While the NBA in the 1990s was dominated by Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls, it also saw an influx of young talent that quickly became superstars and legends in their own right. Along with the unprecedented attention and popularity of the league at the time, the NBA brought back alternate uniforms, which led to an influx of new designs. Exciting young talent in new and unique jersey designs has created a lot of iconic jerseys to look back on.
What is the 7th most iconic jersey of all time? The Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey is the 7th most iconic jersey of all time. The ranking comes from SLAM Magazine’s “Top 75 Greatest Basketball Jerseys of All Time” list. The jersey has a black base with white vertical pinstripes, with white “Orlando” lettering and blue numbers. This jersey was identified as Mitchell and Ness as their 7th best-selling jersey of all time.
Why is Penny Hardaway iconic?
Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway burst onto the scene with the Orlando Magic, who traded for him in the 1993-1994 NBA Draft. A strong addition to the rising franchise, he helped the Magic become perennial playoff contenders, forming a dynamic duo with Shaquille O’Neal. Hardaway was traded to the Phoenix Suns in 1999, where he continued with strong play although hampered by multiple injuries. After short stints with the New York Knicks and the Miami Heat, his NBA career finished in 2007. Hardaway was a 4 time NBA All-Star and 2 time All-NBA First Team, as well as All-NBA Rookie First Team honors. He averaged 15.2 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 5 assists per game in his career.
Penny Hardaway was quite similar to his idol Magic Johnson; he had size and athleticism at the point guard position, a flair for passing, and was a great dribbler, including his signature stepback move. His ability to score 20 points or more on any given night were apparent, especially during his time with the Magic. Multiple injuries a few seasons into his career left him from completing his potential as being an all-time superstar, but those who saw his game knew he was legit. Hardaway has retained icon status as being one of the brightest talents in the 90s NBA.
Why is the 1994-1995 Penny Hardaway Orlando Magic alternate jersey iconic?
Penny Hardaway was coming off the back of a strong rookie campaign as the 1994-1995 season began. He continued with his strong form, averaging 20.9 points per game, 4.4 rebounds per game, 7.2 assists per game (a career high), and 1.7 steals per game. Helping the Magic finish to a conference-best 57-25 record, Hardaway was selected as an All Star Game starter and received All-NBA First Team honors.
The Magic marched through the first three rounds with Hardaway’s help, as he continued his strong play. In the NBA Finals against the Houston Rockets, Hardaway averaged 25.5 points, 8 assists, and 4.8 rebounds in the series, although his efforts were fruitless as the Magic were swept. But for Penny’s second year in the league, he showcased what he was able to do on the biggest stage there is, making his 1994-1995 season, and his jersey, an iconic one.
Why is the 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey iconic?
The 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey features a black base with vertical white pinstripes on both sides of the jersey. The “Orlando” lettering is white with blue outlines; notably, the “a” is replaced by a silver star. The numbers are white with blue outlines, while the collar and armpit trim are also blue and white. Prior to the 1994-1995 season, the Magic wore this as their away uniforms.
While the Magic were still a young franchise, they were making a strong push to become legitimate playoff contenders. With the superstar duo of “Penny & Shaq” and notable free agency addition of Horace Grant, the Magic finished the regular season with the best record in the Eastern Conference. The Magic continued their strong form into the playoffs, consecutively defeating the Boston Celtics, the Chicago Bulls, and the Indiana Pacers to face the Houston Rockets in the NBA Finals. Although they were outmatched and were eventually swept, the season indicated a bright future for the young Magic franchise. However, injuries and rifts between Penny and Shaq meant that the Magic were unable to reach the Finals again until 2009, making their 1994-1995 season all the more iconic.
Which other notable players wore the 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey?
Other players that wore the 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey include Shaquille O’Neal, Horace Grant, Nick Anderson, and Dennis Scott.
Who manufactured the 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey?
The 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey was manufactured by Champion. This includes the on-court (“authentic”) and fan (“replica”) versions. Currently, Mitchell and Ness makes reproductions for the 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey.
Are there other iconic Penny Hardaway jerseys?
According to SLAM Magazine’s “The Greatest Jerseys of All Time” list, the 1994-1995 Penny Hardaway Orlando Magic away jersey is also iconic; it ranks at #24. This jersey is a variation on the alternate jersey; instead, the base is blue, the numbers are white, and the collar and armpit trim is black and white.
Another iconic Penny jersey comes from the prior season, the 1993-1994 Orlando Magic home jersey. This jersey has a white base with black vertical pinstripes. The “Magic” lettering is blue with black outlines; notably, the “a” is replaced with a silver star, and similarly for the dot on the “i” albeit smaller. The numbers are black with blue outlines, and the collar and armpit trim are black and blue. The Penny Hardaway 1993-1994 Orlando Magic home jersey ranks at #42 on SLAM Magazine’s list.
Are there other iconic Orlando Magic jerseys?
According to SLAM Magazine’s list, there are a few other iconic entries belonging to the Orlando Magic. The Shaquille O’Neal version of the 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey is iconic, and ranks at #10. O’Neal’s 1993-1994 Orlando Magic home jersey also ranks at #73.
Tracy McGrady also has two entries on the list: at #25 is the 2000-2001 Orlando Magic away jersey. This jersey has a blue base with dark blue stars making up the background. The “Magic” lettering is white, and the stars that replace the “a” and the dot in the “i” are also white. The numbers are white while the collar and armpit trim are black and white. The jersey also has side panels that are black with white vertical stripes. At #60 is the Tracy McGrady 2003-2004 Orlando Magic alternate jersey; this jersey has the same features as the 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jerseys.
Sometimes, a player doesn’t need to have had a long career filled with trophies and awards to be iconic. Sometimes, what a player is able to do on the court can capture the hearts of fans; while their careers may be short or not as illustrious, fans remember them long after their NBA careers are done and dusted. Penny Hardaway was just that; a bonafide baller whose resume may have been light but his game spoke volumes. The height of his career was the 1994-1995 season, where he combined his electric play with strong team play, although he fell just short of the ultimate goal. It’s most likely the reason why the Penny Hardaway 1994-1995 Orlando Magic alternate jersey has such iconic status.