Fashion and streetwear, like music, are part of the culture of basketball. From Allen Iverson to Russell Westbrook, there is no shortage of players wanting to make a statement or market their brand through their clothes. However, has fashion taken over the life of some basketball stars today? Retired player Kwame Brown shared his NSFW rant about the trend.
Kwame Brown rants about Russell Westbrook
Brown, who has turned himself relevant by airing his opinions on different matters, uploaded an NSFW rant against Russell Westbrook after the Los Angeles Lakers star wore skirts and boots in public. In case you missed it, here’s the outfit in question.
For Kwame, he claimed he lost all respect for the former Oklahoma City Thunder guard.
“Not no n-gga I ever grew up and messed around with gonna be walking around in the streets with a dress on and some muthaf—ing boots and keep my respect. And say he heterosexual. Now if he gay, cool I don’t give a f-ck. But when you say you a heterosexual male and that’s what you do, then f-ck you and that’s my opinion.”Kwame Brown, Fadeaway World
The ex-Washington Wizards player is entitled to his own opinions, just like Brodie is free to wear what he wants. Still, this loaded rant seems uncalled for. You don’t have to like Westbrook’s outfit, but if a skirt on a man got you so riled up, maybe you are the one with a problem. (P.S. Don’t show Kwame images of Greek and Roman warriors. Hindu soldiers, Turkish fighters, and members of the Qin military of China as well. And for the love of God, don’t let him watch The Gladiator or Braveheart)
It’s not the first time that Westbrook has worn interesting clothing choices. He had been rocking several not-so-common styles before games through the years. He’s never been shy expressing his interest in fashion. The former MVP has gone to great lengths for his pregame outfits, and they carry a huge price tag. The jean jacket below allegedly costs more than $1,500.
Bashers can hate all they want, but for stars such as Westbrook, it’s all about flexing their brand. They have the money to pay for ridiculously pricey items, and they could rock it no matter the opinion of others. But when is too much? Or has vanity taken over the life of basketball players?
Fashion, streetwear, and basketball
Dennis Rodman wore a wedding gown at some point and did not care about what others would say. It’s part of his character, his brand of being a bad boy in the league. When Allen Iverson entered the NBA, he built his brand as someone who wore baggy pants, had cornrows, headbands, and tattoos. No matter what critics were saying, Rodman and Iverson contributed to the fashion aspect of NBA players. They paved the way for the likes of Russell Westbrook to be able to wear something interesting and get away with it. That being said, AI dislikes the modern fashion sense in the NBA.
However, it’s not as easy as it seems. Players need to have the proper street cred to earn the respect of their fans, on and off the court. Kyle Kuzma and Ben Simmons often receive criticism from the fans because they appear to focus more on what they wear than improving their game. Stars such as Westbrook or Kyrie Irving could wear any outfit they want and still get away with it because their games speak for themselves. It adds a layer of protection from hate because fans won’t ridicule a player who dishes out MVP performances constantly.
As LeBron James said, they are more than just basketball players, but they are basketball players first. Winning games and doing what they are paid for is the best way to shut the critics up.