The Brooklyn Nets are one of the most beloved franchises in the NBA. The Nets also have quite an interesting history filled with name changes, location changes, and more. Read on to learn about the Brooklyn Nets.
The Beginning Years
It all started in 1967 when the team the now the Brooklyn Nets played their very first season as the New Jersey Americans. Although they were representing New Jersey, the team played in Long Island, which led them to change their name to the New York Nets in 1969.
In their first six years as a team, they struggled to win many games; however, their luck turned around in 1973 when they recruited Julius “Dr. J” Erving. Erving led the team to a winning streak, where his Nets ultimately won the 1974 and 1976 American Basketball Association (ABA) finals.
In 1976, the ABA merged with the NBA and because the Nets were from a less established league, they had to raise $8 million just to win a position as an NBA franchise. In a crushing blow, in order to help raise the money they had to sell Erving to the Philadelphia 76ers. While the Nets had secured their spot in the NBA, they also had lost their best player and subsequently lost their first five seasons.
As the losses piled up, the Nets moved back to New Jersey in 1977 and played at the Rutgers University Stadium until they moved to their new home in the Meadowlands, New Jersey in 1981. The Nets also drafted a new rookie by the name of Buck Williams who led them to a successful 1982 season. Williams was named Rookie of the Year, and although the team didn’t make it back to the championship, they were finally winning again.
After a few strong seasons, the Nets succumbed to a five-season drought that finally came to an end after drafting Kenny Anderson, Dražen Petrović and Derrick Coleman. While the team showed great promise with their new additions, it was short lived with Petrovic’s tragic death in a car accident in 1993.
From 1967 to 1968, the New Jersey American’s logo felt all-American and featured an American Flag and a basketball.
1972 - 1981
The biggest update to the Nets’ jersey was in 1972 when they went for an all white jersey with blue and red accents resembling the flag on one side. They brought back the all block letters and numbers.
1981 - 1990
In 1981, the team elected for an all blue jersey with no real accents; however, they updated their numbers to blue and their letter to a red cursive with a white outline. This jersey only lasted one year before going back to their previous jersey.
1990 - 1997
In 1990, the Nets’ jersey went for an all blue base with red and white accents on the side and around the collar. The numbers and letters had a futuristic block feel and were all red with white outlines.
1997 - 2012
In 1997, the Nets essentially inverted their jersey to an all dark blue base with white and red accents and numbers.
2012 - Today
In 2012 when the team officially moved to Brooklyn and became the Brooklyn Nets, their jersey was updated to reflect their new black and white logo. From 2012 to now, their logo has seen minimal changes. In the Nike version, the Nets jersey remains nearly identical.