This is hardly the first time a player has chosen to go a different way from the norm, as players like Dwyane Wade, Klay Thompson, Rajon Rondo and Tony Parker, among others, have chosen to sign with non-Nike or Adidas-owned brands.
Just when you thought it was really weird to see Kawhi Leonard in a Toronto Raptors jersey this season, wait until you see him in his new signature shoe.
The two-time Defensive Player of the Year will now earn considerably more than the $500,000 dollars that he was earning each year from his existing deal from Jordan. Sports' Chris Haynes on Wednesday and later confirmed to ESPN's Nick DePaula.
Leonard is now averaging 24.3 points, 8.6 rebounds and 1.8 steals. ESPN has reported that in order to convince Leonard to sign, New Balance has offered well in excess of $5 million per season, and his new deal will put him into the top 15 earners in the National Basketball Association. However, it's just not the coolest brand around for a guy Leonard's age or status in the National Basketball Association. Nike pays LeBron James more than $20 million annually as part of his lifetime contract.
2018 has taken Kawhi Leonard to a new team and a new shoe sponsor. But then Leonard will likely laugh all the way to the bank and make us all look foolish.