Players across the league took to the court in new looks of their latest signature sneakers and statement-level models this week, headlined by a bevy of All-Stars breaking necks in loud colorways.
For Damian Lillard, the official debut of his Adidas Dame 6 -- in a vivid orange colorway -- was hard to miss, fueled by one of his favorite road-game experiences in recent years and his on-court mindset.
"Early in the design process, the many sides of Dame's personality emerged during our conversations with Dame," Jimi Taylor, senior footwear designer for Adidas Basketball, said. "He's a leader, a family man, a businessman and more, but when he hits the court, a different side comes out."
While on the road at Orlando a year ago, a courtside heckler's non-stop chatter during his sluggish start to the game has now come to life across a series of themed Dame 6 editions for this year.
"The whole first half, there was this dude just constantly screaming my name: 'You went to Weber State! You can't be that good!' Or 'Good shot!' if I missed. It just seemed like he was getting louder and louder," Lillard said. "I remember one time, I was at the free throw line and I peeked over, just to see who was saying all of that. He looked at me and was like, 'Yeah! That's me!' He owned it!"
Lillard went on to dominate the second half, leading the Blazers to a momentous road win that carried into an overachieving season and a Conference Finals appearance.
"I took over the game, and I had 34 in the second half," Lillard said. "After we had ran off with the game, there was two minutes left and I turned to him. I [held up my hand by my ear] and said, 'I can't hear you.' He wasn't saying nothing. He was on hush."
His postgame Instagram post said it all. Adidas added the zippered mouth emoji to the design, celebrating Lillard's silencing performance.
"The caption was 'Get dealt with,'" he said with a laugh. "I thought it was funny. ... If you light that fire under somebody, it could be detrimental to the team you're cheering for."
For his sixth signature sneaker, Lillard will have a batch of "Hecklers" colorways featuring a word cloud of phrases, along with a split-look pair that plays off of his cold-blooded mentality on the court. With a muted black outer panel, the bright and neon inner half of the launch edition is accented by the word "Ruthless" along the midsole.
"I come out to compete against people, but I don't say a whole lot. I don't talk trash. I just go at them every opportunity I get," Lillard said. "There's a way to go about it in life and in basketball, being compassionate and ruthless. It's important to have both; I was raised that way."
For his return to the floor and regular-season debut, Blake Griffin was spotted in Jordan Brand's latest annual game shoe, the Air Jordan 34. After headlining the Super Fly model for his first five seasons with the company, the 34's new "Eclipse Plate" and bonded paneling design led Griffin to lean in on the brand's featured pair.
"There's so much new technology, so much testing and so much science that goes into these shoes," Griffin said. "You know you're putting something on your foot that is at the top of its game."
As the brand continues to reinvent itself long after Michael Jordan's playing days, there's been a renewed focus recently on relentless performance rather than simply being known for its retro sneakers worn for leisure.
"Coming into the 34, we did have that discussion about taking back the courts. That was number one," designer Tate Kuerbis said. "Let's take back the courts and make it the best playing shoe we've ever had."
With Griffin now one of the longer-tenured fixtures with Jordan Brand, his shoe deal has evolved since 2012. His beloved Oklahoma Sooners have also come on board, outfitted in their own custom crimson colorways.
"When I first signed with the brand, I was so excited about being a part of the brand because to me it is very exclusive and you feel like you're part of a hand-picked family," Griffin said.
Reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo's latest Zoom Freak colorway takes a twist from the launch edition of his debut Nike signature shoe.
"Giannis said his favorite movie was the 'Prince Akeem movie' ... and we were like, 'What are you talking about?'" Kevin Dodson, Nike's global vice president of basketball footwear, said with a laugh. "We're like, 'Oh ... "Coming to America.'"
To celebrate the Greek Freak becoming Nike's first international player to receive a signature basketball shoe, the brand launched his line with a black and gold cheetah print colorway inspired by the iconic Eddie Murphy movie. The alternate blue-hued pair worn this week gives a nod to his native country's flag. Along the heel, the subtle '34' logo also drafts off of the flag.
"In a logo, you can put a lot of things together and talk about your life -- represent family, represent Nigeria and Greece," Antetokounmpo said. "That is exciting."
Elsewhere in the league, Toronto Raptors guard Fred VanVleet celebrated his new shoe deal to become the face of AND1 by wearing a camouflage pair of the brand's new Attack 2.0 model as a Veteran's Day nod. Sneaker free agent Montrezl Harrell of the LA Clippers continued his run of rotating through coveted kicks, with a pair of the limited black and neon "Dunkman"-themed LeBron 7 from 2009.
Celebrating Phoenix's classic "fireball" jerseys from the '90s, small forward Kelly Oubre Jr. debuted a flame graphic pair of the Converse All Star Pro BB, as he continues to headline the brand's relaunch into basketball through both on- and off-court looks.
Check out all of the best sneakers from around the league this week, and be sure to vote on your favorite pair in our poll below. For real-time updates on sneaker culture and NBA kicks, follow @SneakerCenter on Instagram.