an important moment in nba history pic.twitter.com/usc5zOjSRj— Abe Schwadron (@abe_squad) December 13, 2017
Kelly Oubre Jr. in the Supreme x Nike shooting sleeve pic.twitter.com/JpIiIVIX9c— B/R Kicks (@br_kicks) December 13, 2017
After the first half, Oubre took the sleeve off at the team’s urging, according to Candace Buckner of The Washington Post. Oubre was surprised because he believed it was proper on-court apparel. After all, it had the NBA logo and the Nike logo as well. He told SLAM after the game that he was hoping to have a big night with the sleeve on:
“I wish I would have had 45, or at least 30. It would have blown up [on Twitter] even more. It was just something I wanted to try, ’cause I didn’t know if they were going to allow it or not. I tried it, they didn’t allow it, so it’s on to the next one. Wave Papi do wavy things.”
So, here’s some background on what Supreme is, the sleeve itself, and more.
What is Supreme?
Supreme is an apparel company based in New York City. It primarily sells skateboarder and hip hop culture apparel and items.
There are 11 stores in all: three stores in the United States including two in New York City, two in the European Union (London which is still in the EU as of the time of this writing and Paris), and SIX in Japan.
Forgive me for not knowing enough about fashion. But the first time I ever heard of Supreme as a brand was last February when MTA, New York City’s public transport authority had branded Metro Cards for commuters. these cards sold out at subway stations and eBay listed some card for hundreds of dollars!
In short, it’s one of those hip brands that fashion connoisseurs like Kelly Oubre like to wear.
Was the Supreme sleeve REALLY made by Nike?
Apparently so. Most Supreme apparel only has its name on it. But other companies’ products do have Supreme branding on it, like the sleeve Oubre wore and the New York City subway cards.
Can I buy the sleeve?
No because it’s sold out in red and black. It’s only $38, but still considerably more than the $24.99 it costs for a Nike sleeve without that Supreme logo. At any rate, Supreme certainly isn’t complaining after Oubre’s fashion statement.
Could Oubre be fined for this?
Possibly, though I think it would be overreach. Yes, the sleeve was a Nike sleeve. However, the NBA probably didn’t anticipate that other companies would add branding or designs on those shooting sleeves AND that a player would wear those sleeves in a game. It’s more likely that NBA will list a more specific rule on shooting sleeves — specifically that they can only wear shooting sleeves with the NBA and Nike logo, and nothing else.
If Oubre is fined, it wouldn’t be the first time an NBA player was fined for wearing apparel outside of norms, at least of the time.
That’s what happened to Michael Jordan during his rookie season for wearing his black and red Nike shoes. He was also fined wearing shoes that didn’t match the color of the Chicago Bulls’ uniforms in 1995.
The NBA also fined some players for wearing shorts that were too long in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s when fashion leaned in that direction. That said, NBA players are now wearing shorter shorts again. Coincidentally, Oubre is one of the more notable players who wear them.
In 2014, David Astramskas of Ballislife.com wrote about a history of these fines.
Will other players wear Supreme sleeves as long as there’s a Nike logo?
I don’t know. But it will be interesting to see if it does happen.
So, what do you think about Oubre’s “Supreme” fashion statement yesterday? Should the NBA allow players a bit more freedom on arm and leg sleeves? Let us know in the comments below.