The New Orleans Hornets’ March 1st macthup with the New Jersey Nets turned out to be an extra-special game for Chris Paul, as the All-Star point guard debuted his latest sneaker, the Jordan CP3 II, roughly an hour before tipoff. Only a handful of reporters were invited to check out the unveiling. But when I learned it was being held at New Jersey's Izod Center (where the Nets play their home games), there was no way I was missing out. Duane from NJ, missing a GearHead-related function IN New Jersey? That would be like the Fantasy Wiz missing the 2009 Wand-Waving Convention. Never!
Not only was I able to score some pics of the CP3 II, I also caught up with the sneaker's namesake and coaxed him into talking about his new sneaker, his all-time favorite pair of Jordans, and... well, keep reading and see for yourself!
Duane from NJ: How would you compare the CP3 II to other sneakers you’ve worn in the past?
Chris Paul: This sneaker is made for me, that’s the biggest thing.
DNJ: How would you rate this shoe in comparison to the first two editions of the CP3 sneaker?
Chris Paul: This one is the best, easily. It’s easily better than the first one. It’s more comfortable, and I can react and not be afraid of ripping my shoe or anything like that.
DNJ: What does it help you with? Your speed? Jumping?
Chris Paul: It helps with all of it. I have a wide foot, so I normally have trouble finding a sneaker that fits me properly. But you tie this shoe, and it molds to your foot. And then, it’s light. I think the biggest thing it helps with is quickness. When I’m playing I don’t want to feel like I have a big, clunky shoe on. I want to feel like I am running around on grass, barefoot. That’s how these feel.
DNJ: Was there anything that you requested that was too crazy for Team Jordan to fit into the shoe? Or has the entire experience been like a dream come true?
Chris Paul: It’s like a dream come true. In fact, when I was growing up, at school, I would draw shoes. The biggest thing about this sneaker is, I wanted my mom and dad on it. And we found a way to fit that into the design. On the bottom of the shoe it looks like a design pattern, but it’s Actually my mom’s name. And if you turn the sneaker around, it has my dad’s name. I also have Wake Forest, the name of my collegiate alma mater, on the back of the shoe, as well as the names of my college
coach and grandfather, both of whom have died.
DNJ: When should fans expect to see you modeling the CP3 II during game action?
Chris Paul: I actually wore them in a game [in February]. But I guess the league has not approved them yet. They have to be 50% white, or 50% black, depending on if they’re home or away sneakers, in order to be approved. But I don’t think the league can decide if they are home or away.
DNJ: Do you remember your first pair of sneakers?
Chris Paul: They were pretty terrible. Just the fact that I am with brand Jordan… my girlfriend is obsessed with them! We were counting them yesterday in our closet just for fun, and I have like 279 pairs. The craziest thing is that when I have like two or three pairs of the same sneaker, I bring them to practice and give them away. It feels like it wasn’t that long ago when I use to stand in line for Jordans. When the price went up to $200, my mom would never buy them for me. So to know that I now get more than enough pairs is still pretty crazy for me.
DNJ: Would you switch to a low top sneaker like Kobe Bryant?
Chris Paul: When I was in high school I played in low tops. And the thing about my shoe is, it keeps getting lower. But I like to play with my ankles taped, so low-tops or high-tops, it really does not matter to me.
DNJ: What’s your favorite retro?
Chris Paul: Is the XXIII a retro now? Hmm… I always wanted to play in the XI, but I never got them in the New Orleans Hornets colors.
The Jordan CP3 II retails for $118, and can be purchased at jumpman23.com.