June 22, 2020 - For 2020, Nike Basketball is evolving the brand’s industry-leading work to improve energy return through footwear innovation. Ross Klein, Senior Creative Director for Nike Basketball footwear, led a team on a mission to evolve Nike Air — our most efficient cushioning platform for energy return — and create the Nike Air Zoom BB NXT.
"The game and the athletes have evolved in this new era of basketball," says Klein. "We now have athletes that are 'positionless' and generate the values of all positions on court. Within the NBA alone these positionless athletes face a grueling journey, starting with the offseason training, then preseason, and into the 82-game season, playoffs, Finals. Fatigue is the enemy and endurance is the goal."
Staying fresh at the game’s critical, closing moments is key. With that in mind, the Nike Air Zoom BB NXT introduces a unified system of full-length Nike REACT foam, plate and Nike Air Zoom pods to provide basketball players at all levels with impact protection and energy return.
"The shoe is similar to a car," says Klein. "There are many parts and pieces, each doing a very specific job, but working in unison."
The shoe’s three leading performance-driven benefits are outstanding energy return, optimized cushioning and strength. Specific innovations include:
- Exposed Nike React foam under the heel provides a soft, responsive sensation
- A thin plate positioned above the foam provides torsional rigidity
- Two Air Zoom units positioned under the ball of the foot continually absorb an athlete’s energy and provide great responsiveness
- The upper is a lightweight mesh with a tactile, textured print that provides support and durability where athletes need it
- A plush foam tongue and padded collar with a notch to support the Achilles tendon provides a comfortable fit
Updated 9:00 AM PST, June 22:
The Nike Air Zoom BB NXT releases in the black and green ‘Dangerous’ colorway July 2 in Greater China and July 25 in North America. The white ‘Rawthentic’ colorway releases in North America in September.
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August 13, 2020 - Comfort is king for the Nike Offline. Inspired by the mental health benefit of taking time to unplug and disconnect, the Nike Offline aims to do the same for your feet. The new mule, anti-sneaker silhouette is designed for the moments when “doing nothing” is the most important thing for you to recharge.
Emerging from Nike Sportswear's N. 354 footwear line, this latest style embodies experimental design aesthetic and raw ingenuity. The Offline includes two unique sensory drop-in midsoles, interchangeable based on mood and overall feeling. Sensation 001, with strategically placed nubs, offers a massage-like experience for the wearer. Sensation 002 has a greater volume nub pattern for a comfortable prolonged wear time throughout the day. The shoe features exaggerated, exposed-foam padding in the tongue and an adjustable, cushioned strap to optimize comfort for the wearer.
The Nike Offline releases August 28 on SNKRS, SNEAKERS and at select retailers.
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August 10, 2020 - Made with at least 20 percent recycled materials, the Nike Sportswear Recycled Canvas pack takes a sustainable design approach to classic Swoosh silhouettes. Specifically, recycled canvas uppers, with yarn derived of post-industrial Nike textile waste, bring sustainable craft to a men's and women's take on the Nike Air Force 1 ’07, Nike Air Max 90, Nike Air Max 95, Nike Daybreak-Type and Nike Cortez. In addition, Flyleather swooshes and backtabs — made from at least 50 percent leather fibers, recycled foam tongues and laces are used across the pack, while the Cortez and Daybreak-Type employ Crater foam in their midsoles.
The pack is the latest installation to NIKE, Inc.’s ever-growing Move to Zero journey toward zero carbon and zero waste to help protect the future of sport, highlighted most recently by Nike’s Air VaporMax 2020 Flyknit, Space Hippie and Revival lines, the Jordan Brand Crater collection and Converse Crater and Renew footwear.
The Nike Sportswear Recycled Canvas pack releases August 20 on nike.com and the Nike App.
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August 10, 2020 - Converse’s first capsule collaboration with photographer Shaniqwa Jarvis is teeming with florals, inspired by a double-exposed image taken on a trip to Mexico that reminded the artist of her late father. Jarvis, known for combining a modern fashion aesthetic with sensitive and emotional portraiture, uses the image to transform the Chuck Taylor All Star CX, as well as the sneaker’s secondary laces, dust bag, shoebox and an accompanying cotton jersey pullover hoodie, into a floral fantasy.
Incorporating the floral photograph is a means to pay respect or “give the man his flowers." Giving flowers, a ritual meant for both celebrating and paying tribute to life, is an homage to Jarvis’ father’s sharp sartorial aesthetic and to how he helped inspire her identity as a photographer. “He had such great style, and I can remember his outfit choices always had something extra; some bit of unexpected flare," she says. "These pieces I've made are something extra — with an unexpected flare."
To capture that flare, the floral hues are contrasted with a crisp white on the sneaker’s tongue, crafted in corduroy — a nod to her father's favored fabric.
Allowing for maximum exposure, a translucent foxing extends the floral print to the sole and exposes the shoe's construction. The translucency also reveals Converse CX foam, an innovative pairing of a single-density PU insole and lightweight phylon midsole for long-lasting comfort.
Converse x Shaniqwa Jarvis Chuck Taylor All Star CX and apparel will be available at converse.com August 13.
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July 30, 2020 - The Nike ACG Air Nasu is stylistically inspired by the best of late ’90s and early 2000s ACG models (like the iconic Nike Air Humara), while also honing the outsole pattern of recent predecessors (think ACG Zoom Terra Zaherra).
Its namesake, Nasu, Japan, is known for hiking and natural springs.
The stylish summer hiker features Nike Air heel cushioning and a “no sew” rubberized mesh upper. Hard rubber in the toe, heel and outer edges help with protection and durability. Sticky rubber through the center of the shoe offer hikers firm footing on a variety of terrains.
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July 30, 2020 - Chinese-born, London-based designer Feng Chen Wang has gained a cult following for her emotional and multi-dimensional aesthetic.
Season after season, her conceptual work relays a confident freedom — unreservedly creating a future vision through examination of the past.
Wang's partnership with Converse is emblematic of this approach. And through a string of thrilling articulations of brand hallmarks — the Chuck 70, ERX and Pro Leather — she’s made a name for herself in footwear circles. Now, her sights are set on the iconic Jack Purcell.
Recognizable for its toe cap “smile,” the Jack Purcell arrived on badminton courts in 1935. Feng Chen Wang delivers a personal take, using the Chinese characters that form her Mandarin name to create a dynamic system of layering that produces an eye-catching exaggeration of the Jack Purcell Mid's simple upper.
In it, she pulls in leather and suede, allowing the textures to add another touch of subtle dimensionality. The design reflects her identity, where her heritage mixes seamlessly with the contemporary energy of Shanghai (where she still regularly shows) and London.
Experiments in exaggeration extend to the collection’s apparel, including an assortment of asymmetrical pieces designed to form a singular, cohesive statement. The composition of each garment adds dimension to a traditional silhouette — jacket, vest, short, pant, short-sleeve tee — with an acute focus on material, structure and reflectivity.
Intended for mix-and-match styling, and available in two complementary color palettes, the collection is rounded out by a cap and a convertible cross-body bag.
The Converse x Feng Chen Wang Jack Purcell Mid and apparel release August 6.
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July 28, 2020 - The Nike Metcon 6 Mat Fraser explores the competitive advantage that’s separated the Fittest Man on Earth from his peers for nearly half a decade: his mind.
The blacked-out upper, representing the “dark space” Fraser descends to in order to block out all distractions, is punctuated by a red base underneath and through a bold red stripe shooting across the lateral side, representing his focus. Iridescent blue elements in a bolt pattern beneath the mesh and surrounding the shoe throat channel the image of ice in his veins, enabling Fraser to calmly execute under pressure. The sockliner features phrasing inspired by the Serenity Prayer. The words encourage him to focus on what he can change, and to not get distracted by what he cannot control.
“In a lot of ways, I see myself as an engineer sees a machine. I’m always fine-tuning my body, and I see everything as graphs and numbers,” says Fraser. “I know the compounding effects of bringing the details together into one equation. That includes how I train, how I eat, how I sleep and who I surround myself with. All of that starts with my mental approach.”
Other details highlight accolades from Fraser's stellar career, such as the four circular symbols on the heel that recognize his four consecutive wins on the world stage. The acronym for his mantra, Hard Work Pays Off, also appears on the sockliner.
The Nike Metcon 6 Mat Fraser releases July 28.
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July 24, 2020 - The return of the NBA and WNBA is set to begin in Florida, where Orlando and Bradenton will host condensed regular seasons before playoff basketball kicks off, eventually crowning a league champion. A number of Nike Basketball silhouettes will hit the court in fresh colorways, from special editions of the LEBRON 17 to new renditions of the KYRIE 3 Low to more Gatorade flavors of the PG4.
LEBRON 17 Graffiti, Cold Blue and Fire Red
Blue and red variations of the LEBRON 17 Graffiti release July 28 on SNKRS in North America.
LEBRON 17 Low Titan
The collaborative colorway with the Manila-based basketball concept store, featuring symbols and logos that represent Titan's 10-year history, releases August 8 in North America.
KYRIE 3 Low, Eclipse and Inner Harmony
The KYRIE Low 3 Eclipse strikes a tonal balance between night and day, with intricate patterns on the toe and strap and a yellow emblem on the heel. The Inner Harmony colorway pairs a tranquil sunrise gradient with hieroglyphic symbols that speak to Irving’s fascination with the mysterious. The Eclipse colorway releases in North America in August; the Inner Harmony colorway releases in September.
KD13 Nike Nationals
Continuing the KD line’s tradition of recognizing the summertime tournament, this KD13 features glossy gold detailing in the upper’s gridded pattern, the heel wings and the upper half of the Nike Swoosh, brought together through bright blue stitching. The KD Nike Nationals releases July 30 in North America.
The PG and GX logos cover the semi-translucent upper, arriving in both green and orange for additional takes on Gatorade drink flavors. Beneath the mesh overlays of the PG4 are more pops of orange, visible through the heel counter and on the laces. The orange colorway releases August 8 on SNKRS in North America. The green colorway releases July 31 in North America.
A cool-blue version of the outdoor-inspired colorway, the PG4 PCG2 releases in September.
Zoom Freak 2, White Cement
The Zoom Freak 2 colorway is inspired by the four-mile concrete trek that Antetokounmpo would regularly make as a youth from his Sepolia neighborhood in Athens to the gym for practice. The colorway releases October 1 in North America.
Zoom BB NXT
The non-signature performance silhouette from Nike Basketball arrives in a red mesh upper and a navy circular outsole pattern. The shoe releases in August.
July 23, 2020 - Since returning to performance basketball with the All Star Pro BB in 2019, Converse has locked in with its family of athletes (male and female, pro and amateur) to evolve its product. With the introduction of the Converse All Star BB Evo, that hard work is actualized.
“The Converse All Star BB Evo has a low center of gravity; it allows me to be in control each and every moment,” says Kelly Oubre Jr.
Specifically, the ASBB Evo helps keep players on their forefoot, positioning them for nimble moves and creative reactions to find space on the court.
Oubre Jr., Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Natasha Cloud, along with other basketball players from around the world, provided consistent feedback to ensure a design that maximizes on-court control with a healthy dose of artistry. "You get a feeling from it," says Oubre Jr. of the ASBB Evo's aesthetic.
"Athletes are, more than ever, dedicated to self-expression on and off the court," says Richard Ward, Converse Design Director of Footwear. "We wanted to build the upper in a way that allowed for more expressive and bold paneling through a distinctive split. This also allowed us to solve for a performance need, through lockdown and stability.”
The shoe carries some familiar details from its predecessor. Of note is the iconic Star Chevron logo — presented here with a blurred articulation evoking movement and speed. It also delivers new features, including a 5/8 collar height and the 50/50 split upper, which combine to calibrate the shoe for creative playmaking.
The Tuning of Converse All Star BB Evo:
- HEIGHT The ASBB Evo carries a 5/8 height purposefully crafted (and directly influenced by player insight) for increased flexibility. Zonal padding around the ankle provides optimum protection.
- UPPER The 50/50 split material of the upper highlights an engineered, lofted mesh on the medial side for breathability and a structured, closed diamond textile on the material for stability and support.
- LACING The ASBB Evo's rail lace system allows for expressive and adaptable forefoot containment.
- CUSHIONING A Nike React drop-in midsole offers low profile, responsive cushioning.
- TRACTION With a diamond lug pattern dressing the All Star BB Evo’s thin, wrap-cup outsole, court feel and 360-traction are maximized.
The Converse All Star BB Evo releases August 1 on converse.com.
July 23, 2020 - The Nike Waffle Racer, which cemented Nike’s place at the forefront of running innovation, returns in 2020 with a sleek and modernized women’s silhouette for everyday wear.
The new iteration, the Nike Women’s Waffle Racer 2X, takes notes from the OG’s pioneering effort to find an adaptable outsole and is redesigned with a slimmer construction for the shape and proportion of a woman’s heel. Coupling the classic design aspects with amplified characteristics (see the larger waffle pattern outsole), the Nike Women’s Waffle Racer 2X employs an inside-out design ethos on the upper to showcase the original construction and incorporates webbing as a subtle nod to the first edition. The chrome tape featured on the lead colorway is a futuristic play on the classic tongue box stitch. The shoe also highlights the patent number of the OG version (3793750) and a quote from co-founder Bill Bowerman ingrained in the design as nods to the classic model.
The Nike Women’s Waffle Racer 2X is available now on nike.com and the Nike App.
View hi-res images here.