Jay-Z reps Brooklyn Nets gear.
Photo: Getty Images
First things first, HAPPY BIRTHDAY, JAY-Z! We hope you and your girl Beyonce are doing it up big today and celebrating all the crown jewels of your empire. Thanks to the intimate behind-the-scenes packages your Life + Times outlet has been creating, we can celebrate right along with you, and this "Road To Brooklyn: The Look" video, which reveals an in-depth view into overhaul and refresh of the Brooklyn Nets brand, is one of our hands-down favorites thus far.
The video leads in with reactions to the new Brooklyn Nets logo and color scheme (both good and bad) before jumping into the evolution of the brand from New Jersey to BK. Brett Yormack, CEO of the Brooklyn Nets sets the paintbrush to canvas first, "Two years ago, we first started the collaboration on: how do we want to transform the Nets brand? What should it look like? What should it feel like?" while his EVP & Chief Marketing Officer, Fred Mangione, finishes it off with specifics, "We actually started with more of a historical look. We almost were thinking about early doing more of an ABA look." Red, white, and blue Nets? It's almost silly to even try to imagine it at this point! It was Jay-Z's stepping in with his design mind and Rocawear apparel background and deeply rooted knowledge and feelings about Brooklyn that really turned the rebrand on its head.
The idea of a black jersey isn't totally out of left field (see Miami Heat alternates), but it is still noteworthy and totally unexpected for a team's color scheme to be completely black and white. And there's historical significance there, too, since Jay was reportedly inspired by the old-school subway signs for the stark, sans serif look. And it can't be a coincidence that it also hearkens back to the adidas three-stripe tracksuit's heyday.
Since rebranding, the new Nets stand at #7 (out of 30 national teams) in merch sales for the ENTIRE NBA, and have out-sold the club's sales from the previous year. Modell's Sporting Goods manager Nicholas Chang takes Life + Times through the most popular Nets items in stock: the "No Sleep Till Brooklyn" shirt (shout out Beastie Boys), Nets headphones, Brooklyn in all caps and draped with hanging sneakers, and of course, the "Hello, Brooklyn" tee. Christopher Arena, the NBA's VP of Apparel probably sums it up best, "This could be the biggest, most powerful, global icon change in sports in a long, long time." We can't disagree. Check the video out for yourself below!
+ WATCH 'ROAD TO BROOKLYN: THE LOOK'