The Orlando Magic’s 2021 City Edition jersey appears to be on the way as the team teases an orange pinstriped uniform before the official unveiling.
About this time last year, the Orlando Magic were getting ready to debut a bold and different look for their jerseys as part of Nike’s City Edition jersey.
Players and season ticketholders gathered at the NBA Experience at Downtown Disney for the debut of the Magic’s new look.
Everyone knew the orange jersey was coming. Nobody knew what it would look like exactly. What the team got that night — besides an untimely and ominous sprained ankle from Jonathan Isaac — was an anthracite jersey with orange accents.
It was an understated look that did not upset anyone — besides extreme traditionalists who dislike the new wave of jerseys that Nike has produced for the NBA — but may not have exactly excited the fan base. The look was fine and grew on people even if it still confused the stray broadcasters encountering the Magic’s offbeat color scheme.
Along with the orange-based court the team rolled out for games they wore their City Edition jersey with, the set was solid but not spectacular. These were not the worst things the Magic had worn. And they struck a balance between different and understated — at least for trying a new color scheme.
The orange theme was clearly not going away. New NBA courts are expensive — they usually last a few years before they need to be replaced — and so the orange theme was here to stay for the Magic’s City Edition jersey. Having planned these jerseys a few years in advance, a second orange jersey was inevitable.
What we thought we might get was a flipping of the color scheme and see the team go to a full orange jersey. But that does not appear to be what is on the table.
With teams beginning to reveal their City Edition jerseys for the upcoming 2021 season, the Magic began teasing their uniforms online Monday:
UPDATE: The Magic confirmed on their Twitter account they will release the full jersey Tuesday.
Terrence Ross, probably the leakiest part of the Magic’s organization, said on a Twitch stream a few weeks ago to look forward to a white version of the Magic’s City Edition jersey. Orange is clearly still going to be used as an accent.
But from these short snippets, this does not look like a straight switch from the plain anthracite with orange lettering and accents jerseys of last year to a white version of the jersey this year.
Instead, this looks like the Magic opted to take their standard white (Association Edition) jerseys (what I dub the new-age pinstripe uniforms) and change the blue to orange. The team teases a return to pinstripes and an “original feel.”
What that “original feel” is? Well, one of the photos certainly kind of maybe looks like the Magic’s original font, making us believe to some degree this could instead be an orange version of the Magic’s beloved original pinstripe uniforms.
Most fans ask the Magic just to go back to those uniforms. But the league has rules about retired jerseys and they apparently can only bring out throwback — or “Classic Edition” — jerseys on anniversary seasons. The Magic would not be able to wear their classic pinstripe or other throwback uniforms (we see you original stars jerseys of 1999-2003) until the 2025 season.
This would be a sneaky workaround of that if the Magic end up bringing out a throwback uniform that is painted orange instead of blue and black.
Of course, we have to see it to believe it. And fans will be the ultimate judges as to whether this jersey enters the pantheon of great Magic jerseys.
For now it is safe to assume the Magic’s City Edition jersey will be a white jersey with orange pinstripes and “O-R-L” lettering. At least, that is what we are working on for now.
The only thing we know for sure is the orange is here to stay. We are eager to see the rest of it.