Kevin Love is averaging 18 points and 11 rebounds in the NBA Finals while shooting 43 percent from three-point range. His defense, which has long been considered a weak spot, has been passible—at times it has even been good! Kevin Love is a very talented basketball player. But is he have-his-own-logo good?
That logo, which appears on the tongue of the 2016 Hyperdunk sneakers that Love is wearing in the finals, was designed by Nike’s Darien Birks. In an interview with Yahoo Sports, Birks explained where he came up with the idea to deploy the letters K and L in this fashion:
[T]he logo celebrates Love’s late-game defensive stops in last year’s finals, while also paying homage to growing up just outside Portland, Oregon.
“Kevin wanted the mark to embody a few things,” Birks said. “He wanted something that suggested his style of play as a high-energy, two-way player, his family and his strong foundation growing up in Oregon—hence the iconic Douglas fir. Finally, he wanted it to be bold, recognizable and timeless.”
Bold. Recognizable. Timeless. Tree. Love.
Not to rag on Kevin Love, who, you’ll recall, I went out of my way to praise in the first paragraph, but one great defensive possession against Steph Curry does not make you a “high-energy, two-way player.”
The bigger picture here is that we are in serious danger of reaching athlete logo saturation. Roger Federer gets one because he’s the best tennis player ever. The logo-having Tiger Woods was also the best at golf, back when he used to play golf. Tom Brady and LeBron James—you are also deserving of logos. Carmelo Anthony, meanwhile, gets a logo because design software is cheap and easy to use.
And Kevin Love? Look, it’s not his fault that Nike gave him a logo. But one of these days we’re going to run out of logos. What if the next Michael Jordan is a kid named Krayden Lewinski who currently lives in a fir tree? When Krayden starts breaking NBA records and racking up three-peats, how is Nike going to explain why there are no more logos left to give? “Sorry Krayden, but there was this stretch four on the Cavs back in the twenty-teens …”