Meet the designer trying to give Utah Jazz fans a bit of style

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Calyann Barnett was brought in by the team as a creative consultant, & the result is CounterPoint, a lifestyle apparel brand that debuted during All-Star Weekend, and is meant to grow the team’s brand

More than a decade and a half ago, Calyann Barnett was working a temporary gig in the music industry while trying to establish herself as a fashion designer. These days,

she is a celebrated stylist to myriad NBA players, a creative consultant for the Utah Jazz, and the driving force behind “CounterPoint,” the team’s lifestyle apparel brand.

A couple of chance encounters in 2007 would set events in motion.First, she was working with someone who was working with LeBron James, and she marveled both at his chiseled, physical form and 

how it could be shown off, & also the rock-star vibe and gravitas he exuded, which obviously lent itself well to marketing opportunities — though she believed athlete styling was an unmined niche area

Then, that June, she scored an invite to rapper Kanye West’s 30th birthday party, held at a Louis Vuitton store in New York City, where she spotted Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade. 

She thought that, like many of his NBA contemporaries, his off-court look was pretty meh. And she decided to tell him so.“I walk over and I’m like, ‘You need a stylist, take my card,’ 

and I walked away,” Barnett recalled, laughing. “Then I came back and I was like, ‘You know what, you are gonna lose my card — take my number, put my number in your phone.

And I walked away. And then I was like, ‘You know what? You’re not going to call me. Give me your number.’They texted a few times, him telling her that he had a suit-maker 

he was happy with, her daring him to be more bold and take some risks — namely on her. She was getting nowhere. That December, she made one last-ditch bid to persuade him.