// : 2015 Easter Basketball Collection : // Nike vs. adidas

With Easter weekend upon us, it’s nothing new to see Easter themed basketball footwear from the likes of Nike and adidas. Easter is an official sneaker holiday in the NBA and brands have really begun to take full advantage of the spotlight. Over the past few years now, various brands have dipped into the Easter themed pastel color palette to celebrate the holiday. This year, both Nike and adidas go head to head for the Easter spotlight for their respective signature athletes.

For this years Nike Basketball Easter Collection (which released this past Thursday, 4/2/15 at major retailers) features four models: the KD 7 “Easter”, LeBron 12 “Easter”, Kobe X “Easter”, and new to the pack is the Kyrie 1 “Easter”. This years Easter collection is more like the 2014 Christmas collection, in that each pair of the collection has a different story and color behind the inspiration of the shoe. Inspiration for each shoe ranges for each shoe, from modern street art for the KD 7 “Easter”, to the color of a robin’s egg for the Kobe X “Easter”. The LeBron 12 takes inspiration from a Spring floral print with hints of baby blue and pinkish orange.

Take a look below at the Nike Basketball 2015 Easter Collection:

Nike Basketball 2015 Easter Collection

Nike Basketball 2015 Easter Collection


Nike LeBron 12 “Easter”, $200


Nike Kobe 10 “Easter”, $180


Nike KD 7 “Easter”, $150


Nike Kyrie 1 “Easter”, $110

As for adidas Basketball, who is relatively new to the Easter theme, the brand decorated their three signature athletes Damian Lillard, John Wall, and Derrick Rose all with Easter egg themed footwear. Unlike Nike’s pack, the adidas Easter themed collection all go with the same mint and solar blue color ways and will not be hitting retail, but rather are Player Exclusives only for the athletes. Take a look at the shoes below and be sure to leave a comment with which brand you think did a better job on their Easter collections.

adidas Basketball 2015 Easter Collection

adidas Basketball 2015 Easter Collection

adidas D. Lillard 1 "Easter"

adidas D Lillard 1 “Easter”

adidas D Rose 5 Boost "Easter"

adidas D Rose 5 Boost “Easter”

adidas J Wall 1 "Easter"

adidas J Wall 1 “Easter”



// : adidas D Lillard 1 : //

adidas-d-lillard-1-header This Friday (February 6th), adidas Basketball is officially welcoming Portland Trailblazers point guard Damian Lillard to the ‘signature shoe’ family from adidas and is set to release the adidas D Lillard 1 nationwide. Lillard, who had the live launch party for his signature shoe in mid January at adidas America HQ in Portland, Oregon, was all smiles as the brand celebrated the big day with guests such as rapper Future and media from all of your favorite footwear blogs. If you remember, I voiced my opinion about Lillard and how he deserved his own signature shoe from adidas Basketball back in May of 2014 (which you can view HERE) and I’m really glad to see that brand is moving forward with Lillard. Lillard is now the fourth active signature athlete for adidas Basketball, joining John Wall, Derrick Rose, and Dwight Howard. (images via: Sole Collector, adidas Basketball, and Casey Holdahl).

Lillard at the launch party of his signature shoe

Lillard at the launch party of his signature shoe

Screen Shot 2015-02-03 at 2.47.07 PM   D Lillard 1 Rip City Detail 1 (D68974) Horizontal

For the creation of Lillard’s logo, the design team wanted to represent all four O’s in his life: Oakland, for being Dame’s hometown, Ogden, to represent Ogden, Utah and Weber State where he went to college at, and Oregon, where he currently resides, and to also represent the #0 that he wears.

Lillard 1 Logo

Lillard 1 Logo



As for the design aspects of the D Lillard 1, the shoe comes in a low-top cut form and features a full-length adiprene+ for cushioning and TECHFIT tongue and inner booty for premium comfort and stability. One of the first things you will notice about the shoe is the absence of adidas new wave technology, BOOST. First introduced in the running market of adidas Running, BOOST made its way onto adidas Basketball product in late 2014, being featured on the adidas Crazy Light BOOST, which retailed for $139.99. Although Lillard was the main promoter for the new Crazy Light BOOST and played in it for the beginning of the 2014-2015 NBA season, it was left off of his first signature shoe for pricing. Lillard realized the cost of implementing BOOST on his shoe and decided he wanted to keep the pricing lower for all of his fans to afford his shoe (which is priced at a smooth $105). A respectable move to Lillard and adidas Basketball. Lillard has voiced his love for BOOST on adidas product and expect to see it implemented going forward on his signature products from adidas. His shoe will do just fine without BOOST, in my opinion though. Adiprene+ is a good cushioning setup that adidas has to offer which will give Lilalrd the propulsion and ‘spring’ feel he needs. The technology is used mostly in adidas running footwear and basketball footwear, and has stood the length of time since first introduced by the brand.

adidas D Lillard 1 tech info

adidas D Lillard 1 tech info

The shoe was designed by adidas Basketball Design Director Robbie Fuller, who has been with the brand for some years and has a previous record for designing some of Derrick Rose’s shoes from adidas Basketball. The shoe was designed by Dame’s relentless attitude and love for the game. “We designed every aspect of this shoe to compliment Dame’s play on the court,” said Robbie Fuller, adidas Basketball Design Director (SoleCollector, 1/13/15). With Lillard playing for the Portland Trailblazers, and adidas having their adidas America Head Quarters in Portland, Lillard was able to have a very hands on feel during the whole design process. Usually what happens is when adidas signature Basketball athletes are in town to play the Trailblazers, designers will often have to set up times to meet up while the player is in town very briefly, maybe a day or two (outside of the the already scheduled meetings the athlete has with the brand ahead of time). That wasn’t the case with Lillard though, who was very vocal with his designers and would often go over to the brands HQ before/after practice and text his team of designers about anything he felt would help the process of his shoe. adidas is very lucky to have a guy like Lillard to be right in the same city as their HQ’s, which makes for an all around easier process from all aspects of creating a signature shoe for a big time athlete.

Robbie Fuller's initial sketch of the D Lillard 1 for Damian Lillard.

Robbie Fuller’s initial sketch of the D Lillard 1 for Damian Lillard.

Robbie Fuller D Lillard 1 sketch

Robbie Fuller D Lillard 1 sketch

Robbie Fuller D Lillard 1 sketch

Robbie Fuller D Lillard 1 sketch

Another cool aspect of the D Lillard 1 was how Lillard himself debuted the shoe on social media. Unlike other shoe brands who often times try to keep their signature shoes ‘under wraps’ and away from being leaked, adidas Basketball let Dame leak the shoe in mid October, four months ahead of the official launch and debut it on his personal Instagram with his famous #4barFriday posts where he raps a few lines and posts it to Instagram with the hashtag #4barfriday to interact with his fans. Instagram has become the common platform for brands to connect and interact with their fans and adidas wanted to give Lillard the ‘ultimate amount of control’ when it came time to show off the shoe to his fans. A very unconventional route, but will this be a new way we see brands interact in 2015?


Lilllard wearing the D Lillard 1 in white/red for warmups of a Trailblazers home game


Lilllard wearing the D Lillard 1 in white/red for warmups of a Trailblazers home game

The D Lillard 1 will hit retail February 6th for $105 at adidas.com and at Foot Locker in three different colorways. The shoe is also available for purchase on miadidas.com, adidas very own custom platform and will sell for $125.

// : Top 50 shoes of 2014 : //

With all of the thousands of shoe releases that come out in one year, it can be tough to keep up every weekend from various brands. For this post, I let a good friend of mine, Nick Soyer, go ahead and do a guest post with his ‘Top 50 Kicks of 2014’. With 2015 now upon us, lets take a look back at some of the top 50 shoes from 2014. Like any subjective list, this is all Nick’s opinion but I hope you enjoy it none-the-less.

Make sure to check out Nick on twitter at @OswaldSoy and on Instagram at @sneaksoy and hit him up with a follow! (Nick ranked his top 50 from 1-50). How do you think he did ranking the top shoes of 2014? Let your opinion be known in the comments below.

  1. New Balance 997

I sort’ve cheated when it comes to my #1 as I would’ve clogged my top 50 with so many 997 it would have felt repetitive. So I’m putting them all at #1. The 997 was just reintroduced in its original form at the beginning of 2014 and has provided steady and stunning colorways all year long. It’s the perfect running shoe, Made in USA, more cushioning than I can even desire, and multiple high-quality materials on each pair from pigskin suede to leather lining to 3M hits when you least expect them. These are just a flat-out phenomenal pair of shoes

If I had to rank the 997 colorways, I’d have to go with : 1. PR (black) 2. GY (grey) 3. DBR(dark brown) 4. Concepts “Rose” and 5. NV (navy)

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  1. Air Jordan XI low “Concord”

Three Jordan’s in my top 5 in the year that I really started to move away from basketball shoes and more into runners? While the market may be oversaturated with new colorways and retro releases every weekend, Jordan continues to slip us a few classics. The Concord XI is one of my favorite three shoes of all-time and a low top version that MJ wore to celebrate his first championship back from retirement? Well, I guess that warrants a place at #2. Iconic.

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  1. Lance Mountain x NikeSB x Jordan 1 High

A Jordan 1 for the skaters that embraced the shoe back in 1985. The paint-scraping-away effect to reveal asymmetric colorways underneath is awesome, especially since it’s the classic Black/Red and Black/Royal colorways. These are one of the coolest shoes from Nike SB or Jordan Brand in a long time.

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  1. Ronnie Fieg x Filling Pieces Quilted RF Mid Pack

Filling Pieces came on strong in 2014 and the quilted pack collaboration with Kith were their best offerings of the year. Top notch leathers, quilted upper, clean and classic colorways. Not even my bitterness towards Aaron can stop me from putting these top 5. I could wear each pair from this pack and never really another pair of shoes for about any occasion.

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  1. Air Jordan Retro VI Black/Infrared

MJ won his first championship wearing these shoes. That’s about all I really have to say. Classics. Jordan’s best Black Friday release to date.

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  1. Nike Kobe IX Elite Low HTM

A pack of four black and white based Kobe IX lows, the HTM models featured a multi-colored flyknit pattern on the medial side that is different on every pair. Seriously though, white and multi-colored flyknit upper on a gum bottom with speckled carbon fiber? HTM continues to be killer.

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  1. J. Crew x New Balance 998 “Independence Day”

Another 998 that is just clean and extremely well executed. Made in the USA so you know the quality is there, and the USA is well represented through the red and blue colorway done by J. Crew just in time for the July 4th festivities this past year.

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  1. Afew x Kangaroos Coil R-1 “Peanut Butter”

This is about as good of leather as you can get on a running sneaker. New Balance tried with its Horween 998 this year but this collab between Germany’s Afew and Kangaroos makes me drool. Guesis it’s the peanut butter influence. We need Kangaroos to start bringing some of these ultra-premium releases over to the United States.

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  1. Ronnie Fieg x Asics Gel Lyte V “Sage”

I really should move these down the list after I had my order for this GLV cancelled from the “Kithmas” restock. Kith customer service is awful and I’m salty about not getting a pair, but the combination of materials and a new colorway that somehow tip-toes between feminine and perfect lands the Sage in my top 10. Damn you Aaron.

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  1. Nike Air Yeezy II “Red October”

Like it or not, this shoe is the most influential sneaker in the past 5 years. Kanye’s last shoe with Nike. Let your inner hypebeast come out and embrace the Red October’s. Just do it.

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  1. Hender Scheme MIP-10

They’re not Jordan IV’s. They’re better. Hender Scheme has become notorious for taking (whether you think it’s a violation of copyright or not) classic styles and doing them in the highest-quality leathers, all handmade atop a leather midsole. These aren’t your dad’s Jordan IV’s.

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  1. Hanon x Diadora N9000 “Saturday Special”

If you like high-quality materials on your sneakers… Well you need a pair of Saturday Specials. I wasn’t sold on the colorway at first but the burgundy and light blue combination is as flames as the Hanon logo. I wish the United States could have gotten a wider taste of this release.

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  1. Offspring x Saucony Shadow 6000

The best Saucony collaboration of the year, both colorways perfectly blend the neutral grey and navy bases with just the right amount of pop with the pink dots in the logo, and the suede on these is as buttery as any release this year. These just hit on every level, Offspring nailed this collab.

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  1. Air Jordan Future

I really liked what Jordan Brand did by taking a causal woven upper and putting it on the iconic Jordan XI midsole/outsole. The result is one excellent relaxing shoe with basketball roots and a little bit of a luxury feel. The black/clear sole colorway done exclusively for the Jordan Brand Classic is incredible with gold strands running through the middle of the weave. Must be nice to be good at hoops.

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  1. Nike Air Command Force “Billy Hoyle”

Made famous on the court by David Robinson in 1990 and on the big-screen by Woody Harrelson in “White Men Can’t Jump”, I have a soft spot for an original high-top worn by one of my all-time favorite movie characters. I can’t dunk anymore but it’s alright cause Billy can’t jump either.

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  1. Nike Air Tech Challenge “Open Pack”

More retro fever, this time in a classic Andre Agassi model done in premium materials and colorway significant to each major tennis championship. All-around awesome pack.

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  1. Anteater x Saucony Jazz Original “Sea & Sand”

One of the simplest collaborations of 2014, Saucony went to Russia to team up with Anteater to bring back the Jazz Original model with baby’s-butt-soft suede on the toebox and a blue nylon upper. The colors contrast perfectly, just like an ocean and beach after which they were modeled.

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  1. Adidas ZX Flux Prism

The ZX flux became a hit in 2014, almost like Adidas’s answer to Nike’s Roshe Run. Much like the Roshe lends itself to taking on some exotic patterns, this ZX Flux manages to be colorful and loud while still being refined in a way that allows it to be wearable on an everyday basis. Instant classic material.

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19.Premier x Saucony Shadow 6000 “Life on Mars”

Saucony and space themes seemed to go hand-in-hand this year. Michigan’s Premier crushed it with this pair of Shadow 6000 that bring the red planet into sneaker for. The red toe on the grey/black/red pair is stunning, just like the suede used on this collab.

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  1. Capsule x New Balance MT580 “Canadian Tuxedo”

I needed some denim shoes in my life and Capsule brought the heat with their spin on the MT580. Drawing from their Canadian roots to feature a “Canadian tuxedo” all-denim upper on a “maple syrup” outsole with wool-inspired laces, these scream Canada and I love when a shop can really relay themselves through a single shoe.

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  1. Air Jordan XI “Legend Blue”

I’ll always call these Columbias. Call them what you want, but they’ll still be called a classic. More NBA nostalgia as Mike first debuted these in the 1996 All-Star game. White patent leather? Sheesh. Tinker, Mike and Nike were ahead of their time with these beauties.

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  1. Concepts x Brooks Chariot “Merlot”

Brooks? What are those? I barely knew Brooks had a backlog of classic running styles until Concepts decked out the Chariot model in a suede with colors of grapes and wine with the light blue overlay to give this shoe a little character. Concepts continued to kill it with their runner collabs.

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  1. Fragment x Air Jordan 1

I tried to cop and failed but even that bitterness can’t stop me from appreciating this original-vibe but new-colorway version of the AJ1, done up in premium materials in conjunction with Japan’s Fragment design.

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  1. Highs & Lows x Le Coq Sportif R1000

French sneaker brand, Australian retailer, American fan. Girls lust for the red bottoms we associate with Louboutin but sneakerheads everywhere fell in love with the red toe on in this limited runner. Another release that I wish would have made it to the United States as these are hot.

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  1. Ronnie Fieg x Clarks Kildare

I’m a little frustrated with Ronnie Fieg right now (we’ll get to that later) but this new Clarks model he created is awesome. With a bit of a Wallabees-meet-sneakers vibe yet still set on a crepe sole, Ronnie finally gave us another taste of the salmon toe colorway first seen on the classic Gel Lyte III. These scream casual Friday in the best way possible.

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  1. Offspring x Asics Gel Lyte V

At first I thought I hated this GLV collaboration, but after I saw some of the details it was a wrap. The nappy tan suede, smooth purple nubuck, and most of all the asymmetric tiger stripes featuring pink outlined in white on the lateral side and white outlined in pink of the medial. I wish I would have realized early enough to get a pair for retail.

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  1. Nike KD VII NSW Lifestyle

I never liked any of the “lifestyle” iterations of Nike’s most popular signature basketball shoes (Kobe, Lebron, & KD) up until the KD VII NSW Lifestyle. The first release in the hazelnut colorway had a distinctly moccasin feel but this all-red pair really highlighted the design with the most popular colorway from 2014. Count me in on this all-red shoe.

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  1. Puma Suede Angora

More luxury materials, this time from Puma on their most classic Suede model. Each pair was handcrafted in Japan and it shows in the detail and craftsmanship on this pair. Quality comes at a price though, as these retailed for just under 5x as much as a standard pair of Puma Suede.

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  1. Overkill x Kangaroos Coil R-1 “Wine Pack”

A collaboration that many didn’t even know about, Kangaroos came together with German retailer Overkill to release an extremely limited run of these exceptional leather Coil R-1. Good luck finding a pair as just over 50 were released and only in Germany. Talk about quality materials.

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  1. Air Jordan Retro 1 “Jeter”

Derek Jeter was my favorite athlete when I was a kid, all the way back to when I played t-ball at the YMCA and my team was the Yankees and I fought over getting the #2. A solid Jordan 1 with the famous Yankee pinstripes, these hold as much sentimental value for the Captain as they do for their clean looks.

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  1. Patta x Diadora N9000 “9”

Diadora burst into the running market in 2014 thanks in large part (well, thanks entirely) to its collaboration releases with shops like 24 Kilates, Hanon, and Patta. The Italian brand stuck to its roots with this quality offering inspired by the famous #9’s that have played for the home soccer club, AC Milan.

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  1. Nike Air Max 93 Retro “Menthol”

Just another original colorway from a classic Nike runner. Less heralded than its older brothers the Air Max 1 and Air Max 90, the Air Max 93 still comes correct in classic colorways like this menthol-blue version.

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  1. New Balance 998 “Pool Blue”

Just a simple, well-done, ultra-smooth 998 that showcases buttery soft suede and 3m hits in one of New Balance’s most classic silhouettes.

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  1. Supreme x Nike Air Force 1 High

Call me a hypebeast, but three clean and simple AF1 high colorways topped off with bold lettering on the heel is New York City. It’s Supreme. These are dope plain and simple.

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  1. Nike Huarache Light “Ultramarine”

Huarache’s made a comeback this year thanks in large part to the Huarache Run, but this original Air Huarache Light colorway also snuck its way back over the summer. Ultramarine is hot but these didn’t manage to make it across the pond unfortunately as size? and other UK retailers were the only ones to get them in stock.

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  1. Adidas Stan Smith Consortium

Adidas brought the Stan Smith back to the forefront of the market this year, started by these four high-end Consortium releases featuring premium leather, reptile, ostrich, & cracked leather. A first-class twist to an ultimate tennis court classic.

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  1. Extra Butter x Saucony Shadow Master “Space Snack”

Part of the “Space Race” pack from Extra Butter, these neopolitan, dehydrogenated-ice cream-inspired Shadow Master’s were the best offering in 2014 from a shop that consistently nails execution of their collaboration themes. I think I’m hungry now.

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  1. Nike Footscape Woven Motion “University Blue”

An under-the-radar spring release, the Footscape woven has always been a bit of a cult-like classic. This offering used light blue as a base for the rainbow weave that managed to catch your eye without being too flamboyant. And they look even better on foot.

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  1. Nike Air Flight Huarache

I like retro basketball sneakers. And although I can’t say I got to watch the Fab Five in person, black socks, baggy shorts, and Flight Huaraches were all gifts from the fabled Michigan freshman. Can’t beat the original “Lyon blue and bold berry” colorway.

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  1. Bodega x Gel Lyte V “Wet Pack”

Gel Lyte V collaborations ruled the sneaker landscape in 2014 and this beefed up pack from Bodega brought a little more versatility to the arsenal. Goretex provides a material perfectly suited for rainy days, these are the antidote to every sneakerhead’s venom – rainy days.

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  1. New Balance P740 Worthy

New Balance jumped into the retro basketball sneaker segment by digging in the vault back to 1985 for the signature sneaker of former #1 pick James Worthy. I loved pretty much every colorway in these, from the simple and classic white and black offering to the all purple suede with yellow satin lining “Purple Reign” iteration from Packer Shoes.

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  1. Fragment x Nike Roshe Run LD-1000 SP

Fragment closed 2014 with another sneaker you’ll see a little further up the list, but this modernized take on the original Nike Cortez model was a perfect combination between classic upper styling and the new beloved Roshe midsole.

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  1. Air Jordan Retro 1 KO “Rivalry Pack”

Representing the NCAA champions from 1983 and 1984, the AJKO rivalry pack brought together two classic university colorways on the canvas brother to the infamous Air Jordan 1.

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  1. Nike Mercurial Superfly HTM

The whole world had World Cup fever this summer from Brazil, and Nike piggy-backed on that excitement to create a street-ready sneaker based on the design of their World Cup soccer boots. Too bad these were tough to get like most HTM releases.

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  1. Wings & Horns x New Balance 580

A simple and premium collaboration between Canadian retailer Wings & Horns and New Balance provides an all-black upper mixing leather and suede. Sometimes less is more and in this case that holds true.

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  1. Concepts x Asics Gel Lyte V “Pistachio”

2014 was the year of the collaboration. This pair from Concepts and Asics followed up the release of the “Ember” GLV and was even more limited, leading to some overrated hype but with the tan/green/purple combo highlighted by purple 3m stripes on the medial, this collab was well-executed.

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  1. Nike N7 Free Inneva Woven

Most people only know the Free Inneva for being worn by Kanye when first debuted in back in 2012, but this offering as part of this year’s N7 collection was one of the best iterations yet. A grey-to-black fade within the woven pattern complimented with a gold heel counter give these a place in my top 50 of 2014.

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  1. Nike Air Max Lunar1 Burnished

The Lunar1 made a splash this year with some original colorways and a lighter, softer midsole, but it was this premium offering with the burnished leather uppers that really caught my eye. Too bad they weren’t more widely available in the United States.

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  1. Converse CONS Aero Jam

Larry Johnson, 1994, Charlotte Hornets, Grandmama. Finally a true retro to one of the coolest 90s basketball sneakers.

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  1. Saucony Grid 9000 Premium “Three Dots Pack”

Saucony had an extremely strong year and it all got started with the Three Dots pack. Buttery charcoal suede, gum bottoms, and contrasting light blue dots in the logo made these one of the best releases from early in 2014. These were so nice they ended up being my first Saucony purchase.

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// : Christmas Day Kicks Around the NBA : //

The tradition of the NBA playing on Christmas Day continued this year and as always, brands took full advantage of it to give their select endorsed athletes special Player Exclusives (P.E.’s) for Christmas Day games. With star athletes such as Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, and Chris Bosh out due to injury, many other athletes from various brands carried the torch for fresh Christmas Day kicks.

Nike, Jordan Brand, and adidas all did their respective Christmas pack editions, while other brands such as Under Armour, Li Ning, and Reebok also joined in on the fun.

Nike Basketball went with a darker shade of green and red for their Christmas edition shoes for non signature athletes, as well as a white version with green and red colors included. For their signature collection, Kevin Durant, LeBron James, and Kobe Bryant all got their own exclusive Christmas version of their shoes. adidas Basketball went with the ‘Bad Dreams’ theme for their signature athletes, John Wall, Derrick Rose, as well as the other adidas Basketball members.

Scroll down to see more photos from Christmas Day kicks. Images via SoleCollector.


Under Armour Clutch Fit Stephen Curry Christmas Edition


Aaron Brooks Nike Zoom Run The One Christmas PE


Nike Kobe 9 Elite Red Knit Christmas Day PE


Nike Kyrie 1 Christmas Day PE


Nike Soldier VIII Christmas Day PE


Pau Gasol Nike Hyperdunk 2014 Christmas Day PE


JR Smith Nike Zoom Run The One Christmas Day PE


Nike Zoom LeBron XII Christmas Day ‘Akron Birch’ PE


Iman Shumpert adidas Crazy 2 ‘Bad Dreams’ Christmas Day PE


adidas D Rose 5 Boost ‘Bad Dreams’ Christmas day PE


adidas Crazylight Boost ‘Bad Dreams’ Christmas Day PE


adidas John Wall 1 ‘Bad Dreams’ Christmas Day PE

NBA: Cleveland Cavaliers at Miami Heat

Luol Deng Nike Lunar Hyperquickness Christmas Day PE

NBA: Cleveland Cavaliers at Miami Heat

Norris Cole Nike Soldier VIII Christmas Day Pe


Paul Pierce Nike Air Legacy 3 Christmas Day PE


D-Wade Li Ning Wade 808 Christmas Day PE


Andre Miller Reebok Answer 14 Christmas Day PE


Carmelo Anthony Jordan Melo M11

jordan-hill-nike-kobe-ix-9-elite-christmas-01 Screen Shot 2014-12-26 at 5.54.07 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-26 at 5.53.08 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-26 at 5.53.31 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-26 at 5.54.29 PM

// : Customizable Features in the Sneaker Market : //

// : Customizable Features in the Sneaker Market : //

By now, just about anyone who is into sneakers has heard of Nike iD, Nike’s popular customizable platform where you can custom make certain Nike shoes with different materials and colors. Nike iD was one of a kind when it … Continue reading

// : adidas J Wall 1 : //

// : adidas J Wall 1 : //

After a disappointing signature line with Reebok Basketball, combo guard for the Washington Wizards joined forces with adidas Basketball in early January of 2013. After wearing special makeups of adidas Basketball footwear such as the Crazy Quick and Crazy 1 last season, … Continue reading

// : Just For Kicks x Index PDX : //

// : Just For Kicks x Index PDX : //

This past Thursday, Portland consignment shoe store Index PDX, joined forces to go along side with Design Week here in Portland to put on a sneaker art show. On hand were adidas Superstar lows painted up and customized by various artists … Continue reading

// : The Shock Heard Around the Sneaker World : //

The Big /// From left-right, Mark Miner, Denis Dekovic, and Marc Dolce. All three of these footwear designers played a pivotal role in different divisions at Nike HQ in Beaverton, Oregon.

The Big /// From left-right, Mark Miner, Denis Dekovic, and Marc Dolce. All three of these footwear designers played a pivotal role in different divisions at Nike HQ in Beaverton, Oregon and now will be heading to adidas.

This past Wednesday, it was announced that three of Nike’s biggest designers (as of late) were leaving Nike and jumping ship to work over for arch-rival and cross-town foe, adidas America, who is also based in Portland, Oregon. adidas America is opening a Design Studio in Brooklyn, NY where all three of these designers will call home and work on the future of adidas. The three footwear designers pictured above are Mark Miner, Denis Dekovic, and Marc Dolce.

This is big news for the adidas brand, just following the acquisitions of Kanye West, Pharell Williams, and former BAPE designer Nigo this past sumer. Big things are happening for adidas, but something needed to be done. The brand didn’t have a very good year in 2014 and recently got passed by rival Under Armour in U.S. sportswear sales, making Nike #1, Under Armour #2, and adidas now #3 in the U.S. With the likes of Kanye and co. on board, as well as the pick-up of these three young designers from Nike, adidas is now coming for Nike’s throat. Although these three won’t be able to officially design for adidas for at least a year due to design clause rights (they’ll have to sit out a year before any of their designs can go into production), it does create more of a positive buzz for adidas as a company.

Some people may ask themselves, why would anyone want to leave a company like Nike for adidas, based on how big the rivalry is. However, each designer has at least 20+ years of experience in footwear design in the industry and know when to move on. When a new opportunity to create and design for a new company comes up, who could turn that down?

One of these designers is responsible for at least one Nike shoe you may own. Mark Parker was the senior footwear designer for Nike Running and had been with the brand for 6 years, coming from designing at adidas two years prior in 2006. While at Nike, Miner was the lead designer for the Nike Free Run line and the Nike Pegasus. He put Nike Running back on the map with some revolutionary designs and will look to do the same with the adidas performance line, which definitely needs improvements. I look forward to see what kind of amazing silhouettes he creates for adidas performance running.


Mark Miner, designer of Nike Free Run


Mark Miner, designer of Nike Free Run

Denis Dekovic was the lead designer behind Nike Football (soccer) the last couple of years, including this years World Cup, and was the senior designer of the Nike Magista, Nike Hypervenom, and Nike Mercical Superfly (Nike’s first Flyknit soccer boot). He played an instrumental role and innovating for Nike Football and getting Nike more recognition for Soccer in the U.S., with many people believing that adidas has the edge over Nike in Soccer. Although adidas may have won the World Cup this summer, (both teams in the championship match were sponsored by adidas, Germany and Argentina), the player that scored the go-ahead winning goal for Germany to defeat Argentina was wearing the Nike Soccer boots pictured below, designed by Dekovic.

Denis Dekovic, Senior Footwear designer, Nike Soccer

Denis Dekovic, Senior Footwear designer, Nike Soccer


Denis Dekovic, Senior Footwear designer, Nike Soccer, Nike Hypervenom in hand.

The last designer of the trio to leave Nike for adidas is footwear designer Marc Dolce. Dolce had also been with the brand for some years now and had created some very innovative shoes for former NBA player Penny Hardaway and led the design team for the recent redesign of the Lunar Air Force 1. If you follow Dolce’s Instagram feed, you will see all Nike-porn pictures he has posted, showcasing shoes from Jordans to classic Nike Basketball silhouettes all over. This was the hardest for me to believe, just because he has been so close with the brand and the rejuvenation of the Penny Hardaway line and Nike Sportswear.

Marc Dolce, Footwear Designer, Nike Basketball and Nike Sportswear.

Marc Dolce, Footwear Designer, Nike Basketball and Nike Sportswear.

Marc Dolce, Footwear Designer, Nike Basketball and Nike Sportswear.

Marc Dolce, Footwear Designer, Nike Basketball and Nike Sportswear.

Now what does this mean for Nike, with these three designers gone? Not much. Nike still has some heavy hitters on their roster, with the likes of Tinker Hatfield, Jason Petrie, Nathan VanHook, and Leo Chang. The departure of these three also leaves room for up-and-coming designers and new talent for Nike, which isn’t a bad thing at all. Nike is always looking to innovate and it is in the brands genes to do so. They are always one step ahead of the competition and have the reputation of being the best footwear brand ever. Although these three designers did a lot for Nike, their time has come to move on. The next flock of designers will be in soon enough to innovate and create for Nike.

// :Andy’s Desk: // adidas Element Refine Tricot

On this edition of Andy’s desk, I feature the adidas Element Refine Tricot running shoe. These shoes released in the fall of 2013 and retailed for $70 (they are on sale now for $40 here and here). The shoe comes in four different colorways for men in Rich Blue/Black/Blue, Black/Black/Phantom, Slime/Black/Black and Rich Red/Black/Rich Red. The color way featured in this edition of Andy’s Desk in the Rich Red/Black/Rich Red color way, similar to a dark maroon color. While a lot of attention has been on Adidas’s Originals other popular running model, the ZX Flux, the Element Refine Tricot has been a sleeper shoe for most of the year.

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The lightweight adidas Element Refine Tricot has a simple design made up of a mesh upper with strategically placed seams and features a high-abrasion EVA midsole for proper cushioning and support. One cool fact about the shoe is that the mesh upper boasts a 90% material efficiency, meaning that the shoe was built in a very sustainable way. The shoe is also part of the Better Place Program: products built in a sustainable way to make the world a better place.

One cool design element I personally like about the shoe is that the tag of the shoe is placed on the outside of the tongue, rather than on the inside of the shoe like most other brands do with shoes.

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As you an see by the picture below, the adidas Element Refine and the Nike Roshe Run share some of the same design similarities and looks. They were both released at the same price point ($70) and are both a stylish runner offered for a reasonable price. Although Nike did release the Roshe first back in 2012, Adidas joined the party with the release of the Element Refine to compete with some of the shoes Nike has been putting out lately, such as the Roshe Run and the Flyknit series. One of the main differences between the Nike Roshe Run and the adidas Element Refine is that the Element Refine is actually labeled as a performance first running shoe, where as the Nike Roshe Run is simply a casual lifestyle shoe that features some design elements that were mixed into the shoe. (Nike Roshe in Black, adidas Element Refine in Deep Red)

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The shoes outsoles are nearly identical and both the Nike Roshe Run and the adidas Element Refine come with inserts for individuals who like to wear their shoes barefoot and without socks. The similarities are undeniable but it looks as if Adidas is looking to make a push at Nike when it comes to casual and simplistic runners.