Utah Jazz: Kicks kickback? Marvin Williams eschews new shoes
Scott G Winterton, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — One Utah Jazz player after another came out of shootaround Saturday morning sporting shoes fit for a St. Patrick's Day celebration.
While the annual Irish-approved parade rolled nearby outside, Al Jefferson, Mo Williams and Gordon Hayward each had green shoes on inside of EnergySolutions Arena.
Marvin Williams and his white low-top sneakers snapped the streak.
"No, not me," the Jazz forward said. "They sent me some green ones, but they weren't the ones that I normally wear."
Yes, about that.
Unlike the vast majority of NBA players, Williams really gets attached to his shoes.
"I don't really like wearing new shoes," Williams said. "I've been wearing the same shoes I have for the past few months."
That is very rare for these professional athletes whose sweet shoe deals allow them to change their footwear as frequently as they'd like.
"He's unique in that area in the modern-day game," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said. "That's a little different way to approach it."
For comparison sake, Corbin said he changed his basketball shoes a couple of times a month.
"I didn't like changing a lot because I couldn't wear new shoes to play in," Corbin said. "So I would make sure that I broke the shoes in practice before." Mo Williams is more in the NBA norm.
"He'll go the whole year if he can," the Jazz point guard said of the other Williams. "I can't go probably about two or three games."
Mo Williams, like Corbin, prefers to have the shoes fit tightly on his feet. Once they start to break in too much, they get too loose for his liking.
"I move around too much in my shoes, so I have to change mine," he said. "I'm not too comfortable playing three or four games."
Marvin Williams hopes to keep this same pair until the Jazz season ends and they're "completely done." He'll then donate the well-used pair to a friend who's put dibs on them.
"I'm very close to them," he said, smiling. "I'll probably finish the season out in them. I don't like putting on new shoes because they make my feet hurt."
Williams knows this is unusual.
"I've had guys that change them every few games. I've had teammates who change them at halftime," he said. "It just depends on how you feel."
After answering a question about previous shooting slumps this season, Marvin Williams laughed.
"Maybe it's the shoes," he said, smiling. "I don't want to change them and find out."
Which raises a question: Any lingering effect in the locker room with these old shoes?
Mo Williams chuckled when asked.
"It's not a conversation," he said.
JAZZ NOTES: A female fan ended up with a bloody face — and received medical attention — after Jazz center Enes Kanter crashed into her after leaping out of bounds to try to chase down a loose ball in the first half of the Utah-Memphis game. The team wore its alternate green uniforms, adding to the festive feel of the St. Patrick's Day weekend. Corbin on one reason why he needed to change shoes a couple of times a month: "My feet sweat a lot."
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