Nike Fetes Greek Freak With First Signature Shoe: Nike Air Zoom Freak 1
Friday, June 28, 2019 at 10:26AM
NYSportsJournalism.com in Giannis Antetokounmpo, NBA, NBA, Nike, sports marketing

By Barry Janoff

June 28, 2019: On the heels of being named NBA MVP, Giannis ‘Greek Freak” Antetokounmpo has reached another milestone: his first signature shoe from Nike.

The Nike Air Zoom Freak 1 will drop online July 1 and at retail July 10, arriving in black-and-white; “Roses,” which honors his late father, Charles, who died of a heart attack in September 2017; and “Brotherhood,” to symbolize the bond he has with his brothers.

Support includes multi-media marketing, with an initial spot, “Giannis: Mt. Olympus."

In it, Nike explains, “NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo has gone from the streets of Sepolia to the top of the NBA. To celebrate we put (a) hoop on the top of Mount Olympus, the highest point in Greece.”

The backboard itself has the text, “Fate can start you at the bottom. Dreams can take you to the top.”

The Nike collection for the All-Star also includes long and short sleeve T-shirts.

“(In a shoe and campaign) you can put a lot of things together and talk about your life — represent family, represent Nigeria and Greece,” Antetokounmpo said via Nike. “That is exciting.”

This week, Antetokounmpo’s team, the Milwaukee Bucks, unveiled a Giannis MVP Collection, including T-shirts, pennants, koozies and other accessories.

“We are beyond proud of Giannis for earning his first MVP award,” Jon Horst, Bucks GM, said via the team.

“This well-deserved honor is due to his relentless hard work and dedication in becoming the most impactful player in the NBA. Giannis propelled the Bucks to great heights last season with his leadership, drive and unselfish play.”

According to Horst, “His grace on and off the court has made him one of the most admired players in the world.”

Antetokounmpo helped lead the Bucks to the NBA’s best regular-season record, 60-22, which was the team’s best record since 1980-81.

Antetokounmpo averaged 27.7 points, 12.5 rebounds and 5.9 assists, all career-highs.

In addition to Nike, he has deals that include JBL headphones, Metro PCS, Hulu and Aegean Airlines.

He also appeared on the cover of NBA 2K19.

"Two years ago, I had the goal in my head that I'm going to be the best player in the league and I'm going to do whatever it takes to help my team win and I'm going to win the MVP," Antetokounmpo said during his MVP acceptance speech.

"As my dad told me, always want more, but never be greedy. My goal is to win a championship and we're going to do whatever we can to make that happen.”

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