19 current NBA players have their own signature shoe. Li-Ning is set to make Jimmy Butler the 20th.
As the next expected member of the NBA’s elite signature shoe club, Miami Heat All-Star Jimmy Butler has confirmed the shoe’s signature logo. His namesake series with Li-Ning is set to debut this spring.
The symbol, which is a symmetrical logo highlighting his ‘JB’ initials, incorporates angles inspired by a diamond, and elements tying back to Silver Wolves — a nickname from his personal trainer’s son to describe Butler’s close-knit group of friends.
Butler’s signature sneaker has been 18 months in the making. He first signed with Li-Ning in 2020, fresh off leading the Miami Heat to the NBA Finals in his first season with the franchise. At different points over the past year, Butler has teased the logo on accessories like coffee cups, and even incorporated it onto the tongue of player-exclusive colorways of Li-Ning team models.
His “Vice City” themed capsule collection launch with Li-Ning in 2021 featured a silhouette of his face and his jersey number on the tongue tabs instead.
In the coming months, the ‘JB’ logo will officially become the primary mark used on signature Jimmy Butler footwear, apparel, and accessories with the company.
Looking ahead, the launch of Butler’s signature series with Li-Ning will also include promotional tours throughout Asia, as he looks to further entrench himself in the region with his overseas fanbase.
“The NBA is truly a global game now and I am looking forward to connecting with my fans over in China,” he said. “Being able to expand my brand and build new relationships over in China is something I’m really excited about.”
After receiving interest from several brands throughout his sneaker free agent process, Butler ultimately landed with Li-Ning in large part due to the inclusion of a signature shoe in the offer. As its launch draws nearer, initial feedback from Chinese fans have shown the ‘JB’ logo has resonated well.
Already, the five-time All-Star has noticed a strong response in the region. All-Star fan voting returns have landed him in the top five of Eastern Conference frontcourt players, while Heat merchandise and Butler’s #22 jersey have consistently been highlighted on the league’s Top Seller reports.
“Fans in China really, and I mean really, love the game of basketball and getting to be a part of that experience will be cool,” he said.