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Match a la Mode: Sleeveless Versus Short Sleeve NBA Jerseys

by on July 14, 2013

TheILSMag‘s newest feature to our site is ‘Match a la Mode‘, a weekly editorial in which we debate what’s trending in style’s broad spectrum. The name ‘Match a la Mode‘ combines the French term “a la mode” (related to fashion) and the English word “match” (a comparison). This is the first Match a la Mode: an evaluation of the influence and future of short sleeve basketball jerseys.

As a kid growing up you don’t necessarily care about what your wear while you play basketball though it can’t be something as absurd as a turtleneck or a winter jacket. You grow up matching your clothes with your sneakers while even adding on accessories to accentuate your outfit. It’s tradition to customize on the street-ball outfits but any high level of basketball requires unoriginal uniforms. The NBA is one organization that rarely strays from its traditions so it’s amazing to see just what’s been happening as of late. For about a half season now, a new trend has been slowly ushering into the NBA: the use of short sleeve jerseys as game jerseys.


Adidas-March-Madness_JerseysThis new trend, driven mostly by Adidas, has been carefully implemented not to fail. Do you think we would be talking about these jerseys if the Charlotte Bobcats were wearing them? We have seen the New York Knicks  in the 2013 Summer League, the Golden State Warriors during the 2012 regular season, and the Louisville Cardinals dominate March Madness all while wearing sleeved jerseys, so the question is not about the impact of the players’ performances, but how much more this growing trend will spread. Organizations in need of a refresher, i.e. Pacers and Clippers a few years ago, sometimes alter their uniforms to give once-troubled teams a new look. These sleeved jerseys could help facilitate such an effort for teams – just look how it turned out for the Warriors – because of their modern implications as well as the increased area for new design on the jersey.

New York Knicks v New Orleans PelicansWould Michael Jordan‘s “last shot” be any less iconic if he had done it while wearing sleeves? Probably not. While looking good on the court is very important for the media-dominated NBA, as always, your game speaks the most. And if you find yourself complaining about a small modification to the traditional uniform, then wait until the NBA potentially implements advertisements on the jerseys. Though a player such as Dwight Howard may be a bit mad that he won’t be able to show off his massive shoulders, there truly aren’t any complications that come with the short sleeve. Before you know it, your favorite player will be seen wearing a short sleeve jersey while playing a game. What do you think of this new trend?


Co-Written by Tyler Kennedy.

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