“Stole It”: US Legend Flo-Jo’s Fans Demand Angel Reese Clan For More Respect After LeBron James’ Practice Fit Stirred Chaos

Published 04/09/2024, 1:18 AM EDT

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Fashion has always been a part of sports! Remember the Adidas tracksuits and Zubaz pants from the 80s? Back in the day, they were cool. While people may hesitate to wear them today, some 80s fashion is so iconic that people can’t resist it. And such was Flo-Jo’s style. Her asymmetrical one-legged tracksuits and six-inch-long painted nails are popular even today.

No doubt, when track-and-field fans saw the latest practice video of NBA’s LeBron James, they remembered how Joyner did it first. Even LSU’s star basketball player Angel Reese and Las Vegas Aces’ power forward A’Ja Wilson got dragged into the conversation.

In a recent X post by the official Los Angeles Lakers account, LeBron James was seen keeping in shape as he practiced his hooping skills. Captioned, “Getting shots up“, the post shows the four-time NBA champ making two back-to-back hoops without a sweat. For anyone who’s followed his career closely, such displays are a common thing. However, it was his fit that caught the eyes of Florence Joyner’s fans.


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In the video, James could be seen wearing an outfit very similar to Fl-Jo’s one-legged tracksuit. While some fans claimed that James took a cue from Angel Reese, Joyner’s fans took on the responsibility of giving them a crash course on fashion history.

Fans remember Florence Griffith Joyner’s archetypal outfits in the 80s!

Since the Lakers’ post went online, throngs of fans came together in flocks to hail their favorite athlete to show the way for others to follow. As one X user claimed that James’ outfit was inspired by Angel Reese, another user had to remember who the true pioneer was.

Did you know that Joyner would design her own track costumes in high school? In fact, she also tried to convince her teammates to wear leggings under their shorts. For her, fashion was a part of her strategy to perform well. “Dress good to look good. Look good to feel good. And feel good to run fast!” she once explained. And it seems to have worked for her! She went on to become the first female American Olympian to win four medals in a year. Plus, her influence on fashion is still visible.


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Even after retiring from sports, Joyner continued her work in fashion. She launched her own line and even designed uniforms for the Indiana Pacers.

But why did Angel Reese adopt a similar style? Well, she mostly wears one legging on her left leg to cover a scar. As a freshman, she suffered a fracture and had a rod inserted into her left leg. “I cover the scar for one, then my two players that I really admire, Te’a Cooper and A’ja Wilson, they also wear it, too … So it’s swag. But I’ve used it to cover my scar.”

Many X users made it a point to mention Joyner. After all, she brought sportswear and fashion together. Her influence was so deep that in 2018, Beyonce dressed like Joyner for Halloween. In 2021, tennis star Serena Williams wore an asymmetric unitard on day one of the Australian Open. It was a tribute to the track-and-field star. “I was inspired by Flo-Jo, who was a wonderful track athlete, amazing athlete, when I was growing up,” Serena Williams said.


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But what pushed Flo-Jo to create that iconic one-legged tracksuit? She once explained, “It was a two-legged outfit and I was going to make another style [but] I was cutting one leg off and I liked that look. … Some people think that one-legged outfits are more bare than having both legs out …I think it was shocking. People say it’s too much for sports. They figure people can’t run fast wearing that.”


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Flo-Jo had opined that a particular outfit or wearing makeup was not going to stop anyone from running fast. Clearly, her influence in sports and fashion goes deep. What do you think?

Read More: Sha’Carri Richardson’s Biggest Hurdle to 200m Gold Just Announced for Diamond League


Written by:

Diptarko Paul


One take at a time

Diptarko Paul is a senior Olympic Sports Correspondent at EssentiallySports. This state-level swimmer decided to dive deep into the world of Olympics. From writing various aspects of swimming to diving deep in the world of NCAA division 1 Volleyball, Diptarko covers it all.
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Edited by:

Suman Varandani