One of the hottest players in the style game, Nick Young of the Los Angeles Lakers has been quietly shaking up the scene and garnering a lot of attention with his style. From Versace to Saint Laurent, Nick isn’t shy about showing a tasteful amount of panache and flair at press conferences or on social media. Recently, Mr. Refined™ sat down with Nick to discuss his status as a style icon, his style, and being rated in the top-20 stylish athletes in GQ.
Mr. Refined: Describe your style.
Nick Young: Daring. I don’t discriminate on clothes. I’m willing to try anything. When I stepped up to the press conference with the Versace shirt on, that really set it off for me. It sparked the minds of the media and people started going outrageous after that. I’m into trying anything.
MR: What inspired your style?
NY: A little bit of everything. I’m a big Kanye fan of course. I like his style. Growing up, I followed Pharell with the BBC movement the BAPE movement. I got into it from there.
MR: If you had to wear only one designer from head to toe, who would it be and why?
NY: Oooh that’s hard to say. If I had to pick one, it would have to be Saint Laurent. They are killing it right now for me. Too many people wear Givenchy nowadays. That’s the easy way to get fly. People are taking the easy way out, you know?
MR: Where did name “Swaggy P” come from?
NY: How I dress. How I carry myself. My homies started calling me “Swag.” They looked at what I was wearing and said “That’s swag.” I was tired of using that word so I came up with “Swaggy” or “I’m Swaggy.” I added the P from a nickname that they used to call me back in the day.
MR: Would you rather show up to an event overdressed or underdressed?
NY: Overdressed. I’m overdressed lots of times.
MR: Other than yourself, who do you think are the best dressed guys in the NBA?
NY: I like what Russ Westbrook has been doing. And you know Lebron. Lebron is Lebron. And my man Brandon Jennings.
MR: Yeah; Brandon does his thing. He doesn’t get enough credit for what he does.
NY: He definitely doesn’t get enough credit.
MR: D-Wade got a lot of flak last year for the capri look that he did. What were your thoughts on that? How did you feel about that?
NY: I like it! But some stuff you see guys in these days, they just wear whatever their stylist puts them in. A lot of times it doesn’t really fit them or their style.
MR: Would you wear that look?
NY:Yeah, I’ll throw some capris on.
MR: If you had to dress your date for a night on the town, what would you put her in?
NY: Probably a Kenzo outfit and some J’s. Keep it simple.
MR: So we looked at your Instagram and saw a few blazers, but we noticed you don’t wear suits much. Any reason why not?
NY: Nah, I’m not too big on suits. That’s the easy way to go for me. I like to dress down a lot. I’m not too big on being proper and getting all suited and booted, wearing a tie and all that.
MR: What are your top 3 sneakers of all time?
NY: On or off the court?
NY: Jordan IVs, the original black and red ones. Some dope Vans, I wear a lot of Vans. And I gotta keep it LA with some Chucks on. Gotta have the original black and white chucks. They’re classic.
NY: On the court I wear the Kobe’s. I wear every Kobe now. Me and him wear the same size, so I’ll just go in the back get all his sneakers. My other two are the Nike Foamposites and the J’s.
MR: Music has a heavy influence on a lot of people’s fashion sense. Does music play a big part in yours?
NY: Yeah, definitely. Like I said earlier, Kanye is a big influence. I get hype when I listen to his music. It makes me want to go swag out. Kendrick be killing it as well.
MR: How do you feel about making the top 20 most stylish athletes list in GQ?
NY: I feel good! There were a lot of big names up there. You know Lebron, D-Wade, then you saw Swaggy. It was nice to see that someone was taking notice. Next year, I’m trying to be higher on the list. I’m a Laker now, so they’re watching me.
MR: To add on to that…to be on that list, a lot of those guys have stylists and people who are dressing them. You don’t have a stylist, so do you look at that and feel accomplished?
NY: Yeah, all the time. My publicist, Adonis Spicer, always wants me to get a stylist. I tell him I do this on my own. So it feels good seeing some of the stuff people put together, that I already see in my head, like “I’m gonna go get that.” So to have that fashion sense that I have, to get noticed, it feels good.
MR: Do you think you could be a stylist?
NY: I’m not sure. I think I can just style myself. I’m gonna watch you guys and see what you do. Maybe spend a day next to a stylist. Because its hard to just look at someone and just put them in something that looks good on them.
MR: Do you consider yourself a style icon?
NY: Yeah, most definitely. Definitely. I feel like I helped start the movement on getting dressed for the press conference after games.
MR: What is your go-to clothing store? The store that you go to and most of the time you’ll leave out a happy customer?
NY: I do a lot of my shopping online. I go to Mr. Porter and SSENSE. Every week they have something new.
MR: How many days a week do you shop?
NY: Pretty much every day, just to see what’s up. Things sell out fast!
MR: Now that the spotlight is on you, with you being in GQ and your link to celebs off the court, people are looking at you more. Do you feel like there is more pressure? Can you still be Swaggy or do you feel like you have to watch what you do now?
NY: A little bit of both, but I’m starting to get used it more.
MR: The media attention changes a lot of people. They feel like they need to fit in or that they want to be portrayed a certain way. Do you see yourself doing that?
NY: Nah. But I haven’t been dressing up as much. Some games aren’t on TV or anything, so sometimes I feel like I’m wasting my outfits. So I try to wait for the right moments to bring something out.
MR: What advice do you give to a guy trying to refine his style?
NY: You can’t really focus on what people are gonna say when you wear it. You just have to do you. You have to have that confidence. If you don’t have any confidence with your outfit, then it won’t look right, you have to be comfortable.
Photos by: JNHFotos