16 Apr Adidas, Foot Locker release Damian Lillard video
Just a day after announcing a deal that reportedly makes Damian Lillard the third-highest paid NBA sneaker endorser, Adidas on Tuesday introduced a video of the Trail Blazers point guard.
The video “No Rings” was done in conjunction with Foot Locker, an Adidas retail partner.
The video, timed for release just after the signing announcement and before the Trail Blazers begin playoff games, is the first example of how the German footwear and apparel brand intends to parlay its investment in Lillard — said to be a contract of at least eight years and trailing only those of LeBron James (Nike) and Derrick Rose (Adidas).
It wasn’t too long ago that Adidas and Foot Locker partnered to promote Rose, at the beginning of the 2011-12 season. Adidas’ strategy to make Rose the centerpiece of basketball marketing looked sound at the time, as the Chicago Bulls guard was coming off an NBA Most Valuable Player season.
Two knee injuries later, those plans have been derailed. Now Rose’s marketing value to Adidas is cloudy, something Chicago Sun-Times columnist Rick Telander examines in a column on Tuesday:
There’s a bit of pain and irony here. Last month, Adidas brought out a Portland-themed ”Rose City” shoe for Lillard — Rose City being the city’s unofficial nickname — and you wonder if they sent a pair to Rose just to taunt him.
— Allan Brettman