Although limited play from New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson this season likely hindered his chance of winning the NBA Rookie of the Year award, it may not have affected his odds of becoming a signature sneaker athlete.
According to DJ Folk, the rookie sensation’s debut Jordan model dubbed “Z Code” will hit sneaker shelves sometime in early 2021. However, given its far off release date, images of the shoe are currently unavailable. Not much time has passed since Williamson officially signed with Jordan Brand in July 2019, but he led the campaign for the unveiling of the Air Jordan 34 before eventually getting his own player exclusive colorways.
As of now, Jordan Brand hasn’t confirmed the rumors surrounding Williamson’s “Z Code” signature sneaker, but keep it locked to Sole Collector for updates as the story develops.
UPDATE (04/20): After much anticipation and speculation, Jordan Brand has officially unveiled Williamson’s first signature shoe today, and unlike the rumored “Z Code” nickname, the model will actually be called the Zion 1. According to the brand, the footwear designers looked to create a model that enabled him to use his physical tools on the court while also highlighting his personal traits. The shoe itself features a mid-top construction with the forefoot and heel sectioned off by the “Z” design on the midfoot. In addition, a full-length Air Strobel unit and a Zoom Air cushioning unit are encapsulated within the midsole for extra protection.
“We knew that one of Zion’s main inspirations for the look of the shoe was superhero armor. But when we thought about an icon or symbol that could clearly draw out the shoe’s benefits, the “Z” made perfect sense to us,” says Vianney de Montgolfier, Senior Footwear Designer of Jordan Sport. “It’s the letter for speed, it has the base for power, and it’s maybe the most distinguishable letter in the alphabet. There’s nothing else like it.”
The Jordan Zion 1 will be released in the “Gen Zion” colorway on April 23 at Jordan.com and at select Jordan Brand retailers. The “ZNA” colorway will launch on May 5 followed by the “Noah” makeup on May 19 and the “Marion” iteration on May 26.