Klay Thompson shares what it’s like to design his Anta shoes
Klay Thompson isn’t one known for hyperbole, so it doesn’t surprise when discussing his signature sneakers, the Golden State Warriors sharpshooter puts a focus on function over fashion.
“I like it,” he tells SI.com about getting involved in the aesthetics of his Anta signature shoe. “But it is not my No. 1 priority. Comfort and feel and (wearing something) I envision playing in for 40 minutes a night (has a higher priority).”
While Thompson signed with the Chinese brand Anta last season and debuted his signature shoes around the 2015 All-Star Game, he still wore blacked-out Nike Hyperdunks through the playoffs. That changed this year. He moved to the signature Anta model, pulling on the conservative-looking white, blue and yellow sneakers night in and night out.
He says the process of designing his signature shoes wasn’t necessarily what he was expecting.
“You learn doing a shoe that it is a lot harder than it looks,” he says. “I told them what I thought was comfortable, referencing shoes in the past. It was a harder process than I thought.”
Still, though, Thompson was involved in the design and plans to release another signature model next year.
“It is an exciting partnership for me,” he says. “As long as I’m with Anta I expect to have a signature (sneaker).”
Subdued style, sure. But still a signature sneaker for Klay Thompson.
Tim Newcomb covers stadiums, sneakers and technology for Sports Illustrated. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.