Suns plan Arizona Tribal Nation uniforms, give insights on Aztec jerseys

Aug 26, 2021, 2:22 PM

Photos courtesy Phoenix Suns...

Photos courtesy Phoenix Suns

The Phoenix Suns gave additional insight regarding their Aztec uniform concept Thursday and revealed plans for another alternate uniform in the works for 2022-23 that would honor Native American communities indigenous to Arizona.

“… We’re excited to introduce a uniform honoring the Tribal Nations of Arizona for the 2022-23 season,” the team wrote after revealing the Aztec jersey created to honor people of Mexican heritage. “More to come.”

As far the purple and black Aztec uniform concept released by the team Wednesday, the team on Thursday addressed two particular criticisms or questions about the designs.

The team said in its concept release that the Aztec concept is “a tribute to early ancestors of The Valley, our Mexican and Mexican-American fans, and the warrior spirit we bring to battle every day.”

The jerseys feature the Aztec sun stone on the front of the jersey and the Aztec death stone on the back. The shorts feature armor depicting a jaguar.

The first concern over those jerseys that the Suns addressed was about the proximity of Aztecs to Arizona.

“Some sources trace the origins of Aztlan, the ancestral home of the Aztec people, to modern day Arizona before migrating south,” the Suns said on Twitter. “While research is ongoing, we wanted to create an open dialogue with our fans surround this uniform concept.”

The Suns also addressed whether they had sought out cultural permission to use Aztec symbols on their uniforms. The team said select members of the Mexican government along with two organizations within the state of Arizona gave feedback to the team.

“We pursued insight on the designs and historical ties with the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Arizona Latino Arts and Cultural Center and received positive feedback all around,” the team said in a tweet.

The Suns added that community feedback surrounding the concept was important in the third tweet announcing plans for another uniform to represent indigenous communities in the state.

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