The Charlotte Hornets star’s first-ever signature sneaker and corresponding MB.01 apparel collection from Puma is nearly here.
LaMelo Ball has picked up right where he left off after a 2020-21 Rookie of the Year campaign. Nightly highlight passes, new career highs, and clutch shots have come early and often in the first months of the Charlotte Hornets’ season as he continues to impress in his young NBA career.
He’s been doing it all in his first signature shoe with Puma, the MB.01. And now, the much-anticipated sneaker has a set-in-stone release date after a series of factory delays that the entire industry has been forced to face this year.
Thursday, Dec. 16. is the day.
His bright red debut sigs, created in tandem with Puma designer Jacob Garcia, are set to release next week on Puma.com, the PUMA NYC Flagship Store, and at Foot Locker, Foot Locker Canada, Kids Foot Locker, Champs Sports, Eastbay, and Footaction.
Arriving along with the sneakers — which are priced at $125 retail — will be seven different apparel items comprised of jackets, pants, tees, and shorts, all in the $45-$100 range.
While the MB.01 model drew its primary inspiration from the rocket tattoo along LaMelo’s left leg, which boasts a “Sky Is The Limit” tagline, a rocket ship, and an astronaut, there’s also a batch of additional taglines sprinkled onto the design, including “Not From Here,” “1 of 1,” and “Rare.”
Puma MB.01 Sneaker
“The phrase ‘Not From Here’ means kind of like you’re an alien,” said Ball. “You’re not from here, you’re something nobody’s ever seen before. You’re one of one. Something like that. It’s real different.”
Ball has primarily worn the MB.01 in its unmistakably bright red colorway, along with a black and teal colorway more apt for Hornets’ road games. The “Red Blast” edition will be the headliner of the Dec. 16 launch, with future releases slotted for early 2022.
For now, Puma also has a LaMelo-dedicated microsite in place, with landing pages for each of the footwear and apparel items headed to market.
The MB.01 will be the first Puma signature shoe in nearly 20 years, succeeding the Vinsanity from Vince Carter’s short-lived run with the brand in the late ’90s. Never short on confidence, Ball feels his star power can bring an impact to Puma Basketball that the brand has long been looking for.
“Pretty much just being myself. I feel that would drive that,” he said. “And whatever’s 100% real. That’s usually whatever comes out best.”