The Best Japanese Streetwear Brands to Explore

Japanese fashion and streetwear are inextricably linked. As the umbrella of the term ‘streetwear’ continues to expand, numerous brands and styles are encapsulated by the once more niche term. Many brands of various styles, from Americana to high fashion, now exist within the expanse of streetwear. In this article, we’ll look at some of the best Japanese streetwear brands available on the market right now, and then jump into some streetwear brands inspired by anime worldwide. First, a short history of the relationship between anime and Japanese streetwear.

How Anime Has Influenced Streetwear

With the advent of streaming services, channel surfing has become a lost art form. Children stuck at home on sick days or before bedtime don’t scan the airwaves looking for stimulation, as they’re now privy to endless on-demand content of any genre or style. Although the plethora of choices available at a moment’s notice is certainly an embarrassment of riches, there was something magical about the discovery of a new, unexpected television show—stumbled upon in moments of bored desperation.

Back in the early ’00s, Cartoon Network began broadcasting Japanese animation in the Toonami scheduling block and airing adult-oriented cartoons during the late-night [adult swim] block, providing a sharp contrast to the usual colorful kids’ media. These series were often darkly apocalyptic, deeply surreal or comically hypersexual. While we’ve come to expect certain kinds of highbrow twists on the small screen in the current Golden Age of prestige TV, this kind of cerebral entertainment was somewhat unheard of at the time, especially when packaged as hand-drawn artworks.

[adult swim] and Toonami were how many Americans discovered the existence of anime—the genuinely bizarre aesthetics of post-modern Japanese cinema were suddenly shown to teens and tweens acting as their first exposure to avant-gardism. While some shows were silly adventure capers with motifs of existential woe (like Cowboy Bebop, Trigun, Inuyasha and Big O), others explored Y2K-era fears of technology and the emergence of cyberspace (like Paranoia Agent, Serial Experiments Lain, Neon Genesis Evangelion, FLCL and Ghost in the Shell). The artistic statements behind these works were far more dense and inaccessible than American sci-fi at the time—the latter favored big-budget special effects and celebrity name power over intellectual exploration.

Entire subcultures began forming around young people obsessed with Japanese media, sometimes called otakus (taken from a quite derogatory Japanese term for perverted nerds)—or, more recently, called weeaboos. Because more obscure and hardcore content wasn’t available on TV, communities began to form and share their wares, not so dissimilar from the tape traders of pro wrestling culture.

“At the time it felt niche—it was a secret that made you feel seen,” said Katie Rose Leon, who runs the Ballin’ Out SUPER podcast that covers nostalgic anime faves from a distinctly feminist and leftist political viewpoint. “You had to know where to find it. Communities and friendships were built around it. It also offered a visual alternative to Western cartoons during the late ’90s and early aughts, which were largely angular and masculine. Good aesthetics go a long way.”

For LGBTQ audiences, anime was particularly meaningful in that it was many young queers’ first exposure to sexuality that wasn’t strictly heterosexual—outside of pornography. Although these days, Japan remains somewhat behind the times when it comes to LGBTQ politics (same-sex marriage is not legal in Japan), queer and queer-coded characters frequently popped up in anime of that era. Although a lot of the overt LGBTQ stories were heavily censored, fans could see through the veil. These sexual minority characters were often three-dimensional and fully realized. Sometimes, they were even the protagonists, which was unfathomable, given the more significant cultural landscape. No wonder millennial LGBTQs have such an affection for anime—and why cosplay drag (sometimes called crossplay) has become its subcategory of queer performance art.

“Most anime protagonists (especially in the shonen genre) are underdogs who usually have to fight against the odds for survival,” says Blvck Laé D., a Brooklyn-based drag performer whose looks are heavily inspired by Japanese sci-fi. “I think the theme of surviving resonates with a lot of queer babes.”

And now, everything old is new again. “Retro” fashion always works in entirely predictable 20-year cycles, and as we dip into 2020, our favorite niche hobbies from the beginning of the new millennium are coming back. The current cultural fixation on cyberpunk was foreseeable for these reasons. One of the biggest influences on cyberpunk? Anime.

“Shows like Yu Yu Hakusho and movies like Akira set the tone for a lot of the trends we see today,” Laé added.

Tumblr fashionistas have long been observing the similarities between couture designs and anime fashions, but in 2019 and beyond, there’s an increasing parallel between the fantasy looks of anime and readily available streetwear. What once was a sort of shameful hobby has now fully entered the domain of cutting edge style. Anime-influenced design now takes both the tropes of the late ’90s and early ‘00s Japan or directly lifts imagery from the most beloved cartoons. Streetwear designers are taking cues from the characters in animated psychodramas, who sometimes donned normcore clothing (lots of school uniforms, loose-fitting button-downs and pleated skirts), but would transform into superheroes, clad in sexy fantasy gear.

“The demographics who dictate fashion trends are usually hip POC or LGBTQs,” Leon says. “These groups were specifically influenced by anime because it offered representation in an entertainment void where they otherwise couldn’t see themselves at all. The internet has sped up nostalgia, and it’s super profitable. That’s Disney+’s whole model; people no longer watch cable TV, but it’s easier to find anime to watch than ever [on demand]. It’s no longer relegated to nerds. The best rappers sample anime; Goku is all over streetwear. Everyone can easily access it, and the gatekeeping is gone.”

Ironically, it’s mostly non-Japanese designers who are interested in resurrecting anime classics for the sake of fashion—although the genre has gotten “cool” in the United States, anime is still a shameful hobby in the country where it was invented. Takashi Murakami’s designs for Louis Vuitton and Kanye West are perhaps the notable exception to the rule, although Murakami’s so-called superflatist visual style was created to critique the affective deadness of easily consumable luxury objects. Instead, it’s usually Western urban populations that find themselves fixated on the visual imagery of anime. The reach goes well into Latin America, where anime characters quite frequently populate the T-shirts and accessories of the hippest trendsetters. 

The rise of anime in streetwear is also politically prescient: Although every genre of anime exists (horror, romance, sci-fi and drama), it was specifically the dystopian and apocalyptic cartoons that attracted a bulk of viewers. Although the predictions of doomsday wound up being wrong, it’s no surprise that people are drawn to end-of-the-world scenarios like those posed in Angel Sanctuary or X/1999 as we approach an impending climate crisis and tumble headfirst toward fascism. 

Below, we’ve gathered a list of Japanese streetwear brands and brands that mine the visual language of anime as inspiration for their cutting edge styles. From high-end to DIY, these brands are bringing our darkest Y2K fantasies into the future. Take a look at some of the best Japanese streetwear brands and some anime-inspired streetwear brands to shop now.

<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
1. Undercover

No brand represents the world of Japanese streetwear quite like Jun Takahashi’s Undercover. One of the first brands to truly be considered a streetwear brand, founded 30 years ago, Undercover has stayed in the spotlight for so long due to the appeal of the brand ethos surrounding disruption and rebellion.

And they’ve got one of the toughest mottos around: “We make noise, not clothes.”

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
2. and wander

and wander was founded by Keita Ikeuchi and Mihoko Mori in 2011, and is another brand representing the growing integration of outdoorswear into the streetwear canon. Relying on Gore-tex and other elite materials, and wander has managed to make a name for itself by always using the highest quality technical materials and understated color selections with a splash of color once in a while. The best thing about the brand is it doesn’t just look amazing; you can actually wear this stuff into the outdoors.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
3. Visvim

Visvim comes from the culture of Japanese Americana. Throughout the 20th and early 21st century, a lot of japanese designers were fascinated with the late 19th and early 20th century culture of Americana in the US, leading to the development of some of the best denim in the world. Visvim has become a mainstay of celebrity wardrobes from John Mayer to X, and is well-known for its supreme quality and interesting designs. Other brands in the umbrella include Kapital, Nanamica and Hysteric Glamor. 

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
4. Cav Empt

Founders of Cav Empt Sk8thing and Toby Feltwell have such a keen eye for patterns, which is part of what makes the brand so attractive. Graphic designer Sk8thing had worked for a vast array of the biggest names in streetwear before starting his brand, and he brings that design history into his brand. A lot of the pieces are similarly technical, but include more elevated patterns and color ways.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
5. CDG

DOn’t have to say much about Junya Watanabe’s CDG. It’s one of the most referenced brands in hip hop, and Junya continues to innovate throughout the decades, always keeping his finger on the pulse. CDG is an example of a brand that doesn’t follow trends; it sets them.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
6. Nanamica

Nananimca is a wonderful example of the increasing prevalence of tech wear in the ever-evolving umbrella of streetwear. A lot of the pieces are more technical, but all work around a cohesive aesthetic that pulls from outdoor wear, japanese streetwear and elements of Americana. Their shop in NYC is incredible. 

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
7. Suicoke

Suicoke has gotten immensely popular in the past few years, partially due to the high profile people who’ve been seen wearing the innovative sandals. A more visually interesting iteration of a slip on than a Birkenstock, Suicoke has made a name for itself with numerous collaborations and building on the duding culture of slip-ons and sandals.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
8. Kapital

This is the blueprint. Japanese Americana is Kapital. They make the best denim, boast incredibly interesting patterns and always put out interesting pieces inspired by the intersection of Americana and Japanese fashion. 

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
9. Evisu

Evisu was massive in the early 2000s, a favorite of lots of rappers and others in streetwear in its nascent era. Today, the brand has managed to maintain its cultural cachet by releasing a lot of vintage-inspired pieces and they still boast one of the most recognizable and iconic logos in all of streetwear.

shop now
Brands Inspired by Anime

The rest of the entries on this list are not Japanese streetwear brands, but brands from all around the globe inspired by anime and demonstrating the lasting effect the media style has had on streetwear.

<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
10. Mishka

A longtime staple of the indie rap world, streetwear brand Miska has always flirted with anime-influenced designs. This is not a Japanese brand; rather, this is a brand inspired by anime and other elements of Japanese style.

Some of their more recent collections lift the imagery of both obscure and well-known video games and cartoons. Their designs have featured box art from PlayStation classics like Final Fantasy 7 and Silent Hill, with their logo slapped on top. Who needs subtlety when the media their referring to is so profoundly beloved?

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
11. Public Space

Public Space came to prominence during vaporwave’s most influential moments and has waned in popularity a bit since. Still, their nostalgic clothing celebrating the look and feel of Web 1.0 remains lovable as ever. The evocative and moody Pokémon and Yu-Gi-Oh designs are a step above what you’d get at the Nintendo World store and come in color gradients reminiscent of the MS Paint and Word Art era of computing. There’s a strange melancholy to some of these looks, but then again—there’s this campy Kool-Aid onesie.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>

HVY BLK reimagines the cherished characters of series like Sailor Moon as superheroic BDSM bank robbers, totally reinterpreting the kid-friendly program as a kind of message on women’s liberation. The anti-fascist imagery makes sense, given the overtly feminist themes of many of the original shows that the designs inspired.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
13. Sotogang

Tattoo artist Manuela Soto’s drawings of curvaceous anime women became her calling card as she rose to prominence on Instagram. Her unique style takes heavy cues from hentai (animated Japanese pornography) graffiti, nu-metal, skater and raver culture. Now, she’s selling some of her signature drawings printed on a plethora of hoodies, shirts and sweatpants. You’ve probably seen her work on at least one social media influencer—either in ink or as apparel.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
14. Adidas x Dragon Ball

The sci-fantasy series Dragon Ball is widely considered an original of the shonen sub-genre, having influenced almost every series that came after it. The show told the story of magical fighters defending the earth from alien invaders while making lifelong friends—and enemies—on the way. Adidas issued a series of sneakers inspired by the color palettes of the main characters in a smartly understated nod to the classic cartoon, which had sparked interest in so many young anime fans.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
15. Kikillo

Takashi Murakami’s genius was in his abstracting of anime tropes into surrealist art, and Kikillo continues this tradition on their crewnecks, sweatpants and pillowcases. They warp and distort familiar characters into glitchy and melting messes. There’s a sort of Warholian sensibility in the repeated imagery, and the clothes are as dizzying as they are stylish.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
16. BAPE x One Piece

The expansive anime series One Piece tells the story of a mischievous shape-shifting pirate on an endless search for whimsical treasure. Super-deformed and chibi styles were present in anime long before the same kinds of cutesy artists and icons became abundant in the United States, and BAPE’s take on the series turns the colorful cast of fantastical marauders into simple miniatures.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
17. Wet

Far more understated than much of the bombastic and colorful brands elsewhere on this list, designer Lee Kobayashi’s minimalist designs have whiffs of the eroticism and grotesquery characteristic on display in most anime. The medical-themed looks are a bold statement, but the soft and boyish Akira designs sort of sidestep the overt violence of its source material.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
18. Dumbgood

Dumbgood has spammed Instagram and Facebook with an endless slew of sponsored posts, making their ’90s and ’00s pop culture-inspired apparel essentially unavoidable. Their design ethos isn’t exactly sophisticated: They’re normally just slapping a screenshot on a T-shirt and calling it a day. But the pangs of nostalgia are undeniable, and there’s a certain unapologetic brashness in the lazy pandering that’s almost admirable. Although much of their clothes are inspired by horror, they’ve debuted capsule collections featuring artwork from Neon Genesis Evangelion and Cowboy Bebop.

shop now
<code><p class = "instagram-media">\u0026amp;utm_campaign=loading</p></code>
19. Supreme x Akira

Katsuhiro Otomo’s 6,000-page sprawling manga imagined the devastation of Japan following the awakening of the eponymous mysterious entity, Akira. Playing on post-nuclear anxieties and satirizing the fatality of the nation’s youth culture, the books were adapted into a 1988 animated film, which is universally considered to be an absolute masterpiece. During its long production, every animation studio in Japan had worked on the movie, meaning that the work was literally a national endeavor.

Although Supreme has become synonymous with desperate hypebeasts and con artists, the capsule collection, featuring isolated frames of the devastatingly violent series, was a stark departure from their more playful pop art.

shop now

The 19 Best Hoodies and Hoodie Brands to Buy in 2020 – copy

Not long ago, the hoodie was exclusively reserved for lazy Saturday afternoons on the couch or chilly morning runs while doing your best Rocky impersonation. But with the integration of streetwear into high fashion over the last decade, the hoodie has become a hallmark design among the world’s biggest luxury brands due to its undeniable commercial appeal. And, well, to be blunt, stuffy fashion people finally stopped turning up their nose at what was always cool. 

Now produced by just about every T-shirt startup and full-fledged ready-to-wear brand alike, a good hoodie means as much to your wardrobe as a good leather jacket or the perfect pair of white sneakers. Given that hoodies are no longer a passing fad, and winter will undoubtedly rear its ugly head, we’ve put together a list of the best hoodies to test drive year-round.

19. American Giant Classic Full Zip
American Giant

The American Giant hoodie provides you with everything you could possibly want out of a zip up. The quality is superb, with reinforced elbow patches and a double-lined hood, all cultivated in a thick 100% cotton. The classic zip up comes in some muted, minimal colors, as well as a few fun colorful options if you’re looking for something a little more eye-catching. 

American Giant’s products are also entirely made in America, using the most local supply chain possible. If you’re looking for a no frills layer to incorporate into your fall/winter fits, look no further than the American Giant classic full zip.

Buy Now at American Giant, $112
18. APC Larry Hoodie

Although it comes at a steeper price tag than some of the other options on this list, the APC Larry hoodie makes a beautiful addition to anyone’s fall wardrobe. Made with 100% organic cotton, the understated hoodie (which comes in navy blue or anise green) perfectly exemplifies A.P.C.’s commitment to quality. Right now, it’s only available in store or for a pre-order, but if you’ve got your heart set on wearing a truly exceptional hoodie, then the Larry hoodie might just be the sweatshirt for you. 

Buy Now at APC, $245
4. Champion Life Reverse Weave Hoodie

Ahh, yes, the good ole Champion hoodie. Cozy and brimming in an understated cool that implies “I care but also, I don’t,” this purchase is a no-brainer if there ever was one.

Buy Now on Champion, $60
3. Stüssy Basic Hoodie
End Clothing

Bearing one of the best logos in streetwear with an impending Dior collaboration in the pipeline, Stüssy, the quintessential streetwear label, is having a moment. It’s one of many in the brand’s storied history and certainly won’t be the last.

Buy Now on SSENSE, $100
1. Daily Paper Alias Hoodie $102
Daily Paper

If you’ve recently seen the brand Daily Paper all over your Instagram and Twitter feeds, it’s because everyone on your Instagram and Twitter feed is currently wearing Daily Paper. The Amsterdam-based label has quickly gone from a European upstart to a global staple in just seven years. With their simple branding and inclusive visual storytelling, Daily Paper’s reign is poised to continue into the new decade. 

Buy Now on Daily Paper, $102
14. Acne Classic Fit Hooded Sweatshirt
Acne Studios

The Stockholm based fashion house is known for many things, but Acne Studios’ does more than just make flashy luxury pieces. The classic hoodie—made of 50% cotton and 50% polyester—boasts a unique fit, with a bagger silhouette around the torso while maintaining a fitted shape on the shoulders. The colors that are available vary from time to time, but right now there’s a gorgeous light purple and popping sage green available. Although the $340 price tag is certainly steep for a hoodie, Acne’s commitment to quality and recognizable silhouettes make the hoodie a great option if you’re looking for something deeply long lasting and stylish.

Buy Now at Acne, $340
13. Reebok Vector Hoodie

Reebok Classics releases a plethora of pieces that harken back to an era of cozy vintage sportswear. The vector hoodie features the legendary sportswear brand’s iconic logo plastered across the chest of a roomy, simple hoodie. Made of 100% cotton French terry, Reebok’s classic hoodie is a great and affordable option for aficionados of both Reebok and vintage sportswear more generally.

Buy Now at Reebok, $70
12. Everlane Felted Merino Hoodie

Most of the hoodies on this list are 100% cotton, but Everlane’s gorgeous take on the classic hoodie is made of something entirely different: wool. The gorgeous texture gives the layer more versatility than a traditional hoodie, allowing it to be dressed up or dressed down. Everyone also famously has a strong commitment to good work practices, making sure that all of their products are produced ethically. You can always read about the exact factory where your piece is coming from on the brand’s website. The thick speckled hoodie goes great with a beanie and sweatpants, or could be dressed up with a pair of slacks and a nice jacket. And with a price tag under $100, the Felted Merino Hoodie provides the best bang for your buck.

Buy Now at Everlane, $98
11. J. Crew Garment Dyed French Terry Hoodie
J. Crew

As is the case with a lot of J. Crew products, their French terry hoodie screams one thing: classic. Although the coronavirus pandemic has thrown the future of the longtime retailer into a realm of relative uncertainty, it doesn’t seem like their hoodies will be off the market any time soon. One of the beautiful things about this hoodie is the garment dying process, which results in a ton of different unique styles. “Because this hoodie is garment-dyed, it has a perfectly imperfect color that will softly fade over time,” reads the product details on their site. The imperfect color gives the hoodie an element of the Japanese aesthetic term, wabi-sabi; the piece’s imperfection and deterioration over time is part of what makes it so unique and beautiful to begin with.

Buy Now at J. Crew, $88
10. Total Luxury Spa Open Logo Hoodie
Total Luxury Spa

Total Luxury Spa’s most minimal hoodie, the Open Logo Pocket Hoodie, is a great example of a minimal design done right. The black hoodie features the brand’s trademark logo in their font style, modeled by Mama Nene, an elder in their LA community. The brand taps into people in their community for all of their modeling, and includes a little note about the model in the product description. “Mama Nene runs drum classes for the youth and elders in Leimert Park. Her work includes trying to preserve the historical legacy of the music and art in the community,” reads the description, giving the buyer more of a lens into the community they’re buying from.

Buy Now at TLS, $115
9. Russell 2.0 Premium Fleece Hoodie

Although Russell’s Premium Fleece hoodie might not be quite as much of a fashion statement as some of the other items on this list, there’s a reason it’s a tried and true classic. For only $30, you get a rich fleece hoodie comprised of 80% cotton and 20% polyester. It’s got a slouchy, cozy fit and the extremely soft material makes it a great hoodie for lounging around the house or incorporating into layered fits to stay warm.

Buy Now at Russell, $30
8. Nike Standard Issue Pullover

There’s a reason Nike is still the biggest name in sportswear. This iteration of their ubiquitous hoodie features a zippered kangaroo pouch and a plethora of colors to choose from. The cotton / poly blend means the piece won’t shrink, allowing the wearer to get full use out of the hoodie’s roomie fit. The hoodie also includes Nike’s patented sweat-wicking Dri-FIT technology, which means it will keep you warm but still allow for some athletic performance. Between the numerous color options and Nike’s history of excellence in sportswear, you can’t go wrong with the Standard Issue basketball pullover.

Buy Now at Nike, $80
7. Braindead Lover’s Embrace Hoodie
We Are Braindead

The Braindead Lover’s Embrace hoodie has quickly become a staple of modern streetwear. The brand is a “creative collective of artists and designers from around the world,” and they emphasize graphics and eye-catching designs in all of their pieces. You’d have a hard time walking around the Lower East Side of NY in 2020 and not seeing someone rocking this now ubiquitous look, and hey, you can’t blame them.

Buy Now at Braindead, $140
6. Born x Raised Zine Blast Hoody

Born X Raised is an LA-based brand that aims to preserve the true Los Angeles in the face of the growing threat of gentrification and other economic factors altering the city’s landscape. The brand’s hoodie comes in a thick 100% cotton knitted fleece and features designs from local LA artists. All of their drops sell out quickly though, so if you’re looking to get yours you should probably act fast.

Buy Now at Bodega, $130
5. Converse Shapes Triangle Hoodie

This Converse hoodie is a fun play on a traditional single color pullover. It’s all in the details. The single seam on the kangaroo pocket and the back-centered Converse logo give this piece a style distinct from the others on the list, while maintaining a relatively low price point. It’s a little different from your traditional hoodie, but not different enough that it changes an outfit’s entire vibe.

Buy Now at SSENSE, $65
4. Gap Vintage Soft Hoodie

There’s a reason Gap’s been in the game so long. The vintage soft hoodie is aptly named; it comes in a few vintage-inspired colors and is, as the name would suggest, soft. Made out of a cotton-poly blend, the hoodie was designed with comfort at the forefront, and for just north of $40, it’s hard to find an issue.

Buy Now at Gap, $45
3. Uniqlo Long Sleeve Hooded Sweatshirt

Uniqlo really does the basics better than anyone. For the low price of $30, you can get a hoodie that looks far more expensive, comes in a wide array of colors and can provide infinite styling opportunities. Buy an Airism long sleeve tee while you’re at it, and layer them for the ultimate warm fall look.

Buy Now at Uniqlo, $30
2. John Elliott Folsom Hoodie
John Elliott

There’s no way around it, John Elliott makes a heck of a hoodie. This iteration also plays on the Japanese aesthetic notion of wabi-sabi; it comes pre-worn, and if you buy it, you get to watch it continue to evolve throughout your lifetime of wear. Every piece in the Folsom collection is totally unique, as they’ve all been dyed and distressed differently. If you’re looking for a hoodie that’s a cut above the rest, but doesn’t quite break the bank like some of the other designer pieces on the list, then the JE hoodie might be the choice for you.

Buy Now at John Elliott, $268
1. Reigning Champ Midweight Terry Pullover Hoodie
Reigning Champ

Reigning Champ’s signature pullover is quite simply a perfect hoodie. It’s durable, available in a few muted colors, features beautiful stitching and is just a treat to put on. There really isn’t much more to say. If you’re looking for an amazing hoodie with no frills, built to last a lifetime, then look no further than the Reigning Champ pullover.

Buy Now at Reigning Champ, $145

9 of the Most Popular (and Valuable) Modern Sports Cards – copy

Sports cards are no longer a thing of the past. With an increase in overall sports viewership and with the instant ability to access an ever-growing base of popular athletes, it only makes sense that sports cards would find their rightful place back in the United States. 

Being a shop owner over these past years has given me an interesting and unique look at what collectors, investors and flippers are making popular. Grading companies, eBay, the increase in the use of mobile payment services and, of course, the rapid growth in social media has only fueled the rise. In all of the recent attention, a few cards have definitely emerged to the top. Popularity and value seem to intertwine in the hobby community and the following list of modern sports cards should help you navigate the modern scene.

Now, before I get to this list, let’s qualify a few things:

  • Modern cards are considered to be cards that are not “vintage” cards, and depending on what circles you vibe in, vintage cards typically mark their way backward from sometime in the ’70s. In contrast, modern cards would be considered everything else until now.
  • There are different tiers of value: low, mid, high, really high and then crazy high end. For purposes of this article, we will focus on the low to the mid/high end, you know, what most people can afford. No 2000 Tom Brady Contenders autographs or 2003-04 Lebron Exquisite RPAs showing up on this list. (RPA = rookie patch autograph… I told you this would be a “modern” list!)
  • This list takes on football, baseball and basketball only. Sorry, you hockey and soccer nuts!
2003-04 Topps Chrome LeBron James #111

LeBron’s Topps Chrome rookie is a staple in the card collecting community. I can’t tell you how many “baseball-only” or “football-only” folks have one of these LeBron’s stashed away. Is it the staple step-back jump shot on the front that makes it so popular? Maybe the classic, youthful 19-year-old image on the back? Or is it just that this is THE Topps Chrome brand rookie card of this current generation’s Michael Jordan? Probably the latter, but it’s an interesting card value-wise. Since LeBron’s move to LA, the PSA 10 copies of this card have nearly doubled in value. The card is known to be typically well off-center, so it’s not an easy grade for the PSA/BGS savvy types. This specific card has versions as a standard refractor, black refractor (#/500), xfractor (#/220) and the highly sought after gold refractor (#/50). A standard non-graded Near Mint to Mint copy of this LeBron that is somewhat centered—setting you back about $900 or $1,000.

1989 Upper Deck Ken Griffey Jr. #1

Ask any ‘80s to ‘90s card collector about this card, and I’m sure they all can identify it as the most popular card of the late ‘80s/early ‘90s junk era. The funny thing is this card is far from junk. With a PSA 10 POP report of 3,754 and a BGS 9.5 POP report of 2,731, this card’s value on the secondary market continues to remain solid, and Griffey continues to be wildly popular with baseball collectors. With his recent Hall of Fame induction (2016) and popularity that crosses multiple generational lines, the Griffey Star Rookie has cemented its place as one of the most collectible and popular cards. The cool thing for most folks is that a non-graded Near Mint to Mint copy can be scooped up for $20 to $35 at almost any local card shop. It’s quite easily the most recognizable baseball card of the current generation.

2018-19 Panini Prizm Luka Doncic #280

For most people, this card may seem to be too new to make the list, but I would beg to differ. What we have seen from LeBron James in the Topps Chrome Brand, we also see in Panini’s version of Prizm. Prizm, a brand released in 2012 by Panini, has taken the reins as the marquee chrome-like brand that collectors love. Now add in the enormous domestic and international buzz from Doncic to an already crazed basketball-collecting community, and you have a worldwide phenomenon modern rookie card. I would venture to say that this card has single-handedly brought tens of thousands of new eyes to the world of cards.

Additionally, 1 of 1 versions of the Prizm rookie card, the “golden tickets,” have seen realistic sales over $40,000 just three months ago in August (see eBay Luka Doncic Nebula 1/1 prizm). Still not swayed? Well, here is some more substance: The PSA POP report at the time of this article was 6,442 for graded Gem Mint 10s. That’s almost 6,500 cards graded at the Gem Mint status, but remember, these Prizm rookie cards have only been released to the general public for 12 months! The craze is real, and Luka has become the new prince of the NBA (move over King?). Looking for a PSA 10 Gem mint copy? You’ll probably have to fork over a cool $225 to $250, but who knows how high the ceiling for this card could be. You can also find this card in a variety of parallels, including the ever-favorite Silver Prizm.

2000 Bowman/Bowman Chrome Tom Brady #236

Thomas Edward Patrick Brady Jr. Well, that name doesn’t exactly appear on this 2000 card, but the standard eight-letter “Tom Brady” sequence does. While I will leave the four-letter GOAT conversation alone, there is no argument that Brady’s rookies have become legendary in the hobby. The 14-time Pro Bowler and winner of six Super Bowls rings (or “chips,” if I’m going for cool points) sure does bring a lot of attention to his rookie cards. The Bowman brand, a brand that is now more synonymous with baseball prospects than anything, would be seen as one of the staples for Brady in 2000. There are many sought-after rookie cards from his rookie year (Upper Deck SP Authentic #118, Playoff Contenders Autograph, etc.). Still, the Bowman and Bowman Chrome versions are by far the most preferred for anyone trying to own a small piece of the sixth-rounder out of Michigan. Similar to the 2003 Topps Chrome, centering can be an issue on these cards, and PSA 9s and BGS 9s seem to carry a little bit more of an uptick in value as compared to a raw Mint copy. There is no 2000 Topps Chrome rookie card, hence why the Bowman Chrome has become so collectible. A non-graded Near Mint to Mint copy of the Bowman runs around $250 to $350 with the standard chrome version fetching about $500 to $575.

2011 Topps Update Mike Trout #US175

One of the most influential Topps rookie cards of the past decade has been the #US175 Update Mike Trout. The modern-day Griffey Star Rookie, this Trout rookie has seen a healthy rise in value and grading submissions in the past five years. Known by many in hobby circles as simply the “Trout Update,” the card may not woo you at first glance. It’s quite basic and made relatively cheap—thin card stock, simple design, paper base, minimal foil—no bells and whistles. But don’t let that fool you into thinking this card isn’t a powerhouse. PSA 10 Gem Mint copies of this card peaked earlier this year around $1,200 and have settled now in the offseason to $950 to $1,000. Quite impressive from a card in which the print runs of the 2011 Topps Update set were never released. That’s something to be said for how beloved Trout’s game is and how he carries himself on and off the field. From a strictly subjective perspective, customers always talk Trout. They talk about his play demeanor and cards. Trout has fans young and old. Many see him as the modern-day Mickey Mantle. How do you see him? Or better yet, how do you see his rookie card?

1986-87 Fleer Michael Jordan #57

If I were ranking this list, it would be shocking not to have this card at the top. What is not to love about the iconic MJ Fleer rookie card? [delete two extra spaces] The card captures his iconic flight en route to a one-handed dunk, all while the tongue is flapping in the wind. How about the red/blue/white and yellow inner border that screams ‘80s warm-up suit? It doesn’t get any more classic than this. Another critical component to this card’s popularity is that the run is so simple: #57 is the only base set version of the card, and there is only one subset card—the sticker rookie card. That’s it. Less is more. It’s easily the most recognizable basketball card of all time, and unfortunately it’s also one of the most faked/reprinted cards. The MJ fleer rookie can be seen as a significant “key date” for you coin collectors. MJ, across the board, has only seen an overall increase in value in almost all of his cards, highlighted even more so with this 1986 sample. (To briefly touch on the authentic element and looking at our shop records for 2019—the count is up to eight—as in eight is the number of people who have brought in a “valuable MJ rookie” to sell to us, resulting in the unfortunate fake news. Additionally, a search on eBay will allow you to buy a “reprinted” version of this card for a few bucks.)

Please be careful when looking into purchasing this card, but imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right? Buying an already graded version of the MJ Fleer rookie will save you a lot of headaches, and this card is also one of the few cards on this list that we would not recommend buying at the PSA 10 Gem Mint level, simply because the price tag is quite high. A PSA 7 NM or BGS 8 NM-MT would be an ideal entry point for the novice collector/investor and will run roughly $1,500 to $2,200 based on eye appeal. Try and find a decently centered copy, as well as the centering and edge wear on these MJs, can be tough. Lastly, just like his game, the MJ rookie IS the GOAT. Don’t @ me!

1993 Upper Deck SP Derek Jeter Foil #279

0.14 percent—this is the magic number. This 0.14 refers to the percent of the 1993 Upper Deck SP FOIL that have received the unicorn-level grade of PSA 10. It puts things into perspective when the registry has the Jeter Foil at a whopping 15,683 total cards graded. To give some recent perspective in terms of value, in May 2018, a PSA 10 off eBay sold for $99,100, and the sale was confirmed (yes, the winning bidder paid!). Fast-forward to December a year later to find a recent purchase of $138,000 (including the buyer premium) that just finalized a few days ago. As one of the most popular ‘90s baseball cards (and one with significant value), the 1993 SP FOIL Jeter has only seen an uptick in recent months and years. What’s unique about this card is that foil element makes the surface of the card extremely delicate to scratching, and the dark corners highlight any imperfections to almost a higher degree than other cards of this era. It is widely known that this card could be damaged simply by friction in the wax packs—a very tough grade. In terms of mass production popularity, the Jeter Foil and Griffey Star Rookie sit in their thrones atop the ‘80s/’90s junk era. If looking to get in on an excellent FOIL Jeter, a PSA 8 NM-MT or BGS 8.5 NM-MT would be a good entry point—expect to pay between $450 and $750 depending on eye appeal and subgrades.

2018 Topps Update Ronald Acuna #US250

Probably one of the most under-the-radar cards in the last two years, the Acuna Update (At-Bat in Blue Jersey) has seen a tremendous rise in value for one of MLB’s most promising young talents in just the past year. This specific card has multiple variations, including the “Bat Down” pose and the highly coveted “White Jersey” SSP, all of which carry the #US250 numbering. The Topps Update version has become synonymous with many players as the player’s “true” rookie card, and Acuna is no exception. In the shop, the card never really peaked over $8 to $10 for a non-graded mint copy during the 2018 season, but the 2019 season brought the rain. PSA 10 copies of the base “At-Bat in Blue Jersey” card began selling $125 to $150 consistently on eBay, and the loyal Atlanta fan base seemed to be gobbling these cards faster than we could keep in stock.

On top of that, when you can find multiple parallels, including (but not limited to) the Gold (#/2018), Mother’s Day Pink (#/50), Father’s Day Blue (#/50), Camo (#/25), Clear (#/10) and coveted Platinum #1/1, it only adds to the craze. These parallels and short prints, for the most part, seemed to almost fuel the fandom for this card in a way that I haven’t seen from a base Topps Baseball Card in a long time. Values have cooled down a bit, but the Acuna Update is a rookie card that has revitalized those standard Topps wax packs!

2017 Panini Prizm Patrick Mahomes #269

Football cards can be a tricky bunch. When comparing the three major U.S. sports, it’s a common theme to see basketball and baseball carry more predictably than football. Maybe it’s because the NFL season is only 17 weeks/16 games, and players are quick to injure? Things can change so quickly with the pigskin. Lately, that rule seems to also apply to hot quarterback rookie cards as well. (See Lamar Jackson 2018 Prizm #212 for some homework.) Many savvy investors would have said the Patrick Mahomes base Panini Prizm rookie (which is silver) had already reached its peak at the beginning of the 2019 season. PSA 10 Gem Mint copies at that time could be had for roughly $200 to $300 and non-graded versions for around $60 to $90 depending on condition and eye appeal. Who knew that PSA 10 versions of this simple shiny base rookie card would skyrocket to $1,200 to $1,300 (at its peak) through the first four to five weeks of the 2019 season? Never have we seen such a quick spike for such a basic football rookie card, mind you that this all happened AFTER Mahomes had his coming out party in 2018. [delete double space] I believe, one, this further solidifies the Panini Prizm brand as the new Topps Chrome and standard collectible rookie card, and two, that the element of branding, combined with hype, is fueling a new age of collecting. Let’s give credit where credit is due though—Mahomes, in his way, is reinventing the game as well with a massive arm, no-look passes, school-boy flip tosses, Madden covers and ketchup infatuations—all while appearing to have fun playing football. Keep an eye on this card for years to come as Mahomes is leading the changing of the guard with staples like Brady, Brees, Rodgers, Roethlisberger, Rivers and more coming to the end of their careers.


The 20 Adidas Sneakers Every Collector Should Own

In this new series from ONE37pm, we list the definitive sneakers from each of the world’s leading sportswear brands.

For all its importance and cultural transcendence, Run DMC’s pivotal song “My Adidas” wasn’t the beginning of the German sportswear brand. First conceptualized by brothers Adolf “Adi” Dassler and Rudolf Dassler under the name Gebrüder Dassler Schuhfabrik in 1924, the company was officially deemed Adidas in 1949, owned and operated solely by Adi Dassler after a fight severed the brothers’ working relationship. Rudolf Dassler, however, would go on to form the rivaling brand, PUMA. 

Adidas began to thrive almost immediately, moving beyond creating industry best track spikes for Olympic hero Jesse Owens under its old moniker, to producing a groundbreaking indoor soccer shoe dubbed the Samba. They would quickly conquer another sport with the introduction of the Adidas Superstar in 1969, a performance basketball sneaker that impressed with its protective shell toe and formidable leather coat whose durability helped prevent ankle injuries. Two years later, Adidas proved their dominance with the iconic Stan Smith for the eponymous 6’4” American tennis champion.  

By the time the ‘80s arrived, rich in cultural resonance thanks to the emergence of hip hop and graffiti, Adidas was near the height of its powers. A talented rap trio from Queens would nudge them over the top, showering Adidas with praise in adoration for the shell-toe sneaker they famously wore without laces.

Breaking ground aesthetically and moving past the technological boundaries of their time with its Equipment “EQT” series, Adidas was no longer the scrappy upstart but a powerhouse shifting culture. Here, we list the 20 definitive Adidas sneakers that every sneakerhead should own, with a bit of history of each pair.

Adidas Futurecraft 4D

On the forefront of sneaker innovation and sustainability, Adidas, with its 4D printing at its robotics-driven Speedfactory facility, very literally set the course of the industry’s future with this progressive design.

Buy Now, $300
Adidas The Kobe
Nick Kicks

Originally released as a Kobe Bryant signature sneaker in 2000, the newly reborn Crazy 1 ADV was first—and famously known—as Adidas The Kobe. Polarizing and precise, just like the Black Mamba’s game, this design was inspired by the Audi TT, another fine German-engineered masterpiece.

Buy Now, $125
Adidas Rod Laver

Following two historic Grand Slam victories, an Australian-born tennis pro named Rod Laver was gifted a signature sneaker by Adidas in 1970. Taking his name as its moniker the modern-day low-cut tennis shoe is somewhat unsung. While not nearly as iconic as what the Stan Smith has grown to be, the Laver still ranks among the best tennis signature models of all time.

Buy Now, $65
Adidas Powerphase
Fight Club

Basking in a new light after recieving a Kanye West co-sign, the vintage Adidas Powerphase is in the midst of a promising renaissance. Re-released in 2017 under West’s “Calabasas” label, the Powerphase is the focus of ‘80s nostalgia now at the forefront of contemporary sneaker culture.

Buy Now, $110
Adidas Yeezy 750

Kanye West recently (and affectionately) labeled himself “a product guy.” His truth is in the work, as his six-year influential run with Adidas has been nothing short of brilliant. West’s first official release with the three stripes back in 2015 was the Yeezy Boost 750. A towering design that marks one of his most avant-garde outings to date, West offered sneaker purists both a foundational design and showed them how to style it. The latter undeniably serves as one of his greatest powers.

Buy Now, $350
Adidas Campus

First released in the early years of the 1970s as the Tournament, the Adidas Campus would take its final name and find residence at the skatepark in the decade that would follow. Dipping in and around empty swimming pools given its thick vulcanized sole unit, the Campus today serves both as a tried-and-true skater and an everyday lifestyle sneaker.

Buy Now, $60
Adidas ZX 1000c

While the pioneering technologies of the Adidas ZX series have evolved with modern footwear advancements, the rich design language this dense series offered in the ‘80s has not been outmatched by any new or trending ideas. In fact, one of the best of the bunch—the ZX 1000c—has been updated with the innovations of today, now serving as both genre relic and as a piece of wearable history.

Buy Now, $130
Adidas Pro Model
Fight Club

While sharing the shell-toe of the Superstar, the mid-top Adidas Pro Model released long before its high-profile sibling. A prominent basketball shoe, thanks in large to its premium leather makeup, the silhouette was a breath of fresh air to basketball players that had grown weary of canvas sneakers. NBA Hall of Famer, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, became the face of the Pro Model after signing an endorsement deal with the brand in 1976.

Buy Now, $90
Adidas Top Ten
House of Heat

There was the Adidas Rivalry High and the Adidas Top Ten. Both high-top basketball sneakers similar in style and frame, and both predominantly produced in leather. The latter, released in 1979, originally served to outfit the top ten basketball players in the NBA—Doug Collins, Marques Johnson, Kermit Washington, Adrian Dantley, Bob Lanier, Bobby Jones, Billy Knight, Sidney Wicks, Mitch Kupchak and Kevin Grevey. Another NBA legend, Rick Barry, helped Adidas create the shoe and served as the face of the sneakers ad campaign.

Buy Now, $90
Raf Simons x Adidas Ozweego

Designer collaborations in sneaker culture are as common as laces and soles. Adidas, working with the likes of Stella McCartney, Rick Owens and Yohji Yamamoto, found their most popular union with Belgian fashion designer Raf Simons. While repurposing the Stan Smith and vintage canvas gems like the Nizza, Simons’ Ozweego interpretation is his most ambitious and, equally, his most triumphant.

Buy Now, $400
Adidas NMD
Fight Club

In what is realistically the second-coming of the ZX Flux, the Adidas NMD (or Adidas Nomad) quickly became culturally ubiquitous its release in December 2015. Despite some homogeneity, the NMD is a best-seller for a reason. And with new iterations from Pharrell Williams that continue to push the series forward, its upwards trend stands as a defining moment in Adidas’ brand history.

Buy Now, $130
Adidas Crazy 8
Fight Club

Initially released in 1997 as the Adidas KB8, Kobe Bryant’s first signature sneaker now called the Crazy 8 ranks high among the prolific and influential ‘90s-era time-honored basketball sneaker designs. Now more than 20 years old, Bryant notably wore the sneaker in the 1997 NBA Dunk Contest where he was victorious.

Buy Now, $110
Adidas Gazelle

A representation of simple beauty, the Adidas Gazelle, first introduced as a track spike worn by the legendary Wilma Rudolph in the early 1960s, still stands as one of the brand’s most-worn sneakers to date. The very first Adidas shoe produced in suede or, in its earliest iterations, kangaroo velour, has managed to move through space and time without losing its intangible allure. Recently reissued in the US, the Gazelle enjoyed popularity in abundance in the UK in the 1980s and ‘90s.

Buy Now, $90
Adidas EQT Running Support

“Everything that’s essential. Nothing that’s not.” Those are the words of famed designer Peter Moore, who came to Adidas and worked on its Equipment series after designing the Air Jordan 1 for Nike. His work in the early ‘90s all but saved Adidas which was on the brink of bankruptcy shortly before his arrival. The Equipment series, by in large, was the company’s grand repositioning in the sneaker landscape. Moreover, the EQT Running Support, released in 1993, was a marketable and stylish runner with cross-training duality. A status symbol overseas, the EQT line slowly rose to fame in the States. Today, the Running Support and the series as a whole serve as a prime collaborative canvas for the likes of Adidas’ creative partner, Pusha T.

Buy Now, $140
Adidas Yeezy Boost 350 V2

When Kanye West first released his indomitable Yeezy Boost 350 in September 2016, securing a pair was undeniably the most difficult task in sneakers. Fast forward three years, and in the midst of the cultural saturation of its successor—the Yeezy Boost 350 V2—getting your hands on the Boost-laden silhouette is far easier. This is based on a promise West made years ago, stating that one day everyone that wanted Yeezy’s would soon have a pair. Increasing production, yet careful to not overpopulate a shoe—thus devaluing its cultural capital—is a strategic and tedious process. Brands like Adidas have mastered it to their benefit.

Buy Now, $220
Adidas Micropacer

The history of smart sneakers isn’t as long nor as polished as one might think. In 1984, however, Adidas broke new ground with its revolutionary Micropacer. Centralized by an integrated computing system set to record running distance, running pace and calorie intake, the Micropacer was the very first of its kind. Released in accordance with the Los Angeles Olympic Games, the sneaker earned a place at the Computer Museum History Centre in Boston for its groundbreaking contributions to the industry. In 2014 to celebrate its 30th anniversary, a retro of the original colorway and new styles were released.

Buy Now, $150
Adidas Samba

Widely recognized as the first official sneaker that Adidas released in 1949, the performance-focused Adidas Samba is an indoor soccer shoe that helped players train on icy and unforgiving terrain. Given its soccer origins, the Samba—like the Spezial and ZX series—has always been far more popular in Europe than in America. The brand’s second best-selling sneaker of all time behind the Stan Smith, the Samba, along with many other firsts, helped debut the trefoil logo and the iconic three stripes on the shoe’s lateral and medial siding. Over the years, this low-cut soccer trainer released in many special editions. It’s still worn by soccer players globally today.

Buy Now, $80
Adidas Ultra Boost

There hasn’t been an Adidas running sneaker more important in the last 30 years than the Ultra Boost. When it was released in 2015 on the front-end of the brand’s renaissance, the shoe came with a considerable amount of controversy. In the initial marketing campaign, Adidas boldly proclaimed that the Ultraboost was the best running sneaker ever. On its face, the stance was both boisterous and incredulous. Now, though, looking back, the move proved to be extremely effective. Now in its fifth iteration, the Ultra Boost remains a brand best-seller and the most-worn new Adidas silhouette.

Buy Now, $180
Adidas Stan Smith

Adidas’ all-time best selling sneaker, the Stan Smith, wasn’t always the Stan Smith. Initially, in 1965, the shoe was dubbed the Adidas Robert Haillet, a signature model for the French tennis pro of the same name. Horst Dassler, the son of Adolph Dassler, both conceptualized and produced the shoe. It was the first leather tennis sneaker when all others were manufactured in canvas. It wasn’t until his US Open win in 1971 and a subsequent Wimbledon victory in 1972 that Adidas passed on the shoe to Stan Smith following Haillet’s retirement. However, the shoe’s title didn’t officially change to the Adidas Stan Smith until 1978. Adidas has reissued the Stan several times since the late ‘80s, and it serves as one of the best lifestyle sneakers from any brand.

Buy Now, $80
Adidas Superstar

A very hard truth that few mentions when narrating the history of the Adidas Superstar is that this shoe was dead in the water before RUN DMC and the emergence of hip-hop in the late ‘80s. Financially, Adidas was on its last leg and in dire need of a win. Rev Run, DMC and Jam Master Jay were the lifeline the brand desperately needed but never knew they’d get. To that end, so was Gerald Deas, a member of the alt-rap group Creative Funk, who in 1985 released the song “Felon Sneakers.” The anti-sneaker rap song was against groups like RUN DMC wearing so-called “d-boy sneakers”—specifically, wearing them without laces which prison inmates often did as laces (on the inside) were considered makeshift weapons. In response, RUN DMC released “My Adidas” in 1986 to critical and cultural acclaim. It was the turning point Adidas needed and can’t be overstated as a seminal moment in not just Adidas history but in sneaker culture as a whole.

Buy Now, $80

MLS Salaries: The 20 Highest Paid Players

MLS—Major League Soccer—is looking to establish itself as a top-notch professional soccer league that can compete with the likes of English Premier League, Bundesliga and La Liga. The league has made some inroads, like agreeing to a new five-year collective bargaining agreement with the players. In the new CBA, players will receive raises in the minimum salary and will be given increased benefits. 

With two new teams this season and four more teams arriving in the next two years, MLS is looking toward expansion and is showing a commitment towards acquiring some of the top soccer talents from around the world. As MLS teams have acquired more high-profile players from overseas, individual player salaries have risen, leading to a collection of heavy hitters raking in the dough. From Jozy Altidore to Chicharito, here are the highest-paid players in the MLS.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

20. Johnny Russell, Sporting KC – Base Salary: $1.45 million

After signing a three-year contract in 2018 with Sporting Kansas City, Russell has amassed 19 career goals in two seasons. The Scotsman is the highest-paid player on the team and it makes sense, as he has come up big in crucial moments for Kansas City.

19. Valeri “Vako” Qazaishvili, San Jose Earthquakes – Base Salary: $1.47 million

Though he’s had his ups and downs with San Jose, Vako has found his groove with the club. Benched in the middle of last season, he figured out how to get back on the field and ran off a stretch of six goals in eight games. The highest-paid player on the Earthquakes, a lot is expected of the midfielder.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

18. Felipe Gutierrez, Sporting KC – Base Salary: $1.60 million

The 29-year old Gutierrez had 12 goals and three assists last season. Acquired as a designated player by Sporting Kansas City in 2018, Gutierrez is signed through 2020 with an option in 2021. The Chilean-born Midfielder could be a highly sought after player in the near future.

17. Darwin Quintero, Houston Dynamo – Base Salary: $1.75 million

Known as El Científico del Gol or the Goal Scientist, Darwin Quintero is one of the best goal scorers in MLS. Now with the Houston Dynamo, Quintero is looking to help Houston make the playoffs for the first time in three seasons. In the past two years, Quintero scored 21 goals and contributed 20 assists for Minnesota United. He was responsible for 40 percent of Minnesota’s goals in that stretch.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

16. Albert Rusnak, Real Salt Lake – Base Salary: $1.80 million

The Slovakian Rusnak is an integral part of Real Salt Lake. With 27 career goals through three years in MLS play, Rusnak has shown what value he provides. He’s also tough as nails. Last season, Rusnak scored two goals in a game against FC Cincinnati after he dislocated his left ring finger early in the match.

15. Maxi Moralez, New York City FC – Base Salary: $2.00 million

Standing just 5’3”, Maxi Moralez might lack the height of his peers, but he compensates for his stature with elite soccer skills. Last season, Moralez led the entire MLS with 20 assists. Born and raised in Argentina, Moralez is staying in the Big Apple after he signed a two-year contract extension. With the way he cuts hair, Moralez might need a raise.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

14. Jonathan dos Santos, LA Galaxy – Base Salary: $2.00 million

After a strong career overseas that saw him play well for Villareal CF and FC Barcelona, Jonathan dos Santos was acquired in 2017 by the Los Angeles Galaxy. A Midfielder, dos Santos is a two-time All-Star with a versatile skill set.

13. Nicolas Lodeiro, Seattle Sounders FC – Base Salary: $2.00 million

An attacking Midfielder, Lodeiro has been a success in the MLS since he won Newcomer of the Year in 2016. From Uruguay, Lodeiro has been an important factor in two MLS Cup Championships for Seattle. An All-Star this past season, the 31-year old Lodeiro has 26 goals in his regular-season career.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

12. Raul Ruidiaz, Seattle Sounders FC – Base Salary: $2.00 million

Acquired as a Designated Player in a transfer, Ruidiaz came up clutch in the playoffs as he scored four goals in Seattle’s run to the MLS Cup. One of the top forwards in MLS, Ruidiaz has had a definitive role and impact in Seattle’s success.

11. Gustavo Bou, New England Revolution – Base Salary: $2.10 million

Signed by the Revolution in the Second Transfer Window in the middle of last season, Gustavo Bou has been a key addition to the Revolution’s recent success. A versatile player, Bou had nine goals in just 14 games as the Revolution qualified for the MLS playoffs for the first time in four seasons.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

10. Carles Gil, New England Revolution – Base Salary: $2.10 million

The captain of the Revolution, Carles Gil immediately stepped into a prominent role in his first MLS season. After time spent in Spain and England, the 27-year old was named MLS Newcomer of the Year last season. A dynamic force for the Revolution, Gil led the club in goals (ten) and assists (14).

9. Diego Valeri, Portland Timbers – Base Salary: $2.32 million

Valeri has had a really strong seven-year run with the Timbers franchise. A top-ten player in terms of base salary, Valeri has accumulated numerous awards and accomplishments. A former MLS MVP, Valeri famously led the Timbers to an MLS Cup victory in 2015, where he scored the fastest goal in MLS Cup history.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

8. Nani, Orlando City SC – Base Salary: $2.33 million

An OG in the MLS, the 33-year old Nani is in his second season in MLS. An All-Star in his first season, Nani got the job done, leading Orlando both in goals (ten) and assists (12). Famous for his time with Manchester United, Orlando is hoping that the signing of Nani can elevate the franchise to its first playoff appearance.

7. Sebastian Blanco, Portland Timbers – Base Salary: $2.74 million

A central cog in Portland’s offense, Blanco has recorded 11 assists in back-to-back seasons. His skills in the kitchen aren’t too shabby either. The Midfielder owns a pizzeria back in his native Argentina.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

6. Josef Martinez, Atlanta United – Base Salary: $3.00 million

Martinez’s season ended abruptly after he tore his ACL in Atlanta United’s season opener. His presence will be sorely missed. Martinez scored 58 combined goals in the past two seasons and was the first MLS player to win All-Star, regular season and MLS Cup MVP honors in the same season. Though his season is likely over, the 26-year old Martinez still has a long career ahead of him. One thing we do know is that Martinez’ unorthodox penalty kicks will be missed.

5. Alejandro Pozuelo, Toronto FC – Base Salary: $3.80 million

Toronto FC signed Pozuelo last year after he transferred from KRC Genk. Pozuelo hit the ground running, scoring two goals in his MLS debut. Overall, he scored 12 goals in 30 games last season as Toronto made it all the way to the MLS Cup game before falling to the Seattle Sounders. Expected to be a legitimate MVP candidate this season, Pozuelo might need to renegotiate his contract.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

4. Carlos Vela, LAFC – Base Salary: $4.50 million

The 2019 MLS Most Valuable Player, Vela is one of the best goal scorers that MLS has to offer. He earned the Golden Boot last year after recording an MLS record 34 goals. A two-time All-Star in MLS, Vela led LAFC to the best mark in the MLS regular season and helped the team get all the way to the Western Conference Finals.

3. Jozy Altidore, Toronto FC – Base Salary: $4.89 million

A two-time All-Star and MLS champion, Altidore is one of the most decorated players in the MLS. Altidore is a key part of the lethal Toronto FC attack. Using a mixture of strength and quickness, he’s managed to reach top-30 all-time in total goals scored in MLS history and is not stopping any time soon.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

2. Michael Bradley, Toronto FC – Base Salary: $6.00 million

Bradley could miss up to four months after having surgery on his right ankle. Though he will have some time to recuperate after the MLS season was put on pause, It’s a major loss for Toronto. The captain of Toronto’s squad and an MLS champion, Bradley has been a constant for a team that has made the playoffs in four of the six seasons he’s been with the club.

1. Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez, LA Galaxy – Base Salary: $7.20 million

After Zlatan Ibrahimovic left the LA Galaxy to join AC Milan, the Galaxy responded by bringing in the ultimate goalscorer, Chicharito. The Galaxy reportedly paid a fee of $10 million to acquire the elite striker. The highest-paid player in MLS, Chicharito faces some pressure to live up to Zlatan’s reputation, but he should be up to the task. Through a 14-year career, he has recorded 156 career goals and amassed awards like the CONCACAF Gold Cup Golden Boot and MVP in 2011.

Popular Culture

6 Gary Vaynerchuk Quotes to Motivate You

Gary Vaynerchuk has established himself as a thought leader and pioneer in digital marketing. After expanding his family’s wine business in New Jersey for years (which spawned the popular YouTube channel WineLibraryTV and a subsequent wine brand called Empathy Wines), Vaynerchuk is now a lauded public speaker, author, entrepreneur and investor.

Vaynerchuk is also the chairman of VaynerX, a communications company that holds media properties—one being ONE37pm!— and a social-media agency for major brands.

In addition to his commercial successes, Vaynerchuk also spits genuine wisdom via a massive Instagram account and numerous other platforms. Here, his beloved team behind the machinations of his personal brand and content share their favorite Vaynerchuk quote of all time. From Sinan Deriş, the Paid Media and Project Manager on Team GaryVee to Siddharth Astir, the Brand Manager for Vaynerchuk, these quotes are truly the top pearls to know, remember and revisit during your entrepreneurial career. Take a look.

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

1. “Doing the right thing is always the right thing.”

Everyone knows what’s “good” for them and what’s the “right thing” to do for the world. Especially in these times, if everyone has the moral compass to do the right thing we’ll be in a great place. Effort matters, and we have to match our actions and effort with doing the right thing for ourselves and for others around us. —Sinan Deriş, Paid Media and Project Manager on Team GaryVee

2. “99 percent of the things don’t matter.”

This is the thesis of most of the things we go through in life. Family first—their good health and well-being are what we should be grateful for. Everything else is just part of the journey called life, and especially in times like these, where most of us are able to spend so much quality time with our loved ones, we still see so much complaining and unhappiness. It’s so important to get this perspective and focus on things you can control, first and foremost—your mindset.  —Siddharth Astir, Brand Manager for Gary Vaynerchuk

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

3. “How can you beat me when I’m playing inside my own head?”

This funny thing we call life can be boiled down to our experiences in the world and our reactions to those experiences. If you can manage to shut out the rest of the world and all of the external pressures that come as a first-class citizen of modern society— to play your own game—things start to get really fun. Really good reflections in one of my favorite quotes from the great Mahatma Gandhi. “We but mirror the world. All the tendencies present in the outer world are to be found in the world of our bodies. If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. This is the divine mystery supreme. A wonderful thing it is and the source of our happiness. We need not wait to see what others do.”  —Sam Craig, Lead Developer for Gary Vaynerchuk

4. “You have to do. It’s how you learn, it’s how you start.”

Gary’s always preaching, do. I run before I walk. I do. This resonates with me because it’s all I got. My wife and I live by the phrase, “your intent will be your authenticity.” For us and our family, it’s about your intent and that speaks to your character. —Justin Novello, Community & Influencer Relationships Manager for Team Gary Vee

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>

5. “My advice to everyone is patience. Your lack of patience is killing you. Things take longer than you think. Deploy patience.”

Often, we want success or results without putting in the work and having a long-term view. The more patient you are with your process, the more it is likely to stick and grow and have true meaning (leading to the results you want).—Maha Abouelenein, Chief Value Officer for Gary Vaynerchuk

6. “You should’ve gone to VaynerMedia and rose like the phoenix. But then, you had to go to Virginia on business and got hit by a car and you died at 31. That’s life.”

Decisions are scary, but what’s scarier is regret. You’ll never know what life can throw at you, so squeezing every second you have because you don’t know when your death sentence is it what really drives me to be the best version of myself, and what keeps things in perspective. —May Niu, Strategist on TeamGaryVee

<code><p class = "instagram-media"></p></code>


10 Retro Fashion Trends That Have Stuck Around

Keeping up with fashion trends can be daunting; what was “in” yesterday may not be in tomorrow, and trends once shunned for being outdated can make startling comebacks (fanny packs—we are looking at you). That’s the beauty, and simultaneously the challenge of navigating fashion. 

Fortunately, some pieces have endured style’s many fickle evolutions. 20 and even 30 years ago, runways and red carpets saw many of the same staple pieces that consistently appear today. These ten men show us how the same piece of clothing can be styled to meet the changing times (or to play up the nostalgia).

Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Old (1988)
Jun Sato/GC Images
New (2019)
Brad Pitt

Trend: White t-shirt

The white tee is a non-negotiable wardrobe staple. It can be dressed up (as seen with Brad Pitt’s leather jacket) or worn for casual traveling. Depending on how you style it, the tee can evoke the nostalgia of decades past and still manage to look modern and fresh. This tried-and-true piece never went out of style, and its appeal lies in its simplicity.

Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Old (1986)
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images
New (2017)
Robert Downey Jr.

Trend: Tinted shades

Robert Downey Jr. has spiced up his shades with this purplish hue for over 30 years. The trend is just funky enough to persist through the decades, and RDJ pulls this nostalgic trend off with charisma and flair.

Old (1999)
Noel Vasquez/GC Images
New (2016)

Trend: Denim jacket 

Jay-Z’s all-denim ensemble epitomizes ’90s style. Far from obsolete, the jean jacket continues to rule streetwear; but as Jay-Z’s two looks demonstrate, the styling choices are nearly endless. Go big and baggy to pay homage to the ’90s, or opt for a tighter-fitting jacket (perhaps with a decal or some decorative stitching). This is a piece you can make entirely your own.

Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Old (1986)
Raymond Hall/GC Images
New (2019)
Lionel Richie

Trend: Leather jacket

Much like Lionel Richie himself, leather jackets are always au courant. They can look elegant or edgy, and they can transition from warm weather to cold temperatures. Richie’s printed leather jacket elevates his runway attire, while his bulkier leather jacket works well in winter. You can choose the topper that matches your vibe and the occasion at hand. 

Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Old (1989)
JMA/Star Max/GC Images
New (2016)
Harrison Ford

Trend: Blazer and jeans 

Harrison Ford has always been effortlessly cool, and his looks–while understated–have a timeless quality. A blazer and jeans ensemble perfectly satisfies the tricky middle ground between dressed up and dressed down. Ford sports this like a pro.

Ron Galella/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Old (1992)
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images
New (2019)
Keanu Reeves

Trend: Combat boots

Keanu’s affinity for combat boots exists today just as strongly as it did in the 90s. No matter how upscale the occasion, Reeves artfully adds combat boots into the mix. Comfortable and durable, the boot completes a rugged, relaxed outfit (and can bring a fancier fit down to earth).

Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Old (1992)
Mike Marsland/WireImage
New (2017)
Will Smith

Trend: Turtleneck and jacket

Turtlenecks are far from only practical winter wear. Styled the right way, a turtleneck can make a fit distinctly elegant. Will Smith would know; After 30 years in the industry, he continues to bring fresh looks to the red carpet. He isn’t afraid to play around with prints and textures, and his turtleneck/jacket combo is a perfect example of a man with his finger on the pulse of fashion.

Barry King/WireImage
Old (1993)
Franco Origlia/Getty Images
New (2019)
Leonardo DiCaprio

Trend: Camel jacket 

Leonardo DiCaprio’s career has spanned three decades, and his film characters have had no shortage of memorable and imitable looks. His style has evolved as he’s grown into one of Hollywood’s most sought-after actors, but some staple pieces have remained constant. Camel coats, like those pictured, provide refreshed texture and color to everyday looks. 

Jim Smeal/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Old (1999)
George Pimentel/Getty Images for TIFF
New (2019)
Jamie Foxx

Trend: Fedora 

Shoes and suits may enjoy more of fashion’s limelight, but don’t forget about hats. Jamie Foxx has donned fedoras on red carpets, exemplifying the eye-catching appeal of this statement piece.

Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images
Old (1995)
Michael Loccisano/Getty Images
New (2020)
Antonio Banderas

Trend: Monochromatic fits

Easy and practical, monochromatic fits look coordinated and thoughtful. All-black is a simple classic, and Antonio Banderas shows just how flexible and timeless this look can be. This style continues to grace runways and red carpets today. If you’re looking for a consistent home-run look, this is it.


Your Definitive Guide to European Soccer Leagues

As someone who has followed both soccer and basketball in my life, I can understand how daunting it could be for an American to get into the sport. I’m English, so I probably shouldn’t even be referring to it as soccer, but it’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make for you and clarity’s sake.

The NBA, for example, has a structure that’s relatively simple to understand. At the end of an 82-game season, the eight best teams (based on wins and losses record) in each conference battle it out in a classic tournament-style structure. Probably the most confusing thing about the playoffs for me to understand was the way the first seed plays the eighth seed, the second plays the seventh, and so on, which is still a simple concept.

I’m going to be honest with you now: soccer is probably more complicated than that. But I can also tell you that there’s a reason why it’s the biggest sport in the world with an estimated 3.5 billion fans worldwide – it’s well worth the trouble.

If you’re reading this, I assume you already have at least a moderate level of interest in soccer, so there’s no need to cover the absolute basic rules. But it can be incredibly hard for Americans to understand the way that the sport truly functions in an entirely different continent. But not to worry. To make things a little bit easier for you, I have written your definitive guide to European soccer leagues. Even that requires an asterisk because there are dozens of soccer leagues in Europe recognized by UEFA (the Union of European Football Associations) that you could follow if you were a devoted enough fan. You can view a list of UEFA’s member associations here, with each country owning multiple leagues. Even narrowing things down, there are dozens of leagues part of the official European Leagues sports organization. Instead, we’ll keep things as simple as possible and focus on the five most prominent leagues in Europe. Get ready for the kick-off.

Premier League
Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

We’ll start at the top. The Premier League is an English league that is considered the best in the world by far. Best is subjective, of course, but essentially before a season starts, the English Premier League (or the EPL) has the most teams that have a good chance of lifting the trophy. Currently, that includes Liverpool, Manchester City and Tottenham.

In the EPL, each of the 20 teams plays each other twice (once at home, once away) for a total of 38 games in a season (which lasts from August to May). A win is worth three points, a draw is worth one point for both teams, and a loss is worth zero. The team with the most points at the end of the season is the winner.

As mentioned above, there are a total of 20 teams in the EPL, and there have been since 1995—but the teams have not always been the same. The Premier League uses a relegation system every season, wherein the three lowest-ranked teams after a season are essentially demoted to the EFL Championship (or just the Championship for short). Think of this as the three teams with the lowest W-L record in the NBA having to go to the G League. Of course, to balance things out, three teams need to be added back to the EPL. The top two teams from the Championship are promoted to the League, while the third, fourth, fifth and sixth teams battle it out in a playoff series for the third and final spot. This system helps add a little bit of drama to the bottom where things are otherwise bleak for the lower-ranking teams and their respective fanbases. Every league mentioned here functions in the same way.

Even if you’re a beginner when it comes to soccer, you might have known of this league for a while because of Cristiano Ronaldo’s run in it with Manchester United from 2003 to 2009. To many, he was the best player in the world during that time. In his last three seasons in the EPL, Ronaldo helped United win three consecutive seasons (the most that this trophy has ever been won consecutively), each time edging out the win against Chelsea.

Though United (who boast 13 EPL wins) and Chelsea (boasting five League wins) had their rivalry, you might have noticed that I named two different teams both with “Manchester” in their names; City and United. That’s where the classic Manchester Derby comes in. In soccer, a derby is where two teams with a similar geographical location play each other. So in the NBA, the Clippers and the Lakers games are derbies, along with the Nets and the Knicks. United and City do not share a home ground like the aforementioned teams, but the rivalry is still one of the best in soccer. In the EPL, Arsenal, Tottenham, Chelsea, West Ham and Crystal Palace are all London teams, so anytime one of them plays the other, it’s a London Derby.

If we’re discussing the history of the Premier League, the Top Four have to be mentioned. Throughout the 2000s, the league was dominated by Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Man United. In that decade, outside of them, only four teams qualified for the Champions League. Things are a little different now with other clubs in the mix, but this period was one to remember, with legends like Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Wayne Rooney and Cesc Fabregas all taking part.

La Liga
Alex Caparros/Getty Images

In Europe, second to the Premier League is La Liga (also known as Liga BBVA), Spain’s equivalent. Founded in 1929, this league boasts some of the best clubs and players in the world. The league functions in the same way as the English Premier League in that it utilizes the same double round-robin format, the same point system and the same promotion and relegation system. Spain’s equivalent to the EFL Championship is known as La Liga 2 or Segunda División.

As mentioned before, La Liga is home to some of the better players ever to kick a soccer ball. Though great teams like Valencia, Athletic Bilbao, Atlético Madrid and Sevilla have been competitive in it for decades, there’s no question that the league’s two giants are Barcelona and Real Madrid. Of the 88 seasons played in league history, both teams combined have won an astonishing 59 of them (with Madrid at 33 and Barca at 26). That’s 67 percent of the seasons won by just two clubs. That’s dominance.

Naturally, this dominance has given birth to the most iconic rivalry in soccer—El Clásico. This is the name of the derby between Madrid and Barca. Every time they play each other, the soccer world tunes in, no matter what your team is. It even goes as far as Spanish politics getting involved, with the two sides being perceived as opposing political sides. Both teams are the most followed on social media. In 2019, Forbes estimated Barcelona’s value at $4.02 billion, with Madrid at $4.24 billion, putting them in the number four and number three spots respectively on the list of Most Valuable Sports Teams. Incredibly, of the team’s 244 competitive matches to date, they’re both equal in wins at 96. This is a storybook rivalry.

The clash only became more iconic when Ronaldo left Manchester United in 2009 to go to Real Madrid in a then-record move worth £80 million. This meant that Ronaldo and Lionel Messi were now in the same league. Those two have long been considered the two best soccer players in the world and even of all time, with hundreds of millions worldwide debating who was first and who was second. This is Mayweather and Pacquiao, Kobe Bryant and LeBron James, Jay-Z and Nas. Since the inception of soccer’s equivalent of the MVP award (but for every league in the world), of the ten awards given, Ronaldo and Messi have won nine.

La Liga is the home of so many more great players, even in Barcelona and Real Madrid themselves. Many of the team’s best Spanish players have come together to play international soccer at the highest level over the years. But if you’re getting into La Liga, this is the rivalry to follow.

Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images

With England and Spain covered, the next best league in Europe is Bundesliga, German’s top league. Although in most ways the league functions in the same ways as the ones above (with the same system of promotion, relegation, points and games in a season), one key difference is that this league consists of just 18 clubs, as opposed to the EPL and La Liga’s 20.

By far, the most successful club in the league’s history is Bayern Munich, who, at the time of writing, has won the last seven seasons. The second most successful club is Borussia Dortmund (also known as BVB). The crucial game in German soccer is any time these two play each other, dubbed Der Klassiker. There has been some dispute on whether these games should be considered classics, due to them being devoid of much historical context, but regardless, there’s little to no debate on who the best two clubs in German soccer are.

Bayern’s dominance is interesting because while it has meant their fans worldwide have been satisfied, things have become repetitive and monotonous for others. The Germans have an incredible grasp on finding and developing homegrown talent, but it’s Bayern that mostly gets a hold of the talent. Think of this like the dominance of the Warriors making the NBA Playoffs a bore for some. This is a recurring theme for our final European leagues too.

Serie A
Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images

Officially founded in 1898, Serie A is Italy’s offering of its top soccer clubs. Following the same format as all leagues mentioned above, teams that are relegated at the end of each season play in Serie B.

The top clubs in this league are Juventus, A.C. Milan and Internazionale (commonly referred to as Inter). Even though Italy boasts numerous classic names in soccer, similarly to Bundesliga, Serie A has been dominated by Juventus in recent years. Since 2011, Juventus has won every season. Juventus is the current home of Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala and Gonzalo Higuaín.

Naturally, as you might have guessed by now, Juventus is one half of the most prominent Italian derby. They come together with Milan for Il derby Dei Campioni (Derby Of The Champions). However, there are multiple smaller derbies in Italian soccer, which make Serie A fun. Napoli and Roma, Inter and Milan and Genoa and Sampdoria are all some of the fiercest competitive games when it comes to the sport in Italy.

Ligue 1
FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

Finally, we have France’s premier league, Ligue 1. Just like all prior leagues, Ligue 1 seasons are 38 games long for clubs, and the team with the most points at the end of the season wins the L’Hexagoal, the name of the league’s trophy. The bottom three Ligue 1 teams are relegated to Ligue 2.

The number of championships each team in the league has won is a little bit deceiving here. The team with the most wins (ten) is AS Saint-Étienne, but they have not won a title since the 1980 to 1981 season. Next is Olympique de Marseille with nine wins, but they have had no wins from 2009 to 2010. In third place with eight wins is Paris Saint-Germain, usually shortened to PSG. This is the biggest and best club in the league, winning six of the seasons that took place in the 2010s.

The classic derby (Le Classique) in French soccer is the one between PSG and Marseille, who had their first meeting in 1971.

Champions League
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Now that we have the best five leagues in Europe out of the way, it’s time for me to explain how they interact at the highest level. Every year, the top four teams in the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga and Serie A, and the top three teams in Ligue 1 (along with other top clubs from different European countries and leagues) qualify for the UEFA Champions League (UCL). The UCL is by far the most prestigious club competition in European soccer.

The tournament begins with 32 teams, divided into groups of four. Teams from the same nation are never in the same group. Within their groups, they play the double round-robin format with a points system, and the top two teams from each group are entered into the next round.

Round two starts with 16 teams. Here, the winners in one group will play the runners-up of another group. They will play each other twice; once at home, once away from home. It is the team that scores more goals over the course of the two games that advance to the next round. This is where the aggregate score comes into play. Listen close because this could get complicated. If at the end of both games, both Team A and Team B have scored five goals, but Team B scored more of their goals at Team A’s home stadium, they win. Away goals count for more. If away goals are also even, teams will play extra time.

The UCL final is just one game played at a neutral stadium; in other words, a stadium that is fair for both teams and neither of their home grounds.

The winner is presented with the European Champion Clubs’ Cup, with each player on the winning team getting a gold medal and each player on the team in second place getting a silver medal. One of the prizes in this tournament is money, with set amounts earned for each type of accomplishment. Getting to the preliminary qualifying round wins you the equivalent of $261,000 while winning the finals gets you a whopping $21.5 million. Under this structure, a club can earn close to $100 million for winning. While this probably sounds colossal, remember that everything’s relative. In 2017, Neymar went from Barcelona to PSG for $255 million.

There are, of course, other cups and tournaments that European teams can win, but the Champions League is by far the most coveted.

All in all, those are the basics of European soccer. If you made it to the end, I hope next time you run into a soccer fan, you can get your way through a conversation with them and probably surprise them with your knowledge. If you want some extra points, refer to it as football.

Popular Culture

The 14 Best Business Podcasts

There are two types of people when it comes to making use of some unexpected free time: the kind who falls into the trap of mindless scrolling, couch-napping and binge-watching and the opposite who makes the most of a week by staying motivated and working toward their goals. Since you’re reading ONE37pm right now, we’d venture to guess that you fall into the latter category. Props.

If you’re keeping up your grind from home or looking for the inspiration you need to finally launch that side hustle, some of the best stories, advice and real-world tips for killing it in business are just a listen away on these top podcasts. And while there are so many entertaining and informative pods to choose from (can you tell we’re obsessed?), we’ve ranked the best of the best—from the most interesting for the already CEOs to the most useful for the business beginners ready to put their dreams into action. Take a look.

Best Podcast Interviews with Successful Entrepreneurs
14. ‘How I Built This with Guy Raz’

This NPR-produced podcast hosted by journalist Guy Raz offers firsthand accounts of the world’s most game-changing companies and innovations. Each episode features a one-on-one interview with an entrepreneur, from the founder of Wikipedia to Michael Dell (yes, of Dell computers), in which they share the real stories, struggles and triumphs behind their success. If you want an in-depth look at how your favorite brand or product came to be, give this one a listen.

13. ‘Art of the Hustle’

Jeff Rosenthal, cofounder of the exclusive Summit series for creators, takes a conversational (and humorous) approach to hosting entrepreneurs on the quarterly pod by iHeartRadio and WeWork. The podcast is always an easy and enjoyable listen, featuring guests like Dollar Shave Club’s Michael Dubin and RxBar’s Peter Rahal, who touch on a range of topics exploring their approach to growing their million-dollar ventures. Most episodes feel like a coffee (or happy hour) catchup with your casual genius friend.

12. Mixergy – Startup Stories

We’re ranking Mixergy as the highest among the interview-focused podcasts not only because of how expansive its archive is (over 1,900 episodes to date) but also because of host Andrew Warner’s unabashed ability to ask difficult questions in order to dig deep into the journeys of business founders and leaders. We also love Mixergy’s diverse range of guests who are making waves in all sorts of unique industries, from cybersecurity to cryptocurrency to gaming. And you’re always sure to get something out of it. As one reviewer said, “Andrew is honestly one of the best in the biz at expertly extracting [the] bits of gold that listeners are looking for.”

Best Podcasts for Actionable Advice
11. ‘Entrepreneurs on Fire’

For those who enjoy hearing from real entrepreneurs but want some solid directives to glean from their success stories, Entrepreneurs on Fire combines the best of both worlds. Host John Lee Dumas chats with CEOs and thought leaders, and each episode discusses a concept or strategy that’s worked for them. Some recent episodes include “How to Launch & Scale Your Expertise with Nick Unsworth” and “How to Become ‘Data Rich’ and 10x Your Business with Data with AJ Yager & Meaghan Connell.” The lingo and ideas are a bit high-level, so it’s recommended for those who are already familiar with the ins and outs of the business landscape.

10. ‘BiggerPockets Business Podcast’

The BiggerPockets Business Podcast has practical content that is accessible for newbies. Hosts J and Carol Scott were once everyday corporate managers when they left their careers to launch their own house-flipping business, so they know what people who might not have formal training want to learn from entrepreneurs who are already doing the damn thing—without any lofty language.

9. ‘Online Marketing Made Easy’

If you’re already deep in the trenches of running your own business or work in digital marketing, tune in with pro Amy Porterfield, who hosts Online Marketing Made Easy. There are over 300 episodes live right now, a selection that features a mix of masterclass tips from Porterfield, strategies you can apply right now (like, 6 MUST DO Action Items to Make Magic Between Launches), interviews with experts and some inspiring pep talks. Listeners have recently raved about episode 305, “Why Overnight Success Is a Myth.”

8. ‘The $100 MBA Show’

No MBA? No problem. Let Omar Zenhom, the award-winning entrepreneur, speaker and host of this straightforward podcast, be your teacher. You won’t find any long-winded backstories here, just plenty of fluff-free lessons for modern business leaders and beginners alike (that’s why each episode is only around 15 minutes long). We love that Zenholm offers real-world advice on things business owners deal with every day, like difficult customers, how many support agents you really need and when the best time to send out your newsletter is.

7. ‘Youpreneur’

Calling all aspiring influencers: If you’re not only interested in building a company, but also a personal brand, this pod is a must-listen. British entrepreneur, bestselling author and international keynote speaker Chris Ducker offers smart, easily-digestible advice on what you need to do—no matter your hustle. From ways to monetize your podcast to how to write your first book, Ducker gives you his secrets in bites that are mostly under 20 minutes. The only asset you need to get started is, well, you!

The Best Podcasts for Beginning Side Hustles
6. ‘Side Hustle School’

If you’ve been thinking about starting a little something on the side during your commute to a cubicle, this daily podcast will inspire you to finally take that chance. Chris Guillebeau, the bestselling author of The $100 Startup and The Happiness of Pursuit, shares the stories of real people and the side hustles that changed their lives, like the barista who turned a coffee blog into an $8,000 per month copywriting career or the music teacher who quit her job to earn $100,000 on Fiverr. Additionally, he answers some relevant questions from listeners, like “Should I pay someone to build my website?” and “Where do I begin if I want to create an app?”

5. ‘Smart Passive Income’

You don’t need to create a billion-dollar tech startup to earn major dough. According to Pat Flynn of The Smart Passive Income blog and pod, all you need are a few different revenue streams. The best and perhaps the easiest way to create those are through online businesses. Through interviews with pros and mapped-out strategies from Flynn, listeners can learn how to tap into niche markets, build authority online and make use of all the digital marketing opportunities at their disposal. The goal? Eventually, build something that makes money while you sleep.

4. ‘The Side Hustle Show’

“Because your 9-to-5 may make you a living, your 9-to-5 makes you alive.” That’s the tagline of Nick Loper’s The Side Hustle Show, which we’ve ranked the highest here because it offers the most direct and actionable advice that could be applied to side businesses in any industry. Episodes range from covering the basics (7 Key Steps to Start and Grow Side Hustle) to advice on when to hire an assistant and how to manage your product flow. And if you’re not even sure what kind of side hustle you’d be interested in, don’t worry—Looper has an entire episode with ideas.

The Best Inspirational Podcasts
3. RISE Podcast

Look at some of the world’s most successful people and you’ll find that it’s not just business acumen that sets them apart—it’s their entire outlook on life. Rachel Hollis’s RISE podcast is a great place to start when it comes to understanding and embracing the habits, mindsets and perspectives of leaders who’ve risen above the norm. Glean confidence-boosting wisdom from Hollis’s diverse guests or get the kick-in-the-butt motivation you need from her solo shows. No matter where you’re at in your career journey, everyone can benefit from being urged to “Stop Procrastinating!

2. The GaryVee Audio Experience

Of course, the guru of grind himself, Gary Vaynerchuk, aka GaryVee, has a podcast. One of his most prevailing pieces of advice, after all, is that you can always make more content, and on The GaryVee Audio Experience, you’ll find a compilation of some of his best. His honest, no-BS insight comes through in every episode, whether it’s a motivational keynote he’s given, one of his #AskGaryVee editions, a segment from his #WeeklyVee video series or a chat with a fellow innovator. You’ll definitely pick up some solid, applicable branding tactics and business strategy. Even more importantly, you’ll take away some life advice that is sure to fire you up, from overcoming the self-judgment holding you back to being dedicated to living life on your own terms. Boom.

1. The Tim Ferriss Show

We’re sure you’re familiar with Tim Ferriss, the legendary entrepreneur and author behind the concept of “The 4-Hour Workweek.” Most of the over 400 episodes highlight a world-class performer killin’ it in their field, ranging from CEOs (including longtime Disney CEO Bob Iger just before stepping down) to chess players, scientists, sports stars and even burlesque icon Dita Von Teese. While it’s not a straightforward “business” podcast per se, the fact that it extracts teachable lessons and big ideas from unexpected places makes it the best listen for anyone who wants to disrupt the business world.


Inside Tyler, The Creator’s Intriguing Style Evolution

When I was growing up, I was fortunate enough to watch Tyler, The Creator grow from a rebellious teen that was making outrageous music to a Grammy Award winner. While I enjoy his music, what really grabbed my attention was his style. It’s no secret that Tyler has been setting trends ever since his first televised appearance on the Late Night Show with Jimmy Fallon. The Supreme box logo hoodie would go on to become a wardrobe staple—and one of the most desirable pieces in streetwear. But this wouldn’t be the only mark Tyler would leave on the fashion world.

Tyler, The Creator’s Style Come Up

During his come-up as an artist, Tyler rocked bold colors paired with doodled Vans Old Skools. Patterns were a staple in his wardrobe: Whether it was polka dots, checks or stripes, he would wear it. The multi-media artist isn’t afraid to express himself, and his style shows that. What I love about him is that he dresses for no one but himself.

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

The Golf Wang Phase

Later on, the artist started venturing more into fashion by introducing his own brand label, Golf Wang. The company became a lifestyle to his hardcore fans, which allowed them to dress like Tyler. There was a period where Tyler was a real poster boy for Golf Wang, and knowing what kind of effect he had on his fans helped him grow the brand to what it is today. To this day, you can still spot him wearing Golf Wang, his staple “G” logo hat never leaves his side, and he always wearing in one-of-one pieces that don’t get a public release.

Golf Wang
Golf Wang Fall/Winter ‘14 Lookbook

Post ‘Flower Boy’

Fast forward to 2018, and Tyler shows a different side of himself. After the success of his album Flower Boy, it felt like he evolved overnight into a more mature figure that would pivot from extremely loud colors and patterns to a more sophisticated yet fresh streetwear look. More elevated footwear paired with cropped pants would become a staple look for Tyler and naturally would become one of the most popular style choices across his fanbase.

Tyler, The Creator from his song ‘What The Fuck Right Now’

I know they see me. Pants got a flood, lil’ bit Katrina. Oh, you wearing Vans and Supreme this season? Stop lying to yourself, me the reason.

<code><p class = "twitter-tweet"></p></code>

Tyler didn’t make any media appearances until he announced his newest project, IGOR. Once published, Tyler was ready to come out of the shadows and do his press run for the album. I was thrilled to see how his style had shifted. Seeing him go from loud T-shirts and wild patterns to tailored blazers and sweater vests signaled that Tyler had reached a different level. Don’t get me wrong, he still keeps it casual by pairing polo shirts with sneakers, but the way he was executing these looks were still more mature than anything we’ve seen from him before.

Donato Sardella/Getty Images for Dior

Nothing lasts forever, and in the current stage of streetwear’s popularity in the mainstream media, we are bound to see a shift. Sneaker culture is shifting towards more formal footwear like loafers, hoodies are traded for blazers and wearing suits is cool again. Seeing Tyler follow this progression just solidifies that this shift is really happening, and I am here for it.