The Los Angeles Lakers may have had a lackluster season, but LeBron James’s watch game has been on point.
The four-time NBA champ, who has been spotted wearing everything from a Patek Philippe Nautilus with the coveted Tiffany dial to Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak Concept “Black Panther,” busted another extraordinary piece of AP wrist candy for the Laker’s game against the Phoenix Suns last Tuesday.
The timepiece in question is one of the 11 new Royal Oaks designed in honor of the model’s 50th anniversary. Unfortunately, it didn’t bring the four-time NBA champ (or his team) any luck on the court. With James on the bench due to a lingering ankle injury, the Lakers were defeated 121-110 by the Suns and officially eliminated from playoff contention.
The watch is definitely worth a few style points, though. Known officially as the Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin Ref. 16202, the 39 mm timepiece was unveiled in January as the successor to Ref. 15202. Fit for a king—or the King, rather—this particular model has a case and bracelet made from regal yellow gold. It also sports a striking “smoked” Petite Tapisserie dial whose golden center gradually fades to black at the perimeter. This was achieved via a galvanic bath process that involved spraying colored varnish on the rotating dial’s outer edge.
The next-gen design houses a new extra-thin Caliber 7121 in place of the original Caliber 2121. This is actually the first time since 1972 that the model has been fitted with a new self-winding movement. The new, larger mechanism, which measures 3.2 mm, features a rapid date-corrector and a larger barrel with more power for more precise timekeeping over a longer period of time. In fact, the watch boasts 55 hours of power reserve.
Five years in the making, the new movement also has bidirectional winding and a balance wheel fit with inertia blocks to avoid unnecessary friction. To top it off, it’s finished to high-horology standards with Côtes de Genève, Traits Tirés and circular graining clearly visible through the caseback.
There’s no doubt the $70,500 wristwatch is a winner, even if the Lakers aren’t this season.
Check out a video of the watch below: