If their were an award for the NBA’s greatest trash talker, Gary Payton could probably get a unanimous “greatest of all-time” from both players and fans. Today, July 23rd, Gary Payton, aka GP, aka The Glove, turns 44 years old. To honor his contribution to the memory banks of sneaker enthusiasts around the world, we take a look at his important sneaker history with Nike.
Payton’s flamboyant and trash-talking demeanor on the court made him a player that you either loved or loved to hate. The 9-time NBA All-Star spent most of his career in Seattle playing for the Supersonics and backed up his trash talk with defense that was arguably the best of his time, which is what earned him the nickname, The Glove. It also earned him Defensive Player of the Year in 1996.
Nike Son of Glove uploaded by NAlex
The Glove would later become the name of his signature shoe, 1998’s Nike Zoom Glove (known also as the Zoom Flight 98), and Son of Glove(above). Before landing the signature line, GP played in more classic Nike Basketball styles than most players, the Air Force III, Air Force Five, Go LWP, Air Strong and Zoom Hawk Flight were just a small sample. Nike awarded GP with a signature shoe, the Nike Zoom GP in 1999 (we’re in need of this being added to the wiki if you can help). Gary Payton would go on to play in shoes like the Nike Ultraflight and a handful of Jordan player exclusives before returning to The Glove in his final seasons in the NBA, in which he won his one and only NBA Championship. His signature Nike sneakers also inspired the more recent, Nike Zoom Flight Club.
Nike Hyperflight uploaded by Marty McFly
If you have any of the aforementioned Gary Payton sneakers in your collection, we’d love to have them on the wiki. Let us know if you can help us out with an upload.