The Minnesota Timberwolves today officially unveiled their Prince-inspired City Edition alternate uniforms at a media-only event at Paisley Park. It’s going to be hard for another NBA team to top how the T-Wolves unveiled it.
With a video intro shot in the style of Prince’s 1980s movie “Purple Rain”, the full two-toned purple uniform is seen for the first time modelled by several Wolves players all while “Let’s Go Crazy” plays. Probably the best uniform unveiling video I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen more than a few.
“This City Edition represents a legacy derived from the Minneapolis Sound heard through various speakers, the classic shows performed on stages around the world, and the unique and beloved personality that touched the hearts of many”, the team said. “From the different shades of purple to the bold collection of elements, this uniform recalls Prince’s influence and celebrates the intersection of music and basketball. Our team. Our Icon.”
As we saw back in October, the jersey is dark purple and includes “WOLVES” scrawled across the front in a light purple font stylized like the album cover for Prince’s Purple Rain album; a studded look is added to the top right shoulder much like the jacket Prince wears in the film.
According to Zach Lowe’s post on ESPN, the Timberwolves considered including Prince’s famous “Love” symbol on the design but were met with potential copyright issues, they instead decided to design the numbers to look similar to this graphic including the addition of smaller circles inside the 0’s, 6’s, 8’s, and 9’s. Lowe’s post also tells us Nike approached the Timberwolves with the idea of a Prince uniform before last season but the team felt it was still a little too soon after the musician’s death.
On the shorts, a two-toned purple version of the Twolves partial and alternate logos are on the side of the leg and waistband, “MPLS” in that same “Purple Rain” font on the other side. Hidden under the flap of the shorts by that MPLS graphic is a single purple and white paisley:
Prince, born and raised in Minneapolis, was reportedly a big fan of the Timberwolves and would occasionally attend games at the Target Center. Over the course of his career, he released 39 albums with 46 songs reaching the Billboard Top 100, five of those hitting the top spot. Prince died in April 2016 at his home in the Minneapolis area.
The Timberwolves will wear the uniforms six times, five at home and once at Utah in March:
November 16 vs Portland
January 11 vs Dallas
February 13 vs Houston
March 14 at Utah
March 19 vs Golden State
April 5 vs Miami
Oh, and here’s that video I mentioned earlier, full screen it and crank up the volume (where possible):