Denver Nuggets Logo

Denver Nuggets LogoDenver Nuggets Logo PNG

The image of the Denver basketball club, founded in 1967, is a tribute to the history of the state and the club itself. The logo and name Denver Nuggets symbolize a connection to the “Gold Rush” era. The modern style marks the transition to a new stage of development.

Denver Nuggets: Brand overview

Founder:Kroenke Sports & Entertainment
Denver, Colorado, U,S

In 1967, the Denver Nuggets club was founded in Denver, Colorado. Initially, the team was called the Denver Rockets and competed in the ABA (American Basketball Association).

The Nuggets managed to stay in the NBA after the ABA-NBA merger. Soon, the team was disbanded, and the Silver State was left without a basketball event for many years.

In 1967, a group of businessmen led by James Trindle negotiated with George Mikan (the newly appointed ABA commissioner) to revive the team in Denver under the ambiguous name “Denver Larks.” Due to financial issues, Trindle had to sell 2/3 of the shares to Bill Ringsby, owner of the large transportation company Rocket Truck Lines.

Becoming the majority shareholder, Ringsby initiated changes in the team’s name. Thus, the funny “Larks” were replaced with the threatening “Rockets.” Over seven years of existence, the “Denver Rockets” made it to the playoffs five times but never became champions.

In 1972, the club again had new owners. The ABA-NBA merger was accelerating, and under its terms, there couldn’t be clubs with the same name in the future Association. Since the “Houston Rockets” were already playing in the NBA, “Denver” had to change its name again. The team didn’t do anything special: the resurrected “Denver Nuggets” entered the 1974/75 season.

The team’s name is a nod to the 1850s, a time when gold deposits were found in Colorado. Colorado is known worldwide as the most coveted place for every gold prospector. In the mid-19th century, crowds of settlers rushed there, hoping to get rich quickly. The Gold Rush became one of the reasons for the formation of the state of Colorado. Hence, the Nuggets, the team’s nickname, is derived from “Gold Nuggets.”

The team’s mascot is Rocky, the mountain lion.

Meaning and History

Denver Nuggets Logo History

The franchise has had a long career and an incredibly rich history with numerous logos and color changes. Formed about half a century ago, it always experimented with symbolism, which evolved from a simple sign to a profound print. Over its existence, the Denver Nuggets team has had nine logos.

What is Denver Nuggets?

Denver Nuggets is a National Basketball Association club that has been playing home games at the Ball Arena since 1976 and is owned by Ann Walton Kroenke. The club was founded in 1967 as a franchise of the American Basketball Association. Its original name, “Denver Rockets,” lasted until 1974, when the owners decided to rebrand.

1968 – 1971

Denver Rockets Logo 1968-1971

In 1968, the team’s logo was first presented to the public. It was designed by Bill Ringsby specifically for the team. The earliest version dates back to the club’s formative period. The emblem is a classic rondel with an orange basketball in the center. “Ringsby System” (bottom) and “Denver” (top) are written on a white strip. The lower part of the text refers to Bill Ringsby’s shipping company, the franchise’s owner, and the upper part to its location. Across the circle, in a long rectangle, is the word “Rockets,” the club’s old name.

1972 – 1974

Denver Rockets Logo 1972-1974

A year after its foundation, the team’s management decided to link the logo closely with its name. As a result, a rocket running with a basketball against a mountainous backdrop appeared. The franchise’s name is depicted at the top and bottom of the round logo.

1974 – 1976

Denver Nuggets Logo 1974-1976

The Denver basketball team completely changed its concept. Instead of “Denver Rockets,” there were “Denver Nuggets.” After the club was renamed “Denver Nuggets,” designers used the image of prospector Maxie. The red, blue, and white character was Yukon Cornelius, the explorer. He has a cheerful disposition: he joyfully shouts and jumps, holding a pickaxe in one hand and a small ball in the other. The new team name is located around the prospector. A thin blue line surrounds all elements.

1976 – 1981

Denver Nuggets Logo 1976-1981

After the redesign, the emblem remained the same, except for the circle: the developers removed it. They also darkened the colors, blackened the mouth of prospector Maxie, highlighted the letter “D” on his cap, and removed the acronym from the ball.

1982 – 1993

Denver Nuggets Logo 1982-1993

In 1982, the most colorful new logo in the club’s history was approved. It features a semicircle with rainbow lines and houses made of multicolored squares against a backdrop of snow-white mountains. The logo represents the horizon of the so-called “rainbow city.” Artists conveyed the diversity of gems. Below is the inscription “Denver Nuggets,” stylized as an ornament.

1994 – 2003

Denver Nuggets Logo 1994-2003

Another redesign started the era of emblems with a lone mountain peak and the very large word “Nuggets.” The first part of the sports club’s name, “Denver,” is placed above the mountain peak in a semicircle shape.

2004 – 2008

Denver Nuggets Logo 2004-2008

In 2004, designers made minor adjustments to the color scheme. They lightened the colors, replaced the red background with blue in the central rectangle, and made “Nuggets” golden.

2009 – 2018

Denver Nuggets Logo 2009-2018

The previous emblem was entirely preserved. Only the color of the word “Nuggets” was intensified, making it bright.

2019 – today

Denver Nuggets Logo 2019-Present

Since 2019, the logo has been adorned with two golden picks. They are crossed in the center and occupy almost the entire middle. Between them, in the upper part, mountain peaks are visible as if illuminated by the sun. Below, under the handles, is a basketball that looks like a globe. This effect is created by lines very similar to meridians and parallels. A thin red line encircles all central elements. A wide stripe with the inscription “Denver Nuggets” follows it. Stars are placed between the top and bottom words. The logo is surrounded by a double frame along the outer edge.

Denver Nuggets: Interesting Facts

The Denver Nuggets are a basketball team from Denver, Colorado, and they’ve done some pretty cool things in the NBA. Here’s what makes them special:

  1. How They Started: The team first came around in 1967 as the Denver Larks, then became the Denver Rockets, and finally, the Denver Nuggets in 1974. The name “Nuggets” comes from the old days when people would search for gold in Colorado.
  2. Moving to the NBA: In 1976, the Nuggets joined the NBA along with three other teams. Since then, they’ve been doing well, getting into the playoffs many times.
  3. A Record Game: On December 13, 1983, they played in the highest-scoring NBA game ever! It was against the Detroit Pistons and ended 186-184, but the Nuggets lost after three overtimes.
  4. Their Mascot, Rocky: Rocky the Mountain Lion, is the team’s mascot. He’s known for his fun dunks and tricks during games and has even won awards.
  5. Cool Jerseys: In the 1980s and 1990s, they wore “Rainbow Skyline” jerseys, which featured a city skyline with mountains and a rainbow. People liked these.
  6. Playing High Up: The Nuggets’ stadium is in Denver, which is high up. This can make it tough for visiting teams because the air is thinner and harder to breathe.
  7. Famous Players: Some big names have played for the Nuggets, like Alex English, Dikembe Mutombo, and Carmelo Anthony. Recently, Nikola Jokić has been the star, winning the MVP award for the 2020-2021 season, the first in the team’s history to do so, and then again in 2021-2022.
  8. Helping Out: The team does much for the community with its “Nuggets for Good” program, helping with sports, education, and health.
  9. Players from Everywhere: The Nuggets have players from around the world, like Nikola Jokić from Serbia, showing how basketball is loved globally.

These things make the Denver Nuggets a unique and important part of the history of the NBA.

Font and Colors

Denver Nuggets Emblem

The current version is a classic font with a central part and several borders. Earlier versions overlaid on older team names. They share the word “Denver,” used in an extended form or as an initial letter.

Denver Nuggets Symbol

Depending on the release time of the emblems, the inscriptions had different characters. They were grotesque, elongated, serif, ornamental, classical, arched. One of the logos was written in the Aachen Bold font by Colin Brignall.

The franchise’s official palette includes gold and two shades of blue (dark and light). White plays a supportive role. Previously, red, purple, and beige were also used. The most colorful version contains all the colors of the rainbow.

Denver Nuggets color codes

Midnight BlueHex color:#0e2240
RGB:13 34 64
CMYK:98 64 46 54
Pantone:PMS 289 C
Sunshine YellowHex color:#fec524
RGB:255 198 39
CMYK:0 24 91 0
Pantone:PMS 123 C
Flatirons RedHex color:#8b2131
RGB:139 35 50
CMYK:29 96 76 29
Pantone:PMS 282 C
Skyline BlueHex color:#244289
RGB:30 66 138
CMYK:100 86 15 3
Pantone:PMS 7687 C


What does the Denver Nuggets logo signify?

The symbols depicted on the team’s emblem reflect its name. This concerns the two crossed picks and the mountain peak associated with the mining boom. As known, many people went to Colorado in the previous century to find silver or gold. The basketball is dedicated to the Denver Nuggets sports team. The two five-pointed stars look like real celestial bodies thanks to the different lengths of the rays.

Why are the “Denver Nuggets” called “Nuggets”?

The Denver NBA franchise was named after the nuggets that prospectors tried to find in Colorado’s central mining region in the 19th century. It’s worth noting that there was already a team with a similar name in the league, but it only lasted a short time: from 1949 to 1950.

Is “Denver Nuggets” an actual NBA team?

Yes, there is indeed a “Denver Nuggets” team in the National Basketball Association. More precisely, this club is part of the Northwest Division of the Western Conference.

When did the “Denver Nuggets” change their logo?

The “Denver Nuggets” club has changed its logo several times: in 1972 (still as “Denver Rockets”), 1974, 1976, 1982, 1994, 2004, 2009, and 2019. The current logo was adopted in 2019 and is used to this day. This marked the basketball team’s transition to a new stage of development.