Basketball Shoe Technology, with Julius “Dr. J” Erving, Ray Allen, and Rasheed Wallace

The stars of Nike Art of the Champions. Courtesy Nike(dot)com.

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About This Episode

Lace ‘em up! On part two of our basketball mini-series, hosts Gary O’Reilly and Chuck Nice investigate the past, present, and future of basketball shoe technology with the greats. We’re once again discussing Chuck and Gary’s time spent at Nike’s “Art of a Champion” event that commemorated the 16 rounds of the NBA playoffs with special edition shoes that honor the past and re-shape the future. We pick up right where we left off in our interviews with Julius “Dr. J.” Erving and Rasheed Wallace but we’re adding another NBA great to our team: Ray Allen. Before that, we chat with Jon Garon, Global Product Line Manager at Converse, to give us a little history behind one of the most famous shoes of all time – the Chuck Taylors. We also hear about the man himself, Chuck Taylor, and how he revolutionized modern shoe technology – the Converse patch on the shoe serves a purpose other than looking great. You’ll hear how Dr. J collaborated with Converse during his playing days and paved the way for athletes to continue collaborating with shoe companies today. Ray Allen takes us through the Jordan XXVIII “Locked and Loaded” special edition shoes that were created to honor his 2013 NBA Finals performance. Rasheed explains why he wore Air Force 1s, typically an off-court shoe, on the court. All that, plus, we explore the world of sneaker collecting, we hear from Jon about the impact of 3D printing, and we also ponder if “re-inventing the barefoot” is the holy grail of shoe performance.   

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