Of all the NBA athletes who’ve had the honor of wearing Jordan Brand, none were as galvanizing as the tandem of Darius Miles and Quentin Richardson. As part of the LA Clippers’ promising core of the early 2000s, D-Miles and Q-Rich were were remembered for their highlight-potential style and the forehead fist-bumps that sealed each play. That signature sign-off became one of the most mimicked in-game celebrations across all sports and even appeared in the marketing campaign for the Air Jordan XVII, which saw the pair starring in the short ad called “Duet To You”.
So, how exactly did Miles and Richardson get signed to Jordan Brand? Most shoe deals this day and age are cultivated through years of nurturing through the amateur and prep circuits, but for Miles and Q-Rich, it was as cool and casual as can be. Already on Michael Jordan’s radar as they were participants in his hoops camp in high-school, the newly drafted rookies caught the GOAT’s eye during a summer camp after the draft thanks to the AND1 sneakers on their feet. According to Miles, who reveals the story in full on his The Player’s Tribune contribution, the streetball brand had been sending him and Q-Rich a ton of free gear in an effort to sign them to endorsement deal. Jordan simply wasn’t having it, so days later he quickly orchestrated a deal for both rookies to join the Jordan Brand roster.
Despite their hot start, neither player ended up having a career that may have been expected of them. Richardson was active for thirteen seasons without making an All-Star team, and Miles’ journey sadly ended at the age 27 due to injury. However both players will always be credited for purveying the youthful culture into an already entertaining era of superstars, while their double fist-bump to the head continues to be in circulation to this day.