The ease and modifications of NBA fashion icon PJ Tucker


There’s Tucker balancing an ice cream cone and the keys to his Ferrari in one hand, his phone in the other, the camera turned upside down to film him and his son returning to the car on a warm evening of September in Miami, Tucker laughing, his eyes narrowed with pride, streams of melting ice cream begin to flow over their two cones.

There’s Tucker, solid in the lane with his eyes narrowed on the attacking player with the bad luck of trying to be the one to make him back down, change, break just then. There’s Tucker in the back of a low wooden speedboat, his head tilted coldly to the side and his hands resting on his knees as the lifted spray from the Grand Canal escapes and behind him and his white suit Dolce & Gabbana.

There’s Tucker pressing his face to Kevin Durant’s, to Lance Stephenson’s, hissing in Dennis Schroder’s ear, wrapping himself around Donovan Mitchell, all in the intimate distance reserved for lovers. There’s Tucker in the tunnel in a flared green silk Cuban shirt with pink chewing gum flowers, in a long snow-white woolen coat with perfect blue jeans and white air forces worn open, in black leather pants. and a western denim shirt with mother-of-pearl and red buttons and black Jordans, in a silk tuxedo jacket and matching pants with a tight fitting watercolor rose-smeared button down the front.

There’s Tucker in the tunnel

There is Tucker in

There is Tucker

His moods distilled to the looks, to the moments and finally, to the man. A complete picture, nothing out of place. Anthony Leon Tucker Jr., up to Pops Junior, after his father, up to PJ – see the trend here? Modifications, that’s the easiest way to put it. In fashion, a term that refers to clothing and accessories selected for a particular use or time.

On the ground, Tucker makes his edits like a perfectly adjusted line, precise flashes of devotion divided into slices of contempt or possessiveness. Namely, who is on his way, on his way.

Tucker has honed his sensibility through the seasons – fashion and basketball – since joining the league and has been brutally sent back overseas. Israel, Ukraine, Greece, Italy, Puerto Rico, Germany, five years of pro-ball relevance, squinting at plots an ocean away, like gleaning fall trends / winter of five seasons ago while rummaging through the shelves of a shopping center. But he made it all work. Borrow from the physical aspect of the Euro game, squeeze it with this double dare to make fun of you which has become his signature.

Some people are born with a good eye, others with a knack for sifting through anything that flashes in the moment. Tucker has both.

He told stories that he skipped team dinners and wandered solo the narrow, gray winter streets of Kiev in search of any couture flagship he could find, to come from the cold among leather bags and soft boots like a promise. To say that Tucker wears clothes doesn’t quite suit him. Tucker puts it together with the precision of someone who has thought about the swell of when clothes are supposed to wear him. Even if that moment means the quick 30 seconds it takes to get from the elevator in the arena parking lot, down a dark tunnel, to the flooded locker rooms, no matter how dressed up the underground lighting is.

The fulfillment and joy of dressing, for Tucker, is where he started to move away from the need for lunch from his role. Where he warmed himself to silk, satin and leather as tools in his belt.

Never brooding, unlike other players who are known for the same excess muscle and guts, Tucker methodically hits plays, with buttoned-up icy calm even while snarling. All of her thrusts and back-and-forth, literally, chest to chest, come with style and come off best paired with an Armani suit. There is never anything about to lose control there. Tucker made his first NBA Summer League at age 27, losing a contract in Russia in case the Suns – the already muscle-packed 2012 roster with the two Morris brothers, a late-career Jermaine O’Neal and a scowling debut. Marcin Gortat – Would see something of this solid control in Tucker. He had the power to stay in Phoenix, he had to, and it was when he helped perfect Devin Booker’s rookie mess that Tucker would step into his bespoke cut, the role he wears best.

Protective, muscular, intangible with teeth, Tucker wore mercurial superstars like James Harden and teams like Toronto and its internalized demons with the same stoic support. He hollowed out, length of stay unimportant, offering the kind of confidence that comes from borrowed clothes. Costume to begin with, until parts of this sucked-in character start to settle permanently on the shoulders of borrowers.

There’s a reason Tucker’s tenure in Milwaukee seems longer than a season, and it’s more than a ring. For the Bucks, the pragmatic, blue-collar basketballer, Tucker was in comparison flashy, a flowery jerk of just enough pretension to push the team out of its well-worn comfort zone.

And after drinking champagne in South Wisconsin and signing in Miami, Tucker pulled out what seemed like all summer from the one thing he loved in the other’s name – the two wolves inside of him. , one wearing basketball shorts and the other in a fuchsia brocade silk military jacket – and spent slow, golden days in Paris and Venice watching parades and shaming all those antiques dotting the streets with the clothes he did it in. Her love for fashion and clothing is open, with appetite, equally encompassing people who love food will look at a menu and choose half of it, revel in the rhythm of the plates placed on the table in a chaotic jumble for everything. to arrange, to insist on sharing. Eager, with a gleefully persistent mania that rejects pretension, driven by instinct and feeling overly attentive to what’s popular or what goes with what.

To say that for Tucker, who has spent a career compiling moments, editing every season spent chasing, then holding, then methodically transcending, this season with the Heat represents a reinvention would be like lacing a pair of Jordans, pulling on. Levis, to tie a trench with a perfectly negligent knot, without considering what makes each piece more than a sum of its parts. But there’s a delightful, lustful drop going on with Tucker now, a perfect combination of role, fit, and a perfect climate for him to drive topless in his convertibles.

Tucker’s hard edges don’t soften, but he has found the best fabrics to cut them and drape them perfectly.


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