NBA Style Rankings: LeBron’s tribute to Takeoff, Def Leppard love and other fits

We missed a day of basketball — and fits — as the NBA prompted players, coaches and fans around the country to get out and vote on Nov. 8. Still, there was no shortage of style provided on pregame walks to locker rooms.

In this week’s NBA Style Rankings, arguably the face of the league paid tribute to an artist tragically gone too soon. Additionally, Darius Bazley‘s beret collection expanded, and we had several newcomers. Here are this week’s rankings:


Ibaka is the first of several new faces of this edition of the rankings. Ibaka has long been known to enjoy high fashion, so it’s fitting that we begin this week with the 2019 NBA champion.

His blue and red cardigan is woven in several different styles, almost making for an optical illusion. The blue pants are a shade darker than the blue in the cardigan, which I’m sure was a conscious choice. This fit already has so much color that all he needed were white and gray sneakers to complete it.

The black shades, silver watch and black Louis Vuitton bag made for superb accessories.

The Knicks play in one of the fashion-forward meccas, and Grimes and Barrett are the first on the team to make an appearance here. Grimes and Barrett arrived at Madison Square Garden knowing they were flying, but there was no doubt they were warm, too. These Kith pieces are perfect for the change in weather we’re seeing across the country, and I appreciate each for different reasons.

Grimes’ jacket has patches with different designs, fabrics and colors, but somehow they still all tie in to make for a stylish fall look. He went with green sweatpants and white Air Force 1s, staying in theme with the colors of his jacket. Barrett’s coat looks heavier and more winter-ready. Since his coat was a bit bigger, he threw a white hoodie under with tan sweats that matched the accent of his coat.

Well played by both Grimes and Barrett.

From the fit photos I’ve seen this season from Mills, I feel like he’s often got to be the coolest person in the room, even on a team with superstars. Mills makes it two weeks in a row where we’ve had a player make the rankings almost solely based on the pants they’re rocking.

These orange and white, wavy pants make it easy for Mills to throw on everything black to make the pants stand out. The black hat, shades, shirt and shoes all contribute to how vibrant the pants look. Mills has been an early-season surprise with his fits so far.

Green is back for the second consecutive week. One observation: Green is definitely a Louis Vuitton fan. Last week, we saw the black leather Louis jacket; this week, he was sure to bring his Louis luggage — which make for great accent pieces.

He’s got the Def Leppard “Adrenalize” album shirt on, an album that came out roughly a decade before he was born. Style points for the music knowledge — or just the appreciation of a cool shirt. Either way, the contrast between the all-black North Face puffer jacket and the white shirt helps the album cover stand out. He’s only a few games into his third season, but Green definitely has an eye for fashion.

The Michigan State product’s fit came as a bit of a surprise to me. Of all the players I’ve seen show interest in fashion, I hadn’t seen much from Forbes … but I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out.

The pink Punk hoodie is one of the more eye-catching pieces you’ll see on this week’s list. The rhinestones on the lettering give this hoodie extra flair. Punk was designed by Grammy-winning rapper Young Thug. Forbes knew how fresh his hoodie was and only needed to throw on some black jeans, a black hat and black sneakers.


(Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)

Bazley is becoming synonymous with berets the more he wears them. And although berets aren’t something I see every day, they’re never the focal point of his fits. This time, it was his Missoni jacket.

Dark cargo pants are always a good option when you have a colorful centerpiece item like this jacket. The white New Balance shoes offer an alternative to designer shoes that have a similar build.

Fun fact: Bazley had a $1 million internship with New Balance before being drafted that eventually turned into an endorsement deal. Pre-NIL, companies had to get creative not to commit any violations.

What’s cooler than playing in the NBA yourself? Having a mother who played in the WNBA. Niele Ivey played five seasons for the Indiana Fever, Detroit Shock and Phoenix Mercury. She’s too currently the head coach of the Notre Dame women’s basketball team, a team she once played on.

It was only right for Jaden to show his mother some love by rocking her Shock jersey pregame. His red pants were the same shade as the red in the coloring of the number. This is the second time this season that Jaden has worn the professional jersey of a family member. He brought out the jersey of his grandfatherformer Detroit Lions defensive back James Hunter, during opening week.

Barnes (left photo), the reigning NBA Rookie of the Year, stepped into the Thunder’s arena like he knew he was leaving with a win. He didn’t, but his pregame look was convincing enough to make this week’s style rankings.

The baby blue letterman jacket in coordination with the baby blue Louis Vuitton trainers was enough of a flex, but Barnes added the Chrome Hearts cross jeans for good measure. And I can’t forget the white shades, which highlight the white sleeves of his letterman. Barnes will definitely be on my weekly radar.

Haliburton is one of the most promising young guards in the league and has the swag to match the box-office billing off the court. I’ve noticed a few of his fits from past weeks and still can’t put a finger on his style, which makes me appreciate it even more.

The 22-year-old has more of a mature sense of fashion than his counterparts. The Pelle Pelle red leather jacket is already uncommon enough, but he added some extra bling. Haliburton was intentional about zipping the jacket up halfway so you could still see his chain.

If you’re familiar with James, you’re well aware that he is a huge hip-hop fan. He’s frequently seen on his Instagram stories singing the latest tracks in his Maybach. He’s been on stage with artists like Drake and Travis Scott and even has executive producing credits on 2 Chainz’s “Rap or Go to the League” album.

As a way to pay his respects to Takeoff — the member of rap group Migos who was killed in Houston on Nov. 1 — James wore a black suit, black shades and a chain similar to Takeoff’s. Not only was this a great look, but it also paid homage to someone James has been listening to since 2010.

(Top photo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis: Adam Pantozzi / NBAE via Getty Images)

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