Zion Williamson is in elite company.
The second-year New Orleans Pelican has taken the league by storm, and now his star power will reach new heights with the unveiling of his own signature. Simply dubbed the Zion 1, Williamson will be debuting them tonight against the Brooklyn Nets.
When it came to designing the shoe, Nike understood how important it was for it to be able to withstand the amount of force and power he uses with every quick movement he makes. And thanks to the 20-year-old’s love of superhero armor, the shoe started to take form with the Z etched across the whole upper, showing how reinforced they are.
“We knew that one of Zion’s main inspirations for the look of the shoe was superhero armor. But when we thought about an icon or symbol that could clearly draw out the shoe’s benefits, the “Z” made perfect sense to us,” says Vianney de Montgolfier, Senior Footwear Designer, Jordan Sport. “It’s the letter for speed, it has the base for power, and it’s maybe the most distinguishable letter in the alphabet. There’s nothing else like it.”
Aside from Williamson’s explosive play on the court, he’s also known for being down-to-earth and family-oriented. So, he’s even got a pair called the “Noah’s” that are dedicated to his little brother. The kicks are all white with colorful scribbles throughout– inspired by the first time Zion visited the Nike campus, and the staff gave 5-year-old Noah an all-white pair of sneakers and a box of crayons to design them.
Though not as colorful as the Noah’s, family also plays a part in the simple Black/White pair.
“The white and black colorway is important to me. Growing up, I was taught that your home base is your foundation,” he told Nike. “Whether it’s your family or your brothers, you need a solid base to start from, and that’s what the black and white colorway represents for me.”
The collection also includes apparel with nods to streetwear, as the clothes and sneakers are set to begin dropping May 5. Get a better look at the upcoming offerings in the gallery below.