Lakers News: First Look At LeBron James’ Upcoming Nike LeBron 21 Shoes
Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James is entering his 21st NBA season while still towards the top of the league. James’ impact on the floor is still sky high, but it’s arguable that his impact off the floor — as both an NBA and community leader — is even greater.

One way that his off-court success can be best measured is with his signature shoe collection with Nike. Not only do fans clamor for the next pair of Nike LeBron’s, but opposing players can often be seen wearing the signature sneaker. And now as James begins NBA campaign No. 21, he is pairing it with signature shoe No. 21 as well.

Fans can now have the first official look at the Nike LeBron 21, a slight tweak on the Nike LeBron 20 with some simplified design elements, according to Nick DePaula:

The design is intentionally not significantly different from the Nike LeBron 20. The designer of the shoe spoke about the reasoning behind this and why only minor edits were made.

“His trainer says it’s like taking care of an F1 car. You tweak the car between each race,” says designer Jason Petrie. “You don’t need to rebuild the car completely.”

Season 20 was a successful one for James with the Lakers. After a slow start and an overhaul at the trade deadline, James helped lead the Lakers all the way to the Western Conference Finals, where they ultimately fell to the eventual NBA champions, the Denver Nuggets.

But the Lakers did not get complacent with that in the offseason. They retooled with some new and some familiar faces around James and Anthony Davis, and they now look ready to compete for an NBA championship in 2023-24. James’ 20th and 21st season are going to look relatively similar in the goal and the roster, making it make sense that the shoes for each year are similar as well.

Rockets rookie Cam Whitmore names James as biggest inspiration

James has been playing at an all-time great level for so long, he is serving as inspiration for the generation of new NBA players. One of them is Houston Rockets rookie Cam Whitmore, who named James as his biggest inspiration for the way he carries himself on and off the court.

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