Fashion in the NBA: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander

By Jake Bertolini-Felice, Guest Columnist

Editor’s Note: The Gettysburgian hosts guest columnists from the Fashion Initiative organization at Gettysburg College. The opinions published in this section are those of the individual writers and are in no way representative of the views of The Gettysburgian staff, The Gettysburgian or Gettysburg College.

“[T]wo things on my mind: if the jets here and the checks clear; you boys just started to get gear; I put no basketball pics in this dump, so you have stuff on your mood boards for next year.  -2”

Perhaps you’re wondering what song these lyrics are from? Look no further than the melodic rhythm of Oklahoma City Thunder’s point guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s Instagram caption. SGA is one of the NBA’s premier young players, leading the league with 50 games of 30 or more points this season. He’s an all-star for the second year in a row and is currently leading a young and talented Thunder team, who is just half a game out of first in the star-studded Western conference. However, Shai is leaving his fingerprints on the game in a way that extends much further than basketball.

Shai has revitalized the fashion scene within the NBA, turning the league into an organization that the world’s leading fashion brands can’t help but pursue partnerships with. Following Shai’s amassment of popularity, SKIMS signed a deal with the NBA, becoming the league’s official underwear partner. SGA was also selected as one of the three feature athletes to model SKIMS’ new line of male underwear when it first dropped, along with football and soccer stars, Nick Bosa and Neymar Jr. SKIMS stated that they chose these three athletes based on their backgrounds, how they own their personal style and their ability to connect with people beyond the realm of sports.

(Photo Courtesy of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s Instagram)

SGA was named GQ Magazine’s Most Stylish Man of the Year in 2022. The vote was determined through Instagram polls, which clearly displays the tremendous influence he has within the pop culture world. Every time he posts on Instagram, he seems to immediately garner the entire app’s attention; the combination of his impeccable sense of fashion, poetic Instagram captions and other-worldly basketball talent has transformed him into a generationally-captivating pop culture icon. Swiping through SGA’s Instagram “dumps” is like watching poetry in motion. 

A post of his from December of 2023 is captioned: “Shai over, Shai under, Shai you owe me bread bc you didn’t cover… ya ya ya, just know who to go to when you need a bucket before the buzzer. -2”

 This caption is paired with pictures of Shai posing next to his gold metallic and black Mercedes-Benz Maybach S680, donning a white, red and black Canada hockey jersey with icy white cargo pants and bulky designer sneakers, holding a white cylindrical Chanel bag. A few swipes to the right unveils videos of the young star absolutely decimating the defending champion Denver Nuggets, which is followed by mesmerizing images of Shai in two different denim-themed fits.

“My whole life is consistent,” Gilgeous-Alexander told a reporter during a post-game interview earlier this month. 

It is hard to dispute that, considering the accolades that he has already surmounted at age 25. Shai’s stardom in the worlds of basketball, pop culture and fashion certainly paint a vivid image of consistency–one that has begun to inspire a new generation of young people all over the world. 

Author: Gettysburgian Staff

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