Originally posted on Player Perspective  |  Last updated 5/21/12

With all the creativity that these NBA fellows have been putting into their wardrobes I wondered how much of this is allowed under the dress code. Well, you will be happy to know that…ALL OF IT is. The NBA dress code isn’t nearly as strict as I remember. Here’s a little refresher:

Oklahoma Thunder's Kevin Durant (right) and Russell Westbrook (left) are fashion risk takers

…the NBA set forth a “minimum” dress code starting with the 2005-2006 season. The following highlights are excerpted from the memo:
1. General Policy: Business Casual
Players are required to wear Business Casual attire whenever they are engaged in team or league business. “Business Casual” attire means:
• A long or short-sleeved dress shirt (collared or turtleneck), and/or a sweater.
• Dress slacks, khaki pants, or dress jeans.
• Appropriate shoes and socks, including dress shoes, dress boots, or other presentable shoes, but not including sneakers, sandals, flip-flops, or work boots.
2. Exceptions to Business Casual
There are the following exceptions to the general policy of Business Casual attire:
a. Players In Attendance At Games But Not In Uniform
Players who are in attendance at games but not in uniform are required to wear the following additional items when seated on the bench or in the stands during the game:
• Sport Coat.
• Dress shoes or boots, and socks.
3. Excluded Items
The following is a list of items that players are not allowed to wear while on team or league business:
• Sleeveless shirts.
• Shorts.
• T-shirts, jerseys, or sports apparel (unless appropriate for the event (e.g., a basketball clinic), team-identified, and approved by the team).
• Headgear of any kind while a player is sitting on the bench or in the stands at a game, during media interviews, or during a team or league event or appearance (unless appropriate for the event or appearance, team-identified, and approved by the team).
• Chains, pendants, or medallions worn over the player’s clothes.
• Sunglasses while indoors.
• Headphones (other than on the team bus or plane, or in the team locker room).

I don’t know exactly what business Russell Westbrook’s shirt would be appropriate at. But it’s an upgrade considering last week he showed up to his presser wearing what appeared to be a nurse’s scrub shirt. I suppose the code could take issue with Kevin Durant wearing what looks like a t shirt but given that it’s covered with a blazer I doubt anyone would quarrel with that.

I’m all for guys taking fashion risks so I’m not complaining, really. I actually love it. Cause when the dress code came out it really was in response to the NBA becoming too urban and trying to appeal to the suits who buy tickets for their companies and the average middle aged white male fan. It was basically saying we don’t want a league that is too hip hop. Well now, the league is more hip hop than ever. All the players are dressed like Lupe Fiasco, T.I. and Common and there are more tattoos showing than Allen Iverson ever could have predicted when he was being maligned for his tattoo sleeves.

I guess since some people wouldn’t come to hip hop, hop hop just came to the people. Now we just have to wait for “book bags” and “non prescription glasses” make it onto the dress code’s excluded list.

 

 

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