7 Reasons Why Kevin Durant’s Signature Sneaker Line Is the Best in the Game

  • Nike KD IV

    Nike

    Weatherman storyline

    As a child, Kevin wanted to be a weatherman or meteorologist. That singular aspect of his upbringing has found its way into countless classic sneaker colorways. Starting with the KD IV, Nike has continued to play off that storyline. This year, almost every single launch colorway of the KD7 dipped into the weatherman angle. It’s refreshing to see, considering sneakers have for so long been dominated by the same colors and designs. Nike went out of the box with this one, banking that the sneaker culture would accept an idea like this. It worked.

    Because of that unique story, I have to give this one the edge over similar storylines like the “Brenda” colorways from adidas and Derrick Rose and LeBron’s love of the lion.

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  • Nike KD IV
    Colorways

    In a continuation of the weatherman theme, it’s the colorways that truly stick out in Durant’s line. His Nerf IV has to be considered one of Nike’s most hyped signature basketball sneakers of the last decade. The Supreme “DC Heat” KD VI colorway was another classic, playing off Durant’s love of the DMV area.

    This isn’t to say that other players don’t have spectacular colorways, but there’s something about these joints that stand out. The KD7 has also done something I haven’t seen over the last few years: It has connected on every single colorway it’s released. There’s not an whack joint in there.

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  • Nike

    Christmas themes

    Over the last few years, Durant has been consistently shutting the game down with his Christmas Day themes. This year he didn’t suit up for Dec. 25 but his “Egg Nog” KD7 was a thing of beauty. It featured personal details like glossy flecks along the Hyperposite heel, meant to be the condensation on a glass of egg nog, as well as a “Fresh Since ’88!” sock liner.

    Before that, we saw a red and mint KD VI last year that was laced with bad sweater details. It completed overshadowed everything else in Nike’s Christmas Day collection. And the year before that, we saw KD’s sneaker pay tribute to his love of video games on Christmas morning. Too hot.

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  • Kevin Durant

    Nike

    Price

    With Nike experimenting on recent LeBron releases with monster price tags, and with Kobe Bryant’s sneaker pricing generally rising, Durant is still the most affordable of the three. When he first secured a sig shoe, that was actually one of the line’s strongest points as Durant wanted to make sure any kid could cop his kicks. He wanted to keep the retail price below $100. Naturally, it has gone up since then, just like anything else, but this is still a point of pride for Durant and his team.

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  • Nike KD7

    @thatskwaaasi

    Uniqueness

    Recently, a sneakerhead friend of mine was talking about his quest to cop every colorway ever released of the Nike KD VI. I remember thinking, firstly, what a nuisance that would probably be, but also how dumb. Yet on second thought, it hit me: The simple fact that there are less KD “collectors” makes you unique. That alone makes it worthwhile.

    In a day and age where everyone is a hypebeast and everyone is a follower, diving deep into this line will make you stand out. Ten years from now when Durant is looking like he’ll have a shot to break the all-time scoring record, you’re going to wish you were up on game earlier.

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  • Nike KD7

    Nike

    The sneakers continue to get better

    The first few KD sneakers were solid performers, but didn’t connect with the culture at large. Durant finally made that leap with the KD IV, the sneaker many consider to be his magnum opus. Between the strap, the low-cut — which inspired many customizers to design on it — and the awesome colorways, the sneaker was a massive success. However, since then, the shoes have continued the upward trajectory. The KD7 is definitely his best shoe so far, returning the strap and offering up a mid-cut that allows the shoe to succeed at any point in the year, with pants or shorts.

    As for LeBron’s line, opinions are divided on his best signature but most figure it to be the LeBron 8 or 9. He hasn’t been able to top those masterpieces. Kobe’s? At this point, he is concentrated on performance rather than how the sneaker looks on the ‘gram.

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  • Nike KD VI

    Nike

    Aunt Pearl

    The Aunt Pearl inspiration is just dope. Floral designs? Sign us up. Derrick Rose’s “Brenda” colorways from adidas are the only other similar thing in the game on this level.

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  • Nike KD IV "Weatherman"
  • Nike KD IV "Nerf"
  • Kevin Durant
  • Nike KD7
  • Nike KD7
  • Nike KD VI "Aunt Pearl"

When speaking of basketball’s holy sneaker trinity — LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, and Kevin Durant — it almost always starts and ends with the King and the Mamba. LeBron is the game’s greatest player, a four-time MVP who is still in the prime of his powers, and Bryant has long been revered as perhaps the most spectacular individual talent this generation has ever seen. The two of them spark debates, heat up Twitter, and support legions of fans who’ll follow them until the wheels fall off. Durant? He doesn’t possess the same mid-air creativity, nor does he have a single defining characteristic on the court. He isn’t a scoring machine like Bryant, someone who can get so hot he can outscore entire teams. Durant also isn’t a walking triple-double like James, the greatest athlete we’ve ever seen.

Durant also plays in OKC. He also doesn’t have a cool nickname. He’s also mild-mannered and seems to almost avoid conflict. He’s just a basketball player…but one of the BEST basketball players we’ve ever seen.

All of this comes through within the players’ respective Nike signature sneaker lines. James’ releases are mind-bending, literally monsters that seem to stomp the competition through personality and prominence. Bryant’s joints are eccentric, performance-based shoes that take no prisoners and no shortcuts. Durant’s line has lived in the shadows for much of the past few years. That’s changing, however.

With another colorway of Durant’s Nike KD7 set to drop this week at Champs Sports, make sure you aren’t missing out on what’s become the game’s most underrated sneaker. That’s especially important as we head into 2015, where KD is looking to take the next step. Here are 7 Reasons Why Kevin Durant’s Signature Sneaker Line Is the Best in the Game.

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Follow Sean on Twitter at @seanesweeney

image via Nike