Swaddled in particpatory goodness
Pardon me if this seems like a more relevant second take on yesterday’s effort for the good of mankind, but there are things in this game that simply must be discussed. Last week, the NBA released its list of the league’s best-selling jerseys. I got the scoop from
1. Wade: No-brainer. Player you have to jock, inspiration incarnate, statesman galore, had momentum from last season’s playoffs.
2. AI: The people’s champ, now and forever.
3. LeBron: Sometimes I think that people’s strong feelings for him are all professional, never personal enough to require a jersey purchase
4. Starbury: Remember, these figures are NYC only.
5. Kobe: Not bad for someone who’s been a walking PR disaster and on non-stop career suicide watch. Or maybe there’s just no denying the sickness.
6. Shaq: Everybody loves him, but surprised to see him this high. Professing your devotion to Shaq is like writing Abraham a birthday card.
7. T-Mac: Would be top five if not for those Maoist Rockets unis. Which, actually, were kind of a weird way to suck up to Yao's fanbase; must have just been for the benefit of the Party
8. Melo: He’s all niche appeal; many still doubt him or don’t feel the game. But they show out strong for him.
9. Duncan: People like rings and power; they’ve made an icon out of Trump.
10. Vince: Face it, the legend will never die.
11. Big Ben: A shocker. But figure that the deep, dark Wallace mystique can speak to the corner-hugging bad-ass and the “right way” pundit. . . that’s certainly the makings of a jersey dynasty.
12. Nash: The American Apparel of NBA players
13. Jermaine O’Neal: I respect the hell out of the dude, and I wonder if these sales aren’t all to Howard students in town for the weekend.
14. Paul Pierce: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: he should either be much higher or much lower on this list. He’s almost like the imaginary number of high-scoring swingmen.
15. Dirk Nowitzki: My opinion of the Recluse changed forever when I discovered what a pivotal role Top Model played in his week, but I now find myself attached to Project Runway. That said, folks who want Dirk’s jersey are the same kind who find Heidi Klum sexy, and I’m not talking about the German thing.
16. Amare: I would buy an Amare suit of armor, as would the rest of this country if dude were where he should be. Why Jesus, why?
17. Manu: NYC is 35% Puerto Rican.
18. KG: I have come to the conclusion that Garnett is ahead of his time, plain and simple. Is there any other explanation for why he’s not the undisputed king of the Association, when he’s basically Iverson, Duncan, and Jermaine O’Neal wrapped up in one?
19. Ray Allen: Neighborhood favorite.
20. J-Kidd: Proof that a good portion of New York just can’t leave Jersey behind
21. Stevie Franchise: It’s been three seasons since he was relevant. Maybe he’s still big in streets, or on video games.
22. Artest: QB’s finest AND the second coming of the pre-Spree Knicks
23. Hinrich: When the Bulls had Jordan, they were the Cowboys of the NBA. There are still Cowboys fans in Philadelphia, many of them African-American.
24. Ben Gordon: Mt. Vernon kid, commuters, shares a backcourt with the resplendent Hinrich.
25. Yao Ming: Number one worldwide.