When the Atlanta Hawks welcome fans back on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, they’ll play on a special MLK City Edition court that extends the recognition of Dr. King to the main floor of State Farm Arena.
The team has already unveiled the special MLK City Edition Jersey to be worn on MLK Day as well as other select dates, and the hardwood court reflects that design (shown below). It’s part of the partnership between the estate of civil rights icon Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the National Basketball Association (NBA), the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) and Nike–the same group responsible for the uniform design.
The MLK City Edition-branded court will extend the recognition of Dr. King to the main floor of State Farm Arena. Mirroring the City Edition uniform colorway of Infinity Black, Vintage Gold and Fidelity White, the iconic MLK initials along the court’s sideline are flanked by “Freedom Stars” that represent the 22 times Dr. King was arrested fighting for equality and the dedicated student freedom fighters who engaged in sit-ins all over the South. The court features a stylized Hawks Primary Icon logo at the center, incorporating the MLK City Edition colorway along with team’s core uniform colors–Torch Red and Legacy Yellow–in a mosaic pattern reminiscent of a stained-glass motif. The name of the Hawks’ award-winning home venue, State Farm Arena is positioned at the mid-court line. The logo for Chase, the U.S. consumer and commercial banking business of JPMorgan Chase & Co and the team’s official banking partner, is prominently placed along the upper apron of the court.
The team is also launching an additional retail capsule inspired by the life and legacy of Dr. King. The Unity Collection includes items from popular sportswear brands New Era, Sportiqe and more. The centerpiece of this collection, the Homage Sweet Auburn hoodie and tee give a nod to the neighborhood where Dr. King spent much of his young life and where he preached as an adult. There is also a New Era snapback cap featuring the King Center logo alongside the Hawks logo. Additional items are expected to be added through the MLK Holiday in January.
Profits from the MLK Nike City Edition jersey sales will be donated by the Hawks to help promote economic empowerment in the Black community. To purchase the 20-21 Hawks MLK City Edition jersey and see the full Unity Collection go to hawksshop.com.
Renderings courtesy Atlanta Hawks.