Kawhi Leonard’s Return to California Inspires New Balance’s ‘First Light’ OMN1S

The first sneaker NBA star Kawhi Leonard laced up on the court after signing with New Balance, the OMN1S, is hitting stores next month with a bright new look.

The sportswear brand will deliver in July the OMN1S “First Light,” the featured sneaker in the second part of a two-part collection created to celebrate Leonard’s return home to California, this time as a member of the Los Angeles Clippers. It is a follow-up to the brand’s “Sundown” collection that also featured the OMN1S, which released in March and was a nod to the drive all baller’s have to play from sunrise to sunset.

The “First Light” OMN1S, according to New Balance, was made to capture the state’s “summertime hoops culture, the sunny vibes, and youthful energy and passion.” The mismatched shoe features a bright orange hue on the left shoe and a bold yellow hue on the right. Both sneakers have black “N” branding on the upper and are completed with black midsoles and outsoles.

Aside from the OMN1S, the “First Light” collection will feature new-look iterations of the brand’s 997 and 850 models.

NTWRK app-users will have first access to the New Balance “First Light” collection on July 7, and following the exclusive launch it can be purchased via Newbalance.com on July 9. The OMN1S will retail for $140 and both the 850 and the 997 will come with $110 price tags.

New Balance OMN1S First Light
Another look at the New Balance OMN1S “First Light,” releasing in July 2020.
CREDIT: Courtesy

Leonard signed with New Balance in November 2018, defecting from his longtime Jordan Brand home. The OMN1S was the first court-ready sneaker from New Balance that the two-time NBA champion laced up until he debuted his signature sneaker, dubbed the Kawhi, during 2020 NBA All-Star Weekend in Chicago.

Although Leonard is the highest profile basketball player New Balance has signed, the company has since also inked other respected ballers including Darius Bazley and Dejounte Murray.

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