The Raptors have had trouble in the playoffs. That’s a fact. There new star, Kawhi Leonard? Not so much trouble in the playoffs for the 2014 NBA Finals MVP. Now Leonard is the undisputed leader of the Raptors franchise after an off-season split with San Antonio that broke hearts and was widely misunderstood. Why misunderstood? Part of it was that Leonard never felt the need to explain why he wanted to get out of San Antonio and start fresh in a uniform that didn’t say Spurs.
Leonard was criticized, sure. But he maintained his characteristic reticence and just kept playing, giving Toronto the second best record in the Eastern Conference and real hope for a deep playoff run. Leonard has long had a figurative sign on him that basically said “Do Not Disturb.” For the Raptors during the playoffs, the superstar small forward will wear more than just a figurative sign — Leonard’s shoes will literally say: Do Not Disturb.
Leonard not only left the seemingly comfortable fold of Gregg Popovich and the Spurs, he also left Nike to do more things his own way. Instead of just another superstar at Nike, Leonard instead became the most prominent name endorsing New Balance basketball sneakers.
Do Not Disturb is written on the new-for-the-playoffs New Balance OMN1S that Leonard will reportedly wear against all comers in the East. Not that anything could disturb Leonard anyway. He transformed all the drama surrounding his move to Toronto into 26.6 ppg, with 7.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists. He even added the occasional smile. But just in case you needed a reminder, Leonard would prefer not to be disturbed. Just read the shoes.
It’s a little darker and more emphatic than his earlier work with the brand:
— B/R Kicks (@brkicks) April 7, 2019