trumps the aesthetics of any jerseys. Darius Garland and Jarrett Allen emerged as stars last season, snagging their inaugural All-Star team appearances. Evan Mobley delighted en route to a runner-up Rookie of the Year finish and stardom is a matter of when, not if, for him.
Collin Sexton and Ricky Rubio will be back after suffering season-ending injuries before the turn of the calendar. Their returns will bolster a previously depleted ball-handling unit. Lauri Markkanen found his niche as a versatile on-ball wing defender who launches spot-up triples. Isaac Okoro displayed signs of growth. There’s a whole lot to be excited about with this club that stretches well beyond its new, nifty white jerseys.