Champs Sports Presents :24 – A History of NBA Swagger

More so than in any other league, game takes on a vital role in the NBA. It isn’t just about making shots or playing defense. It’s about staying fly for the cameras, crowds, and fans. In the week leading off to tipoff for the 2015-16 NBA season, this will be the only preview you need. At Champs Sports, we know game. We can see it in the sneakers. The uniforms. The sounds. The faces. The fans. We see it everywhere. Get schooled on what’s going to happen next.

More than any other professional sports league, the NBA is defined by its players. It’s a sport that, while a team game, embraces the individuality of its players and gives them outlets to shine both on and off the court. As a result, the men who play the game don’t constantly redefine just the game of basketball; their senses of self and lives off the court shape larger cultural trends too.

While we don’t always think of the NBA as a center of innovation, that’s exactly what it has always been. It started way back in the 1920s with the Converse All Star, a game-changing sneaker that for the first time allowed players to take the floor with confidence that they wouldn’t immediately break their ankles. Of course, all conversations about basketball and swagger begin and end with His Airness, Michael Jordan. From commercials to sneakers to baggy shorts to actual basketball, there are very few aspects of NBA life that MJ hasn’t completely altered.

Today, social media and 24/7 sports coverage have turned players like Russell Westbrook into household names not just for their incredible play on the court, but for their sense of style and self-assuredness off of it.

As the new season gets set to begin, it’s a good time to take a look back at the players, styles, and innovations that changed the game and represented the cool, trend-setting, confident aura that has come to define the pro basketball. We present a History of NBA Swagger.

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image via Nike