The Houston Rockets blasted us off into the 2019-20 season this morning (a little early with the 2019 NBA Finals still going on and on, and on…), with the unveiling of their new “Global Logo” as well as setting a date for us all to see their new uniforms.
Replacing the Rockets’ very horizontal wordmark-heavy logo in use since 2003-04, the new logo places their familiar “R” mark on a graphite basketball, a ring around the ball incorporates the team name while also suggesting that we’re actually looking at a giant basketball planet.
Houston has been referring to this logo as a secondary logo in their social media posts and on the official team store — it looks like, however, it’ll be classified by the NBA officially as their Global Logo. The logo it’s replacing was also known as the “global logo”.
We also learned today that the Rockets will be unveiling a new uniform set on June 20th. No details released by the team but rumours have swirled suggesting we’ll at least see a new Association (home) and Icon (road) uniform — the Association will be white (by league rule), the Icon is reportedly red. I’ve been told the designs for these two jerseys will be quite simple and straight-forward, and that they are not a throwback to any previous team uniform.
The Rockets, like many teams in the league, have set another logo as their “preferred primary mark”, in this case, the “R” on its own.
NBA’s logo classification system is in its own world, but I’ll try to explain it. Every NBA team has the option of setting two primary logos — one intended for use domestically (“primary icon”) and one for use internationally (“global logo”). The global logo must include the full name of the team.
Each of these teams can then choose any of the logos in their existing set to be used as their “preferred primary mark”, and this could be any of their team logos — whether it’s an alternate, secondary, primary, or global. For visual reference, here’s what each of the NBA’s 30 teams currently have set as their preferred primary mark:
As this is a website available to the world, I made a decision a few seasons ago to classify each team’s “global logo” as their traditional primary logo and will do the same with Houston.
It’s a mixed bag.
At 16 seasons, the “R” wordmark logo was the second-longest tenured “primary/global” logo in team history; the back-to-back championship logo which debuted in 1972-73 still reigns, it was in use for 23 seasons.