Day’Ron Sharpe was drafted by the Brooklyn Nets in the first round of the NBA Draft Thursday night, and it was an occasion to celebrate. For the young men drafted into the NBA, Draft Night is part graduation, part prom, and part introductory press conference. In all instances, you want to put your best foot forward and look good.
For much of the early 2000s, NBA draftees opted to wear gigantic suits with more buttons than is practical or appropriate.
A virtual 2020 NBA draft means one thing...— Joe Pompliano (@JoePompliano) November 18, 2020
The 2003 draft class—perhaps the best in NBA history—retains their title as worst dressed for at least one more year.
"We got enough fabric on these suits to clothe the entire country."
— @DwyaneWade pic.twitter.com/17DFqUjSQ7
I can only imagine that the baggy jeans and gym shorts era informed a lot of these designs, as these fashions were not found on either Wall Street or Main Street. They were the exclusive domain of the NBA Draft and prom tuxedos for those who made the short-sited decision to wear zoot suits, because they thought it would be funny. The less of that mentioned, the better.
As skinny jeans replaced JNCOs and young people became more exploratory with color, we started to see some bold and forward-leaning choices in Draft night garb. Socks were ditched, custom-tailored suits were seen, patterns were introduced, and bespoke jacket linings with various logos were displayed like Batman opening his cape to dive off a building.
Day’Ron Sharpe managed to skate perfectly in between the lines of too conservative and too crazy. He wore a navy blue suit with light pinstripes, a clear nod to his former head coach Roy Williams. Instead of wearing a tie, though, Sharpe opted for gold chains and an unbuttoned collar, with gold rings to accent.
It was a refreshingly simple, but elegant pairing; hip and modern. But in fashion, so much of what is old, is new, and what is new, is old. Sharpe’s suit and jewlery combination reminded me of another North Carolina legend, the 16-time world heavyweight champion Ric Flair, particularly his 80’s run in NWA/WCW:
Ric Flair on World Championship Wrestling 10/10/85 (2/2) pic.twitter.com/EAO9tf7QnA— No Context Flair (@NoContextFlair) July 27, 2021
Day’Ron smashed it on Draft night, and Tar Heel Nation will be eager to see how the rookie center looks wearing a Brooklyn Nets uniform.