As one of the biggest players in the NBA, Zion Williamson stands at 6 feet 7 inches and weighs 284 lbs. Thanks to his skills and size, he is often compared to basketball greats, such as LeBron James and Shaquille O’Neal. However, he has a unique style of play.
After playing in the league for just a couple of years, it was clear that Williamson was destined for greatness. The need for him to have a signature sneaker line was undeniable from the onset. To that end, Williamson signed a seven-year-long, $75 million sneaker deal with Jordan brand back in 2019.
Read on for a rundown of the evolution of this towering basketball star’s signature collection.
The first installment in the Zion Williamson signature sneaker collection was released back in 2021. The Jordan brand design team worked closely with the athlete to develop a shoe that perfectly matched his physical attributes, playing style, and personality. When asked about the story that his first signature sneaker told, the basketball star replied, “If somebody walks into a store, I want them to know it’s my shoe.”
In addition to a wide base and reliable herringbone traction, the lightweight Zion 1 came with a bottom-loaded Zoom Air Unit and full-length Air Strobel Unit. The superhero armor-inspired flexible and articulated tongue was one of the most unique features of the shoe.
For a touch of uniqueness and personality, some of the Zion 1s featured several Naruto-inspired colorways. Zion is a self-professed anime fan. These iterations were released after the original version – which featured a simple black-and-white colorway.
In 2022, the Zion 2 was released. Considered to be a great performance model, the shoe featured various design tweaks meant to be an improvement on the previous iteration. For starters, the new sneakers came with upgraded materials. Improvements were also made to the cushioning tech. The heel featured a half Air Strobel while the forefoot featured Zoom Air.
The Zion 2 features a one-of-a-kind New Orleans voodoo-inspired appearance – paying homage to African diasporic religion originating from New Orleans. To highlight the traditional African religious dolls and their associated altars, the shoe is made from a mixture of materials, such as brown fur, knit textiles, and suede. The shoes come in a muted pastel Fauna Brown / Sesame / Muslin Flax colorway.
The Zion 3 was released in 2023. The sneaker – which is considered to be another performance model – breaks away from the initially established design characteristics of the Zion collection. This is more of a Kobe-adjacent hoop shoe, thanks to its lightweight and low-profile design. This iteration comes in a light sleek design, offering grippy traction and a nice drop-in midsole cushioning system.
For the third installment in his signature collection, Zion wanted to pay homage to his rise from “the mud” – referring to his hometown of Marion, South Carolina. With that in mind, the upper on the Zion 3 features a combination of materials and color splatter representing Williamson stepping out of the mud.
Zion Williamson is using his signature sneaker line to change the rules when it comes to sneaker culture. Every variant in the lineup is not only built to ensure performance and reliability but also pays homage to his hometown, his new city – New Orleans – or his favorite off-court obsession anime.