Seven years since he signed with the brand, Kyrie Irving’s line remains one of Nike Basketball’s most popular signature franchises. A fan favorite thanks to their on-court performance capabilities and storytelling through collaborations and colorways, Nike Kyrie sneakers have been a top seller in recent years. But it sounds like there could be trouble in paradise if a recent Instagram comment from Irving is any indication.
In response to leaked images of an unassembled pair of what’s said to be the upcoming Nike Kyrie 8, Irving called the design “trash” on social media, said Nike plans to release them despite his disapproval, and apologized to his fans and sneakerheads.
“I have nothing to do with the design or marketing of the upcoming #Kyrie8, IMO these are trash!,” Irving wrote on Wednesday. “I have absolutely nothing to do with them!
Nike plans to release it without my okay regardless of what I say, so I apologize in advance to all of my sneaker heads and true supporters of the #KAI11 brand.”
Irving’s comment was posted underneath a leak shared by Kyrie sneaker fan account @k11kicks on Instagram. As of publishing, Irving’s message has been up for two hours and has been liked over 2,000 times with almost 100 comments.
Last month, a similar scenario played out after a pair of “Mambacita” Nike Kobe 6 sneakers was accidentally shipped to retailers and made its way onto the internet to Vanessa Bryant’s dismay. Bryant said the shoes were not approved for sale or production.
“I do not know how someone else has their hands on shoes I designed in honor of my daughter, Gigi, and we don’t,” she wrote.
Nike did not immediately return a request for comment.