“On the bottom you have an octagon with a phoenix in it and that phoenix design — I wanted a crest to show rebirth,” Spencer Dinwiddie said when discussing the design of his new shoe.
Rebirth can mean a lot of things for Dinwiddie, who has become a poster boy for dream-chasing in the last year. His career is a symbol for opportunity in the NBA. Before his time with the Nets, Dinwiddie was a basketball vagabond who spent much of his time in the G-League.
Now, one year after signing a contract with the Brooklyn Nets, Dinwiddie announced that he has created a self-endorsed signature shoe, which will be manufactured in China. He explains his latest project with Jared Zwerling on The Crossover’s “What Are Those?”
He calls them, “PERCEPTION.”
“This was a passion project for me. Last year when I got to Brooklyn, nobody wanted to sign me from an apparel standpoint,” said Dinwiddie. “Going through that situation - it got me back to thinking and wanting to do something for myself. It’s special for me because I used to draw shoes as a kid — and to go to China and make those connections — and to now see it come into fruition, it’s big time.”
Unlike many NBA players, Dinwiddie’s dream – off the court – has became a reality. He didn’t need to be sponsored by Nike or Jordan. It was simply a passion of his with the hope of inspiring people in the process.
“I don’t have any plans to retail it right now at this moment. Like I said it’s more of a passion project for me, it’s more about showing people what’s possible, showing people what it means to dream and this is the project that came out of it for me.”
But he did hint he might want to market it in China eventually.
The timing is special. As noted, Friday is one year to the day since the Nets signed him. Not to mention, things came into fruition around his grandmother’s birthday. She played a big role in his life. It’s shown on his Twitter bio: “When my Grandma died I realized I had an angel, she showed me everything's a blessing depending on the angle... 6/3/17”
“That’s why we chose to debut it at this time. It was my grandma’s birthday, who was very important in my life. It still is my brother’s birthday, that’s my little man. And it’s a year to the date after I signed with the Nets.”
Brooklyn’s trip to Mexico City will be fortuitous for Dinwiddie. He’s ollaborating with a Mexican artist to put the final touches on the shoe.
“My grandmother used to draw and was an artist, so we’re going to partner with an artist in Mexico City - Louis Carreon. He’s very prominent in doing work out there and we’re gonna have a little fun with the shoe. This is kind of what this is gonna be known by. With my shoes it’s all gonna be about philanthropy and having fun”
This is one of many off-court projects for Dinwiddie. Prior to the season, he announced his ‘Dinwiddie Scholars’ idea -- a merit-based scholarship open to low-income minority students from Brooklyn and Los Angeles.
He said he has even more in store with a specific message for Nets fans.
“I would say, Nets fans, be tuned in for my birthday. Something special is coming for my birthday. So I’ll just leave it at that. I would say that’s probably the next big thing for me. Somewhere around April 6 we’re going to have something special coming.”
You can view the full video below:
So we shall see.