October 5, 2017 BY Sneaker News
The competition between sneaker brands is fierce. Or is it? One of this Summer’s interesting sub-plots in the world of basketball was the comments Kevin Durant made about Under Armour and how is isn’t quite appealing to young basketball players and therefore aren’t as susceptible to recruiting by UA schools such as Maryland. It was yet another reason for the media to attempt to drive a wedge between the championship winning duo, but Steph, who seemingly lives on the “high road”, came forward to calm the waters.
Just before Steph and KD took the court in Shenzen, China for the NBA Global Games, Steph took to Instagram to post a friendly photo of himself and Durant, with KD himself playfully pointing to his Nike Flyknit Trainer kicks. Steph’s caption of “Why so serious?” makes it clear that their competing signature shoes don’t affect the higher goal of winning a championship. This photo is eerily similar to one that Michael Jordan and rival Magic Johnson took during the 1992 Olympic Games.
Both Kevin Durant and Steph Curry are paid handsomely by the footwear brands they represent. At one point, Nike and Under Armour were paying their respective signature athletes more than the NBA teams were. Just before the 2014-2015 season, Kevin Durant was heavily courted by Under Armour; KD’s contract with Nike had expired and despite a generous offer by the Baltimore-based brand, Durant re-signed with Nike for a massive deal reported to be in excess of $300 million.
Basketball athletes who have massive contracts with shoe brands are typically protective of their partnerships. There’s been a history of endorsers making efforts to hide logos of rival companies, but never has an athlete gone forward to place it front and center on the most viewed social media platform. Will this positively or negatively affect sales of the soon-to-launch Curry 4, or will it have no affect all?
Above: Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson share a moment during the 1992 Olympics.