In 1949, PRO-Keds was established by Keds as an athletic footwear line primarily aimed at basketball. Originally released as the "Royal Tread," the first PRO-Keds product was the classic Royal, a canvas basketball shoe in high and low tops featuring a distinctive red and blue power stripe adjacent to the toe. It was worn and endorsed by the Minneapolis Lakers, the first NBA Champions who won five consecutive titles in PRO-Keds. Over time, new styles were added across the categories of baseball, football, tennis, and track and field. Materials utilizing exclusive shock-absorbent support and cushioning techniques were developed to keep pace with the rapid advancements in footwear technology. The Royal was the market leader in performance basketball through the '70s, gracing the feet of famous NBA stars including Willis Reed, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and "Pistol" Pete Maravich. By the Late '70s, PRO-Keds had become synonymous with some of the biggest personalities in basketball history and professional sports, while attaining cult status as the first real sneaker with style among New York City's early hip hop community. The '90s saw PRO-Keds flourish in Japan, where the tennis shoe, the Court King, was re- worked in vibrant toe cap colors, special materials and limited edition prints. Many of these items are highly sought after by collectors. Today, PRO-Keds has reissued the classic Royal Canvas, the Court King and the historic Royal Master basketball shoe. Stocked by leading shoe retailers across the world, PRO-Keds will progressively release authentic sports originals.