What Your Casual-Friday NBA Jersey Says About You

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Casual Friday has gotten hella fraught for office workers in the last decade. What was at first a chance to relax a little and dust off those polo shirts and crisply pressed Old Navy jeans has become a referendum on who you are as an employee. The way you approach Casual Fridays tells your fellow employees and your boss how you think of yourself, so how can you be sure you’re sending the right message?

Enter the basketball jersey. This handy guide should provide some rules of thumb for getting across the essence of who you are with your careful jersey choice.

Derrick Rose


What it says: I’m coming in today and I’m ready to work, but I’ve gotta say: That shrimp tempura from Wednesday night is still sitting a little weird with me. Temper your expectations. And don’t talk about food, please.

Russell Westbrook


What it says: I’m sorry I was sick all week and I know we had that big presentation, but I’m ready to leave it all on the floor today. Also, this is technically more formal than the zebra-striped jackets I usually wear.

Kendrick Perkins


What it says: I am overpaid, but I bring doughnuts to staff meetings.

Michael Carter-Williams


What it says: I know I just got here, and I know you’ve slashed the budget for my entire department, but I’m going to show you that this group can do something special, even with limited support.

Thaddeus Young


What it says: Please transfer me to another department.

Andrei Kirilenko (Minnesota Timberwolves)


What it says: I’m not the guy who founded this tech start-up. I’m not the Steve Jobs or the Bill Gates. I’m not even Nolan Bushnell. But I’m the guy you brought in to do all the little things. You know why your keyboard is so bright and shiny all the time? It’s because I clean it with a Q-tip every morning before you even get here.

Andrei Kirilenko (Brooklyn Nets)


What it says: I took a big pay cut to leave that tech start-up and be the receptionist at this Fortune 500 company. But the benefits package is … generous.

Andrea Bargnani


What it says: I know you hired me for a specific skill set, but honestly, I was just bullshitting in that interview. But now we’re here, so I recommend you just stash me on some low-priority project while — what? Tyson from corporate security is out? For four to six weeks? Well, OK, I guess I can do that.

Rajon Rondo


What it says: I CANNOT believe you transferred all the best people in my department. Can I just start telecommuting? Because if any of these new guys so much as breathe funny around me I am going off like a Roman candle.

Andre Drummond


What it says: I have a crush on the cute, popular girl in accounting and I’M TOTALLY GOING TO MAKE IT HAPPEN.

Stephen Curry (long-sleeve)


What it says: You done with that soda can? Bam: I just threw it in the garbage. All set with those memos? Bam bam: crumpled, in the bin, from across the room. How ’bout that lunch bag? Off the copier, in the trash. There was still a cookie in there? Sorry: You can’t stop the hot hand. Also, I’m a little self-conscious about my upper arms.

Pierre the Pelican

What it says: The conference room must be bathed in the blood of the unclean. And the Tupperware in the sink must be washed with the tears of the non-believers. Or at least soaked in some hot water.

Victor Oladipo


What it says: I’m going to absolutely slay it at the office Christmas party when it’s time for karaoke. Just you watch.

JaVale McGee

What it says: I send around office memos with drawings of ducks on them. I draw mustaches on people’s ID badges when they’re not looking. That fake severed arm in the break room fridge? That was me. Sometimes I like to have my alter ego answer the phone. And yet I still got a big fat raise.

Tim Duncan


What it says: Nothing. This is fundamentally indistinguishable from a suit and tie.

Steve McPherson (@steventurous) is a contributor to the New York Times’s Off the Dribble blog and ESPN TrueHoop Network sites A Wolf Among Wolves and Hardwood Paroxysm.

Filed Under: Derrick Rose, Javale Mcgee, NBA, Tim Duncan