Kevin Durant's latest signature shoe, the Nike KD9, has hit store shelves.
Retailing for $150, the KD9 is $30 less than the initial price tag of the KD8. However, it's still quite a bit more expensive than Durant's earlier offerings.
The KD1, KD2 and KD3 all retailed for $88, and the KDIV sold for $95. When compared with the price tags of LeBrons or Jordans, KD's early signature shoes were a bargain. Durant was a fan of the low price points because he wanted to keep the shoes accessible to a wide audience. He remembers what it was like to grow up in a single-parent household where expensive shoes weren't in the budget. "We couldn't afford the Pennys, the Pippens, the Jordans," Durant told The Oklahoman in 2011. "If they were $125, I wasn't getting them. But $88, that's reasonable."
At the Nike KD9 launch event in Austin, Texas, Durant was asked why he had to move away from the under-$100 price range.
"As humble as I can say it, I'm not an $88 player. I'm an elite player. You want everything to be affordable, but I knew we had to make sacrifices along the way. I wanted fans of the shoe and the brand to stay patient with who I am as a player and the level I'm trying to get to," Durant said. "As I evolved as a player, I knew that the shoe, to stay on course, would have to come up a little bit."
As Durant's star has risen, the amount of research, technology and cutting-edge material used in his signature line has increased. "The thing about the [KD9s] is you get it all for a nice price. It's a $250 shoe for $150. You get the latest innovations," Durant said. Those innovations include a heel-to-toe tapered Zoom air bag and a Flyknit upper, technologies that cater to Durant's versatile game.
The "Zero" colorway is available now, while the "Premiere" and "Mic Drop" are set to drop in the coming weeks. Get a closer look at all three below.
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