A Luxe-as-Hell Trophy Case Is Just the Beginning of the Louis Vuitton x NBA Partnership

Jonathan Evans
Photo credit: Gregoire Vielle

From Esquire

The Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy is a modern icon. It's the brass ring of basketball, metaphorically speaking. Speaking more literally, it's a two-foot-tall sculpture of a basketball over a hoop, made by Tiffany & Co. from 16 pounds of sterling silver with a 24 karat gold overlay. It's fancy, is what I'm saying. Very fancy. And it has to travel, preferably in something as iconic and high-end as the trophy itself. That's where Louis Vuitton comes in.

This week, the storied French fashion house announced a multi-year partnership with the NBA. To kick things off, craftsmen in Vuitton's Asnières workshop, a few miles northwest of the heart of Paris, crafted a custom case for the Larry O'Brien Championship Trophy, fitted with brass fixtures and wrapped in the always-recognizable Monogram canvas.

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The case is a strong start, no doubt, but it's not the only element at play here. To round out the offering from the partnership, Louis Vuitton will release a limited-edition capsule collection each year. The first one, designed by Virgil Abloh, will be available after the presentation of the trophy this June, though exact timing is still a mystery.

Also a mystery: the look of the clothing itself. Under Abloh's predecessor Kim Jones, and now under Abloh himself, Louis Vuitton has embraced more of a sportswear-slash-streetwear mentality in some of its menswear. This season, though, saw Abloh go hard on playing with tailoring, subverting the suit for the modern guy that probably (okay, with these suits, definitely) isn't wearing his two-button because the corporate dress code demands it. So, will LV x NBA look more like what the guys are wearing on the court, or what they're wearing through the tunnel? Come June, we'll find out.

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