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What Size NBA Jersey Should I Buy?

Publish Date: 19.05.2021
Fact checked by: Mike Goodpaster

If you are a big NBA fan, there’s nothing like supporting your team or favorite player by wearing their NBA Jersey. NBA jerseys are fun to wear and they look great too.

It’s easy to find jerseys online both new and used, however, NBA jerseys are not usually cheap, especially popular ones. If you are going to pay top dollar for a Steph Curry or Kawhi Leonard jersey, you want to make sure it fits properly.

So, before you make that investment in an NBA jersey, it is probably a good idea to ask yourself, what size NBA jersey should I buy?

My Personal Experience

I love NBA jerseys and have owned quite a few over the years. There’s something about the look and feel of the material, the team logo and player’s name on your back, that makes you feel special. I instantly feel like a true fan when I put it on because I know that I will get comments from friends, family and even strangers in public.

I currently have an old Indiana Pacers Reggie Miller jersey and when I wear it in Denver, I usually get comments like, “Hey, the Pacers, are you from Indiana?” or “Reggie Miller? He was a great shooter!”.

When I wear it to a Denver Nuggets game, I often get negative comments. It forces you to build a greater sense of pride for supporting your team and it can often be a great conversation starter.

The important thing is to make sure that when you buy your jersey, you get one that fits the way you like it. I have experienced the unfortunate experience of purchasing a jersey that did not fit the way I wanted and I ended up not wearing it.

So, let’s take a look at some tips on how you can figure out what size NBA jersey to buy.

How Do you Like to Wear Your Jersey?

The first thing you will need to figure out is, how, and why, you like to wear your jerseys? You could be playing basketball in your jersey or maybe you are wearing it casually, either to a game or in public.

This will determine whether your jersey should have a tight or loose fit. It is also important to remember that some jersey styles are longer than others, so if you are not tucking the jersey in, it may hang fairly low.

You should also think about what you might wear under the jersey. You may wear a t-shirt under it or possibly a hoodie in which case you may need an extra room and go for a larger size. If you are wearing it to play in a game you might not wear anything under it and you may want it tight fit so that you can maneuver and shoot better.

Example of a jersey worn three different ways. Photos by Melissa Medina

Find your Size

If you know how you like to wear your jersey, the next step is to figure out what size will fit you the way that you want. If you don’t have a jersey to compare sizes, you can always go to a store and try some on. You don’t necessarily have to purchase the jersey there, but you can at least see how they fit. Just remember the brand, the style, and the size and then you can order that same type online.

Different brands and styles within the same brand are sized differently and will not always fit the same.

Another option is to take your measurements and adjust your jersey size from there. You can measure your chest using a soft measuring tape like one tailor uses.

Take the measuring tape and wrap it all the way around your chest, just under your armpits. See the photo below for an example.

How to measure chest size. Photo by Melissa Medina

If you are worried about the length you can also measure from the top of your shoulder, down to your waist area to give you an idea of where the typical jerseys will lay on your waist or leg area. Once you have the measurements you can look at a measurement chart.

Remember, if you want a tight fit, then go with the size jersey that is closest to your measurements. If you want your jersey to be baggy, then go to the next size up. Let’s take a look at some of the measurements for some of the typical jersey brands and styles that are currently on the market.

NBA Jersey Size Chart

There are a number of different brands and styles of jerseys out there. Below is a table showing how some of them are sized.

Nike Authentic S M L XL XXL 3XL
Numeric Size 40 44 48 52 56 58
Chest (inches) 35 – 37.5 37.4 – 41 41 – 44 44 – 48.5 48.5 – 53.5 53.5 – 58
Length (inches) 29.2 30.6 31.3 32.1 32.9 33.3
Adidas Replica S M L XL XXL 3XL 4XL
Numeric Size 40 44 48 52 56 58 64
Chest (inches) 40 44 48 52 56 58 64
Front Length (inches) 31 32 33 34 35 36 37
Back Length (inches) 31 32 33 34 35 36 37
Adidas Swingman S M L XL XXL 3XL 4XL 5XL
Numeric Size 41 44 47 50 53 56 59 62
Chest (inches) 41 44 47 50 53 56 59 62
Front Length (inches) 31.75 32.875 34 35.125 36.25 37.375 38.5 39.625
Back Length (inches) 33.25 34.875 36 37.125 38.25 39.375 40.5 41.625
Adidas Authentic S M L XL XXL 3XL 4XL 5XL
Numeric Size 44 46 48 50 52 54 56 58
Chest (inches) 40.4 42.4 44.4 46.4 48.4 51.4 54.4 58.4
Front Length (inches) 36.4 37.2 37.9 38.7 39.4 40.2 42.9 43.7
Back Length (inches) 38.4 39.2 39.9 40.7 41.4 42.2 44.9 45.7
Mitchell & Ness Authentic S M L XL XXL 3XL 4XL 5XL
Numeric Size 36 40 44 48 52 56 60 64
Chest (inches) 37 – 39 41 – 43 45 – 47 49 – 51 53 – 55 57 – 59 61 – 63 65 – 67
Front Length (inches) 29.5 – 30.5 30.5 – 31.5 31.5 – 32.5 32.5 – 33.5 33.5 – 34.5 34.5 – 35.5 35.5 – 36.5 36.5 – 37.5

Vintage Jerseys

If you are like me and you like vintage jerseys, it can sometimes be hard to know how they will be sized. If you’re buying them from a seller on the internet, you can always ask them to take measurements of the jersey and send them to you. If you find a vintage jersey in a second hand or collector’s store, it is always best to try it on before you purchase it.

Additional Resources

NBA jerseys can be expensive so when you purchase one, you want to make sure you take good care of it. Check out this video on how to properly wash your NBA jersey.

If your jersey is starting to look old or get stained, you can take a look at this video on how to whiten and remove stains from jerseys.

Great Fit

NBA jerseys are a great way to show your support. Whether you like jerseys of current players or vintage NBA jerseys, you want to make sure your jersey fits correctly.

Trying on a jersey is the best way to make sure it fits correctly, but if you can’t find what you want at a store, you can take your own measurements and use the chart above to decide what size NBA jersey you should buy.

What is your favorite type of NBA jersey? We’d love to hear from you, so please leave your comments if you would like.

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