It’s a golden time for signature shoes. While the old guard of players such as LeBron James and Kevin Durant, who are on their 17th and 12th shoe respectively, still exists, there’s a new guard of players like Kyrie Irving, Paul George, and Giannis Antetokounmpo who want to make their mark on the kicks game.
Paul George has brought a much-needed breath of fresh air to the signature sneaker world. He’s one of the few players who insists on having a low-cut shoe, and he has consistently prioritized performance on the basketball court above all else. The PG 4 is no different.
Nike designer Tony Hardman took all of George’s feedback about the 3 and worked to create an even better shoe. One of the major updates implemented was an overhaul of the cushioning system. In the past, George and Hardman had been content with Zoom Air cushioning living in the forefoot. This time around, the two decided to do something never-before-seen in a Nike shoe. Swapping the strobel (a sock-like layer that connects the outsole to the rest of the shoe) for cushioning had been done in the KD 12, but Hardman swapped it for a complete Zoom Air Unit that provides elite cushioning.
With the PG, Nike has been willing to try less-than-traditional traction patterns looking for any advantage over the classic herringbone pattern that is frequently used. Similar to the circular pattern they used for the PG 3, the 4 draws on inspiration from the cloud-like design of the Zoom Air Unit itself. The other noticeable aesthetic change is the addition of a zip-up shroud covering the laces. The shroud is semi-transparent and made of mesh to offer extra support while still providing excellent breathability.