Monday, October 18, 2021

Basketball stars play on the luxury court

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After the palpitations in front of the games of the Olympic Games and before the resumption of the NBA, scheduled for October 19, it is off the court that basketball scores points. Already omnipresent for a few years, team sport continues to gain in impact on fashion. While the Italian label Fila is devoting a capsule to it at the end of August, and the German Puma a mini-collection imagined with God Shammgod, former American player and king of dribbling, luxury brands go from their specialized shoes to fares taking off higher than a rolled arm shot. In recent weeks, Dolce & Gabbana has launched a pair in suede with PJ Tucker, the star winger of the Miami Heats (595 euros); Celine, the CT-03, model in calfskin with logo and Velcro (690 euros); Gucci, the Basket, rising version in acid colors (790 euros).

“In 2017, Riccardo Tisci had already introduced the codes of this sport at Givenchy. For five years, sportswear has become the watchword of fashion. Appropriate, therefore, that basketball appears in the inspirations of houses. Even if it is more, in my opinion, for aesthetic taste and the quest for comfort than a real revival for this sport in itself ”, observes Stéphane Ashpool of Pigalle Paris, a brand that has made basketball its identity since it was founded in 2008, with its hoodies or jersey outfits edged with grosgrain. At a time when marketing directors like to think in terms of values, coming to appropriate those of basketball, and of sport in general – fair play, surpassing oneself, sense of the collective… – does not hurt.

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Above all, the players have become valuable showcases. “For a long time, what the public looked at was Kobe Bryant’s outfit on the field when he scored against the Celtics”, recalls Jesse Einhorn, chief economist for the sneaker resale platform StockX. But since 2008, landing in China for the Olympics, LeBron James did without warning explode sales of the Beats by Dre headphones he wore when exiting his plane, the athletes began to become heads of the gondola. “The sports uniform has given way to a logic of influence lifestyle, continues Jesse Einhorn. At StockX, moreover, technical parts are less in demand, while the most coveted sneaker of the moment is the Nike Dunk ”, city shoe inspired by basketball seen in particular at the feet of PJ Tucker.

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