Vanessa Bryant, Kimberly Chandler, and Alexis Welch in New York Magazine September issue
For many, the perception of the life of a woman dating or married to a professional athlete was shaped by a weekly dose of VH1′s “Basketball Wives.”
New York Magazine offers an alternate, perhaps more realistic view (minus the drama) of who these women are, and how their lives are shaped by a commitment to family and a love of high-fashion, that they share with their husbands.
It points out that over the years, the player’s wives have taken a more visible and viable role within the NBA landscape, and as a result, the pressure to best the next wife is a head-to-toe challenge, that often includes Christian Louboutin shoes.
Alexis Welch, who is the parent of three children with Amar’e Stoudemire, became his fiancée in June and the couple plans to marry next summer. Stoudemire asked for Welch’s hand in marriage (with a 8.5 carat diamond ring in tow) in a romantic setting in Paris, France. As part of his proposal, he made it clear that Alexis and their children should move to New York from Miami to be closer to him.
We’re going to get everything balanced, and that will be reflected on the court. I’m taking care of the household, making sure the kids are straight, the dog has his food, making sure Amar’e can be a dad at the end of the day, do something that has nothing to do with basketball.” She’s excited to be in New York, with her three little A’s in tow.
For Kimberly Chandler, life with husband Tyson Chandler has had its fairytale moments. Here she recounts the time Tyson decide to surprise her with a Pretty Woman-type shopping event, which included a stay at the same hotel that was filmed in the movie.
When they arrived, they were whisked into a dressing room the size of a hotel suite, with racks of clothes throughout and shoes lined up along the perimeter, Stella McCartney frocks and Chloé pants and everything in her size. Tyson gestured around the room, saying, “Everything you want, you can have.” Giggling, Chandler said, “Okay, good! I’ll take it all!” Slow down, slow down, he said, try some of it on. She walked out with a bounty, like a Rick Owens jacket with a high collar and low sleeves—it’s probably her favorite Owens jacket.
Vanessa Bryant, wife of Kobe Bryant, discusses her non-dispute with Khloe Kadashian-Odom, and the reason why she, and only she gets to greet her man in the Lakers tunnel after each game:
Everything is false,” she says. “Khloé was at my 29th birthday. I don’t get involved in the drama. I’ve been with Kobe since I was 17, so I’ve seen plenty of players, and plenty of wives, come and go. It wouldn’t benefit me whatsoever to have an issue with any of them, whether they were a girlfriend, or a wife, a person-of-a-month, or … you know. And I think that’s why the Lakers as an organization give me the access that I have, that other wives don’t have.”
Did I detect a little shade about the different “levels” of women she has encountered over the years? Nope. I detected a lot!
She also makes it clear that being with a man who does not go out and win championships is not for her. Basically, she feels, win it all or don’t come home!
Vanessa is like the house mother. She has been in this game far too long to dally in trivialities.
Ironically, former basketball wife, now Kanye Wests’ “Perfect Bitch” Kim Kardashian is on the cover of this issue of New York Mag, which hit stands this week.
This article is full of rich chocolate chips of information, you should definitely check it out.
Visit nymag.com for the FULL STORY and more photos.
Photo: Gillian Laub/New York Magazine
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