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NBA players are getting poorer because Louis Vuitton is getting richer

June 19, 2010

Personally, I don’t get the fascination with Louis Vuitton (especially in Asia). It’s not pretty or special, costs an arm and a leg, and 99% of the bags you see people carrying on the street are fake. Anyway, enough of my thoughts. Today, we are going to take a look at the many NBA players that are in the throes of love affairs with Louis Vuitton (though perhaps not as committed to the relationship as one Rajon Rondo).

For me, the man purse trend started with one Gordan Giricek (who wants to bet that a European player started this NBA “trend”?). He was the first Jazz player I ever heard about having a man purse, apparently inspired his teammates to do the same (every single Jazzman in 2007 was toting a Louis Vuitton man purse around), and there was even a locker room discussion on man purses in tribute to him after he was traded.

Over the past few years, LV man purses have become an Association-wide epidemic. As I said above, I don’t get Louis Vuitton, and I don’t think I would even if I had money. But to each his own, right?

LV man purse-toting NBA players (click to enlarge):

Top Row (Damier*, i.e. checkered pattern; L to R):
Jason Hart, Rafer Alston, Deron Williams, Dahntay Jones, Dwight Howard, Chris Paul

Top Row (man purse with “Louis Vuitton” splashed across front, R):
Unsurprisingly, Sasha Vujacic

Bottom Row (Monogram*, i.e. logo pattern; L to R):
Carmelo Anthony, Carlos Boozer, Kendrick Perkins, CJ Miles, Memo Okur, Jonny Flynn (with matching luggage), Jason Richardson, Ronnie Brewer

And then we have the LV luggage-toting NBA players:

Top Row (Monogram*, i.e. logo pattern, L to R):
Charlie Villanueva, Sun Yue**, Monta Ellis, Paul Pierce

Bottom Row (Damier*, i.e. checkered pattern, L to R):
Brandon Roy, Kevin Martin, Pau Gasol

*Names/terms I learned today and will forget by tomorrow.

**I am pretty sure that Sun Yue ran out to the closest Louis Vuitton store to get that bag the moment he received his first NBA paycheck. Either that, or he picked it up from a street peddler in China before traveling across the ocean to America to study Zen Buddhism under the tutelage of Phil Jackson (Rule #1: You don’t get to play during the regular season; Rule #2: You don’t get to play during the Playoffs unless you have regular season experience; Rule #3: You don’t get to talk to your family during the Playoffs because you need to concentrate on not playing).

Finally, just as a contrast, we have Luis Scola predictably carrying a man purse, but it is–refreshingly and adorably–a Nike man purse:

Update 6/24/2010: Louis Vuitton is getting ’em hooked early nowadays.

Dime: How deep is the kicks collection?
ED [Davis]: My collection has sort of changed. When I was younger, I was more into Nikes, but as I got older, I’m more into high-end shoes like Prada, Louis Vuitton and stuff like that. So it’s kind of change a little bit more into casual than sneakers.

[Me: When he was younger and as he got older? Come on now son.]

Dime: What’s the best pair in the collection?
[Wesley Johnson]: Probably my Space Jams or these Louis Vuitton shoes I have. (Dime)

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