The signature shoe. A mark of a great athlete or entertainer partnering up with a savvy company. MJ and Nike. AI and Reebok. Kanye and Adidas. When done right, there’s nothing quite like a signature sneaker.
However, things aren’t always so rosy. Lately, signature sneakers don’t seem to have the appeal that they once did (at least for collectors). Why’s that? Let’s take a look.
The first reason could be the saturation of the market. It seems like nowadays, every All-Star caliber player and above-average musician has their own shoe. Let’s be honest, who really cares? A signature sneaker is supposed to be for someone who’s 100% on top of their game, or rising fast to the top, not someone who’s good but not great.
Another problem is that the colorways and execution on certain sneakers leave a lot to be desired. There are several sneakerheads who would tell you that the LeBron 9 or 10 is one of their favorite shoes of all time…not so much the Lebron 11 or 12 however. Same goes for other new kicks like the KD 7 or the D Rose 5. Signature sneakers from high-end athletes don’t seem to have the same sheen that they used to.
The colorways are part of the problem too. With random, seemingly thrown-together colors like the Lebron 12 “Data” and the KD7 “Lightning 534” still sitting on shelves, it seems that sneakerheads aren’t too excited with the prospect of rocking outlandish colorways.
However, not all hope is lost for signature kicks. Young bucks like Steph Curry and Kyrie Irving dropped their first signature shoes this season, and they were both well-designed and affordable (another problem with signature shoes nowadays…who wants to shell out $200 for some mediocre kicks?), proving there is hope for the next generation of signature kicks.
Here’s hoping more athletes take after those designs. The game would be better for it.