Kobe Byrant was the reason the Lakers lost Game 5 of the 1997 Western Conference Semifinals. Bryant was still a rookie back then, still 18-years-old. He threw up four airballs down the stretch of a tight game, finishing with 11 points in the 98-93 loss that ended the purple and gold’s season.
Back in Compton, an eight-year-old DeMar DeRozan was watching that game. DeRozan says that he learned how resilient he had to be by seeing Kobe falter like that. Now Deebo’s using that memory as inspiration for his newest Kobe AD colorway.
The “Compton” AD has lacetips that read “May 12, 1997,” the date of Bryant’s ultimate struggle, Jazz-themed colors on the tongue and a picture of the street that DeRozan grew up on in Compton on the sockliner. The sneaker has a marble finishing on the heel and suede around the collar.
The “Compton” AD releases on April 12, for $160.
Photos courtesy of Nike