NBA City Edition Jerseys: Northwest Division


Nearly midway through the 2017-18 season, the Northwest Division is red hot. The Minnesota Timberwolves, Oklahoma City Thunder, Portland Trail Blazers, and Denver Nuggets each hold a top 8 seed in the conference, while the Utah Jazz remain competitive for a playoff spot as well. Let’s take a look at the region-specific cultures Nike’s City Edition jerseys celebrate within this thriving group of teams.

Mile High Jerseys



These special Denver jerseys are not drastically different from the team’s other jersey choices. The Nuggets already have jerseys that are primarily navy with accents of gold and blue, but these jerseys replace the Nuggets’ team name across the chest with a mountain and two crossed axes. These images symbolize Denver’s nickname, Mile High City, which was given due to the city’s altitude of roughly a mile above sea level.

Sheep in Wolf’s Clothing



Nike chose to go with gray for these Minnesota jerseys to mimic the shade of fur on a real-life wolf. Fans may hope Karl Anthony-Towns and the Timberwolves’ game mirrors the ferociousness of these animals on the court as well.

Thunder and Lightning



The Portland Trail Blazers’ City Edition jerseys are jam-packed with local sports history. The plaid pattern was selected to honor the late Blazers coach Dr. Jack Ramsay, who was known for his signature plaid suits. The torso proudly displays a “rip city” logo, which is now the mantra of Portland sports team. This phrase originated in the Blazers’ 1970-71 inaugural season, as the then play-by-play announcer, Bill Schonely, excitedly yelled the phrase during a live game broadcast.

Jazzy Jersey



Utah’s city jerseys feature strips of warm colors, slowly darkening from the top down. Nike chose such a distinct pattern to represent the breathtaking red rock formations and canyons within the state.

Best of the West

The teams of the Northwestern Division have played a stellar first half of the 2017-18 season. Even if a couple of these squads tail off toward the end of the season, these jerseys will be going strong for years to come. Join the players in celebrating Northwestern pride and get your official Nike City Edition jerseys from Fanatics.



The Beginners Guide to #NBA: Become a Fanatic Overnight: National Basketball Association


Guide to Becoming an NBA Fanatic

When you hear friends shout the phrases “check,” “brick,” or “from downtown” at the televisions, they’re celebrating the game of basketball. We don’t want you to miss out on enjoying all of the action! Our Guide to Becoming an NBA Fanatic will transform you from rookie to All-Star overnight, and leave you ready to tell others about the difference between a field goal and a 3-point play.


Thirty teams across the U.S. (and Canada!) make up the National Basketball Association, better known as the NBA. There are the Eastern and Western conferences, each containing 15 teams; there are three divisions in each conference (six in total). The Atlantic, Central, and Southeast divisions make up the Eastern Conference, and the Southwest, Northwest, and Pacific divisions make up the Western Conference. This format is helpful when coordinating a team’s schedule throughout the 82-game season.

Shot Clock Violation

Each NBA game takes place over 48 minutes, divided into four quarters. After the first two quarters, there is a “halftime” break. At the end of regulation (four quarters), the team with the highest number of points wins the game. If both teams are tied, a five-minute overtime begins. If there is still a tie, the teams continue playing until an overtime period ends with one team ahead of the other in points.

During each game, the clock can stop for many reasons: when a player passes the ball or steps out of bounds, when a foul is committed against another player (rule violation), when a coach or player calls for a timeout, or when a team scores.

Dribbling Down the Court

Each team places five players on the court at a time. While a player may have a specific position based on physical attributes and style of play, there is no requirement for a set number of positions to be present on the floor. For the five positions, each is commonly equated with a corresponding number:

  • Point Guard (PG): 1
  • Shooting Guard (SG): 2
  • Small Forward (SF): 3
  • Power Forward (PF): 4
  • Center (C): 5

If you’re trying to associate the names of players you’ve overheard with these positions, here are a few examples of current key ballers:

  • Point Guard: Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers; Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
  • Shooting Guard: James Harden, Houston Rockets; Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors
  • Small Forward: Paul George, Indiana Pacers; Carmelo Anthony, New York Knicks
  • Power Forward: LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers; Blake Griffin, LA Clippers
  • Center: Al Horford, Boston Celtics; Dwight Howard, Atlanta Hawks

During the game, any of the team’s five players on the court may be substituted with another player on the bench. Rotating players in and out of the game can be a strategy – with coaches sometimes looking to match up a type of player against another (for instance, a speedy playmaker versus a strong and tall defender), or just to give their player a break after a long stretch.


Mo’ Buckets

There are two phases of the game – offense and defense. These are very fluid in basketball and are interchangeable within seconds. Each team is able to score either one, two, or three points per shot.

  • 1 point: Free throws, awarded after a player is fouled in the act of shooting
  • 2 points: Any shot made inside the 3-point line
  • 3 points: Distance shots made anywhere from 22 to 23.75 feet away from the basket (they earn an extra point over a regular shot due to the skill and accuracy required)

Must-See Teams and Players

So now you’re ready to hop on the court and start making threes, but hold on – let’s leave that to the professionals. You need to choose a team with exciting players to follow, and we have a few recommendations:

  • Cleveland Cavaliers: Fresh off of winning the 2016 NBA Championship, the state of Ohio and the city of Cleveland are back on top. They are led by one of the best players of the past decade, LeBron James, and the supporting cast is worth watching every time they take the court. Here’s the big question: Will they become repeat champions next season?
  • Golden State Warriors:  the Golden State Warriors, minutes shy of winning back-to-back NBA Championships, are one of the most exciting teams to watch. Steph Curry, the league’s MVP for the last two seasons, leads a team of All-Stars. Another All-Star, Kevin Durant, just made the switch to “Splash City” from the Oklahoma City Thunder.
  • Minnesota Timberwolves: Led by Karl-Anthony Towns, the 2016 Rookie of the Year, and Andrew Wiggins, the 2015 Rookie of the Year, this young, scrappy team looks to take the next step in the 2016-2017 season with a new coach. The Eastern Conference might be in for a major surprise, courtesy of the T-Wolves.

Final Shot

If you’re watching your first full NBA game, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Each team puts five players on the court.
  • They can score one, two, or three points for a shot.
  • Don’t be surprised if the Cleveland Cavaliers or the Golden State Warriors make it back to the NBA Finals next year; they’re loaded with talent and built to compete for it.
  • And get the best officially licensed NBA apparel and merchandise from to cheer on your team.