Ten years ago today, the NBA finally got a black tennis shoe.
But the shoe was a first for the league.
The Nike LeBron 1, released in 1999, was a black and white version of the shoe the NBA had been making for years.
It’s the first shoe for an NBA team that isn’t a member of the NBA, meaning Nike couldn’t make the shoe because of an antitrust violation.
(The NBA is the only professional sports league with no team in the NBA.)
Nike did make the LeBron 1 a few other years later, but it never went on sale in the U.S.
The shoe, though, was already a hit.
A lot of people thought it was the most revolutionary basketball shoe ever.
The shoe was the first NBA shoe to be made in black.
The LeBron 1 was also the first basketball shoe to feature Nike’s iconic Air Max technology, which is the same technology that makes LeBron sneakers look so good.
The Nike LeBron 2 debuted in 2000, but didn’t make it into the U, so Nike had to wait for the NBA to release the LeBron 3.
The 3 was a better shoe, but still wasn’t as good as the LeBron 2.
Nike finally released the LeBron 4 in 2002, which became the last shoe Nike made for the next decade.
And the Nike LeBron 5 debuted in 2007.
Nike didn’t sell many of the LeBron 5s, but the shoes sold well enough that Nike eventually released a LeBron 6.
Nike’s next basketball shoe, the Nike Air Max 1, was released in 2012.
The LeBron 5, the most iconic basketball shoe of the 2000s, was also made in white.
Nike has since changed the color of the Nike shoes from “black” to “red,” which is what the NBA is currently using for the LeBron 6 and the LeBron 7.