NBA MVP Russell Westbrook is at it again. No, he’s not scoring yet another triple double or trolling another player with his arena entrance. This time the hits are coming off the hardcourt. Westbrook finally gets his first signature performance shoe, the Jordan “Why Not Zer0.1.” Yep, you read it right. Check out the backstory, the tech and look that make up a shoe that’s seems to be as unique as the player.
The Back Story
Since high school, both on and off court, Westbrook has followed a simple principle: “If I face a challenge, I run at it — not away from it,” he told Nike. That outlook is captured by his personal mantra, “Why Not?”. It defines how Westbrook plays, how he dresses and how he shares his story. In this case through his new kicks.
“Allowing me to have my own shoe is a great opportunity to tell my story, extend my Why Not? motto and explain the whole background behind it,” Westbrook says. “As a kid growing up in LA and standing in line to get other people’s shoes, you become aware of how fortunate you are to get sneakers,” he says. “To be able to sit here now and hold my own shoe is an honor.”
Now it wouldn’t be a Nike shoe is it didn’t have some innovative tech under the hood. Crafted for the dynamic game and personality of the reigning MVP and fashion king, the Jordan Why Not Zer0.1 is highlighted by its smooth vamp, which, offers dual purpose.
First, it serves the MVP’s key footwear need: forefoot containment. Westbrook plays high on his toes, always ready to push to the hoop or convert a rebound or steal into a fast break. For this, there is stability over the sole unit, such that no added movement minimizes response when shifting direction or getting maximum bounce to the rack. The end result is a futuristic silhouette that features a fused mesh upper, full-length Zoom Air unit and a compression-molded pylon foam piece engineered for flight.
Behind the scenes, Westbrook worked closely with Jordan designers and the Thunder equipment manager, Wilson Taylor, to ensure his feedback is clear and concise. “Russ is a detail-oriented guy. He picked up on every little thing [when testing the shoe],” shares Taylor.
Of course, looking good is important too. That’s where the second element of footwear design, adding personal style, comes into play. “My favorite part of the design process is storytelling,” says Westbrook. “Being able to tell my story through colorways and at different times during the season is a lot of fun. This shoe is futuristic and something that people will take a double look at,” he says.
All we can say is. Why Not?
The Why Not Zer0.1 launches January 15 with limited quantities of the Mirror Image colorway. The 2-Way colorway releases February 15, 2018 for $125.