From an environmental perspective, the new uniforms for the U.S. women's national soccer team are cool because each is made from recycled polyester that came from 18 plastic bottles. From a promotional standpoint, the latest version is practical because it is the first time that the women's uniforms will be sold to the public in men's sizes.

At the unveiling of these kits, we caught up with Alex Morgan, Sydney Leroux and Tobin Heath for their thoughts about the fresh style as well as their preparation for the Women's World Cup that opens June 6 in Canada.

Nike's decision to opt for black and neon green rather than red, white and blue in the color scheme raised some eyebrows. But Washington Post columnist Clinton Yates countered by writing:

"Moves away from flag-related colors are really nothing new in the soccer world, even if that concept makes waves on these shores. Germany and Argentina have been rocking the look gloriously for years. ...

"A move away from the same old colors of the Star-Spangled Banner is a great move for U.S. Soccer at this point. It's no surprise that the women are leading the charge, per usual."

-- Check out of Jacques Slade on and follow him on Twitter @kustoo.

During Magic Johnson's NBA career, he was among the superstars who endorsed Converse sneakers. At one point in the mid-80s, Converse had a TV commercial for its Weapon model that featured Johnson, Larry Bird, Bernard King, Isiah Thomas, Mark Aguirre and Kevin McHale. But Converse was already starting to lose ground to Nike and Air Jordan, and lack of innovation was a key factor. When Magic ended his relationship with Converse in 1992, he called it "a company is stuck in the 60s and 70s."

Then Magic became a huge fan of the Air Jordan line and that continues. Speaking at the Dodgers Foundation's Blue Diamond Gala fashion show, Magic says he still asks Michael Jordan to hook him up with the latest Air Jordan gear.

"And what he doesn't send, I go out and buy," Magic says.

Here's more of Johnson's appreciation of Air Jordans:

In an interesting twist, Nike now owns Converse. In 2001, Converse filed for bankruptcy, and Nike bought the company two years later.

One fun consequence of the NBA instituting a dress code for games: Players have really taken to fashion. During the past few years, guys like Russell Westbrook, Dwight Howard and Dwyane Wade have grown progressively more ambitious -- and audacious -- in the way they present themselves in postgame interviews. From Wade's lens-less glasses to Kevin Durant's backpack, even to Westbrook's collecting of wallpaper-inspired shirts, we offer an in-depth look at what to expect this playoff season.

The already contentious relationship between the Dodgers and the Diamondbacks got worse this week after another Los Angeles fan at Chase Field was asked to put on an Arizona jersey.

The incident occurred Sunday, during the NL West rivals' afternoon clash in Phoenix. A fan can be seen on the broadcast behind home plate wearing a blue Dodgers' shirt and cap. During the game the fan is given a Diamondbacks jersey and asked to change.

Here's the clip:

The Diamondbacks released a statement about the incident, essentially saying ticket buyers enter into an agreement that if they are sitting behind home plate they will either wear Diamondbacks gear or neutral colors.

This isn't the first time a Dodgers fan has been hassled at a Diamondbacks game. In each of the past two seasons Arizona has made a stink about a Los Angeles fan wearing blue inside Chase Field.

Deadspin reached out to the Diamondbacks after one such incident in 2013, and this was the club's response:

"Due to the high visibility of the home plate box, we ask opposing team's fans when they purchase those seats to refrain from wearing that team's colors. During last night's game, when Ken Kendrick noticed the fans there, he offered them another suite if they preferred to remain in their Dodger gear. When they chose to stay, he bought them all D-backs gear and a round of drinks and requested that they abide by our policy and they obliged."

Here's to hoping "Marlins Man" makes his way to Phoenix, because we doubt he'll budge.

On a lighter note, this appears to be another instance of life imitating art, as these incidents bear a striking resemblance to a scene in season three of Seinfeld:

Jordan Brand president Larry Miller shunned the politician style copout. Favorite version of the Air Jordan? Miller said it has to be the Air Jordan XI. "It's almost like, do I really want to play basketball in something that looks this good?" Miller said.

Miller also spoke about retro shoes and working with a figure as iconic as Michael Jordan, shortly after his participation on a panel at the IMG World Congress of Sports presented by SportsBusiness Journal/Daily in Los Angeles:

The NBA is expected to be the first major North American professional sports league to showcase advertising on game uniforms, according to a panel of industry experts at the IMG World Congress of Sports presented by SportsBusiness Journal/Daily.

"We're not going to rush into this thing, even though it's widely accepted around the world," said NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum, who also referenced the practice in the WNBA, D League and NASCAR. "We've got to do it thoughtfully because we're potentially going to be one of the first leagues to do it. We're putting a lot of thought into how it looks, how it works and those mechanics."

Two NHL executives, league deputy commissioner Bill Daly and Flames president Brian Burke, also spoke Wednesday at the conference in Los Angeles about how it's only a question of how and when the NBA would start running ads on uniforms.

Larry Miller, president of Jordan Brand, has a unique perspective because he used to work the other side of the fence as president of the Portland Trail Blazers.

"I don't necessarily like it, Miller said. "If you start to get too much going on with the uniforms, it actually takes away from the authenticity of the uniform. But by the same token, I know it's a revenue play for the league and teams. If it's going to be done, it's in a way that doesn't affect or impact the authenticity of the brands."

Another consideration is whether these ads would be locally driven or be negotiated league-wide on a national scale.

"If you look at it from a local perspective, small market teams don't benefit from that, as much as the larger market teams," Miller said.

Burke isn't looking forward to the day when this comes to the NHL.

"Go look up a Swedish hockey team and look at the advertising on the uniform," Burke said. "It's sickening. I hate it. I hate it. If you need the revenue that badly, cut your labor costs. We don't sell heroin. We shouldn't sell advertising on uniforms."

Such an analogy might be considered apples-and-bowling-bowls hyperbole, but apparently not for Burke.

"They're very close in my mind," he said. "It's coming. I hate the fact it's coming. That doesn't mean traditionalists like me have to embrace it or enjoy it. I look at, especially our Original Six teams, the clean marks we have, the beautiful sweaters and I look and I think, we're going to have Ford patch or Chrysler patch on there -- you gotta be kidding me.

"There are Swedish team that have the golden arches on their socks, on the stripes on their socks -- c'mon!"

Although the NHL might not beat the NBA to market with this approach, it has already started down the same path.

"It does exist currently," Daly said. "The current manufacturers of our jersey really advertise with their on-ice presence, so it is a matter of how you do it."

Turn on any sporting event, action movie or other masculine-stereotyped television programming. It probably will not take long to see a commercial for Game of War starring Kate Upton. The image of the model riding around in armor on a horse is odd, but Upton has never been one for the ordinary.

After all, the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue star got much of her fame from the May 2012 video of her performing the "Cat Daddy." The short clip of Upton shimmying in a skimpy bikini became a YouTube sensation and garnered a serious of slow-motion spinoffs. The original video has over 22 million views:

However, in an interview for Vogue released Tuesday, Upton admitted she was fuming when photography Terry Richardson released the video. It turns out the scene was not in the scripted plans.

"Upton was horrified because the behind-the-scenes video had been filmed for fun, not something she expected would make the final cut," Alexa Chung writes in Vogue.

Upton and Richardson avoided making any confrontation public, and the model embraced the video. Along with her first of two SI Swimsuit Issue cover appearances being in 2012, a 2011 video of Upton doing the dougie at a Los Angeles Clippers game was also spreading. The Cat Daddy video ended up being a perfect storm for pumping up Upton's publicity.

Upton is long over the Cat Daddy fiasco. "Now, obviously, it's fine," she says. Yes, for the most recognizable model in the world, things have worked out.

Tinker Hatfield is no stranger to creating cool sneakers. From the Air Jordan 3 to the Air Max 1 to the Air Jordan XX9, Tinker has had his hand is nearly every cool Nike shoe you can think of. This weekend, Hatfield's work once again came to life via the new Nike Air Max Zero.

The Air Max Zero was actually designed in 1985 -- before the Air Max 1. Hatfield's original drawing, which was ahead of its time in terms of what technically possible, was recently discovered in the archives at Nike. A team from Nike Sportswear led by Graeme McMillian was tasked with creating the shoe and bringing it up to today's standards.

Introduced as part of Nike's Air Max Day to celebrate that line, the shoe was unveiled in a special house-sized sneaker box in Los Angeles.

Erected in a week and glowing through the night, the Air Max Box featured memorable silhouettes from the line including favorites such as the Air Max 95, the Air Max 2015, the Air Max 1 and the Air Max.

Check out the video above for more details about the shoe and the pop-up sneaker-box venue that was on Third Street in Los Angeles.

-- Read more by Jacques Slade on and follow him on Twitter @kustoo.

Every day is casual Friday for Andy Reid.

The Kansas City Chiefs coach, who may or may not own a suit, showed up to the NFL's annual meetings in Phoenix this week rocking shorts and a bright Hawaiian shirt.

See if you can pick him out from this photo:

Here's a better look at Reid's ensemble:

While almost all of his colleagues wore a nice shirt and pants, Reid went for comfortable with this outfit. And seeing as it was in the 80s and 90s in Arizona, Reid was probably the only one not sweating.

As one can imagine, Twitter users had a lot to say about Reid's clothes. Here's a sampling:

Reid, 57, wasn't the only one to go casual for the coaches' meetings. Bill Belichick, whose scowl and hoodies have made him something of an NFL fashion icon, wore sandals for the day. Belichick looks like he might have just gotten back from a Costa Rican vacation with Tom Brady and his family.

You can see Belichick below, seated second from right.

Reid is entering his third season as coach of the Chiefs. He's gone 20-12 in Kansas City, finishing second in the AFC West both seasons.

You might have heard the story about how Michael Jordan's first choice of sneakers when he was entering the NBA in 1984 was Adidas, not Nike.

After getting a strong offer from Nike, Jordan went back to Adidas, and (as he put it to sports business reporter Darren Rovell in a 2009 interview) said: "If you come anywhere close, I'll sign with you guys."

As we all know, Adidas declined to match the offer. Jordan took the Nike deal, and the industry was revolutionized.

Now, according to a Wall Street Journal story, we have the reason why Adidas passed on Jordan:

He wasn't tall enough.

At that time, Lakers center Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was the biggest star Adidas had under contract. The Adidas braintrust was looking for more big men like Kareem, who was listed at 7-2, and not the 6-6 Jordan.


Ellen Emmerentze Jervell and Sara Germano report in the Journal that there was a push within Adidas to get Jordan, but the power brokers at company headquarters in Germany overruled those sentiments:

Adidas distributors wanted to sign Mr. Jordan, says someone who was an Adidas distributor then. But executives in Germany decided shoppers would favor taller players and wanted to sponsor centers, the person says, adding: "We kept saying, 'no -- no one can relate to those guys. Who can associate with a seven-foot-tall guy?'"

Adidas did land 7-foot Patrick Ewing coming out of Georgetown the following year, and perhaps the Nike-Adidas dynamic could've been a little different if his Knicks had ever gotten past Jordan's Bulls in the playoffs and won a title.

There is still a legacy of Adidas' big-man mentality that led its missed opportunity with Jordan. Current NBA stars wearing Adidas include centers/power forwards Tim Duncan, Dwight Howard, Joakim Noah and the Lopez twins. Its other top players include guards Derrick Rose, John Wall and Damian Lillard.

But the focal point of the Journal's story is how Adidas is trying to recover from a lengthy slump in the U.S. market. It had been No. 2 behind Nike in domestic sales, but slipped to No. 3 in 2014 when Under Armour surged past it.

Within Nike's empire, there is the Jordan Brand subsidiary, and it features players such as Russell Westbrook and Carmelo Anthony (and Derek Jeter before he retired).

The other interesting footnote is the fate of Converse. Jordan had worn Converse in college at North Carolina because of the school's contract. Converse was a major player in the NBA shoe game in the 80s with Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and Julius Erving. But a lack of innovation was hurting Converse, and when Magic left the company in 1992, he delivered these parting shots: "Converse as a company is stuck in the 60s and 70s."

Jordan's rise with Nike and the subsequent phenomenon of Reebok's Pump put it in even deeper trouble. Converse filed for bankruptcy in 2001. Nike rescued it by buying the company in 2003, and the Converse brand has rebounded well since then.

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