Ranking the 5 best LeBron James signature sneakers
LeBron James is a household name in the NBA, winning four titles in his 19-year career to certify his position as one of the greatest players in league history. Throughout his career, his talent on the pitch has attracted the attention of several brands, making him the most marketable player since the Michael Jordan era. As a result, he entered into several sponsorship contracts.
Of all of LeBron’s high profile mentions, his affiliation with sneaker company Nike is easily his most recognizable association. LeBron James, 36, was associated with the company even before making his first NBA appearance.
LeBron James’ display in high school made him the center of a bidding war between top shoe companies like Addidas, Nike and Reebok. Although he got a much better deal from Reebok, he ended up choosing Nike, signing his first signature shoe deal with the company worth $ 90 million in 2003.
Since then, its signature Nike LeBron series has only broken several records, becoming the longest series of signature shoes worn by an active player, also establishing itself as one of the most successful shoe collections in the world. In 2015, LeBron James reportedly signed a billion dollar lifetime contract with Nike, extending their successful relationship into the foreseeable future.
With that said, let’s take a look at LeBron James’ top five iconic sneakers.
# 5 Nike LeBron 7
The LeBron 7 sneaker is one of the most iconic shoes in the series, notable for its different styles from previous iterations. Released in 2009, the sneaker was Jason Petrie’s first design for LeBron James, and it contained 80% more air than previous designs to increase comfort.
âIt’s a unique problem to have out there. It’s very fast and very powerful,â said designer Jason Petrie. “When we build a LeBron, we know everything that’s going on.”
It was the first time that Nike used the Air Max cushioning system as silhouettes in a basketball sneaker, while also having the classic Nike Flywire technology that was first featured in their hyperdunk collections.
âThere was a lot of style in this shoe because we were really talking about ‘CEOs of the pitch and the culture’ at the time, and we really wanted technology to become the element of style,â said Petrie.
It boasted some of the best colorways in the LeBron series, available in white, red, and even All-Star themes, and was notable for being the first series to launch the red carpet version.
# 4 Nike LeBron 15
The Nike LeBron 15 is one of the best LeBron James sneakers for a variety of reasons, with its importance and style being the two main reasons.
“No one has ever reached number 15 [while playing] before LeBron so that’s a big deal, and we wanted to celebrate LeBron’s technology, style and play, âsaid Petrie.
Debuting in 2017 at the KITH fashion show, Nike LeBron series designer Jason Petrie created another masterpiece. The release marked the first time the 15th Edition of a signature shoe was designed for an active player, and its success helped breathe fresh air into the LeBron series.
The LeBron 15 has adopted one of the most imaginative designs in the series, with themes inspired by Lebron James’ favorite themes and some of the brand’s biggest hits. Possessing a combat knit upper system, it was one of the most durable sneakers in the series and helped the Superstar to his eighth straight NBA Finals.
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