In breaking NBA uniform news, both the OKC Thunder and New York Knicks have revealed new alternate uniforms they will be wearing this season. Both teams needed something else to wear on the road, but now I just wish it was somethin' else.
As you can see above, the Thunder go the unconventional route with 'Thunder' draping the jersey vertically. They also go the unconventional route by not including any of the team's colors. I dig the concept, I dig the simplicity, I don't dig that they look more like Penn State uniforms than OKC Thunder uniforms. Where's that unique shade of blue? Why not mix in some orange and black as well?
All that said, the Knicks alternates make the Thunder's alternates a smashing hit. I normally vibe with mono-themed clothing, but not with NBA jerseys, and not with orange. Especially disappointing after their new away/home unis successfully paid homage to the 80s and 90s Knicks threads. They could have done the same here if they had simply reversed some of the colors, with the orange-based unis making for a modern twist, but they unfortunately missed the boat on that opportunity.
You can look forward to seeing these unis throughout the season, starting tonight when OKC debuts them at home. They actually have a great glimpse at the design inspirations on their site, so check that out as well.
Out of nowhere tonight, Olympic gold medalist and reigning 6th Man of the Year, James Harden was traded away from the Oklahoma City Thunder to the Houston Rockets. OKC received Kevin Martin, rookie Jeremy Lamb, two first round draft picks, and one second rounder while Cole Aldrich, Daequan Cook, and Lazar Hayward will be joining Harden in Houston.
You may be wondering why OKC would trade James Harden just days before the start of the new season? Well, after this season, Harden would become a restricted free agent and would likely get a 'max' deal from a team eager to build around the 23 year old shooting guard. This would mean large luxury tax penalties to the Thunder, who already have Durant, Westbrook, and Serge Ibaka locked up to lucrative long-term deals.
Now I'm kind of surprised that OKC still didn't play out the season and then maybe do a sign-and-trade in the offseason if they decide they don't want to pay the tax. I feel like Harden on the squad gives OKC the best chance to win the Finals this year, but that's still entirely possible with their core, plus Kev Mart and Lamb. Will be weird seeing the beard not flanking Durant and Westbrook anymore. Looks like they had some real camaraderie. We shall see though...