As I was cruising the Suns Team Shop in the wake of Friday night's double overtime victory over Memphis I noticed something really strange. Now don't get me wrong - there is a great deal of crap nobody would buy at the Suns Team Shop (I mean honestly, who's buying the 4 foot tall Steve Nash doll) but something shocking caught my eye.
See for yourself:
It's a freaking Matt Janning jersey (don't mind my finger...I was still slightly buzzed at the time and working on like 2 hours sleep). But it wasn't just Janning - the team shop had jerseys for pretty much every Sun except Garrett Siler.
Gani Lawal and Earl Clark? They've got em. Hell, the Siler jersey was probably there - I just didn't see it. As a regular of the team shop I should note that I'm about 99.9% sure this is a new thing. I don't recall seeing Jarron Collins jerseys for sale last season. And you all damn well know that if they were pushing T-Griff gear I would have spent 2 months salary on it.
I don't know about you, but I'm delighted by this development and if you are also a fan of obscure player jerseys I assume you're equally thrilled. Does this mean I shelled out the 60 bucks to be the one guy wearing a Matt Janning jersey in US Airways Center (and I'm including Matt Janning himself here)? Absolutely not. But I assure you that the minute one of those jerseys ends up on the clearance rack I'll gladly pony up the dollars.
Since you all know me pretty well by now I assume you're not surprised by the fact that I'm a fan of the obscure. That fandom extends to jerseys. I've never paid full price for one but I am the proud owner of jerseys of Wesley Person, Oliver Miller, Marcell Shipp, David Boston, and Josh McCown. Otherwise known as a real who's who of Arizona based superstars. In addition, I'll semi-regularly scour eBay for a hilarious find - a recent search found a Corey Gaines Knicks jersey from the early 90's that was just a little too rich for my blood.
I mean really, is there anything more comical than seeing somebody in a ridiculous jersey? At one Suns game last year I saw a dude sporting a Yuta Tabuse jersey. I thought about hugging him. Anyone can throw on a Steve Nash jersey - it takes a guy with a real sense of comedic irony to go Tabuse, Pat Burke, or Eric Piatkowski.
I know I'm not the only guy who finds obscure jerseys amusing so please share your worst. Pictures or it didn't happen.
And if you see a dude in a Matt Janning jersey trolling the concourse of US Airways Center in the next few months, it's probably me. I'll probably be yelling irrationally. (A few preemptive responses: (1) yes I'm aware of straightcashhomey.net, (2) yes I know they have a jersey making station right outside the team shop but that's not the point, and (3) yes, I'll probably make out with you).