Forget who went where and when. To real fans, the NBA draft is the ultimate parade of style hits and misses. For the fifth year in a row, ESPN.com surveys the fashion scene, where talent was as spread out as it was on the draft board.
Big winner: Marvin Williams. No. 2 on your draft board, No. 1 in fashion. At least the Hawks have finally won something.
The NBA went "MBA" Tuesday night, looking more ready to drive a deal in a Wall Street boardroom than drive the lane.
It wasn't just the black herringbone suit, the vest or the blue shirt with a hint of Carolina coloring. As with all the best-dressed players, the secret was in the tie in Marvin's case, a gorgeous silver look with dark accents.
Turning professional at 19? At least Marvin looked the part.
Other winners: You show me some color, I'll show you a winner. Too many players relied on washed-out gray. Anyone sporting colors earned rave reviews:
What a night of "Tar-torial" splendor! At the No. 5 pick, Raymond Felton bucked the gray trend with a phenomenal-looking brown suit and a gorgeous multi-toned tie with tan and brown piping.
And fellow Tar Heel Rashad McCants can have all the attitude he wants, if it comes with the boldness of the pink shirt-pink tie combo he wore.
Want to relive draft fashion of the past? Check out Dan Shanoff's previous reports:
• 2004: Livingston, I presume
• 2003: LeBron's big night
• 2002: Jay Williams' Career Apex
• 2001: Once you go French ...
He may have slipped to No. 15, but Antoine Wright did his preppy (school) roots proud by also having the confidence to wear pink.
Did the Clippers make a promise to Yaroslav Korolev? Perhaps only a promise to be fashionable! In a draft with few foreign players, Korolev carried the weight of the world on his narrow shoulders, draped in a fabulous purple striped shirt and purple tie.
Alma Mater Awards: Nothing says spirit like flashing a bit of school colors, especially between the dueling point guards, who competed all the way to the podium. Deron Williams wore a tie with a hint of Illini orange and was picked one spot higher, but Chris Paul outdressed him, wearing a black suit with Wake Forest gold pinstripes, along with a Wake-colored tie. The alumni office will take cash or check, CP.
The "He-Made-It-Work" Award goes to the hardest-working guy at the draft, Julius Hodge, who wasn't even invited, but showed up anyway, wearing a monochromatic cream suit that had my wife observing: "He's the first one who looks like he's at the NBA draft, not an investment banker's meeting."
Second Round Award: It was worth sticking around for the second round just to catch Mickael Gelebale, who instantly has the best hair in the NBA (he couldn't even get the draft cap on his head), but also came with a classy Euro-stylin' suit in the mold of fellow Frenchman (and one-time Page 2 Draft Fashion Report Big Winner) Tony Parker.
Finally, the highly coveted "Bar Mitzvah Boy" Award goes to: No. 10 overall pick (and Kobe's newest valet) Andrew Bynum, who not only wore the traditional "BMB" blue suit, but at 17 years and change, is the youngest draftee in NBA history, making him the closest to actually having his bar mitzvah. With his baby face, I was reminded of my BMB award comment from 2004: If you were to tell me he was 13 and heading to the podium to read his haftarah, I'd not only believe you, but slip a check in his pocket. L'chaim, Andrew!
Losers: Light gray. Stop the madness. Let's hope your rookie seasons aren't as much of a washout. I'm talking about you, Channing Frye and Sean May. May apparently didn't get the memo from his dapper UNC teammates. (Martell Webster, you get a pass. Were those hidden suit-jacket buttons?) Oh, wait, Charlie Villanueva was wearing light gray too? I was too stunned by his going seventh overall to notice.