It’s February, which means that it’s Black History Month, and there are many ways that people are celebrating, including the NBA.
The basketball league launched their Dream BIG campaign, which featured a designed t-shirt created by Ray Allen, but now two NYC designers are taking the celebrations into their own hands. Jah Meke Rodriguez and Duane Rowe have come up with the idea to use African kente cloth in the orange areas of the New York Knicks’ uniforms.
As many teams change their uniforms during holidays to honor those in the league of different cultures, the designers have created a jersey and matching shorts that celebrated Black History Month for each team.
The duo’s mission is to “celebrate the legacy of African-Americans by having players wear these commemorative jerseys,” and each team has their own city’s tribute to a figure who contributed greatly to history. The purpose is to do something different, while also educating people.
Each one is dedicated to an iconic figure in Black History. For instance, the New York Knicks’ jerseys are dedicated to Black nationalist Marcus Garvey for the work he did in the Big Apple. The Utah Jazz’s are dedicated to jazz great Duke Ellington for his contributions to American music. The Sixers’ jerseys honor W.E.B. Dubois for his dealings in Philly.
There is currently a petition going around to try and make the change an official tradition for the NBA, which the league is open to, but it would be too late for it to begin this year.