Memphis Grizzlies set to unveil ‘City’ uniforms

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 12: Ben McLemore
DENVER, CO - JANUARY 12: Ben McLemore /

After not having a Martin Luther King Day game, the Memphis Grizzlies get it back Monday afternoon. They’re also debuting slick uniforms.

The Memphis Grizzlies’ City uniforms will represent the message delivered on February 1st, 1968. Two Memphis sanitation workers were crushed to death by  malfunctioning garbage truck. Between this event, and the years of deaths due to safety violations or lack thereof, the people went to the streets of Memphis to protest. Similar to last season’s, each part of these uniforms will have a special message related to Martin Luther King Jr.


When the jersey was released, a lot of people had no idea why it was so plain, as they didn’t know the story. “It’s inspired by the slogan ‘I Am A Man’ and intended to pay remembrance and respect to the events and those individuals in 1968 who fought for social and economic justice in Memphis.”

Why Black and White?

“The black and white uniform color base was chosen to represent the protest signs directly but also remind us of the dignity being fought for and the suits many of the marchers donned.”

The Font:

“The ‘MEMPHIS’ wordmark across the chest is directly inspired by the iconic type of the ‘I Am A Man’ signs, from typeface to the underline accent, used in Memphis during the 1968 strike and protests.”

Pants design:

“The panel design uses the wordmark angles and lines to form a tall and bold ‘M’ inspired by the typeface used in the word ‘Man’ on the signs while nodding back to Memphis itself.”

Emblem on shorts:

“Although subtle, the use of Beale Blue accents nods back to location. Steps from Beale Street, adjacent to FedExForum, Clayborn Temple acted as the starting point for a number of the 1968 marches and today is the site for the new ‘I Am A Man’ Plaza opening in April, 2018.”


The moves the Memphis Grizzlies have made in the last two years has put the NBA on notice that they should always host a MLK game. The city jerseys, along with the programs, that show off how influential the city was during the civil rights movements that Dr. King led. Memphis and the Grizzlies have all gone out of their way to show that the city is more than deserving and continues to impress on MLK day. These jerseys are just another great example.

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Memphis once again will have a great day lined up for both the home team and the Los Angeles Lakers. The talk of the NBA on Monday will be the uniforms no doubt, but even bigger will be what the story is behind these black and white uniforms. The stage is yours, Memphis, show them how we celebrate the King.

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