ESPN is reporting that the NBA will be banning the now popular basketball tights worn by several players, including Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James. Dallas Maverick’s forward Jerry Stackhouse wears them for medical reasons, others because they keep leg muscles warm and loose.
I coach an 8th grade basketball team and while none of my players wear them, I have seen them on several opponents during games. Let’s be honest — they look ridiculous, but that isn’t why players are wearing them.
The NFL went through a similar dilemma when Under Armor started manufacturing performance apparel that goes under players pads. The NFL, who’s rumored to be considering a ban on end zone dancing, was smart enough to capitalize on this fad by creating their own line of NFL apparel modeled after the Under Armor lycra shirts, tanks and pants.
Why wouldn’t the NBA do the same? NBA and team-branded tights, the same ones the Pros wear, would be a huge seller for the league that capitalized on throw back jerseys, baggy shorts and shiny uniforms.