Miami Heat players had mixed reactions Wednesday when it was announced they would be playing three games at the end of the month in pink uniforms.
Listed by the team as “laser fuchsia,” the uniforms are the latest edition of the “Vice” variety first worn by the team last season. This newest release, labeled “Sunset Vice,” will be worn for the first time on Dec. 26 at AmericanAirlines Arena.
“I mean, I like them,” center Bam Adebayo said. “We’re going to go out there and look like some cheerleaders, though. I appreciate them.”
Said forward Josh Richardson, “I mean we shouldn’t have problems turning it to the other team, we’ll be bright.”
Forward Justise Winslow said it could require an adjustment.
“Heat Nation, they’re giving people what they want,” he said. “Obviously they wanted the fuchsia, so give it to ’em. So it is what it is. They just got to out there and play.”
Several players mentioned the link between pink and breast-cancer awareness, but there is no direct tie-in with the latest uniforms, unlike the team’s annual scrimmage that directs proceeds to such research.
“I mean, if it was October, I would like the color, for breast-cancer awareness, that would be really nice,” guard Rodney McGruder said. “I don’t have a problem with it, though. It is nice. But I wish if it was for a better cause. But it is going to be a little weird. It is.”
NFL players have worn pink accents for years in October to heighten breast-cancer awareness. Unlike athletic programs that have utilized pink in condescending manners, such as the painting of opposing locker rooms in that color, the Heat’s scheme is a reflection of the South Florida palate of such hues.
“Um … wow … they’re colorful,” guard Dwyane Wade said. “It was a surprise to all of us, very different. So I kind of want to see how it looks on the court, with all of us together. We’ve only taken picture of ’em. But I’d like to see when it’s all put together.
“But it’s definitely a summer vibe. I’ll make sure I’ll get the jersey and the shorts for the summer, because I’ll be rocking ’em. So we’ll see.”
Then there is forward Udonis Haslem, known for his Mr. 305 grit and representing his hardscrabble upbringing in Miami.
“That’s not really my style. But whatever for the team, whatever for the team,” he said with a good-natured smile.
“I was a little discouraged. But I understand pink also is for breast cancer, so that’s a positive. But overall, no, pink is not my color.”
Asked if it was possible that he might come out in a black jersey while his teammates played in laser fuchsia, he laughed.
“I wish, I wish, I wish,” he said. “I don’t know. I might just get a stomach virus that day. I don’t know.”
The Heat still are scheduled to wear their “Vice Nights” black editions at home games in the interim, after the team shifted away from them in the wake of an 0-6 record in that variety. The team confirmed Wednesday that “Vice Nights” would make a return next week.
The NBA allowed the 16 teams that made last season’s playoffs to sport an additional “Earned Edition” jersey variety this season, with those editions unveiled Wednesday.
Limited quantities of the Sunset Vice jersey will be available for purchase online exclusively at TheMiamiHEATStore.com on December 19th at 10 a.m. Sunset Vice jerseys purchased online at The Miami HEAT Store will begin shipping to purchasers Dec. 26.
All other Sunset Vice merchandise, including Court Culture apparel as well as a full line of retail items, will be available for purchase both online and at all Heat Store locations on Dec. 19.
The Heat will wear the Sunset Vice uniform for the following home games:
Dec. 26 vs. Toronto Raptors
Dec. 28 vs. Cleveland Cavaliers
Dec. 30 vs. Minnesota Timberwolves
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