Thursday, June 6, 2013

NBA Sneaker Sales: Who is number one?

As I’ve stated in previous posts, there are not too many more lucrative ventures for NBA players than the world of high-priced sneakers. The sales numbers for 2012 are in from SportsOneSource and the top sellers are not much of a shock to be really honest. Michael Jordan still leads by a wide margin with a $2 BILLION dollar sales figure (read my old post about Air Jordan’s continued dominance if you do not believe me), followed by Mr. Chuck Taylor and his Converse line. But those are givens, how did the current crop of NBA stars stack up? Who was in the top 3 for currently active hoopers? (Hint: Derrick Rose and Kevin Durant missed the cut)

Let’s see:


‘Melo takes third place with a healthy $40 million in sales figures for his Melo M8s and M9s, which were released for the 2012 year. Personally, his shoes are not my cup of tea but I appear to be in the minority as since he has traded in his old Denver Nuggets sky blue and gold for the navy blue and orange of the Knickerbockers, his sales have steadily increased despite the disappointment that was the 2012-13 New York Knicks. The key for Carmelo to keep climbing up this particular chart appears to be success in June as our next shoe selling extraordinaire as experienced quite a few times in his illustrious career…


 The “Black Mamba” takes the second spot with a cool $50 million in sales for 2012 thanks to his Kobe 7 Systems and Kobe 8 Systems. While the Lakers struggled throughout much of the 2012-13 campaign and Kobe himself suffered a devastating Achilles tear, Kobe is just well…Kobe. He may still be the most popular player in all of the NBA and that reflects in his shoe sales. Plus, his shoes are very slick looking and very comfortable for ball players and regular guys alike. Also, having five rings helps as well.


Alas, we have our sales king ($300 MILLION) and his name is King James. Now let me start by saying this is a little controversial as James’ “X” or “10th edition” shoe retails for upwards of $200-$250, which is nearly $50 dollars more than everyone else on the list but let me also tell you this: THESE SHOES ARE HOT. Whether it is the rare “South Beach” colorways or the “Superhero” variants, these shoes sell out quick and are worn out in abundance daily, regardless of price. 

The simple design of the shoe feels almost like a Air Jordan Retro while the engaging color combos pop the eyes of everyone around you. With LeBron winning the last two NBA MVPs as well as very possibly the two most recent NBA Finals in a few weeks, no one will be taking this crown from the King for a long, long while. If you have $200 lying around, taking a flyer on a pair of LeBron Xs is not a bad idea according to this poster.

Oh and one quick side note: It must be really good to be Nike right now…


Aaron J. Coleman is currently a sport management major at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA minoring in Communication (with a focus in Public Relations). He was born and raised in Upper Marlboro, MD, a suburb outside of Washington, DC. He is currently a supervisor for Drexel’s Intramural Sports program and also an intern for the Arena Football Legaue’s Philadelphia Soul franchise. He covers the Chicago Bulls, New York Yankees, and Washington Redskins (his favorite squads along with the Washington Capitals and Drexel Dragons) for Follow Aaron on Twitter @shutupCole

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