As Jim Cramer tried to determine the valuations for Under Armour, Nike and Foot Locker, he found himself wondering what would happen to the stocks if some of the pro athletes who represent the brands suddenly become losers.
Would Under Armour's stock get hammered if Stephen Curry suddenly doesn't make it to the finals?
If the valuation of a company's stock is determined by whether a team wins or loses in the NBA West finals, then count Cramer out.
"That, in a nutshell, is how I feel right now about the footwear and sports apparel group. I have never seen the cohort in this state of flux, and while opportunities may abound … this group has simply become too hard to reconcile," the "Mad Money" host said.
Nike recently reported a quarter with guidance that Wall Street did not like, which sent the stock lower. Under Armour reported a similar quarter, with worries about excess inventory. And Foot Locker left Cramer completely mystified, as no one liked the quarter but Foot Locker.
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"There was an 'Alice in Wonderland' feel to it, an almost psychedelic dissonance between how well Foot Locker believes it is doing and the ugly reality of the situation," Cramer said.
Even worse, the group has been flooded with short-sellers.
What is really going on?
The entire footwear and athletic apparel group has gone into "show me" mode, Cramer said. Meaning, Wall Street requires clean quarters from every company, which has raised the bar.
"Sometimes, we just have to admit that a sector has become a battleground, at least short-term," Cramer said.
Ultimately, companies require long-term perspective; there are just too many variables to judge them in the short term.
That is why Cramer will buy the shoes to stay in shape but says to wait before buying the stocks.