This pandemic hasn’t exactly given us much to celebrate, so for the Memphis Grizzlies’ upcoming season, they’ll be relishing the team’s bright future by taking a bit of a voyage into the past.
It’s no secret that Memphis has a rich music history, having the unique distinction of serving as the birthplace of everything from rock n’ roll to Three 6 Mafia. And in tapping into that lineage, on Tuesday, the Grizzlies unveiled their Memphis Soul City Edition Nike uniforms which they’ll rock during the 2020-21 NBA season.
Also, aside from celebrating the life of soul legend Isaac Hayes and the legacy of Stax Records, it sounds like the organization was very intentional in conveying the meaning behind the Soul City Edition jerseys in how they were crafted.
The uniform’s black background and vertical stripes represent the grooves in the vinyl records Stax produced, delivering Memphis soul and music to the world. The gold and turquoise colors throughout the uniform are pulled from Hayes’ 1972 Cadillac El Dorado, displayed today at the Stax Museum, and echo the gold records and legendary, international hits pouring out of Stax during the 1960s and 1970s.
The ornate “MG” pattern trimming the neckband, shorts and left side panel of the uniform, inspired by African Kente cloth, represents Hayes’ flair for fashion and voice for social activism. The vents on each side of the shorts accent the uniform with a Stax logo and Hayes’ trademark sunglasses while Hayes’ name is emblemized just above the jersey tag to represent the mark he left on the design, in Memphis and on the music industry.
Of course, the fact that they look dope doesn’t hurt either.
The Grizzlies intend to wear the Soul City Edition jerseys about 10 times next season, and in speaking to The Undefeated, Isaac Hayes III appreciates the love the team has for his father.
“It means a lot that a relevant team like the Grizzlies in his hometown of Memphis decided to honor him in this way,” Hayes III said. “[W]e can’t wait to see [the uniforms] in person. [...] They captured the soul and the energy and the flair of Isaac Hayes.”
Check the Grizzlies new jerseys below and hit up their website for more info.