The NBA’s Golden State Warriors have received a deluge of attention for their plan to compete while wearing jerseys with tight sleeves on Friday, Feb. 22. Not too long thereafter they’ll be joined in the sleeved-basketball uniform crusade by most of the best high school basketball players in America.
As noted by Dime Magazine and a handful of other outlets, the uniforms at the McDonald’s All-America Game will also feature sleeves. Like the NBA uniforms, the All-American duds are made by Adidas, with the German-based company pioneering the latest foray into trying to sleeve top basketball players.
You can see photos of the uniforms for both the West (top) and East (bottom) squads to the right. Clearly the East unis are significantly more gaudy, with a sublimated pseudo-lightning flash design incorporated into a largely white-and-black color scheme.
Regardless of colors and themes, both uniforms feature the aforementioned sleeves, meaning that the likes of hometown hero Jabari Parker (the All-American Game is played in Chicago) and Andrew Wiggins will steal the national spotlight wearing uniforms that are unlike whatever they’ll wear on a college campus.
That’s a strange development certainly, though it allegedly won’t hold back their performance. Adidas notes that the sleeves have been created with a “360-degree channel around the shoulders that connects the jersey portion to the sleeve portion, all in the name of full range-of-movement.”
That "breakthrough technology" may make arm motion quite a bit easier, but it's pretty difficult to believe that players will be able to shoot, block shots and stretch for full length as easily with sleeves on as they will without them. It seems like common sense, though perhaps the Warriors can prove that isn't the case on Friday.
We’ll leave it to the likes of Parker and Wiggins to determine just how full their motion is while wearing sleeves. If it holds back the annual slam dunk contest, those top teens won’t be happy.