C-l-y-d-e. The name slides off the tongue as slick as this NBA All-Star's moves, like the one where he sails over a defender and lets the ball simply roll off his fingertips into the hoop. "Sooo smooth—in his approach to basketball as in his approach to style," says GQ editor-in-chief Art Cooper, whose magazine this year called Drexler—also known as Clyde the Glide—"the coolest guy in the league."
There's a seductive ease about the guard who has led Portland to the NBA finals twice in the past three years, from his elegant 6'7" frame to the serene smile he has radiated during a decade as a pro. He pulls down more than $2 million a season, works as a volunteer with Portland schoolchildren and last year was runner-up to Michael Jordan in MVP balloting—all without appearing to break a sweat. SPORTS ILLUSTRATED observed, "It's easy to picture him with a ball in one hand and just the right Chablis in the other." Or the way his wife, Gaynell, a lawyer turned full-time mom of two, describes him—lounging around their Portland home in silk pajamas.
Drexler, 30, owes some of his winning form to diligent conditioning, which he started as a "kind of chubby" child in Houston. He's as particular about the rest of his appearance; teammates rib him about half-time preening in the mirror he installed next to his locker. But it isn't garden-variety vanity, Drexler insists. "I'm checking to see if the two strands of hair I have left on my head are in place."
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