Most Recent Sports Illustrated Cover for Each NBA Team

If appearing on the cover of Sports Illustrated is some indication of national relevance, than it’s easy to understand why the Cleveland Cavaliers & Golden State Warriors are the most recent NBA teams to appear there, and also why it’s been a very long time since some other NBA teams have been featured on the cover.

It’s not necessarily a cover specifically about a team. Like in the last one about the Boston Celtics (2011), it’s simply a Celtics player (Rajon Rondo) on the cover during a game against the Los Angeles Lakers.

There are 31 covers here, not 30, because the Seattle Supersonics, a franchise that turned into the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2008, gets a cover, back from 1996, the last time they made the NBA finals (losing to the Bulls and Jordan).

And it’s incredible how long it’s been since anyone really cared about the Milwaukee Bucks.

Golden State Warriors & Cleveland Cavaliers (June 1)

Warriors Cover

Cavaliers Cover

Oklahoma City Thunder (April 6)

Thunder Cover

Houston Rockets, Chicago Bulls (February 23)

Rockets Cover

Bulls Cover

New Orleans Pelicans (December 8, 2014)

Pelicans Cover

Los Angeles Lakers (August 25, 2014)

Lakers Cover

San Antonio Spurs (June 23, 2014)

Spurs Cover

Brooklyn Nets (October 28, 2013)

Nets Cover

Miami Heat (June 1, 2013)

Heat Cover

Memphis Grizzlies (May 20, 2013)

Grizzlies Cover

New York Knicks (February 27, 2012)

Knicks Cover

Los Angeles Clippers (December 5, 2011)

Clippers Cover

Dallas Mavericks (June 20, 2011)


Mavericks Cover

Boston Celtics (February 21, 2011)

Celtics Cover

Orlando Magic (April 20, 2009)

Magic Cover

Philadelphia 76ers (October 27, 2008)

76ers cover

Phoenix Suns (April 23, 2007)

Suns Cover

Denver Nuggets (October 23, 2006)

Nuggets Cover

Indiana Pacers (October 24, 2005)

Pacers Cover

Detroit Pistons (May 9, 2005)

Detroit Pistons

Minnesota Timberwolves (May 31, 2004)

Timberwolves Cover

Washington Wizards (February 17, 2003)

Wizards Cover

Charlotte Hornets, the old version (May 21, 2001)

Hornets Cover

Sacramento Kings (February 19, 2001)

Kings Cover

Portland Trail Blazers (May 29, 2000)

Blazers Cover

Toronto Raptors (February 28, 2000)

Raptors Cover

Utah Jazz (June 1, 1998)

Jazz Cover

Atlanta Hawks (May 19, 1997)

Hawks Cover

Seattle Supersonics, no longer exist (June 10, 1996)

Seattle Supersonics

Milwaukee Bucks (February 22, 1982)

Bucks Cover

Hat Tip / For some SI classic covers