My father will finally be wearing a shoe associated with someone from the NBA while running the grill down in Florida while he’s on his winter break to Naples. Wait until my dad hears that Kawhi Leonard is officially Team New Balance. It’s going to blow his mind because he has no idea who Kawhi Leonard is and he sure as hell has no idea a guy from the NBA would be repping the shoes he buys at Walmart or wherever he gets his shiny New Bs.
The Kawhi Leonard to New Balance news broke this afternoon and it’s been sending shockwaves through the BD community and amongst suburban white guys who now have a shoe hero. The BDs can’t believe it and the same goes for the white guys. They’re equally blown away by this.
While terms have not been disclosed, industry expectations are that New Balance is likely to have offered significantly more than $5 million per year. That range would be on par with the Jordan Brand extension that Leonard turned down earlier this spring, a four-year deal worth up to $22 million.
Although his existing Jordan endorsement deal expired Oct. 1, Leonard has been wearing last year’s Air Jordan 32 Low model during games.
The per-year figure would place Leonard among the top-15 annual shoe deal earners in the NBA.
Credit New Balance and Kawhi for teaming up in this space where you didn’t expect New Balance to be playing ball. Now comes the hard part figuring out who the target audience is for the New Bs besides the BBQ grillin’ dads out there. Maybe New B can sign Spice Adams to leave the Air Monarchs behind and get on board. Just a thought.