As this week brings us the beginning of the 2009-10 NBA season, I thought it would be appropriate to explore a few NBA themes to get the week going. I'm a huge fan of the NBA, have been for a long time, so this is a great week for me.
In the 1980's, the NBA ruled the world and the shoes that were worn on the courts around the league were some of the most sought after items of the decade. We all know the story of the Air Jordan and its impact on the sports products business. We also remember the Converse Weapon, the Pony City Wing and the I've even written about the old Ralph Sampson Pumas. All of those shoes had their time in the spotlight in the 1980's and 1990's.
Today we take a look at one of the more obscure player endorsed shoes from that time period. LA Gear was a shoe company that was best known for its street style and its fitness image more than it was for its presence on the NBA basketball court. This ad from 1990 features Akeem Olajuwan (yes, pre-Hakeem Akeem) and his signature LA Gear basketball shoes.
The ad lacks the sophistication and story line that was so common in the other shoe ads at the time. The image features "The Dream" in an LA Gear themed practice uniform and a fire burning in the background with the theme of "Unstoppable" The shoes feature some familiar design cues that can also be found on the other shoes we mentioned earlier from the time period.
This Olajuwan LA Gear shoe will not go down in history alongside some of those other classics, but this old school ad provides a great look back at a time when the basketball shoe ruled the world.