Each year, Kevin Durant drops a new sneaker with Nike. The KD line of shoes has been wildly popular since its inception. That's not all that uncommon, though. Like other popular NBA stars, Durant has enjoyed success in the shoe game, too. There is something special about the KD line, though. Durant sets himself and his shoes apart by releasing one specific colorway each year. The "Aunt Pearl" colorway is always in the lineup, and while the hues and the design differ from year to year, the name always stays the same. So what is the "Aunt Pearl" colorway all about? The famed KD colorway pays homage to the baller's late aunt.
Kevin Durant's 'Aunt Pearl' colorway honors his late aunt
In 2012, Kevin Durant released a pink sneaker. The shoe, the Aunt Pearl colorway, has special meaning to the famed NBA star. The sneaker pays homage to Durant's aunt. According to NBA, Pearl was Durant's maternal great-aunt. As a kid, he spent a lot of time with the women of his family but developed a special bond with Pearl.
The star has spoken openly about his time with Pearl and how her death affected him. The inspiration behind the colorway died in 2001 from lung cancer. Durant was just 11. He said he wasn't aware of her diagnosis until after her passing but grew to understand cancer's impact on the world. He told the NBA that he wanted to do something cool to honor her impact on him. Nike helped, and the Aunt Pearl colorway flies off the shelves each year.
Some years, the sneaker is all pink; other incarnations are white or pearl colored with pink accents. Regardless of the design, fans go hunting for the Aunt Pearl, and that doesn't seem likely to change anytime soon. According to House of Heat, Durant even plans to return to the beginning of his sneaker journey to honor his aunt. The KD3 Aunt Pearl colorway is expected in October 2023.
Kevin Durant recently honored his late grandmother with her own colorway
Durant's aunt Pearl isn't the only family member to get an honorary nod in the power forward's sneaker lineup. Durant's late grandmother, Barbara Davis, was honored with a sneaker released this year.
Wanda Durant sat down for a chat with Boardroom and explained that her son approached her about working on a sneaker collaboration to honor his grandmother. The colorway, which is featured on the KD 15, is eye-catching, to say the least. Decked out in purple, the shoe includes velour for a truly luxurious feel and features a rose pattern. Roses were her favorite flower.
Of the shoe, Wanda Durant said,
""It's so important for that shoe just to remind everyone of their grandmother and how Kevin loved on his grandmother. She was spoiled, he loved on her tremendously. When he asked me to collaborate with the shoe, it was, 'Absolutely.'""- Boardroom
"It's so important for that shoe just to remind everyone of their grandmother and how Kevin loved on his grandmother. She was spoiled, he loved on her tremendously. When he asked me to collaborate with the shoe, it was, 'Absolutely.'"
We don't know whether the colorway will be a yearly release, like the Aunt Pearl offering, just yet. If the past is any indication, something to honor Barbara Davis will likely make its way into the lineup year after year.