Mountain Purple and Midnight Black: Inside the Utah Jazz's jersey and logo revamp

It’s mountain time for the Utah Jazz.

Just two seasons after unveiling a new color scheme of bright yellow and black, the team is leaning back into the beloved purple, white and sky blue mountain scheme the Jazz became known for over the years.

“We know the purple pops,” Jazz governor Ryan Smith told ESPN. “It’s how a lot of people know us. It’s not simple because you have a couple other teams that have a couple other variations of purple. Making this our own has been what we’ve been working on.”

The Jazz aren’t calling this a rebrand but instead an evolution.

Either way, it’s a quick pivot away from what the team introduced heading into the 2022-23 season. Since the debut of the new jerseys and colors, Smith said the Jazz consistently surveyed the fans and researched how they were responding.

“We’ve been watching what’s been working, what’s selling, what fans and our players are wearing and what we feel is really trying to find our identity that is for us both for the past and going forward,” Smith said. “The one thing that is absolutely part of who we are is these mountains that sit within 15 miles of no matter where you live.”

According to the Utah Office of Tourism, 85% of the state’s residents live within 15 miles of the Wasatch Mountains, so reincorporating mountains into the team’s jersey designs was something Smith and the Jazz wanted to do moving forward.

“[In 2022-23] we made a pretty bold move to say, ‘Hey, let’s kind of clean the palette a little bit, what do we do?'” Smith said. “And so we went with black and yellow with purple as our city edition. I’ve stood up since the beginning and said the brand is an iterative process. It’s going to be an iteration. We are not going to be static on it.”

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Introducing the Utah Jazz’s new uniform lineup

The Utah Jazz are redesigning their image with fresh new uniforms for next season.

The team said it will take two years to completely convert to its new color schemes and uniforms. Fans and opponents alike will still see the old colors and jerseys for the first half of the 2024-25 season because the new ones won’t be ready in time for opening night.

“I think we’re moving in that direction where it’s like, ‘Hey, this is who we are.’ And if we’re aligned on it internally and we feel like our fans are with it and our players are with it,” Smith said, “then why are we going to wait?

“And we’d rather just show where we’re going and I think that’s exciting. I think people can see that they have something to wait for. I think we all love surprises, but very rarely do they launch exactly how you would. I’d just rather show everyone and say, ‘Hey, this is what we’re doing. We really are excited about mountain basketball.'”

Some of the designs will tie back to Utah’s much-celebrated city editions from 2017 to 2022 that featured a gradient style and resonated with fans.

Working with Doubleday & Cartwright, a consultancy and design firm, the organization knew it was going with purple as the primary color in the redesign but recognized something beyond standard black and white was needed to make the scheme pop. The official names of the team’s new colors: Mountain Purple, Midnight Black and Sky Blue.

The colors are a callback to the John Stockton/Karl Malone-era jerseys worn from 1996 to 2004. The blue is also a subtle callback to the Deron Williams/Carlos Boozer-era jerseys the team sported from 2004 to 2010.

“You walk outside right now and you see that blue on the mountains with the white,” Smith said. “It’s pretty similar to who we are and what you see.”

Utah will use two black statement uniforms this season: The first is one with yellow lettering that the Jazz have worn the past two seasons; then they’ll switch to a different one on Jan. 1, 2025, that features the J-note mark and number with the mountains in the background.

This will be the first time the Jazz have used their mountain scheme on a black jersey.

For their association jersey this season, Utah is sticking with the white uniform used the past two seasons with the J-note number and yellow trim. That jersey will be used throughout the 2024-25 campaign.

Next season, the yellow will no longer be part of the Jazz’s branding.

Utah’s city edition jerseys in 2024-25 will be primarily purple with the recognizable mountain in the background and white Utah lettering and the number.

In 2025-26, the team will have new primary jerseys for its icon and association editions. Both will be a take on the city editions the team wore during the 2023-24 season with the gradient mountains featured on both the top and bottom.

“We really thought about, wow, that’s a really good-looking jersey,” Smith said about last season’s city editions. “It looked good on the court, looked good on the fans and the fans loved it. It kind of checked all the boxes. So we were like with a white jersey, is there an inverse of that? And when we saw that, it’s like, holy cow, that’s incredible.”

The ones the Jazz wore this season featured a purple mountain gradient with a Utah wordmark stylized like the Jazz wordmark from the late 1990s to early 2000s.

The association edition is a white version of that uniform — one that was very popular with members of the Junior Jazz youth basketball program who tried on the uniforms for the team’s release video. The icon edition uniform will be similar in style and color, but the team will work in its new sky-blue color to top the mountain as well as trim the jersey, waist and shorts.

Utah’s primary logos will mostly stay the same. The team’s J-note will be purple and drop the “Utah Jazz” wordmark underneath for a simpler look. The “Utah” featured on the 2023-24 city editions will be used, as well.

The team also will use the J-note logo surrounded by “Utah Jazz Basketball” and an outline of the state, with basketball lines, a logo first used with the original gradient city editions from the 2017-18 season.

To help launch the new look, the team called on approximately 50 kids from the Junior Jazz program, which Smith participated in as a young Jazz fan.

The team said up to 70,000 kids participate in its Junior Jazz program throughout Utah and parts of neighboring states, making it the largest team-led youth program in the NBA.

“I’ve always come out and said if you’re betting on a state, you’re betting on youth,” Smith said. “We’re the youngest state in the country and we have 70,000 people in our youth program, which is insane.

“I think it’s really cool that they’re leading it out.”

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