Purple Reigns in Toronto Once More

Toronto Raptors Road Uniform 1996

Twenty years later, the big purple dinosaur is coming back to Toronto Raptors basketball.

The Raptors announced yesterday that as part of their 20th season celebrations next year, the team will wear their original purple road uniforms for select home dates.

“We are excited to bring back a piece of team history as part of our 20th Anniversary celebration. Our fans have shown affection for the original purple uniform and I think our players will enjoy the chance to wear them next season.” – Masai Ujiri, Raptors President and General Manager

Toronto Raptors Purple Throwback Uniform 2014-15

Toronto originally wore the oft-ridiculed uniforms from their inaugural campaign in 1995/96 through the end of the lockout shortened 1998/99 season. While players and fans alike were embarrassed by the purple uniforms, they’ve recently experienced a resurgence of popularity… I can only imagine this is due to the fact that nobody has had to see them day-in-and-day-out for about 15 years now.

The Raptors never once made the post-season in these uniforms and only once finished higher than last place. They amassed an absolutely horrendous record of 34 wins, 114 losses in the 148 games they’ve been worn, a winning percentage of .230. But, to be fair, these were all during road games played in the first four seasons of an expansion team.

Despite the awfulness, these uniforms did actually see their fair share of talented players, they just couldn’t put together a winning season until the first season the uniforms were eliminated, coincidentally:

Tracy McGrady, Vince Carter, Marcus Camby, Charles Oakley have all worn the Raptors purple dinosaur uniform
Tracy McGrady, Vince Carter, Marcus Camby, Charles Oakley all wore the Raptors’ purple dinosaur uniform

Toronto is expected to announce more plans for their 20th season in the coming weeks, the 2014-15 season will be their last in their current brand as the club has confirmed a total re-brand will be launched for 2015-16.