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Portsmouth fashion designer’s hat worn by NBA star Kyrie Irving

  • January 21, 2024

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Portsmouth entrepreneur Mike Rivers Jr. got quite the surprise earlier this month from one of the NBA’s biggest stars.

Kyrie Irving, the 8-time All-Star and NBA champion, was pictured on the Dallas Mavericks’ Instagram donning a black and white crocheted hat that Rivers made specifically for Irving.

Rivers said he had no idea Uncle Drew would ever wear it, but it fell right into place like one of the point guard’s silky jumpers.

“I grew up watching Allen Iverson and then Kyrie kind of took the Allen Iverson to the next level, so I’ve always been a fan of Kyrie,” said Rivers, who was born and raised in Portsmouth “But also I do pay attention to what celebrities are wearing. After I noticed he wears those hats a lot I said I’m gonna design something for him, give it a shot.”

The bucket-style hat took about a month to complete and actually glows in the dark thanks to a special type of yarn. It also has Irving’s jersey number: 11.

<em>The hat made for Kyrie Irving (Courtesy of Mike Rivers) </em>

The hat made for Kyrie Irving (Courtesy of Mike Rivers)

“Instead of sending a picture or an illustration, I took a chance and just made it,” Rivers added. “[Kyrie’s people] saw it, they said ‘well we’ll show it to him, it looks great but it’s up to him,” but I got the call back saying that he loved it.”

Not long after, Irving was wearing the hat on the way to the Mavs’ Jan. 5 game against the Blazers. He’d go on to lead Dallas to a 139-103 victory without Luka Doncic, scoring a team-high 24 points.

Maybe it was the magic of the hat?

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