Mexico City has long been floated as the possible location for an NBA expansion team, and last night the city’s basketball dreams briefly became a reality, when the scrappy Atlanta Hawks faced off against an up-and-coming Orlando Magic team whose surprising 4-3 start to the season has shown flashes of promise. The Hawks took the win thanks to an impressive go-ahead three from Dejounte Murray in the final 30 seconds of the game, but it was the 41-point clinic put on by superstar Trae Young that got them there—the ice-cold point guard was shooting lights out all evening.
Nor was his statline the only thing that made an impression. After strutting into the Arena CDMX wearing the jersey of Mexican soccer star Santiago Gimenez—sure to guarantee the crowd’s support from the jump—Ice Trae stepped onto the court in an eye-catching variation on his new signature sneakers, the Trae Young 3. This vibrantly multicolored twist on the silhouette paid loving tribute to Mexican culture with a bright wash of reds and greens and huge Mexican sugar skull front and center. It was Dia De Los Muertos style taken to the extreme, and he couldn’t have chosen a better time to wear it.
There’s no word yet as to whether this was a custom one-of-one made just for Trae for Mexico City or whether we can expect to see this colorway on store shelves soon. But he’s not the first basketball star to put out a Dia De Los Muertos shoe with Adidas. Derek Rose, Damian Lillard, and Donovan Mitchell each have had special-edition “Day of the Dead” versions of their signature sneakers released by the German sports brand over the years, typically boasting similar colors and the same style of sugar skull branding. Whether we can take this one home soon or not, it’s clearly one of the best shoes we’ve seen on court all season so far.