Kyrie Irving On The Comfy Air Jordans That Inspired His New Kyrie 6
Ben Nethongkome, senior footwear designer at Nike Basketball, says it took 18 months to design Kyrie Irving's latest signature sneaker, the Nike Kyrie 6. In the ever-changing NBA, 18 months is an eternity. Eighteen months ago, the Golden State Warriors were an unstoppable super team with Kevin Durant, Irving himself was a surefire bet to re-sign with the Boston Celtics, and the Brooklyn Nets were struggling to win games. Not even the all-seeing eye on the pull-tab of the Kyrie 4 signature shoe could've predicted where things sit now.
For this signature sneaker, Irving and Nethongkome had a couple of big-picture goals, which they explained on the newest episode of Signature Sneakers. Irving was especially concerned with paying homage to his heroes—namely, Michael Jordan. "The most important thing in this shoe compared to the others is, literally, just comfortability," Irving says. "I imagined what the upper would be on a Jordan 2, [but] on a basketball shoe that was evolved into 2019. Just imagine having a shoe that you slip on and slip off, and it's the most comfortable thing that you're putting on."
Of course, it wouldn't be a Kyrie Irving signature shoe without some deep thoughts. The 11 non-black colorways are packed with subliminal references, while also each representing a city that's made an impact on Irving during his travels.
"When you're on the path of self-mastery or enlightenment, you're going to come into contact with different symbols, different theologies, philosophies, religions, ideologies, and all of it is just knowledge," Irving says. "When you meet knowledge with understanding, then that turns into wisdom."
Check out the full "Signature Sneakers" video with Kyrie Irving below.