For NBA fans, the crisp October air brings with it the excitement of a new basketball season. Each year starts with a handful of teams changing their on-court look, hoping that new colors will mean new results. Past successes, disappointments and oh-so-close moments are stashed away and, supposedly, a new era begins. The marketing team makes its best pitch, media day arrives and fans snatch up merchandise, eager to start a new age with their team.
But, what happens when offseason changes are subtler? The Atlanta Hawks made a dramatic change in the 2007 offseason: gone was the yellow and red combination the team had worn for nearly 40 years. In its place, a modern red, blue and silver look arrived and the team was determined to join the NBA elite with a core of young stars.
Five years later, the Hawks are looking for a new direction. After a string of playoff appearances, the post-Joe Johnson era has begun and the focus of Atlanta will be on a young team aiming to build upon past success.
The team will look to their big men – Al Horford and Josh Smith – to provide a push to the playoffs this upcoming season. Freed from the shadow of Johnson’s $119 million contract, Horford and Smith must prove to management and fans that they are the stars Atlanta needs in a tough Eastern Conference.
However, the Hawks are not the only ones looking at Smith. Adidas has stepped up their marketing around J-Smoove, giving him a starring role in the campaign for their new adiZero Ghost 2 shoes. Combined with his past appearance in the Slam Dunk Competition and a bold on-court personality, fans and marketing executives alike are hoping that Smith seizes the opportunity and becomes the face of a new Hawks team.
This isn’t to say the rest of the team will look stale. The Hawks will be of one a handful of teams to take advantage of the recent comeback of ‘90s-inspired fashion and wear a new set of throwback uniforms at some point this season. Yes, the bold gradients and in-your-face graphics of the Dikembe Mutombo era are suddenly back in the NBA. Coupled with their ATL alternates, Atlanta will have a deep closet to dig into during the 2012-13 season.
For fans, it’s a new opportunity to break out jerseys, snapback hats and gear from past glory days. Whether worn by Dominique or Pistol Pete, few teams have had as many recognizable on-court looks as the Hawks. Best of all for fans, this means more ways to mix, match and support the Hawks during the upcoming season.
Right now, get free shipping on all orders, including the adiZero Ghost 2 series, with email sign-up at RetailMeNot’s Adidas store.
Guest post written on behalf of RetailMeNot