It’s during each spring’s NBA Playoffs where the game’s biggest stars make their mark, earn their star power and establish a legacy that’ll last long after their careers throughout the history of the Association.
Today’s biggest names are no strangers to those stake-raising moments, and have been flipping the switch come playoff time to take their game to even greater heights. Whether that was LeBron James establishing and later cementing the Soldier series’ place amongst Nike Basketball icons on the NBA Finals stage, Kevin Durant leading his emerging Thunder roster to the Finals early in his career in just his fourth signature shoe, or Kyrie Irving draining the go-ahead jumper in perhaps the greatest Game 7 in league history — the array of career defining moments across Nike’s roster of pro athletes are endless.
All throughout this year’s playoffs, we’ll be celebrating and highlighting several of Today’s Best sneakers worn throughout the postseason, along with the more recent Modern Icons of the last decade, in our official ‘Flip The Switch’ Bracket.
Each day at Noon, we’ll launch a new head-to-head matchup, and you can vote right here below, or on Instagram and Twitter, to crown the best Nike Basketball sneaker of the modern era.
Flip The Switch Bracket // Today’s Best
Throughout the league, established signature stars and rising young guns alike are looking to advance past the opening round of this year’s playoffs. LeBron, Kyrie, KD and PG are each headlining their own namesake models, aiming to add to their on-court signature legacy.
Featured silhouettes like the Hyperdunk, Zoom Live and Zoom Rev can also be seen on the likes of Kevin Love, Draymond Green and Gordon Hayward, while the Kobe series is still getting love from DeMar DeRozan and Isaiah Thomas, both in this year’s AD. Of course, even the Kobe X is still shining strong on court, as the Greek Freak can’t seem to put down his trusty Lows. Check the full bracket below and continue voting daily to see which current model will be named Today’s Best.
Flip The Switch Bracket // Modern Icons
Career defining moments are forever etched in our collective memory, and one step further, we also can always remember the sneaker worn during every player’s biggest achievements.
LeBron winning his first ring in the 9 Elite, Isaiah Thomas beating literally all of the odds to make his first All-Star Game, and Draymond Green’s versatility on full display during the 2015 NBA Finals are just a few of the recent moments we’re celebrating on the ‘Modern Icons’ Bracket below.
Hailing rom St. Louis, Smino definitely has different taste when it comes to his own music. Likewise, the same could be said for his taste in sneakers. “Everything I wear is Air Force 1s,” reveals the up and coming artist who is on the lookout for both a Nike plug and a Nike collab. In addition to the five Uptown he’s currently rocking, Smino also revealed that what his shoe would be called and what is the must have accessory to go with his shoes. So, what pairs compose his My 5? Find out below.
Nike Air Force 1 Low LV8
Smino: “I’ve been wearing my LV ’08 Forces with a little patch on the back. Last but not least I’ve always gotta have a pair of all-white mid top Forces and a low top Force. I personally don’t like running shoes, I like my shoes to have some kind of construction on it so I don’t like sock shape shoes. You don’t wanna hurt your toe and it’s a St. Louis thing that everybody is wearing AF1s there.”
Nike Special Field Air Force 1 Custom
Smino: “Those are super hot. I got a pair of all-white ones from my homie in St. Louis who does really cold customs. He’s done customs for players on the LA Rams and they even sent him cleats. My homie is cold as fuck. When we were at the studio, he came in the town and because I have always wanted to do something like a special edition art collab he’s big on collaborating with artists from St. Louis.”
Nike Air Force 1 Mid “Red Suede”
Smino: “I’m always wearing my mid top suede Forces in red. I’ve been on my Forces shit for a long time. They need to come out some more suede mids. Once I get my own collab my Forces are gonna be called the Air Force Swans.”
NikeLab Air Force 1 Low “Tiffany Blue”
Smino: “I like the light tiffany blue Forces from NikeLab. I wear my Forces with a clean shirt and clean jacket, and a comb to match with the Forces. I don’t like Supreme, I try to stay away from those. I don’t like logos that much in general, I just like shit to be smooth and solid. The Supreme is really hyped up.”
NikeLab Air Force 1 Low “Citron”
Smino: “Now I like the NikeLab low tops. The only one I don’t have is the blue one, but I’m about to get them. Nike needs to fuck with me man, I’m telling you…”
Keep up with Smino’s music, tour and more at here. For more from Smino, also check him out on Instagram.
If you were born between 1980 and 1995, then Tiger Woods is your favorite golfer baring you don’t have blood relation to Phil Mickleson or Vijay Singh. Even if you don’t like or follow golf, Tiger Woods is still your favorite golfer.
And no, you can’t count MJ.
Why is Tiger your favorite golfer? Because he transcended sport like Agassi and AI and dominated like Ali and Serena. Certainly not as brash or bold as the aforementioned athletes, his Sunday red is still more signature than black Jordans in the playoffs and his fist pump more synonymous with pop culture than any cast member of the Jersey Shore.
Breaking barriers while breaking records, Tiger transcended pop culture with skill that was astronomical paired with competitive exuberance that was still relatable. Eventually the face of brands like Buick, Gillette, Gatorade and EA Sports [Editor’s Note: All respect to Golden Tee, but can you really imagine people playing — more so buying — a golf video game if it weren’t for Tiger Woods?], it was his five-year, Million Nike deal in 1997 that broke the mold for both the sport and the brand.
Still serving signatures styles with the Swoosh despite injury, scrutiny or activity, Tiger and Phil Knight’s partnership brought athletic branding and performance innovation to a game that’s always been a hot bed for dollars but far from sporty or progressive when it came to style. Dri-Fit polos, TW marked hats and Zoom Air driven spikes became synonymous with the star, while tagline t-shirts and awesome ad campaigns came from the same minds that made Penny and Griffey household names.
From a sneaker standpoint, Tiger may not have collectible kicks like his basketball brethren on the brand or ever crossover success quite like his cleated comrades like Vick or Ronaldino. Closer to Kobe, the young prodigy challenged the mental and physical boundaries of what it meant to be a competitor and brought out genre changing product just the same.
Most importantly, by winning the 1997 Masters at age 21 exactly 20 years ago today, the Stanford standout made history and made golf cool.
Virgil Abloh’s OFF-WHITE label has partnered with Umbro on all-white leather edition of the latter’s Coach sneaker, handcrafted in Portugal and accented with tonal stitching throughout. The low-profile silhouette, finished with custom sockliners printed with dual OFF-WHITE and Umbro branding, comes in special collaborative packaging with retail set at 0. See detailed looks in the gallery below, and pick up your pair now at unknwn.com.
Afew has a collaboration on the way with Diadora on the “Highly Addictive” V7000, but they’ve also gone into the lab to create the remedy. The Afew x Diadora V7000 “The Cure” is made up of ingredients so rare that the they could only manufacture 50 pairs. Each is made in Italy and features a premium blend of suede and leather, as well as perforated suede on the toe box. The shoe will launch in limited numbers on April 15th at Beams in Harajuku, and the rest will be available April 22nd in-store at Afew in Duesseldorf, Germany.
Aligning at Alumni, Joey Badass and Joe La Puma pair up for the latest episode of Sneaker Shopping. Talking everything from politics to potential collabs, the Pre Era MC discusses the early Uptempos he wanted, his favorite Jordans and his admiration for adidas. What’d he cop? Check out the video below to find out.
Alexander Wang is now getting into the basketball market with a luxury high-top basketball shoe with adidas Originals. Showcased is the adidas AW BBall which is scheduled to release at the start of April.
As you can see, the adidas AW BBall has a 1980s feel and even similar to something we would have seen on the court back then. However, it comes with Boost which makes them better for modern day. Other details include an elastic collar, thick tongue and a unique lacing setup.
adidas AW BBall Release Date
The adidas AW BBall is rumored to release at select adidas retailers on April 1st, 2017. You will be able to purchase at adidas.com and alexanderwang.com. Retail price will be 0. So far, two color options will debut. The pair shown along with a Black pair. Make sure to check back with us for updates.
On the heels of their second collaborative release, Alexander Wang and adidas Originals are set to launch Drop 3 from their burgeoning partnership. For this latest go-round, the collection will showcase a new sneaker silhouette in the form of the adidas Originals AW BBall sneaker. The bulky high-top is built with a combination of materials and textures, equipped with an elastic collar and supported by a BOOST midsole. The fashion-forward silhouettes will arrive in two colorways, one featuring white, grey, black and tan hues, the other dressed in simple tonal black. Retailing for 0, the AW BBall is expected to launch in stores on April 1.
It’s good to be king, take it from Maxwell Lund, the winner of the 2016 World Sneaker Championship sponsored by the good folks at Pensole Footwear Design Academy and Foot Locker. In a new video from Wacom, Maxwell talks about his assignment while Pensole founder D’Wyane Edwards shares some insights on the sneaker design process and how modern tech like Wacom’s Cintiq creative pen display is changing the game. Peep it all in the clip below.
WWE wrestler Enzo Amore is a known SneakerHead which makes sense as he finally finds himself on Complex’s sneaker shopping segment. Sitting down with Joe La Puma, the two hit up Stadium Goods to buy some sneakers.
In the video, he talks about his favorite Air Jordans and how his collection is starting to catch up to Shane McMahon’s who also is a big collector. He goes on to say that one day, you will see him in the ring wearing a pair of the Nike MAGs.
Below you can check out the full video. Like always, visit the comments section below with your thoughts.