A Complete Timeline and History of All Kevin Durant Shoes
Kevin Durant has always been known as a professional basketball player to watch — he actually signed a seven-year, $60 million deal with Nike when he turned pro after the 2007 season, the second-largest rookie endorsement deal at the time behind LeBron James. Nike immediately took a bet on the 6-foot, 10-inch forward, recognizing that he had next-level talent. Throughout his career with the Seattle Supersonics, the Oklahoma City Thunder, the Golden State Warriors, and now the Brooklyn Nets, Durant has proven that no matter which team he’s a part of, he brings superstar wattage to the court. That’s translated throughout his career into sales of his KD basketball shoe line for Nike.
With 14 iterations of Nike KD shoes, Kevin Durant has proven that he has lasting power for Nike. Here’s a breakdown of all the different styles in the line, from KD1 to KD14.
Nike Zoom KD1
Kevin Durant entered the NBA as the second pick in the 2007 NBA Draft to the Seattle SuperSonics. As a 19-year-old he averaged 20.3 points and won the NBA Rookie of the Year award.
In 2008, the SuperSonics moved to Oklahoma City and became the Thunder. With a new city, team name & colors, Nike unveiled the first signature Kevin Durant shoe, the Nike Zoom KD1. Available in nine colorways, including some with titles very personal to Durant – like the OKC Home and Montrose Christian High School – the shoe was modeled after Durant’s favorite Huarache 2K4 shoe. It featured Zoom Air in the forefoot and molded to the foot.
Nike Zoom KD2
The second shoe in the Nike Zoom KD series sought to honor and recognize Durant’s many accomplishments in his third season. KD averaged 30.1 points per game and became the youngest NBA scoring champion. Kevin was also selected to his first NBA All-Star Game. The KD2 introduced the signature strap across the shoe that has become a key feature in the KD collection over the years.
Nike Zoom KD3
The KD3 was the first shoe of Durant’s to feature Nike Flywire technology, which made for lighter yet more durable wear. It was also the first and only time Nike iD allowed customers to design their own colorways of the shoe.
Nike Zoom KD4
With teammates Russell Westbrook & James Harden, Durant made it to the 2011-2012 NBA Finals, only to be bested by LeBron James and the Miami Heat. However, it was a defining season in KD’s career beating the Mavs, Lakers and Spurs in the playoffs – with a dominant 34-point performance in Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals – solidifying him as one of the game’s best players.
It also proved to be a very popular year for the shoe line — a special edition “Nerf” shoe actually came with a Nerf basketball and court, which has proven to be extremely sought after in the reselling community. It was also the year the Aunt Pearl colorway debuted. Named after Durant’s Aunt Pearl, who passed away from lung cancer and with whom he was close, the Aunt Pearl pink styles bring joy to the assortment and are continuously seen throughout the line.
This shoe was the first high-top iteration. The first four styles of KD shoes all had “Zoom” in the title, but by this point, Nike was confident that Durant’s name spoke for itself and dropped the moniker. Nike also raised the price to over $100 a pair. Until this point, Durant’s shoes had all retailed for below $100, as affordability was important to him in reaching his fan base. It was also the first time a sub-line called Elite was introduced, which added additional technical updates to the shoe in the postseason.
In the 2013-14 season Kevin Durant averaged an insane 32 points per game and had several impressive scoring streaks: (12) 30+ point games and (41) consecutive 25+ points, along with two 50+ point games. Kevin won his first MVP award and had one of the most rememberable MVP acceptance speeches of all time.
The Nike KD6 featured a lower top, an ultra-thin upper, and Flywire technology. A hexagon pattern on the outsole helped add traction and was ideal for players who needed quick reflexes.
The signature strap returned to the shoe in 2014, and Durant’s personal pair had the names of four members of Durant’s family that held significant importance to him on the tongue. Durant had, unfortunately, an unmemorable season due to an injury, and the Oklahoma City Thunder did not make the playoffs for the first time in six years. The strap returned for this shoe, only to be shed for several years. The Zoom Air technology was visible in the heel.
This would be Durant’s last season with the Thunder. The KD8 was released in 2015 and featured a Flyweave upper and a full-length Air Zoom panel for the first time in any Nike basketball shoe. Creative colorway names include PB&J, “What The” and Sabretooth Tiger, proving that Durant was having fun with his shoe collection at this point. The KD Elite 8 version came with a compression sock and Kevlar-infused Flywire technology.
Durant’s first season with the Golden State Warriors turned out to be an excellent one, with the team winning the 2016 NBA Championship title that year. It was the first time Durant had played in the NBA Finals in almost a decade, and he received his first Finals MVP award. The shoe features Flyknit technology that locks down the shoe, as well as a visible, tapered Zoom Air unit for a springy step.
After a decade of partnership, KD10 is a shoe that looks like it was designed to be iconic: full-length Zoom cushioning, a Flyknit upper that maximized tenacity and a new lacing system that added security to the foot. Durant won his second NBA title this season and another Finals MVP award.
Durant’s 2018-19 season with the Golden State Warriors — his last with the team — saw the debut of this shoe, which features a leather wrap around the heel and a comfortable sock collar. He actually continued on playing with the KD10, and the shoe made its debut during the Warriors victory parade. It paid homage to Durant’s off-court style, with elements of Nike Flyknit Trainers and Epic React incorporated into it, as they were two of Durant’s favorite styles. Unfortunately, Durant tore his Achilles tendon, which put him out for the 2019-2020 season entirely.
New team, new location, new shoe. This time, Durant landed in Brooklyn as a member of the Brooklyn Nets. The shoe reflects the grittiness of New York City in shades of black and grey. It was the first time Nike had stitched together a full-length Air Zoom with an upper to great success. It also contained a Strobel. Positioned between the sock liner and the midsole, the Strobel, when combined with the Air Zoom unit, makes the shoe even more dynamic and its responsiveness greater.
The Nike KD13 sneakers have a double-stacked Air Zoom panel and a broken-in upper for a flexible and relaxed feel, allowing its wearer to have more movement through the ball of the foot. Durant actually created a special pair he wore during the 2021 season with his childhood friend, Devonte Young, of brand Enspire. The pair met in 7th grade.
The strap from earlier versions has returned on the highly anticipated KD14, which debuted in spring 2021 online, but this time with a twist — Durant has seemingly toyed with fans by making the strap scythe-shaped, a nod to his nickname “The Slim Reaper.” A full-length Air Zoom panel helps with responsiveness, as does Cushlon foam. Traction is available through grooves in the sole, and support in the arch helps with keeping the foot stable. Durant is only the third basketball player to ever reach 14 shoe collaborations with Nike. He’s in good company: the other two are Michael Jordan and LeBron James.
Nike x Kevin Durant Sneaker Deal
Perennial All-Star Kevin Durant has proven that he’s not only one of the NBA’s best players but also a force to be reckoned with when it comes to sneaker design. His contract with Nike was extended in 2014 for a 10-year, $300 million deal, proving that Nike believes in Durant. Durant has also never forgotten who his target market is for his shoes — he’s consistently made his shoes relatively more affordable than other superstar collaborations. An investment in a Kevin Durant shoe means you get both style and technical ability — a winning combination.