LeBron James’ detractors are still plentiful and are still vocal — just follow the conversation on twitter during any Heat game. People will tell you how much they loathe LeBron and everything he stands for.
But they are buying his shoes.
Forbes Magazine broke down the numbers on domestic signature shoe sales (from sportsonesource.com) and found the two-time MVP is blowing by the field like he blew by Paul George for a game-winning layup.
LeBron is a Nike guy and, as it has for years, Nike dominates the shoe sale market. Here are the top five signature shoe sales, according to Forbes:
LeBron James (Nike): $300 million
Kobe Bryant (Nike): $50 million
Carmelo Anthony (Jordan): $40 million
Kevin Durant (Nike): $35 million
Derrick Rose (Adidas): $25 million
Looks like LeBron is on top… until you compare him to Michael Jordan.
Jordan accounted for $2 billion in sales. Yes, billion with a “B.” That a decade after Jordan retired (and 15 years after what we like to think of as his retirement… we ignore the Wizards years). The Jordan brand accounts for three out of every four basketball shoes sold. Still.
Once again, LeBron is chasing Jordan’s legacy. But in this case, it’s Nike that wins.
(Thanks to Lang at NBA.com’s All Ball blog for finding this story.)