In the world of sneaker sales, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant are monsters.
As Stefan Bondy reports Monday...
Only LeBron James ($32 million) earns more from sneaker endorsements than Durant’s $26 million per year Nike deal, according to Forbes. Irving is seventh at $11 million behind Russell Westbrook ($12 million), Zion Williamson ($13 million), James Harden ($14 million) and Steph Curry ($20 million). Michael Jordan is still the unquestionable king earning $130 million per year from Nike.
So what happens if the Nets bestie superstars combine forces? We are about to find out. Bondy reports that KD and Kyrie are working with Nike on design. It’s only right. It was a Nike rep, Jeff Rogers who connected them on a text group back when the two were kids.
Bondy recounted what noted designer Ben Nethongkome told him about the collaboration.
When Kyrie Irving first saw the latest model of his Nike line, he immediately contacted Kevin Durant to brag. And also to compare.
“He was like, ‘Look at this heat I have in my hand,’” said Ben Nethongkome, who designed the Kyrie 7 sneaker with Irving. “And there was some friendly competitiveness to them too, like, ‘Whose shoe is better?’”
It didn’t take long for the two players/friends/entrepreneurs to turn to working together.
“It kind of spawned into, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if we collaborated on something together in the near future?’” Nethonkome said. “And right then and there, KD was like, ‘Of course.’ So we’re excited to have some level of interaction between those two in terms of product creation in the near future.”
It’s big news in sneakerdom, Bondy argues. There’s no indication of when the KD-and-Ky product will come to market. Nethongkome also spoke to Bondy about changes in style of play can lead to changes in game-worn wear.
“Kyrie talked about last night, how his role on the Nets is a little different now because he’s got to facilitate for his players. He didn’t have KD previously, now he does,” Nethonkome told Bondy.
“And so he’s not trying to attack one-on-one anymore, he’s thinking about getting around guys to distribute the ball somewhere else. So his movement on the court is going to broaden a lot more. And so with the 7 being lighter weight, he feels like he be all over the court much easier than the Kyrie 6 or the Kyrie 5. So we’re excited to hear that.”
The Kyrie 7, which has a $140 price tag, will be available on Nov. 11.
- Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are designing a sneaker together - Stefan Bondy - New York Daily News
- Gallery: the Kyrie 7 - Brooklyn Nets