Few tools are as important in the NBA player’s arsenal as the sneakers, which are worn down via intense physical activity in-game. With that, one would expect that the game’s best would have their exact footwear needs completely sorted. Such wasn’t the case for Pacers small forward Paul George, who recently learned he’d been wearing the wrong size sneakers.
Nike discovered George’s too-small shoes while creating his first signature model, then Nike PG1. According to sneaker designer Tony Hardman, who worked with him on the model, George was wearing a size 13 despite being a true 14.
“One thing we learned about him was that he was wearing a shoe that was a size too small for years,” Hardman tells Sole Collector. “He was smashing his toes, and it was hurting.”
After measuring his foot at the Nike Sports Research Lab at the brand’s world headquarters in Beaverton, Oregon, the design team tried to persuade him to go a full size up, but George stopped at a 13.5. The snug fit he prefers informed his new signature model, which has a strap that allows for a locked-down feel.