The Style Journey of Sports Journalist Sisters Malika and Kendra Andrews

We chatted with the dynamic duo for National Siblings Day

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Malika and Kendra Andrews are two of ESPN’s brightest young talents. Since joining the four letter network in October 2018 as an NBA reporter, Malika has had a fast rise to the top, becoming the host of ESPN’s NBA studio show NBA Today which covers the league nationally, along with the Wednesday edition of NBA Countdown. Malika’s work has also appeared across many other ESPN platforms including, Sportscenter, and ESPN Radio. Kendra joined ESPN in January 2022 as an NBA reporter primarily covering the Golden State Warriors after a successful stint as the Warrior’s reporter for NBC Sports Bay Area. In addition to writing and reporting for, Kendra also provides contributing reports to various other ESPN platforms including its NBA programming and Sportscenter.

With today being National Siblings Day—and the NBA postseason officially kicking off tomorrow with the start of the 2023 Play-In—we figured now would be the perfect time to check in with both Malika and Kendra to chat about how they approach their personal style as reporters. You can check out the full interview below.

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ONE37pm: Alright ladies, this is an interview all about style. I’d like to start by asking both of you where your inspiration and love for style began.

Kendra: Our school wasn’t uniformed, so we were definitely people who picked out our outfits to wear every single day. For myself growing up, I don’t think I wore a pair of pants until third grade. I was a dress girl as a little kid, in particular velvet dresses. Several of my school pictures from kindergarten to probably fourth grade were all in velvet, and people would ask my mother why I was alway in a “pretty dress.” She would always say, “Well why not?!” I don’t think I would have considered myself into fashion from a young age, but I think a part of me always liked to get dressed up, and that is definitely the case now at least.

Several of my school pictures from kindergarten to probably fourth grade were all in velvet, and people would ask my mother why I was alway in a 'pretty dress.' She would always say, 'Well why not?!'

- Kendra Andrews

Malika: Yeah Kendra always loved to wear fancy dresses! We have our aunt Sandra who works in the fashion industry that lives in London. Growing up we didn’t get to see her that often, but when we did we would do fashion shows where would clomp around in her shoes that were five sizes too big for us, and she would sort of dress us up. It was always something we enjoyed and liked. Our mother and grandmother were also people who were always impeccably dressed. Our grandmother always wore suits in just about every color—but purple was her favorite. She would wear scarves and earrings that would match every necklace—our nana was somebody who dressed to the nines. I think growing up our style influence was a combination of all those figures for sure. 

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ONE37pm: I think one thing we all have in common is those early years of being in the sports industry. It can be a grind to find things to wear! How did you make it work in those early years?

Malika: Oh man! Well I definitely bought some things that I shouldn’t have and had to pay off a little bit of credit card debt! I learned that in this business, especially early on, it’s not the highest paying industry. For Kendra and myself, Rent the Runway was and still is some of the things that both of us implement in our wardrobe. I would also buy things secondhand that I found, and mix and match a lot—Kendra and I would swap clothes as well. Those were the kind of things that we did so we could kind of stretch it as far as we could go in those early years. Sometimes with outfits that are colorful or have certain patterns, you can’t repeat it early on, so a lot of times I would wear black because it would be something that I felt good in, but at the same time it wasn’t so big or demonstrative that it would be so memorable to where I couldn’t wear it again in a week.

Kendra: With me coming up behind Malika, I had the perk of being the younger sister, in the sense that I got to learn from my older sibling. I learned a lot from Malika with what she was saying as far as being in college or even just fresh out of college and not making the amount of money that you would want to be spending on clothes. She introduced me to Rent the Runway, swapping outfits, and figuring out how to functionally build your wardrobe with staples—so that if you do buy something, it's special. Or if you’re renting something you can add it on top of the basics that you’ve already collected. Also with being in college, the perks of having roommates at the stage of your life was figuring out we could stretch everyone’s closet to its maximum potential.

I had the perk of being the younger sister, in the sense that I got to learn from my older sibling.

- Kendra Andrews
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ONE37pm: Alright! Well let’s jump into the early years of your professional careers. I know you guys have to travel a lot, and that can be tough with clothes too. How did/do you pick what you were going to wear then?

Kendra: I am the world’s worst packer in the sense that I overpack. With the trips that I go on—in comparison to Malika’s work trips now, which are a little bit quicker—I sometimes have to go on two week trips that span five cities in ten different days in different climates. I’m the kind of person that needs a different shoe for Miami versus Denver, so I could get better at that. For those longer trips, I do try to be smart about picking a shoe that can be worn with multiple things such as a black or nude pump that is simple and goes with multiple outfits. I’ll bring a lifestyle sneaker such as Air Maxes or Air Force Ones to wear on the plane, and then one pair of workout shoes just to try and keep it down.

I also try to find clothes that won’t wrinkle easily, or can be steamed in the shower if there isn’t an iron or steamer in the hotel. I check the weather app every couple of hours leading up to the trip. Rent the Runway has been so great and helpful, but you have to make sure you time your order perfectly so that it gets delivered before you leave. There’s been instances where I haven’t gotten the order window right, and have had to run around to find something to wear. For me it’s a lot of app checking, and trying to figure out the most concise way to try and not overpack—even though I always end up doing it!

Malika: I’m the opposite, because I don’t overpack. I want a carry-on whenever I can to make sure that I can get off the plane as efficiently as possible when that’s an option. I’m always trying to figure out what I can get that isn’t going to wrinkle, and what I can put in a bag that’s going to make it from Los Angeles to New York. I’m definitely always in the mode of what I can get off the plane with and put in the least amount of prep. Also, I will say that sometimes my stylist will send stuff to the hotel if I’m going to be away for a long time, but that’s cheating! 

ONE37pm: Cool! So Malika you just mentioned a stylist. How has that been?

Malika: I just started working with a stylist at the beginning of this season. His name is Leon Gray, and he is so wonderful. He’s become a friend that I just so happen to work with as well. He’s so good at putting together color combinations that maybe I haven’t thought of. I’ve been able to lean more into a suit look with him just because I wasn’t as confident in pants, and he found me pants that made me want to wear them. He puts together things that are fun and different. Kendra was my first stylist, and now Leon has taken the ropes from Kendra a bit. Sometimes Leon will send me the looks for NBA Today, and I’ll send it to Kendra to see what she thinks for her opinion.

Kendra: I haven’t worked with a stylist, but I’ve learned by proxy through Leon because of the way he puts things together. Malika and I both really love color, so I love everything he comes up with. I distinctly remember being in LA with Malika in her dressing room, and she was like “Leon told me to put this color with that color,” and it was something that neither one of us would have thought to do. In fact, the other day I texted Malika to ask her if a blue suit I was wearing was too much blue, and I went with a different color shoe just to break up the monochrome look. Seeing how he styles Malika makes the wheels turn in my head when it comes to fashion. 

ONE37pm: There’s definitely been an evolution in both of your styles from your first seasons to now. What’s the difference in who you are between now and then?

Malika: I still wear dresses, but I think I’ve gone from flowy dresses with bigger prints, to bolder colors and more tailored fitted suits, which I like because it’s a full circle moment that makes me think of my nana honestly. It’s also a comfort thing. When I first started on television and was in locker rooms trying to find my way a bit, I had to find a balance because you want to wear things that you enjoy, but you have to also know that you’re not the story, which means your outfit isn’t the story. That’s what I tried to keep in mind, particularly when I was on the beat working locker rooms every single day. Now with being in the studio—and frankly being more comfortable with what my body looks like on television along with all of those other things—that has all been a factor in the evolution towards more colors, suits, and more tailored looks.

For me, it’s about finding looks that compliment the story.

- Malika Andrews

There’s a bunch of women who I really admire, such as Robin Roberts, Megan Markle, and Zendaya along with Olivia Pope and Kate Middleton. If you could put that all in a pot, that’s where I think I would like to go in terms of women who inspire me with their fashion. My goal is to have interesting great looks that I’m proud of and feel good in, but also know that I’m not taking anything out of the story. For me, it’s about finding looks that compliment the story.

Kendra: I’ve always liked a more tailored look, be it a tailored dress, or tailored pants and suits. I lived in Denver before moving back out to California, and it’s cold and snowy there, so I think I leaned into pants early in my career. Maturity has also played some role in it as well. When I first started I was in my early twenties, and as you get older you feel more grown up. Similar to Malika, I try to walk the line between dressing for myself and what I like, while not being like “Here I am!” I make a conscious effort to not make a super bright color everyday—I try to switch it up with a variety of looks. Also, it’s kind of funny, but I’ve been wearing a lot more sneakers lately as opposed to heels. I love heels so much, but I’ve been leaning more towards a business look with a pair of sneakers. It’s just so much easier to run around in! 

ONE37pm: Alright one more questionwas that Malika’s watch?

Kendra: Okay let’s set the record straight! It was, but she knowingly gave it to me. Does she want it back at some point? Maybe. Will she get it back? Probably not! 

Malika: When it comes to sisters, what really is yours? 

Kendra: The person in possession of it is the owner.

Malika: The important thing though, is that it was mine!

You can keep up with all of Malika and Kendra’s latest updates via their Instagrams.

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