Sports stars are most often seen in their team jerseys, workout clothes and and with helmets covering their pretty faces, so on the one night of the year when they have the chance to dress up, they go all out!
As competitive as Richard Sherman, Colin Kaepernick, Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant are on the football field or the basketball court, they are just as ego-driven when it comes to fashion statements.
The Hollywood Reporter was on the red carpet for the 2014 ESPYs at the NokiaTheatre L.A. Live on Wednesday to judge who which super star athlete had the craziest, most colorful or flawlessly classic ensemble.
Oklahoma City MVP Kevin Durant is famous for his "nerd chic fashion" such as wearing a backpack to press conferences or Clarke Kent glasses, but the NBA star rebounded on the ESPYs red carpet with a green jacket (that looked like it should have been handed out at the Masters), a crisp white shirt and neat bow tie.
Having just signed a six-year contract extension worth $126 million (including $61 million guaranteed) with the San Francisco 49ers, Colin Kaepernick can afford to pull out all the stops in the style stakes. The quarterback compared his game plan for style to football, telling ESPN's red carpet reporter: "You have to be a little bit edgy; you have to push the limits, but at the same time you have to you have to make sure you're not just doing something ridiculous," he said. "Today I wanted to do something clean with a little bit of flash."
Indiana Pacers player Paul George told THR: "I came last year and saw what everyone was wearing so really wanted to step it up." His Giuseppe Zanotti shoes were a last minute decision to go with his tailored suit and pink shirt combo. "I just think if people try to do something different, it spices it up a bit more. I just wanted to be presentable and look good," he said.
Sacramento Kings player DeMarcus Cousins aimed to be "not too flashy but classy," so stuck to a midnight blue tuxedo offset with a silver clover leaf pin. "You've got a lot of athletes here, so of course they are competing, but I am not really at that level, so I am going to keep it simple," the 6'11" center, who was drafted in 2010, told THR.
CRAZY AND COLORFUL
Russell Westbrook is almost as famous for his fashion antics as his basketball moves, so it's no surprise that Durant's Oklahoma City teammate just launched his own collection at Barney's. ESPY's host Drake mocked Westbrook during the show for his outlandish costumes, and who can blame him considering the bizarre high-buttoned, floral-sleeved, collarless shirt the point guard opted to wear — topped off with a Jersey Shore style gold chain.
Portland Trailblazers point guard Damian Lillard stuck with his team's colors in a red-and-black plaid jacket that looked as if the 6'3" player was wearing Scottish tartan.
Now that he's playing for the San Diego Chargers, Brandon Flowers "wanted some blue and gold to match my new team. I feel good and I think I look good," he boasted to THR, adding that he had put all his trust in his stylist and she pulled it off. "We're not basketball players, so no one knows our face. This is our chance for everyone to see what we look like," explained the NFL cornerback who is normally hidden by a helmet.
Having recently signed with the Arizona Cardinals, Antonio Cromartie is a veteran on the field and never shies away from a style scrimmage. "The inspiration was just to be one of the sharpest out here. People aren’t afraid to show off their personalities," he explained while rocking a pale gray suit, white shirt and the secret to his stylish ensemble,blinged-out Louis Leeman shoes with gold rims.
Wearing the same spiked shoes as Flowers — "He copied me!" — Tennessee Titans tight end Delanie Walker opted for black baggy shorts and a knitted bow tie.
"It is hot out here, I am in L.A., I thought I would put on some shorts and nice shoes. I am with my girl, and she's looking beautiful, so I am trying to match with her," he revealed, telling THR that one of the joys of the ESPYs is "you see what everyone is wearing, who has got the best outfit, and we then let you judge the next day on who dressed the better. I just hope I win it!"
Before he got booed as he took to the stage during the awards show, New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz told ESPN: "I just figured I'd be relaxed as possible on the carpet. This is my third ESPYs; I just want to be chill and cool," he said, explaining the origin of his unusual outfit. "It is a three-quarter short with leggings underneath and no socks, enjoying the Cali weather and giving the ankles some breathing room," he quipped of his [ankle] flesh-baring pants.
While Jarret Stoll's prettiest accessory was girlfriend Erin Andrews, the L.A. Kings star and Stanley Cup champion was dashing in a John Varvatos suit. "I am better after shaving. I have a tan," he joked, referring to the playoff beard that recently took over his face for three months.
"It is nice to come to these things and hang out with other athletes. I want to see some of the football guys, Peyton Manning, Russell Wilson and Colin Kaepernick. As for his Dancing With the Stars date, "I came with Erin, we took some photos together and then she took off. We'll meet up after for the parties," he told THR.
For the bravery shown by becoming the first openly gay athlete in the NFL, Michael Sam received the Arthur Ashe Courage Award at the ESPYs on Wednesday. Before he received a standing ovation for his moving speech during the show, the St. Louis Rams rookie walked the red carpet in a classic blue suit and tie holding hands with boyfriend Vito Cammisano, telling him, "You are my inspiration."