Nike’s decision to end its partnership with Kyrie Irving earlier this week prompted the Brooklyn Nets’ star point guard to alter his Kyrie signature shoe yesterday.
In a regular season matchup against the Charlotte Hornets last night, Irving donned 2018’s “Raygun” Nike Kyrie 3, a colorway that borrows its looks from the coveted “Raygun” Nike SB Dunk Low from 2005. Irving has worn the “Raygun” Kyrie 3 before, but this time he covered the sides with tape that featured texts including “I am free. Thank you God…I am,” on one side, and “logo here” where the Swoosh logo would normally appear.
Nike announced on Monday that it had terminated its relationship with Irving, making him a sneaker free agent. The news comes on the heels of the Swoosh suspending its partnership with the Nets star last month after he shared a link to an antisemitic film on Instagram and refused to denounce antisemitism in the immediate press conferences that followed.
Irving signed an endorsement deal with the sportswear giant back in 2011 and has regularly worn his signature shoes since. The Nike Kyrie line has introduced seven official signature models as well as numerous takedown sneakers.