LeBron James Practices for Game 5 of the NBA Finals in $5,000 Nike Sneakers

LeBron James
LeBron James.
Rex Shutterstock

It remains to be seen if LeBron James and his Cleveland Cavaliers will win the NBA championship for the second consecutive year, but judging by the superstar baller’s sneakers of choice during a Sunday practice, he’s got his eyes on the throne.

Fitting for his “King James” nickname, the 2016 Finals MVP wore one of his rarest sneakers to prepare for Game 5: the “Watch the Throne” Nike LeBron 9 from 2012.

Designed to commemorate the joint album of the same name between rappers Jay Z and Kanye West, the “Watch the Throne” LeBron sneakers are about as rare as it gets. Only a handful of pairs are said to have been produced, with James, Jay Z and West being three of the lucky recipients.

Because the sneaker never found its way to retail — and because it was directly tied to one of the biggest athletes in sports and two of the most influential artists in hip-hop — its aftermarket value has been among the highest of any LeBron sneaker. The most recent listing at consignment store Flight Club has the sneakers priced at $5,000, while a size 11.5 pair is available from StockX for the same price.

Nike LeBron 9 Watch the Throne Nike LeBron 9 “Watch the Throne” Flight Club

James and the Cavaliers will face the Golden State Warriors for Game 5 of the NBA Finals tonight at 9 p.m. ET from Oakland’s Oracle Arena. The Cavaliers face a must-win situation, down 3-1 as the Warriors look to clench their fifth NBA title and second since 2015.

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