clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Here are the 18 NBA players with a signature shoe, and how they got them

New, comments

Every sneaker here in one place

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

The best signature shoes are typically only reserved for the top of the top class in the NBA. The rise of the signature athlete for different brands has rapidly increased over the years. In the last four years, eight different NBA players have gotten signature sneakers with different brands trying to break into the market.

Players like Michael Jordan and LeBron James have had success turning themselves into the biggest household names behind their iconic brands. Signature athletes have to be able to do that, but most can’t. Brands still take chances on athletes who might be able to — think of it as a process similar to restricted free agency.

We’ve created a running list of every active player who has a signature shoe along with the current sneaker model they’re on. It’s tough to make this list — there are only 18 players on it to date. But each of them has some quality that makes them desirable for different brands. We’ll go over those qualities and their sneakers here.

LeBron James

Floyd Mayweather Jr. v Conor McGregor Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Why James has his own shoe

It goes without saying why James is on this list — he’s a four-time MVP and a three-time NBA Champion. He’s currently viewed as the consensus best player in the world and has been on the league’s biggest stage eight times in his career.

What does his deal look like?

In 2015, James signed a lifetime deal with the swoosh and is on his 15th signature shoe with the brand — excluding the Zoom Soldier series. He reportedly debuted the Nike LeBron 15 at a pickup game at UCLA earlier this summer.

What does the shoe look like?

Here’s a look at that shoe via Sole Collector. We don’t really know too much about the knit material the shoe is made of or the sole. Stay tuned.

The shoe is set to debut in October and will retail for $185.

Kyrie Irving

kyrie irving

Why Irving has his own shoe

Irving has always been one of the league’s most marketable players. His flashy handle and the ability to score anywhere on the floor at any time has earned him four All-Star appearances in six years. Plus, he’s got an Olympic gold medal and an NBA championship under his belt — along with maybe the greatest shot in NBA history.

What does his deal look like?

Sneaker brands love guards, so it’s only natural for Irving to have a signature shoe with his talents. And his deal is only being worth $8 million annually is a steal for Nike — he had the second best selling signature shoe in 2016.

What does the shoe look like?

Here’s a look at what we think is going to be Irving’s Kyrie 4 via Reggie Miller’s instagram. The pic has since been deleted and Nike has declined to comment, but its a never before seen model for Irving with his logo on the tongue.

The Kyrie 3 currently sells for $120 in stores.

Kevin Durant

Golden State Warriors Victory Parade And Rally Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Why Durant has his own shoe

Kevin Durant just won his first NBA title, but he’s always been one of the league’s top athletes. He’s a four-time scoring champion and an MVP. And his trophy case is probably going to need more space for the near future as long as this Warriors team stays together.

What does his deal look like?

Durant signed a 10-year, $300 million deal with the swoosh in 2015 when Under Armour nearly poached him away. He’s on his 10th signature shoe with the brand after he debuted its newest iteration during last year’s Western Conference Finals against the Spurs.

What does the shoe look like?

It takes on Durant’s persona as a long-lanky low top shoe with zoom padding in its soles for extra boost.

Golden State Warriors v San Antonio Spurs - Game Three Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The KD 10 currently retails for $150 in stores.

Stephen Curry

2017 NBA Finals - Game Five Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Why Curry has his own shoe

Stephen Curry’s success is one of Nike’s biggest mistakes after they overlooked him back in 2013. Since then, Curry has made his mark as one of the best three or four players in the league with two MVP trophies and two NBA titles. He’s also shattered the three point

What does his deal look like?

In 2015, Curry signed an extension with the brand that keeps him with the brand until 2024. Curry also has some equity stake in the company, which an uncommon practice for Under Armour’s best. Tom Brady has the same deal.

What does the shoe look like?

Curry recently debuted his fourth signature model during the 2017 NBA Finals. It’s got a sock-like collar for ankle protection and a pretty thick midsole for cushioning.

2017 NBA Finals - Game Three Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The sneaker is expected to hit stores sometime in October. We don’t have a price point yet.

James Harden

San Antonio Spurs v Houston Rockets - Game Six Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Why Harden has his own shoe

Harden is one of the best basketball players in the league and also has plenty of commercial appeal off the court. He’s been a Rocket for five years and each season he’s made an All-Star team. Plus, he’s been an All-NBA’er for four of those five seasons.

What does his deal look like?

Adidas took a huge gamble on Harden in 2015 with a 13-year, $200 million deal — they passed up on re-signing John Wall to a massive deal just to do it. Though basketball isn’t quite their focus, Harden’s deal is paying dividends and keeping their presence alive in the sport.

What does the shoe look like?

Harden introduced the Harden Vol. 1 to the public last season. The Harden Vol. 2 is expected to release sometime this fall for the 2017-18 season.

2017 Las Vegas Summer League - Los Angeles Lakers v Cleveland Cavaliers Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

The Harden Vol. 1 retails for $140.

Paul George

Cleveland Cavaliers v Indiana Pacers - Game Four Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Why George has his own shoe

Though George’s star has fallen a bit, he’s still known as one of the best two-way players in the league and is a four-time All-Star. His battles against LeBron James in the 2012 and 2013 conference finals as well as his bounce back from his broken leg have him as one of the league’s most familiar faces.

What does his deal look like?

George makes $5.5 million annually from Nike. He’s their 21st signature shoe athlete in the brand’s history and has one of the more well-received shoes in the business.

What does the shoe look like?

The PG 1 released in March earlier this year. It’s a sleek low-top with a strap covering its forefoot.

Indiana Pacers v Denver Nuggets Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images

The PG 1 is Nike’s least expensive signature model on the market selling at $110.

Damian Lillard

Portland Trail Blazers v Golden State Warriors - Game Two Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Why Lillard has his own shoe

Brands love guards because they have the ball in their hands most of the time, and Lillard’s play style lends itself to that. Plus, he’s made the All-NBA squad twice in his short five year career and had one of the most memorable shots in recent playoff history against the Rockets. Did I mention he can rap?

What does his deal look like?

Lillard signed a 10-year deal with Adidas in 2014 that is expected to net him over $100 million over its lifespan. He currently on the third year of that deal with his third signature shoe in the books and the fourth one on the way.

What does the shoe look like?

Lillard is expected to drop the Dame 4 in October. It’s a mid-top shoe with Adidas Bounce cushioning in its soles (image via Sole Collector).

There’s no word on the price yet, but they probably won’t be on the high end because Lillard doesn’t want them that way.

Derrick Rose

Toronto Raptors v New York Knicks Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images

Why Rose has his own shoe

Rose is still reaping the benefits of his MVP season in 2011. Rose was the league’s youngest MVP ever at just 22 years old and had tons of upside before tearing up his knee in the 2012 NBA Playoffs. Rose’s career has fallen ever since between his injuries and a rape case.

What does his deal look like?

This deal looks crazy, but it wasn’t when he signed it. The 13-year, $185 million deal with Adidas he signed in 2012 looked excellent for Adidas back then. Rose hadn’t had any injury troubles and they couldn’t have seen that coming.

What does the shoe look like?

The D Rose 8, set to release in October, will be a high top sneaker with boost technology in the sole for more cushion when making sudden movements and cuts.

The shoe will sell for $140 with Adidas and other retailers.

Klay Thompson

2017 NBA Finals - Game Two Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Why Thompson has his own shoe

Thompson is one of the best three point shooters the game has ever seen. He’s never dipped below 40 percent from three during his career and has taken 6.8 per game over his career. He’s a three time All-Star and a key cog to one of the greatest championship teams of all time. He’s kind of funny, has an adorable love for dogs and just seems like a cool guy.

What does his deal look like?

Thompson just signed a 10-year extension with Anta, a China-based brand, that could reach $80 million. The brand dropped Thompson’s third signature shoe in May right before the start of the NBA Finals.

What does the shoe look like?

Thompson’s shoe is a high top with a knitted upper, which is new for the Anta brand overall. It’s secured by a large strap on the collar and has a thick outsole for ease of movement. (Via Sole Collector)

Russell Westbrook

The 2017 ESPYS - Show Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Why Westbrook has his own shoe

He wore the Jordan 31s throughout last season, but Westbrook does have his own shoe. But, much like the league’s newest MVP and Triple Double king’s style, it’s a bit unorthodox. It’s really a lifestyle shoe Westbrook doesn’t wear on the court and, sometimes, doesn’t wear it off it. But the shoe still carries his name.

What does his deal look like?

Westbrook recently signed a 10-year extension with Jordan Brand that will keep him under the Jordan umbrella until 2028. The dollar amount of the deal is undisclosed at this point.

What does the shoe look like?

They’re pretty neat for a lifestyle kick. This Westbrook 0.2 is his second signature model with the brand with the 0.3 still on the way. (via Kicks on Fire)

The Westbrook 0.2 sells for $110 with Nike and most other retailers.

Lonzo Ball

2017 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Why Ball has his own shoe

Though Lonzo Ball hasn’t really done anything of significance in the league just yet, his star is already huge. People cared about what he wore during Summer League. He’ll be one of a handful of rookies to have a signature shoe in their first season. Some names on that list? Michael Jordan, LeBron James and John Wall.

What does his deal look like?

We don’t know! But here’s what we do know: Ball is a member of Big Baller Brand, so he’ll get a return on whatever profit they make from his signature ZO2’s. But we still don’t know what that looks like.

What does the shoe look like?

It’s a a low-top with some sort of foam cushion tech in the sole for comfort. The shoes are still currently available for pre-order on the Big Baller Brand website.

2017 Las Vegas Summer League - Boston Celtics v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

They can only be pre-ordered on the Big Baller Brand website for $495. If customers are willing to pay that hefty price, they’ll get their pair of shoes in November.

Dwyane Wade

Chicago Bulls v Boston Celtics - Game Five Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Why Wade has his own shoe

Wade is going to go down as one of the All-Time great players in league history. He’s a 12 time All-Star, three time NBA champion, former Finals MVP, a scoring champ from the 2009 season and an eight time All-NBA player. The resume speaks for itself.

What does his deal look like?

In 2012 Wade signed a deal with Li-Ning that gave him his own ‘Way of Wade’ brand with the company and pays him $8 million annually. He chose Li-Ning over Jordan Brand because of the equity he’d have in the company and the allure of his own brand.

What does the shoe look like?

Wade is launching the Way of Wade 6 for 2017. It’s a low top shoe complete with a knit upper. It also features a strap across the forefoot and a thick sole for more cushion.

The release is expected to come sometime in the 2017-18 season. There’s no word on the price just yet.

Chris Paul

Utah Jazz v Los Angeles Clippers - Game Seven Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Why Paul has his own shoe

Yes, but like Westbrook he doesn’t often wear them on the court. Paul is actually on his 10th sneaker with Jordan brand after signing with them in 2006. Paul is one of the league’s best point guards despite his playoff failures. He’s a nine time All-Star and and eight time All-NBA player.

What does the deal look like?

The terms of Paul’s deal are undisclosed, but he’s been with the brand since 2006 after originally signing with Nike in his rookie season.

What does the shoe look like?

It’s a mid-top shoe that is fairly polarizing because of a ripple overlay coming from its midsole. Twitter actually roasted it earlier this year. (via Sneaker News)

Carmelo Anthony

International Champions Cup 2017 - Real Madrid v FC Barcelona Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images

Why Anthony has a shoe

Anthony hasn’t had much success with the Knicks, but he’s still one of the best scorers in the league. He won a scoring title and can’t seem to stay off the All-Star team — he’s participated 10 times in his career. He’s got the clout needed to be a signature shoe athlete.

What does Anthony’s deal look like?

Anthony, like Westbrook, makes $5 million annually from Jordan Brand. He’s been with the brand throughout his career and will wear his 13th signature sneaker under the Jordan name in the 2017-18 season.

What does the shoe look like?

Carmelo’s M13 sneaker, like Paul’s sneaker, is a bit polarizing because of an unorthodox design. It has a thick midsole with an upper made of mesh material. The upper also has ridges spread throughout the shoe that can be a bit jarring. (via Sneaker News)

The M13 currently sells for $135 with Nike but has been discounted by many retailers.

Rajon Rondo

BIG3 - Week Seven Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Why Rondo has his own shoe

Rondo is signed to the Anta, which is the same China based brand Klay Thompson is signed to. Often times Chinese companies chase big names even if production doesn’t match, and Rondo fits that description. He’s a former four time All-Star, NBA champion and recent assist king. His name still carries weight.

What does his deal look like?

The current terms of the deal haven’t been disclosed, but the Pelicans point guard has been signed with the brand since 2013. He’s on the fourth iteration of his sneaker with the fifth set to come in the 2017-18 season.

What does the shoe look like?

What you’d expect it to. It isn’t too flashy, has plenty of performance perks and gets the job done. The RR 4 is your prototypical low top basketball sneaker with plenty of grip in its thick sole. (via hibasketballshoes.com)

The RR4 is selling at hibasketballshoes.com for $79.99

Tony Parker

Houston Rockets v San Antonio Spurs - Game Two Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Why Parker has his own shoe

Yes! Parker is signed with Peak, another Chinese based brand. And, again, they want big names associated with their brand. So Parker, being a four time NBA champion and a Finals MVP, fits the bill nicely.

What does the deal look like?

I wouldn’t call it huge -- Sportune, a French publication, reported he signed a deal in 2013 that could be worth $2.6 to $4 million annually. Plus, he gets a signature shoe with the brand — something he wasn’t getting at Nike. He’s on his fourth shoe with a fifth coming for the 2017-18 season.

What does the shoe look like?

The TP4 has an upper made of mesh and synthetic leather, making it a lighter shoe. The sole is thick with plenty of traction, allowing for better cuts and amplified quickness. (Via Peak USA).

The shoe currently sells for $120 with Peak USA.

Dwight Howard

Washington Wizards v Atlanta Hawks - Game Three Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images

Why Howard has his own shoe

He’s signed with Peak, so it’s much of the same. He’s a big name who has four defensive player of the year trophies in his mantle. He also led a team to the NBA Finals before. He’s a known quantity.

What does the deal look like?

Howard was signed to Adidas, but he left the roster for greener pastures with Peak. The terms of his deal are undisclosed at this point, but Howard did mention that he had more creative control over his shoe. That’s an important factor for players.

What does the shoe look like?

His latest DH3 sneaker with Peak is actually basketball’s first 3D printed sneaker and will be worn for the 2017-18 season. It features a knit upper as well as a translucent outsole making it extremely light. (via Weartesters)

Neither the price or release date for the DH3 has been unveiled yet. Stay tuned.

Matthew Dellavedova

Toronto Raptors v Milwaukee Bucks - Game Six Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Why Dellavedova has his own shoe

You read that correctly. Delly has his own signature shoe despite not having earned any major individual accolades. He’s signed with Peak, and Peak needs names. He’s a recognized face from a championship team. (Insert sentence about grit and tenacity and other intangible, nonsensical things here.) It features this commercial you absolutely have to see.

What does the deal look like?

Peak Australia announced Dellavedova’s three year deal before last season without disclosing the dollar amount. They also announced that Dellavedova was already in the process of creating a shoe with plenty of input on its design.

What does the shoe look like?

Here’s the Delly 1! It’s pretty much exactly what you’d expect from a Dellavedova shoe. There are Peak R and Peak S pads in the soles allowing for more bounce and explosiveness when diving for loose balls and snatching sneaky rebounds.

The Delly 1 sells for $122 at Peak Australia.

This list will continue to be updated as sneakers change and players are added