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Grammy-winning artist unveils new Nike Cortez collaboration

American rapper and songwriter reveals the Kendrick Lamar x Nike Cortez “Kenny”

Kendrick Lamar

American rapper and songwriter Kendrick Lamar revealed a collaboration with Nike of the Cortez, the sportswear brand’s original running shoe first unveiled in 1972.

The Nike Cortez, in this case, features a red and white colourway and reads “don’t trip” across the laces. The basic look of the Cortez, which was relaunched in recent years, has remained largely unchanged since its beginnings in the early 70s when it was first created by Nike co-founder Bill Bowerman, the coach of the Steve Prefontaine. (Bowerman also designed the Waffle Racer.)


The Cortez is considered one of the cornerstones of the sportswear giant’s success as it revolutionized the running shoe.

The partnership, the Kendrick Lamar x Nike Cortez “Kenny,” received mixed reviews on social media with some praising the design and colourway while others have claimed that it resembles a bowling shoe. Lamar, who won a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album in 2015, showed off the collaboration for the first time on Monday at the Staples Centre in Los Angeles during the NBA jersey retirement of Kobe Bryant.