Category Archives: athlete shoes

andrew wiggins nba shoes

Andrew Wiggins Bio & Shoes: His GAME Does the Talking

About Andrew Wiggins: If there’s one word you could use to describe Minnesota Timberwolves star forward Andrew Wiggins, it would be quiet. But, before we get into his bio, let’s look at why, even in high school, he has a history of leaving other people at a loss of words: (except for maybe, the word, “nasty?”)

Andrew Wiggins: High School Official Mixtape (nasty!)

Andrew Wiggins Biography: Oh, Canada!

Throughout his life, he’s never been one who needed to be the center of attention in every minute of the day. On the contrary, he’d be perfectly happy to be out of the spotlight away from the court. It’s a large part of why he is so reluctant to open up to anyone outside of his inner circle and the Timberwolves’ locker room.

It’s not that the Toronto-born Wiggins is rude to those he doesn’t know or lacks the intellect to hold a conversation. On the contrary, he’s polite and might be one of the NBA’s most cerebral players. It’s that unless the subject is ping-pong, one of his favorite ways to unwind when he’s off the court, he often simply doesn’t have much to say.

Wisdom in silence

Wise men speak because they have something to say;
Fools because they have to say something.” Plato

There’s a reason for that. While others talk, Wiggins is calculating, learning from the words around him. He doesn’t speak unless he needs to, and more often than not, there’s nothing that needs to be said. His game says all that is necessary and a lot more.

andrew wiggins bio dunk

Photo: Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP

Wiggins has been a top contributor from day one in the Twin Cities, scoring 17 points per game as a rookie and claiming Rookie of the Year honors in 2014-15. Two years later, the 6’8″ Wiggins had brought his scoring average to 21.6 points a game and made it clear that the Timberwolves have a blossoming star that they can build around to resurrect their team.

If Wiggins doesn’t want to do much talking about his success, that’s just fine with the Timberwolves. All that matters to them is the performance he gives them on a nightly basis.

“Winners come in all different personality types,” Minnesota coach Tom Thibodeau said. “Some guys are quiet, but they’re fierce inside. Some guys are loud, and you think they’re fierce but they’re not. I watch a player’s actions. They tell me everything.”

Wiggins’ actions have told Thibodeau that his best player flourishes best when he’s allowed to be his quiet self and understand the game around him.

nasty dunk wiggins andrew

Andrew Wiggins: student of the game

Wiggins has always been a student of the game, dating back to as young as 2 years old, when he would watch his father Mitchell play professional basketball in Greece. That action alone made him different from most kids his age: he would actually watch his father play.

Watching his father helped him learn what he needed to do when he got onto the court himself, and when it was his turn to play, his foundation combined with his natural talent made him one of the most sought prospects at the college level before he signed to play college basketball at Kansas. With both the Jayhawks and the Timberwolves, Wiggins’ approach to the game has been simple: combine talent, hard work and basketball intelligence at once and beat you with an unbeatable combination. In four seasons in the spotlight, it’s never let him down.

It’s why the Timberwolves were willing to package Kevin Love in a deal with Cleveland (kyrie irving approved of the deal) to bring the Canadian big man to Minnesota, and they’ve been pleased with the results. Just as the Timberwolves had hoped, Wiggins has stepped up as a top talent and a leader, albeit a quiet one.

Andrew Wiggins: Quiet man, loud & “crazy explosive” shoes:

andrew wiggins adidas shoes

Ironically, despite the quiet nature that Wiggins is known for, his shoes from Adidas are anything but. Known as the Crazy Explosive, Wiggins’ signature shoe looks like something you’d expect from one of the flashier stars of the NBA, but a look at the shoe itself reveals why it’s a perfect fit for him.

The most obvious is the choice of the colors, representing the blue and green of the Timberwolves. Beyond that, however, the high-arching ankle support makes it a perfect fit for Wiggins, who showed up on campus at Kansas in 2013 with ankle braces on. Another signature feature on the shoe is the AW logo, featuring a small maple leaf in the center of the A to represent his connection to the Great White North.

The best price on Andrew Wiggins’ shoes when you use a coupon!

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Andrew Wiggins’ Crazy Explosive shoes are also about substance

Check out the “unboxing” of Andrew Wiggins shoes!

Like Wiggins himself, though, the shoe is about substance. Primeknit construction on the top makes the shoe breathable and lightweight, allowing faster movement, while the Boost cushioning allows the heel to recover quickly from the pressure it takes during a game. The finished product is a blend of style and substance, much like what the Timberwolves are hoping Wiggins will be when all is said and done.

He’s showing signs of doing exactly that this year – although his teammates don’t mind if he takes his time on that one.

“Sometimes he doesn’t have to say much when you see him working so hard on something,” Minnesota guard Ricky Rubio said. “That’s the way to lead sometimes.”

Andrew Wiggins Stats & salary

The latest Andrew Wiggins stats & salary from | more of Andrew Wiggins bio at

how nba shoe deals work nike

How NBA Shoe Deals Work, & How Jordan Made $100 Million Last Year

NBA players are the highest paid professional athletes in the United States with the average NBA player now averaging $4.9 million per year from the league alone. When you factor in endorsements deals from places like athletic wear companies, sports drinks, and electronics manufacturers, that number can easily double or triple.

Did you know that approximately 1 out of every 2 NBA players will sign with Nike before they even play their first game? Most don’t. In fact, there is a misconception among many people on how shoe deals for NBA players work.

It is often a lengthy, complicated contract with a lot of risk and little money being made for the players in the beginning. Read on to find out how NBA shoe deals work

Chuck Taylor and the History of Shoes in the NBA

vintage chuck taylor converseIn order to understand why NBA shoes are a multi billion dollar business today, we have to look at how we got here. In 1917, Converse began outfitting NBA players with the first ever performance basketball sneaker known as the “All-Star”.

An All-American high school basketball player by the name of Charles “Chuck” Taylor began wearing the shoes and soon after graduating high school, traveled to the Converse sales office. He was hired immediately and became the first “spokesman” for NBA shoes, despite not being an NBA player.

Taylor traveled around the country promoting the “All-Star” shoes to basketball players at the professional level as well as high school and college level. Within 6 years, his signature was added to the sole and the shoe was renamed the Converse Chuck Taylor All-Stars. Soon enough, Chuck Taylors were synonymous with the NBA.

In the 1970’s, Nike jumped into the NBA shoe business by debuting their Blazer shoe. Puma followed soon after that. In response to the threat of competition after dominating the industry for 50 years, Converse released the Weapons shoe and signed Magic Johnson and Larry Bird to wear them.

Michael Jordan Creates His Own Shoe With Nike

air jordan shoe deal nikeIn 1984, Michael Jordan chose to sign his shoe deal with Nike, for $250,000. While Adidas offered $500,000, Nike was offering something that nobody else had ever done: a revenue deal. Nike proposed that Jordan take a smaller payment up front in exchange for a percentage of the revenue earned by the shoes.

They also stipulated that if the shoes didn’t earn $3 million in the first 3 years, the contract was over. In 1985, Air Jordans grossed $130 million in revenue and the NBA shoe industry was born.

Michael Jordan’s first branded shoe, Air Jordans. 1984.

Every NBA Player Signs a Shoe Deal

timofey mozgov shoesThe vast majority of players are never going to be Michael Jordan. Since it is essentially a gamble on who will become a star NBA player, every player signs a shoe deal. Timofey Mozgov, center for the Los Angeles Lakers candidly detailed his experiences for

“…here in the League, all the players, even those who are just starting, have a personal relationship with sportswear manufacturers. No matter how much stardom a player has, the companies consider it their professional duty to make it so that “even that new guy” represents their brand. It doesn’t matter how much playing time he gets and what year of his contract it is, because he’s already a part of the elite club: the NBA. And this already means a lot in America. 

…I signed my contract with Nike on October 11. And I played my first game, as I recall, only on 27th. But here it’s normal.”

While Mozgov signed with Nike for his shoe deal, Under Armour and Adidas are also becoming major contenders in the NBA shoe market. While virtually every single NBA player will sign their shoe deal with one of these three companies, Nike still holds court, commanding a dominant share of the basketball shoe market.

However, in an effort to further muscle into Nike’s near-monopoly, Adidas recently signed one of the biggest shoe deals ever with Damian Lillard, eclipsing Kyrie’s Nike shoe deal, and further raising the stakes in the world of NBA shoe deals.

Shoe Deals: Little Money Up Front; Many Opportunities for Bonuses

incentives donkeyContrary to popular belief, when an athlete signs a contract with a professional sporting organization, the number that is announced is actually the maximum that player can earn during those contract terms.

For example, if the hot new NBA player signs a three year, $50 million dollar contract, that means that $50 million is the maximum amount he can make from the NBA in that three year period.

In order to achieve that $50 million pinnacle, he must hit every single metric that his contract stipulates to make the money that isn’t “guaranteed.” This includes per game metrics, per season metrics, awards, no fines or injuries and no benching.

The same exact concept applies to shoe contracts for NBA players.

Mozgov spoke very frankly about the structure of his deal:

“Right now I’m not getting any money from them directly. Yes, in my contract there are generous bonuses for all sorts of individual achievement – getting on the list of the top players of the week, top rookie lists, Rookie of the Year award, and so on. And also for game performance: points, minutes, rebounds, blocked shots… So, for almost every positive stat on the boxscore.”

Mozgov’s shoe deal is structured so that he got a signing bonus up front and is then given an account with Nike where he is able to order merchandise from them from his balance with them. That is to say, Nike is paying part of his earnings out in merchandise rather than cash. When he hits certain pre-determined metrics, he is finally paid out in that sweet, sweet cash.

Why Do Athletic Shoe Companies Pay? Michael Jordan!

how nba shoe deals work nikeMichael Jordan has not played in the NBA in nearly 15 years but his Jordan branded shoes through Nike rang in nearly $3 billion dollars in 2016. Additionally, the Jordan shoe line has a marketshare of 64% of the entire basketball shoe market. Nike branded shoes follow with 29%, followed by Under Armour with 3.6% and Adidas SportsOneSource with 2.3%.

Michael Jordan will end up making about $100 million from his Nike Jordan collaboration for 2016. Forbes estimates that $100 million actually beats the $94 million he made in total from the NBA in all 15 seasons combined.

When lightning strikes, it is a very lucrative business for everyone involved. It is projected that Nike has made nearly $25 billion from it’s Michael Jordan collaboration.

NBA Shoe Deals: In Closing

So while an NBA player will sign their shoe deal with one of the major companies, they won’t get a significant amount of money up front. Much of their payment comes in the form of credit to their account with the company and they can achieve cash bonuses based on performance. As you can see, signing an NBA shoe deal is as complicated as signing with the NBA itself.

*Ever wonder why new shoe releases for top players cost so much and are never eligible for coupons from Finish Line or free shipping at Foot Locker? These mega-shoe deals are definitely to blame, although if you can wait a few months, they might become eligible for coupons when they aren’t so hot.

damian lillard bio stats

Damian Lillard Bio: Mad Skills + Determination = Huge Contract & Shoe Deal

Damian Lillard Bio: When the time came for Damian Lillard to release his first shoe via his deal with Adidas in 2015, there wasn’t any doubt that his heritage would play a major role in the eventual creation of the final product.

Heritage has always been important to the Portland Trail Blazers guard, who isn’t just spouting empty words with his rap song “Loyal To The Soil”. No matter how many points he scores or how much money he makes, Dame DOLLA has never forgotten where he came from.

It’s why he returns to Oakland, Calif., every offseason to work out in his old high school gym, which has been newly renovated thanks to a generous gift from Lillard that also saw the addition of both a new weight room, a new music room, and a computer lab that gives students the chance to design their own shoes.

It’s why he made his shoe available in purple and black as a nod to his alma mater Weber State, who gave him the chance to prove he could play at the game’s highest levels. It’s why he returned to Weber State to get his degree in 2015, a move that helped his old high school point to him as motivation for struggling students.

It’s also why he wears the number 0 on the court: when interpreted another way, the number looks like the letter O, which has been a constant in each place that has shaped the person he became.

damian lillard shoes

Damian Lillard & The Letter “O”

Whether it’s been Oakland, where he bounced around at two different high schools before landing at Oakland High School, Ogden, Utah, where he dazzled the Big Sky Conference while building Weber State into one of the league’s most successful teams, or Oregon, the home of the Portland Trail Blazers that he now stars for, the letter O has always been a constant presence in Lillard’s life.

It’s why his debut album as Dame DOLLA was titled The Letter O and why his Dame 3 shoes feature his initials interlocking to form the same letter.

damian lillard 3 shoe adidas

The SHOES Tell His Story

Even the shoes themselves tell a story of what made Damian Lillard into the No. 6 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft and helped him sign one of the richest contracts in NBA history in 2015, when he inked a five-year extension with the Blazers worth $151 million.

The shoes themselves feature blade traction in the form of a sole design that resembles the milk crates that served as Lillard’s first basketball hoop. As a child, Lillard’s grandfather nailed a milk crate to a pole to create a makeshift hoop for Damian, and it was the time spent on that hoop that formed the foundation of a shooter who averaged 19 points in his rookie season and only improved from that lofty mark.

  • Damian Lillard shoes: Foot LockerGrab a couponnew for up to 20% off + free shipping
  • Damian Lillard: Finish Line – View coupons
    *I just tried the Foot Locker coupon and it works towards D Lillard shoes, (plus free shipping) but if there is a hot new release it might be excluded from promo codes for a while

Beyond the traction, the Dame 3 from Adidas features the cushion that gives the guard the bounce that has helped him play well beyond his size. Even though size isn’t much of a problem for him anymore now that he stands 6-foot-3, the bounce is a throwback to when he left high school at 5-foot-11, and needed that extra edge to get over players who had several inches on him.

damian lillard adidas contract

Photo credit:

Damian Lillard’s HUGE Signature Shoe Deal

damian d lillard 2 shoesJust before signing his massive NBA contract extension, the 2013 Rookie of the Year inked a mega-deal in with Adidas. According to ESPN, Damian’s  shoe deal could be worth $100 million with incentives and options over 10 years.

That kind of “shoe money” eclipses even Kyrie Irving’s Nike shoe deal, and puts him in the top of the sneaker-deal stratosphere with players like Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose.

Even though his shoe deal numbers are mind-boggling, the shoes themselves are priced pretty fairly for a signature shoe, with the D Lillard 2’s currently selling for about $100 or so. Looks like the newly released D Lillard 3’s are more, but still in that range. (The current 15% off  free shipping coupon code for Foot Locker works towards them) 

The Dame 3’s relatively low price point is another hallmark of Lillard, who doesn’t want to ever leave any doubt about where his roots lie. He is involved in every bit of the creation of his shoe with Adidas, and both he and the shoe company make sure they’re on the same page when it comes to the message that he wants to come from his shoes.

“His story is all about his path and humble beginnings to getting where he is today,” Adidas designer Jessie Rademacher said.

“His whole goal is to inspire people, so he’s extremely connected to the community. When we design this shoe, we consider everything: keeping the price down so that it’s accessible, the amount of details that are personal for him, and making the sneaker extremely customizable because everyone has different footshapes.”

Damian Lillard Top Dunks:

Bio: Self Confidence + Determination = Impressive Stats (and nasty dunks!) 

Everyone also has a different path to their goals in life, and for Lillard, the path was paved by self-confidence and a determination to never give up on his dream of playing in the NBA. As a sophomore, Lillard was on his second high school in as many years at St. Joseph’s Notre Dame, where his coach seldom played him and at one point told him that not only was his NBA dream unlikely, but he wasn’t certain that Lillard would have a spot on the high school varsity team in his final two seasons of high school.

For Lillard, that was the extra push he needed to shift his already high motivation to reach the NBA into sheer determination that it would someday happen. He never gave up on himself, and his reward is now obvious.

“That motivated me a lot.” he said. “I really believed I was going to make it to the NBA. You couldn’t tell me it wasn’t going to happen.”

Biography: Career highlights:

  • 2x Big Sky Player of the Year: 2010, 2012
  • Rookie of the Year: 2013
  • All Rookie 1st Team: 2013
  • All-NBA 3rd Team: 2014
  • All NBA 2nd Team: 2016
  • 3x NBA All-Star
  • Damian Lillard full stats & salary:

Top photo credit: Derick E. Hingle/USA Today Sports

kristaps porzingis biography

Kristaps Porzingis Bio: Latvian NBA Star w/ Massive Contract & Shoe Deal

Kristaps Porzingis bio: On the surface, Kristaps Porzingis isn’t supposed to be the critical player that he is for the New York Knicks. That’s probably why many Knicks fans booed when their team “wasted” a lottery pick on the largely-unknown, gangly 20-year old Latvian.

What was surprising was his impressive combination of size and skills that quickly made him a a star for the Knicks, and propelling him to a spot on the NBA All-Rookie First Team. Since, he has become one of the league’s most popular young players, and has also earned the undisputed title of “the most popular man in Latvia.”

Latvia: Not Really A Hot-Bed of Basketball Talent

latvia mapHis country of origin certainly doesn’t suggest success at basketball’s highest level. His home nation of Latvia has a proud athletic tradition, but that tradition is in ice hockey, not basketball. With a temperature that regularly pushes into the 20s, many Latvians spend their winters on the pond rather than in the gym.

The Baltic states do have a proud basketball past, but that past belongs almost exclusively to Latvia’s southern neighbor Lithuania. Unlike the Lithuanians, the Latvians have never qualified for the Olympics and couldn’t make a team of NBA players from their country, having just four Latvians who have gone on to the NBA. Of those four, only Porzingis and Andris Biedrins have managed to reach the 100-game mark in the NBA.

Basketball is In Porzingis’ Blood

But basketball has always been in Kristaps Porzingis’ blood. Back when he was still wearing a Carmelo Anthony jersey as a kid, it was widely assumed that he was going to follow the path his family had set for him. As the son of a former semi-pro player and a former Latvia women’s youth team player, Porzingis had the right bloodlines to break the mold of his country and become the kind of success that Latvia had never before seen on the basketball court.

Breaking the mold was one thing. Becoming the face of one of the most visible franchises in the world was quite another. Far from the bust that New York fans feared he would become on draft night, when he was picked fourth overall in the 2015 NBA draft to become the highest-picked player in the NBA draft of any of the three Baltic sates, Porzingis has instead become one of the Knicks’ most consistent players.

porzingis shoe deal

mage via USA TODAY Sports / Bill Streicher

Kristaps Porzingis Bio: A Deadly 7+ Foot Tall Latvian Sharp-Shooter!

His towering 7’3” height gives him the size to deal with anyone inside as one of the tallest players NBA history, but he’s also nimble on his feet and can create his own shots from down low when necessary. In short, he creates a match-up nightmare for the defense where it’s difficult to take anything away from him because of his options.

It’s why he’s in line to get a raise from his $4+ million salary when his rookie contract expires. It’s why he’s become a consistent scorer and given the Knicks a true threat both inside and outside the lane. It’s why he outplayed his rookie contract in his first season in the league, becoming the first rookie in league history to post more than 1,000 points, 75 three-pointers, 500 rebounds and 100 blocks in a single season.

It’s also why Adidas chose to give Porzingis the richest shoe contract ever awarded to a European NBA player of any nationality, despite Porzingis being a mere 21 years old and in the midst of his second NBA season at the time of the offer.



Kristaps Porzingis Signs Shoe Deal w/ Adidas is Worth Millions

Nike and it’s Jordan brand controls a staggering 95% market share in basketball shoes, but Adidas just took out a sling shot and is trying to channel David vs. Goliath with their Porzingis shoe deal. (A very tall David, I might add!) 

So, how much is Kristaps’ shoe contract worth? Like most NBA shoe deals, the one Adidas signed with Porzingis is based largely on incentives and bonuses, but is valued at $3-6 million dollars a year. That’s up there with the best, rivaling Nike’s signature shoe deal with Kyrie Irving.

That’s also the biggest shoe deal ever for a European basketball player, and a lot more than the $25,000 a year he was making with the Nike shoe deal he signed in 2012. It’s also enough to convince him to ditch the Nike Kobe X Elites that he used to wear. (Which he colored blue with magic marker!) 

porzingis nike shoes

Porzingis’ old shoes – Photo credit: Gemini Keez

When asked by The Vertical about the shoe contract, Porzingis said:

“All I can say is both Nike and adidas are first-class companies… I would be lucky to align myself with either one. The amount of attention I received was flattering, but right now I am letting my agents handle the business side of things.”

Wow, and he’s a class-act too? That question from the press was a big fat chance to screw this whole endorsement deal up, which is what a lot of 21 year-old NBA players would have done!

Also, Porzingis is one of the most popular jerseys in the NBA, (#4 on so that’s a good sign for the future.

Kristaps’ “Crazy Explosive” Basketball Shoes from Adidas

The resulting shoe is the KP-6 as part of Adidas’ Crazy Explosive brand of shoe. Porzingis and Andrew Wiggins are pairing to back the sneaker that came with full-foam conditioning on the insoles, giving its wearers a feeling of relax and comfort throughout the life of the shoe.

For players like Porzingis, the extra cushion means that his body won’t be thrown into a defender when he’s trying to make a move to the basket. Instead, Porzingis has complete control over his body and is able to use his knowledge and quickness to make something happen during the scant amount of time that he has to make a decision.

Coupons & Free Shipping: Best Price for Porzingis’ Crazy Explosive Shoes!

Is it the shoes? Probably not, but you can still “be like Kristaps” and wear the same exact shoes. (Except his shoes are size 16) The best selection and prices on Adidas Crazy Explosive shoes at at Foot Locker and Finish Line:

Tip: Unlike most new signature shoe releases, Adidas Crazy Explosive sneakers are not excluded from coupons and promo codes at Foot Locker and Finish Line. You can get a discount up to 20% if you use a coupon!

porzingis biography

Photo: Chris Keane for SI

Porzingis: A “Crazy Explosive” NBA Weapon

Becoming one-dimensional has never been a concern for Porzingis, who has made himself into a top weapon for his team, regardless of the league in which he’s competing. Whether it was his club team as a youth in Latvia, his first professional team of Baloncesto Cevillia, or the New York Knicks, Porzingis has always brought a professional attitude to the court, along with the demeanor of someone who wants to keep making progress and keep showing improvement.

That might not be what you’d expect from a 21-year-old in the NBA, but Porzingis has proven time and time again that he’s anything but the typical youth. Instead, this is a man who believes 10 blocks a game would be easier than getting 10 assists and took his preparation for the NBA so seriously that he backed out of the draft in 2014, choosing instead to spend the upcoming year working toward being a deserving lottery pick the next year.

With the Knicks on the rise and Porzingis a large reason why, that’s an extra year of preparation that appears to have paid off in a big way.

Photo credit: (top) Mary Altaffer / SI – (Coupons are for Foot Locker and Finish Line)

kyrie irving cavs dunks

Kyrie Irving Bio: A Hungry & Humble Phenom w/ a Sweet Shoe Deal!

Kyrie Irving Bio: 2011, the year that Kyrie Irving arrived in Cleveland as the No. 1 draft pick, was the beginning of a new era in Cavaliers basketball. Irving’s arrival came at the perfect time for the recent power of the Cuyahoga, (The County where Cleveland is located, named after the mighty Cuyahoga indians) as it followed one of the darkest seasons in the Cavaliers’ 45-year history.

Not only had Cleveland lost LeBron James to Miami in free agency the year before, (when he took his talents to South Beach) but the Cavaliers had completed an embarrassing 19-63 campaign that saw them lose 22 consecutive games, a drastic fall for a team that was a perennial championship contender as recently as the previous season.

In Kyrie We Trust!

kyrie irving amatuer playerInto the void stepped the consensus top amateur player in 2011, the Australian-born Kyrie Irving. Though hampered by an injured big toe that allowed him to play just 11 games in his Duke career, the guard’s phenomenal skills were obvious, possessing the vision to find a teammate on the fly, the agility to get into position, and the marksmanship to nail an open look at the basket.

Gradually, Kyrie Irving helped build the foundation to resurrect the Cavaliers from one of the league’s worst teams into a true contender for the title. The Cavaliers recognized what they had when after two seasons they inked him to a five-year, $90 million contract extension ($18 million / year) in 2014.

Their faith was almost instantly rewarded. When James returned to Ohio, Irving had created the atmosphere that allowed the league’s best player to take the Cavaliers over the hurdle that stymied his first tenure in Cleveland.

In two seasons alongside Kevin Love, Cleveland’s Big Three produced 110 regular-season wins, two Eastern Conference championships and the real pinnacle: bringing the city of Cleveland its first championship of any kind since 1964 by dethroning the Golden State Warriors in the 2016 NBA Finals.

Kyrie Irving Top 10 Highlights

Kyrie’s Father, Drederick Irving “Hunger & Humility”

kyrie irving dadKyrie’s Mother passed away when he was only 4 years old, so the responsibility of raising Kyrie fell on his dad, Drederick’s shoulders . Throughout his son’s life, Drederick was never willing to let Kyrie settle for less than was possible for him to achieve, both on and off the court.

For the guard from West Orange, N.J., hunger and humility are values that his father Drederick instilled in him at a young age.

Whether it was in the classroom, in the home, or in the gym, Drederick always made sure that Kyrie set a reasonable goal for himself, a value that Kyrie still practices and plans to pass on to his daughter as she grows up. Often, he writes down both his goals and inspiring quotes to help guide him throughout the season and throughout his life.

kyrie irving shoes bio

Photo Credit:

Kyrie Irving: It’s Gotta’ Be the Shoes!

kyrie 3 irving shoes blackA large part of Irving’s success in resurrecting the Cavaliers has been having the right shoes on his feet. There might be no position where shoes are more critical to success than a guard in the NBA because of the need for quick thinking and decision-making; and that’s before throwing in the nasty crossover dribbles that make a guard like Kyrie Irving so difficult for opposing defenses to stop.

When trying to knife through a defense to create a shot for either himself or a teammate, Irving often has to maneuver through a small window, with no more than a split-second to make his decision on which way to take the basketball before the defender realizes what he’s doing and cuts him off.

Executing such a move requires a lightning-fast first step and complete trust in your shoes’ ability to hold their ground in response to the force placed on them. You might say Kyrie’s shoes are the literal foundation of his success.

Kyrie Irving Sneakers from Nike: The Kyrie 3 – “JBY” and “H + H”

kyrie irving shoes jby hhThe Kyrie 3 shoe grants that freedom of motion with its pair of traction pods, giving the wearer total control over when they stop and where they stop. In the NBA, that can be the difference between creating a basket and creating a turnover.

“This game is separated by very finite moments where you have to get your shot off,” Irving said. “My shoe speaks to that. Being able to stop on a dime and cross over and go another direction, I can’t wait for players to try it.”

The Kyrie 3 highlights Irving’s unique style and personality in ways that go beyond his skills on the court. Each shoe is adorned with abbreviations of two of the quotes that have shaped his life from his earliest days:

  1.  JBY for “Just Be You” : “JBY, just be you is the motto I live by every single day because I’m happy to be an individual. I celebrate it. I think that everyone should celebrate their individuality” – Kyrie
  2.  H + H for “Hungry and Humble : “Hungry and humble is something my Dad gave me as a kid that I most likely will give to my daughter, whether she plays sports or not. It’s always staying hungry for more and never being satisfied. Acknowledging the present moment, what you’ve accomplished, and then thinking about what’s up ahead and how you’ll prepare yourself for that. Then of course the humility part. It’s supposed to go unnoticed, your humility. You’re supposed to be humble, you’re supposed to show respect to other human beings, to anyone. You respect other people’s journeys, and also you respect your own” – Kyrie

The shoes also have the roman numerals, “VIII” and “XIII” (the same numbers that are tattooed on his wrist) as a reference to his late mother’s birthday & death. Also, on the sole you’ll see the names, Azurie and Elizabeth,” the names of his daughter and wife.  Click to view larger:

Tip: If you’re looking for the latest Kyrie shoes, Foot Locker and Finish Line have the best selection online and almost identical pricing:

*You won’t ever find coupons for the newest Kyrie shoe release anywhere, but you might find kyrie shoes on sale, or get free shipping. Promo codes might work towards older styles, like the Kyrie 1 or kyrie 2.

Kyrie Irving’s Million Dollar Shoe Deal With Nike

kyrie irving shoes bioSpeaking of shoes, you can’t talk about Kyrie’s NBA contract without mentioning his shoe deal with Nike. Kyrie got his own signature shoe deal with Nike, and in 2014 they released the Kyrie 1.

So, how much money is Kyrie’s shoe deal worth? Shoe deals are a little complicated, but here’s an estimate of what Kyrie’s shoe deal is worth:

  • Kyrie is one of the faces of Nike Basketball, an endorsement worth about $5 million a year
  • 5% royalty on all shoe sales is standard. When the Kyrie 1 launched in December 2014, Nike sold over $7 million worth of Kyrie 1’s in just the first month after launch!
  • Add incentives & bonuses: Whenever a basketball player inks a signature shoe deal, they get bonuses based on performance. As of 2017, Kyrie is already a 3x All-Star, All-NBA, and 2016 League champ, so add bonuses to the annual total
  • Free shoes – Add in a lot of free pairs of shoes and Nike swag!
  • As the bulk of his $11 million in total endorsements, I’d estimate Kyrie’s total Nike deal is worth about $8 million a year, with the shoe deal alone being worth around $3 million annually. That’s a nice boost to his impressive current net worth

Kyrie’s Impressive Stats & Career Highlights: “Always Staying Hungry”

Irving’s dedication to success and hitting his goals have been evident in his consistency with the Cavaliers. Through his first six seasons in the league, he has never averaged fewer than 18 points per game, and his free throw percentage, a mark of concentration and mental fortitude, has never been below 85.5 percent, an average that usually ranks in the top 25 in the entire league.

Other career highlights include:

  • kyrie irving biography2010 McDonald’s All-American (high school)
  • 2010 Jordan Brand High School All-American (high school)
  • USA Olympic Gold Medal (2016)
  • 3× NBA All-Star (2013–2015)
  • NBA All-Star Game MVP (2014)
  • All-NBA Third Team (2015)
  • NBA Rookie of the Year (2012)
  • NBA All-Rookie First Team (2012)
  • NBA Rising Stars Challenge MVP (2012)
  • NBA Three-Point Shootout champion (2013)
  • USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year (2014)
  • FIBA World Cup MVP (2014)
  • NBA champion (2016)
  • Kyrie Irving’s full stats –

More important to Kyrie Irving than his individual stats has been the continued upward trajectory of his team. With the Cavaliers again among the NBA’s elite franchises, Irving seems poised to continue the success that has made him one of the NBA’s most exciting and productive competitors for years to come.

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