Nike unveils Christmas Day sneakers for James, Bryant and Durant
By Ben Golliver
What good would new uniforms be without some new shoes to go with them?
Back in November, the NBA and adidas revealed their “BIG Color” jerseys for the 10 teams slated to play on Christmas Day. The monochromatic jerseys take a simple look, sticking tightly to a single color worn by each team and tacking on minimalistic styling with a secondary color. The Heat sport deep red with light white trim; the Lakers bright white with purple trim; and Thunder deep blue with orange trim.
Nike, sneaker brand for the NBA’s three biggest stars, has gone the opposite direction with its Christmas Day shoes for LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Durant. The league’s three top All-Star vote-getters will be wearing festive and dazzling multi-colored Christmas colorways of their signature shoes.
Keep reading for more information about all three shoes.
The LeBron X made headlines earlier this year when it was reported that an enhanced version of James’ sneaker would retail for more than $300. When they were officially released, the enhanced version wound up selling for $270.
James will take the court in Miami against the Thunder at 5:30 p.m. ET wearing a seasonally appropriate red and green kick that should match his red jersey pretty directly. Nike.com offers these details.
Furthering the diamond inspiration of the LEBRON X, the design team unearths the rarest of diamond colors, red, to serve as the creative muse for this colorway. Highlighted by a sun-washed green, the shoe also features a metallic-like reflection on the vibrant red upper. Technical benefits of the LEBRON X include full-length visible Nike Zoom cushioning, dynamic Flywire technology and Hyperfuse construction.
The latest version of Bryant’s shoe, the Kobe 8, was released earlier this month. The black, red and yellow shoe really won’t have anything to do with the Lakers’ white uniforms, and Nike explains that the shoe’s influence comes from Bryant’s signature animal, the snake, with the scale-like design meant to mimic a holiday garland. Bryant and the Lakers will host the Knicks at the Staples Center at 3:00 p.m. ET.
In keeping with the snake-inspired design of Kobe Bryant’s latest signature shoe, the KOBE 8 SYSTEM draws inspiration from the rhinoceros viper. The perfect snake skin for a holiday colorway, its bright red and yellow scales mimic a Christmas tree garland — but don’t get too close. Built for Bryant’s speed and precision, the KOBE 8 SYSTEM features a Nike Engineered Mesh upper, Lunarlon midsole and tactile traction.
When the Thunder visit American Airlines Arena for their rematch of the 2012 Finals, Durant will be wearing blue, orange and yellow versions of his KD V sneaker, unveiled in October. The Christmas model will roughly complement his jersey but there’s definitely a little extra oomph. Nike explains that the unusual wavy lines on the side of the shoe are meant to recall video game graphics from the early 1990s.
As a kid, Kevin Durant recalls getting a video game system one Christmas. Inspired by video game graphics, Nike designers created the upper design, sockliner graphic and tongue tab logo for Durant’s special Christmas Day shoe. The KD V, Durant’s most technically advanced shoe to date, features the combination of Nike Zoom (forefoot) and Nike Air (heel) cushioning along with Hyperfuse upper and dynamic heel support.
The NBA will play five games on Christmas.
- Celtics at Nets at 12:00 p.m. ET
- Knicks at Lakers at 3:00 p.m. ET
- Thunder at Heat at 5:30 p.m. ET
- Rockets at Bulls at 8:00 p.m. ET
- Nuggets at Clippers at 10:30 p.m. ET
The signature shoes for James, Bryant and Durant will be sold in stores the day after Christmas, Dec. 26.