About L.A. Gear
One of the original athletes to endorse L.A. Gear shoes was NBA player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who ended a long association with Adidas to sign with the upstart company toward the end of his playing career.
Other NBA players to wear the brand were Karl Malone and Hakeem Olajuwon. San Francisco 49ers quarterback Joe Montana signed an endorsement deal with L.A. Gear in 1990 after working with Mizuno for most of his career and quickly became the company’s feature athlete.
Hockey star Wayne Gretzky was also signed as an endorser while he was still playing with the Los Angeles Kings, and eventually would have his own line of street hockey shoes before his endorsement contract expired.
In addition to Abdul-Jabbar several other NBA stars wore L.A. Gear shoes, perhaps the most notable being Karl Malone who appeared in several commercials for the brand beginning in the early 1990s. Hakeem Olajuwon was another L.A. Gear-endorsed basketball player who after being signed stayed with the brand until 1994 when he was contracted by Spalding to endorse a line of basketball shoes with his name and number.
History L.A. Gear
Unlike other athletic shoe companies of the day L.A. Gear was not averse to going outside of sports to find endorsement contracts. One of the earliest celebrities to sign an endorsement deal with the company was singer Belinda Carlisle, who appeared in a series of print ads for L.A.
Gear when the brand first began to become popular (as seen in this ad). Two of the most notable celebrities to endorse the shoes were Michael Jackson, who promoted shoes for both men and women, and Paula Abdul, who was signed away from Reebok in 1991 and whose shoe became one of the biggest sellers of the early 1990s.