One of the league’s best young players, Jayson Tatum took the league by storm his rookie year in 2017-18. This despite fierce competition for the Rookie of the Year race from Donovan Mitchell and Ben Simmons.
Tatum had an decent regular season, but he truly shined in the 2018 NBA Playoffs. Without superstar Kyrie Irving, Jayson put up big numbers averaging 5 more points a game at 18.5. Tatum was able to showcase his extreme athleticism, including a career dunk over LeBron James. Jayson would eventually draw comparisons to a young Kobe Bryant. After those plays, Kobe would take Tatum under his wing with summer workouts looking to unlock his potential.
Despite his mamba idolization, Tatum stuck with his then teammate’s sneakers with the Nike Kyrie line. Tatum even rocked exclusive colorways once Irving was on the mend. Tatum would switch over to the swoosh’s subsidiary in the Jordan Brand, where he would be the face for the then launched Jordan 34.