IT IS going to be a busy stretch of releases for Nike in the Philippine market as it is set to unveil a couple of shoes later this month and in February.
First to be released is the PG3, the latest iteration of the signature line for the global brand of National Basketball Association All-Star forward Paul George of the Oklahoma City Thunder, and the Nike Adapt BB.
Set for a Jan. 26 release in the local market, the Nike PG3 features improvements on the signature line, which the makers said is representative of how Mr. George has charted his path in the NBA nine years in.
“As I see myself getting older in this league, the question I ask myself is, ‘How can I become a more efficient athlete?’ I need to perform at the elite level I know I’ve reached, but without wasting excess energy,” said Mr. George in setting up the rationale behind his latest shoe.
Mr. George and Nike Basketball Footwear Designer Tony Hardman set out key principles as they worked on the PG3, building around on making it efficient, high-performing and true to what the Thunder superstar is as player.
The PG3 pared down unnecessary material (such as extra TPU), integrating the tongue into the collar, employing a softer, lighter foam in the midsole and utilizing mesh in the upper, resulting in a lighter feel with nearly an ounce shed off the PG 2.5.
It also features a circular traction pattern that helps one close out at a sprint and stop on a dime as well as free-floating, synthetic “wings” across the forefoot, a dimension carried over from the PG2.
Much like previous editions of his Nike shoe line, Mr. George made sure the PG3 embodies who is, highlighting this time around his hometown of Palmdale, California, with a NASA-inspired colorway, taken from the site of the area’s research center.
In the PG1 and PG2, it was the player’s penchant for video games which was highlighted.
In the PG3, the image of lunar exploration conjures one of George’s favorite quotes that appear on the shoe’s heel: Don’t tell me the sky’s the limit when there are footprints on the moon.
Such personal connections run deep in the shoe’s DNA. Inside the circular traction pattern are numbers that trace Mr. George’s past, such as his birthday, the different numbers he’s worn during his career and his number of tattoos.
The Nike PG3 will be available at select Nike and Titan stores for P6,295.
Set for a February release, meanwhile, is the Nike Adapt BB, which is touted as a platform that creates a truly custom fit shoe for one’s feet by combining an advanced power-lacing system, an app and continually updated firmware.
Nike said when one steps into the Adapt BB, a custom motor and gear train senses the tension needed by the foot and adjusts accordingly to keep the foot snug. The tensile strength of the underfoot lacing is able to pull 32 pounds of force (roughly equal to that of a standard parachute cord) to secure the foot throughout a range of movement.
That is where the “brain,” or FitAdapt tech, kicks in. By manual touch or by using the Nike Adapt app on a smartphone, players can input different fit settings depending on different moments of a game.
For example, during a timeout, a player can loosen the shoe before tightening it up as they reenter the game. In a forthcoming feature, they can even prescribe a different tightness setting for warm-ups. Plus, players can opt in to firmware updates for the FitAdapt technology as they become available, sharpening the precision of fit for players and providing new digital services over time.
“We picked basketball as the first sport for Nike Adapt intentionally because of the demands that athletes put on their shoes,” said Eric Avar, Nike VP Creative Director of Innovation.
“During a normal basketball game the athlete’s foot changes and the ability to quickly change your fit by loosening your shoe to increase blood flow and then tighten again for performance is a key element that we believe will improve the athlete’s experience,” he added.
The Nike Adapt BB will be available at Nike Park Fort, Titan Two Parkade, and for P17,495. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo