By Evan Bleier / May 23, 2019

LeBron James to Pay Tribute to Andre Agassi’s “Hot Lava” Nikes

Nike is bringing back the Nike Air Tech Challenge II this week

Nike "Hot Lava" LeBron 16 s
Nike "Hot Lava" LeBron 16 s

As a 16-year-old tennis phenom, Andre Agassi was a big signing for Nike when he joined up with the apparel company in 1986. Even two years after the success of Michael Jordan’s first pair of Air Jordans, signing an up-and-coming star before they could prove themselves was still a relatively new phenomenon and a potentially risky business move. But it paid off. By 1990, Agassi was a huge star and Nike had given him a sneaker of his own: the Air Tech Challenge II.

Originally decked out in a “Hot Lava”colorway, the shoes were loud, bright and attention-grabbing — just like Agassi with his flowing mullet and neon gear. Like the player they were named after, fans were divided over the sneakers. Were they good or were they just really loud?

Now, almost three decades after Air Tech Challenge IIs debuted on Agassi’s feet, we have our answer. Nike is not only bringing back the tennis silhouette in “legendary form,” but LeBron James is also paying homage with his own Hot Lava Nike LeBron 16s.

The reissue of Agassi’s sneaker’s comes complete with Nike branding on the tongue, heel and insoles and features a white leather upper, black overlays and contrasting Hot Lava accents, the new versions of the old sneakers were “designed to meet the high demands of tournament play through superior durability, flexibility, cushioning and traction,” according to Nike. James, meanwhile, will offer up a black ad white version of his own Hot Lava sneakers.

Priced at $130, the Agassi sneakers are dropping May 24 at 10 a.m. Cop ’em here and get your Memorial Day weekend started off right. Since Nike has re-released the Hot Lavas before, it’s safe to say people will be clamoring to snatch these up pretty fast. LeBron’s tribute to the tennis shoes ($200) also drop tomorrow, and will probably make it to the secondary market by noon.

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