As you could probably tell from my last piece as part of this SBNation Jersey Week, I have a weirdly close connection to my sports jersey collection. They were what I spent the vast majority of my disposable income on in college, and given that I have a Walmart brand, three-sizes-too-big Lions Matthew Stafford jersey (I have legitimately no connection to either the Lions or Stafford other than I think it’s cool that he and Clayton Kershaw were childhood friends), I do truly mean disposable.
At my peak, I had somewhere in the realm of a hundred sports jerseys, as my friends and I would order jerseys en masse from those sketchy foreign wholesale websites for a while, and you needed to order at least 10 to get free shipping — I usually made up half that order.
As such, I need an outlet to talk about these jerseys every now and then (apologies to any and all girlfriends I have ever had), and thankfully for me (and unthankfully for DRB), SB Nation queued up Sports Jersey Week right when I had some free time on my hands. So here is an obnoxiously self-indulgent list of some of my favorite (and not so favorite) jerseys I own. Please, please, please leave your own favs/regrets below.
Newest Addition: Atlanta Dream sky blue Tiffany Hayes
Pictured above, I absolutely love this jersey. The Dream are going to be the most fun team in the W this year by a long shot, and Hayes will act as the Old Head for a dynamic and fun young squad. Plus, who can ever argue with the sky blue and red combination?
Next Purchase: Tampa Bay Rays throwback Ji-Man Choi
I want the rainbow “RAYS” with the devil ray below it on the front, and I want “Ji” on the back (if they could do the Korean symbol, I’d be even more over the moon). As soon as this is an item that can be purchased, I’m going to buy it so fast the Rays fan gear site is going to crash. I’m tempted to get this one just to buy myself some time, but why settle for anything less than perfection on what would become arguably my new favorite sports jersey?
Editor’s note: I have no idea what’s going on with that sketchy link, please follow at your own discretion and caution...
Most Valuable (literally): Chicago Bears Gale Sayers, autographed
Another one pictured above, I received this incredibly amazing gift from my dad’s brother, as he has become my old school jersey Sherpa. Whenever he has to clear out some space in his house, or a big birthday is around the corner, I have positioned myself to be the prime recipient of these gifts, and I could be more appreciative. This jersey is unreal to have hanging in my closet.
Most Frequently Worn: 1995 NBA All-Star Game Patrick Ewing
It’s in the main picture for this article, but let’s appreciate this design in all its glory again.
How do you wake up any day and not toss that on?!
Most Sentimental: Crookston Pirate Baseball
The final piece of the main picture above, I received this from my players after I coached the local middle school baseball team when I was living out in Minnesota. Naturally, I get sappy whenever I even look at it.
Biggest Regret: New York Yankees Johnny Damon
I picked up this heinous rag when I was working at a sporting goods store in college, and it appeared on the $5 rack we had at the store. I mean, how could I turn down a jersey, ANY JERSEY, for $5?! Well, it’s a f***ing Johnny Damon Yankee jersey, that’s how. Regrets, I have a few.
Definitely the Coolest: Philadelphia 76ers two-panel Allen Iverson
I’m so angry that this jersey is back at my apartment while I’m quarantined elsewhere, and I’m also beyond furious that somehow the internet doesn’t have a photo of this exact jersey because I promise you, this is the coolest jersey anyone owns.
Most Treasured: St. Louis Cardinals Stan Musial
Outside of LeBron James — whose fandom of his I have tied up all sorts of weird emotional trauma from defending him against a rabid anti-LeBron group of friends for the better part of a decade (re: who is the GOAT?) — Stan the Man is my favorite athlete of all time, so it’s no surprise that his jersey is the one I would totally dart back into a burning apartment to save. (And of course while I’m there, I’d try to snag Ewing and Choi...)