Klay Thompson’s shoe company Anta is celebrating their client’s max contract with the Golden State Warriors by releasing a special edition sneaker.
ESPN/Nice Kicks sneaker reporter Nick DePaula shared on Twitter Monday that Anta is collaborating with the East Bay Times on the Anta KT4s, a special edition shoe that features newspaper clippings on it. The shoe references Thompson’s habit of reading the newspaper at his locker before games.
Klay Thompson is celebrating his new @Warriors Max deal with a special edition sneaker drop this weekend, highlighting his pre-game locker ritual of reading the newspaper.
— Nick DePaula (@NickDePaula) July 2, 2019
Thompson received a five-year, $190 million max contract from the Golden State Warriors, the team that drafted him in 2011. He will be recovering from surgery to repair a torn ACL suffered in Game 6 of the NBA Finals against the Raptors.
Thompson has averaged 19.5 points on 45.9 percent shooting for his career. He is a career 41.9 percent 3-point shooter and has been especially clutch in the playoffs for the Dubs.
Damian Lillard’s choice of footwear was a hot topic of discussion during Game 2 of the NBA’s Western Conference finals.
When Lillard took the floor for Thursday’s game, he did so in a pair of bright green shoes.
— Chuck Taylor (@cigarman79) May 17, 2019
It didn’t take long for them to be the subject of speculation on social media. Some wondered if the shoes were a product of Lillard’s relationship with television streaming service Hulu, whose logo is green.
Lillard got them Hulu shoes on tonight
— Ceezy (@m_cole34) May 17, 2019
— Jacob Spike Kraus (@jacobspikekraus) May 17, 2019
— Michael A Noble (@m_noble_ia) May 17, 2019
Lillard has appeared in an ad campaign for Hulu advertising their live sports. He even has an ad for that on his Twitter banner. Another possible inspiration for the shoes? He mentions “bright” in his Twitter bio.
“They say the truth shall come to the light…so everybody grab ya shades cuz ya boy that bright.”
The Blazers point guard has a line of shoes through adidas, with one pair being a mint green color. These were much brighter.
Lillard’s shoes certainly made a statement. However, if the Blazers are going to even the series with the Golden State Warriors, Lillard’s game will likely have to make an equally loud statement.
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Zion Williamson is changing things up in his return from his high-profile shoe blowout last month.
Williamson will be lacing up the Nike Kyrie 4 to start the ACC Tournament against Syracuse. Duke shared a photo on Twitter Thursday that shows Williamson in his new shoes.
— Duke Basketball (@DukeMBB) March 14, 2019
Williamson previously wore the Nike PG 2.5 PE, which is the Paul George shoe. He was wearing that model when his shoe tore apart in the first minute of Duke’s game against North Carolina on Feb. 20. Williamson missed the remainder of the regular season and is returning to action in the conference tournament.
Skechers is looking to capitalize on Nike’s high-profile equipment malfunction.
Skechers launched an ad campaign taking aim at Nike over Zion Williamson’s shoe falling apart during Duke’s game against North Carolina two weeks ago.
The ads are appearing in newspapers like USA Today and The New York Times, as well as Instagram.
USA Today ad. Well played Skechers. pic.twitter.com/353tLvBgft
— Don Jones (@DonnyJ44) March 2, 2019
i usually wouldn’t implore you to buy the paper for an ad, but you’ll never see shade like [squints] skechers is throwing at nike on page 3 of tomorrow’s nyt sports section again pic.twitter.com/wu9tQGacrf
— Josh Crutchmer (@jcrutchmer) March 2, 2019
As soon as Williamson had the shoe blowout, competitors pounced, though Puma deleted their tweet. Skechers decided to go all-in with an ad campaign that seems well-timed.
One of the worst public relations nightmares in Nike’s history occurred during Wednesday night’s game between Duke and North Carolina, and the sports apparel juggernaut is working hard to remedy the situation.
Just over 30 seconds into the game, freshman superstar Zion Williamson was forced to exit with a knee injury after his shoe literally fell apart. Williamson is the best player in the country and is expected to be the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft, so the equipment malfunction could not have happened in a worse situation.
Zion's shoe: destroyed pic.twitter.com/LqQ2te0Jay
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) February 21, 2019
After UNC’s 88-72 win over the Blue Devils, Nike issued a statement about the broken shoe. A spokesperson wished Williamson a speedy recovery and said the manufacturer is working to identify the cause of the “isolated incident.”
Got this statement from a #Nike spokesman:
“We are obviously concerned and want to wish Zion a speedy recovery. The quality and performance of our products are of utmost importance. While this is an isolated occurrence, we are working to identify the issue.”
— Des Bieler (@DesBieler) February 21, 2019
Isolated or not, the situation is a horrible look for Nike. Williamson is fortunate to have only suffered a knee sprain, though it is unclear how much time he will miss. The freshman has already been urged by some former NBA players to sit out to protect himself from injury, but no one envisioned his footwear being the issue.
As you might expect, Nike was ruthlessly mocked by the competition over the debacle.
Nike’s worst nightmare occurred on Wednesday night.
In the first minute of the high-profile Duke-North Carolina game, Blue Devils star Zion Williamson exited with an injury after his shoe broke. Williamson was wearing the Nike PG 2.5 PE, and the shoe literally fell apart, resulting in a knee injury.
This is the biggest stage in college basketball and the biggest star in the sport, and to have the equipment fall apart and cause an injury could not have been a worse turn of events for the Swoosh. Instantly, people pounced.
Boston Celtics guard Terry Rozier said Williamson/Duke should join Puma, a new brand in the basketball shoe market.
Come on over to puma
— Terry Rozier (@T_Rozzay3) February 21, 2019
Puma joined in as well before later deleting their tweet.
Wouldn’t have happened in the pumas
— PUMA Basketball (@PUMAHoops) February 21, 2019
Others on social media instantly knew what the injury and shoe failure meant for Nike and its competitors.
Nike right now…. pic.twitter.com/05aWBRRiJ8
— Damien Woody (@damienwoody) February 21, 2019
Adidas, Under Armour and Reebok after Zion fell out of his Nikespic.twitter.com/255WWmjsze
— Breyon (@bre_88) February 21, 2019
Nike stock may take a hit on the market tomorrow after Zion blowout!! #UNCvsDuke
— Mark A. Perdue (@markperdue65) February 21, 2019
Terrible look for Nike.
— Joe Person (@josephperson) February 21, 2019
We’re not about to say Nike’s stock price is going to fall on Thursday, but this really couldn’t be worse for them.
Williamson was soon ruled out for the rest of the game due to his knee, raising questions about his future at Duke, and whether he might actually follow Scottie Pippen’s advice.
Brad Stevens jokingly had pretty high expectations for Nike’s new self-lacing, “smart” shoes.
During Wednesday’s game between the Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors, Jayson Tatum wore Nike’s new Adapt BB shoes, which can be loosened or tightened by manual touch or by using the Nike Adapt app on a smartphone.
Jayson Tatum set to debut the new auto-lacing Nike Adapt BB here in Boston — what’s everyone think of the $350 smart shoe?? pic.twitter.com/WSgxkUoo9i
— Nick DePaula (@NickDePaula) January 16, 2019
Prior to the game, Celtics head coach Brad Stevens joked that he hopes the shoes make Tatum “superfast.”
Brad Stevens on Jayson Tatum: "He has a motorized shoe? I hope it makes him superfast."
— Sean Deveney (@SeanDeveney) January 17, 2019
Tatum was among the group of athletes to put the shoes through rigorous tests at Nike’s world headquarters. During Boston’s 117-108 victory, Tatum scored 16 points on 6-of-16 shooting to go along with 10 rebounds. It had to be the shoes.
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