Can They Kick It?

Draymond Green has some advice for Kevin Hart

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The Golden State Warriors are one of the most popular teams in the NBA this season for their play on the court. Off the court? They’re starting to get popular there as well. So in this new ad from Foot Locker, Kevin Hart looks to Warriors forward Draymond Green for advice with the launch of his “fashion” line. Perhaps Green should stick to racking up triple-doubles…


VIDEO: Draymond-Hart

adidas introduces Black History Month collection inspired by Jesse Owens

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ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — With February right around the corner, adidas has unveiled their Black History Month collection, inspired this year by the legendary track and field athlete Jesse Owens. As adidas notes, at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Owens “became a groundbreaking athlete and symbol for social justice and equality after a historic performance where he became the first American track and field athlete to win four gold medals in a single games, all while under tremendous global tension.” And he did it while wearing a pair of spikes handmade by adidas founder Adi Dassler.

For Black History Month, adidas athletes will wear shoes that pay tribute to Owens. From a release via adidas…

James Harden, Damian Lillard and Derrick Rose, among others, will debut the exclusive collection during the Martin Luther King Jr. Day games and continue to wear the commemorative editions in select games throughout February to celebrate Black History Month and honor African-American role models like Jesse.

Each model features cream tones, dark brown contrasts, gold accents and signature details including Owens’ 733 bib number treated with gold foil on the tongue and a 1936 graphic-print in the sockliner.

The D Rose 6 features an aged, tumbled leather upper that pays homage to the medal-winning cleats worn by Owens, contrasted by off-white hits and a clear outsole with gold flecks. He was the first American to claim four medals at the games and gold accents on the D Rose logo, heel straps, tongue detailing, lace lock and faceted eyelets celebrate the groundbreaking feat. The sneaker also features a subtle tribute to the crowd in attendance with a black-and-white photo printed on the collar lining and back of the tongue.

Inspired by Owens’ track uniform at the games, the D Lillard 2 is designed with an off-white color palette, while the upper’s cracked, gold foil texture and accents echo the medals won. The upper is also color blocked with cream suede and mesh paneling for clean, comfortable style on and off the court. The silhouette pairs Oak Print hits with a fresh coat of vintage-white at the midsole, eyelets and heel cap that seamlessly blend with a clear outsole.

The Crazylight Boost 2.5, worn by James Harden and Andrew Wiggins, features a mix of materials in the upper including off-white, gradient Primeknit and genuine leather with gold foil treatment. The 2.5 also includes a ‘Jesse Owens’ graphic print lace jewel and the elite sprinter’s name embroidered on the inside of the tongue. Gold accents on the silhouette’s lace tips and signature details deliver a true gold metal tribute.

The D Rose 6 ($140) and D Lillard 2 ($105) roll out in January at adidas.com. For detailed images, check below… (more…)

Jordan Brand introduces the Air Jordan XXX

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ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The Air Jordan, one of the most (if not the most) iconic basketball sneakers of all-time, is turning 30 years old. And today in Chicago, Jordan Brand unveiled the latest iteration of the shoe. The Air Jordan XXX, designed by longtime Nike designers Tinker Hatfield and Mark Smith, found inspiration in several places.

According to Jordan Brand…

Each of the shoe’s elements results from a key performance insight or design inspiration fundamental to the player and Jordan Brand’s evolutions. The start of the design process, however, tied to a significant, if lesser-known, date: a bitterly cold weekend in February 2015, when – during a pre-birthday party dinner — Michael Jordan asked long-time design collaborator Tinker Hatfield to spearhead the design of the anniversary-marking shoe. “The next morning I drew a shoe,” Hatfield recalls, “because I knew I was in deep trouble. We had no time. Then I realized it wasn’t good enough to sketch a shoe. I asked for that particular photo of Michael in the slam dunk contest and then I drew.”

The photo in question, which featured MJ in the open lane, rising to the hoop, ball cocked behind his right ear and legs tucked under his body, activated Hatfield’s memories of 1988. It spurred the designer to add his own illustrations to the familiar image. The resulting artwork, which recapped Jordan’s history in unconventional ways, in turn inspired the shoe.

An “XXX”, signifying 30, transformed into a basketball net. Stars symbolized the athlete’s otherworldly talents and planets orbiting the Jordan universe took on surfaces — elephant print or carbon fiber — related to innovations initiated by past Jordan models. Elaborating his drawing, with help of fellow designer Mark Smith, Hatfield broadened the Jordan narrative and formed the story of the Air Jordan XXX, one that references a storied yet timeless lineage with an eye towards the future.

The Air Jordan XXX will be globally available at select retail stores and Jordan.com on February 12, 2016. For more images, check below… (more…)

Stance debuts Black History Month socks

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ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — NBA players have worn all sorts of colorful socks this season thanks to the NBA’s new partnership with Stance socks. Check out the newest design: A Black History Month sock. This look will make its debut on court next week, on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and then be worn again in February, which is Black History Month. According to Stance, the design is in honor of Dr. King, and the “1929” on the footbed is for the year Dr. King was born. The socks are now available at the NBA Store or Stance.com.

adidas, Nike introduce Christmas Day shoes

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Over the last few weeks we’ve seen the unveiling of special Christmas Day uniforms and Christmas Day socks, and now, to complete the look, Nike and adidas have introduced their special looks for the big day of NBA games.

And here’s a close-up look at the Kobe X, featuring five golden rings on the back, as well as the Kyrie 2 Christmas edition, which has “zig-zag embossed graphic [that] mimics teeth while the shoe’s white and blue color scheme finish off this nod to the abominable snowman.”

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adidas unveils 2016 All-Star uniforms

2016 NBA All-Star Uniforms

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — The All-Star Game will be played north of the border this winter, and today adidas unveiled the uniforms teams will wear in Toronto for the 2016 NBA All-Star Game. [photo gallery]

According to a release from the NBA and adidas:

“This is the first NBA All-Star Game to be played outside the United States, and it is a very exciting time for basketball in Canada,” said Chris Grancio, adidas global basketball general manager. “To honor this global celebration and pay tribute to Toronto — the site of the NBA’s first game — we’ve incorporated design elements that are inspired by the city’s basketball history, sports culture and unique fashion scene to make an All-Star collection that players and fans will love.”

The red-and-white Western Conference and white-and-blue Eastern Conference uniforms feature a maple leaf overlay on the front of the jerseys as a tribute to the national symbol of Canada, while Toronto’s cityscape is featured across the back to represent the host city. Clean, single-layered fonts are a nod to the NBA’s early days in Toronto, where the first NBA game was played on Nov. 1, 1946, between the Toronto Huskies and New York Knickerbockers.

A star patch that incorporates the maple leaf and NBA logo is displayed on the upper back of the uniforms, while black-and-gold jock tags display the Toronto Raptors’ alternate team colors and claw logo. Featured on the jersey’s neck liner and shorts’ draw strings is a mosaic of flag colors that represent the multinational makeup of the league’s players.

The NBA All-Stars will sport warm-ups that embrace Toronto’s winter fashion and style. Black and heather gray fleece jackets include star patches that acknowledge the number of NBA All-Star appearances for each player, while patches on the right zipper pocket call out the game’s top accolades, including: Kia NBA Most Valuable Player, Kia NBA Rookie of the Year, NBA All-Star Game MVP and NBA Championships. The on-court warm-ups also include a performance fleece shooting shirt and tapered pant with white and gold trim.

All this gear will be available on NBAstore.com starting in January. For images, check below…

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Stephen Curry gets a taste of his own medicine in new Foot Locker ad

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Just yesterday we did a post about how athletes can occasionally be reticent to talk to the media, and we highlighted how a few teams used kids to get some of these guys to loosen up a bit. Well, in a new commercial for Kids Foot Locker, some kids do exactly the opposite to Golden State’s Stephen Curry. As Curry tries to talk to a couple of kids following a pick-up basketball run, these kids break out the same rote quotes we often hear from pro athletes following big games…


VIDEO: Curry Stonewall

James Harden officially signs with adidas

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — A few weeks back, we heard that Houston’s James Harden would be signing with adidas once his contract with Nike was up. For Harden, last season’s MVP runner-up, it was an opportunity to become the face of a brand and have his own signature shoe.

Now that it’s officially October, Harden is contractually free to wear the three stripes. And if the video below is any indication, he won’t have any shortage of adidas gear to choose from…

VIDEO: Harden adidas

The return of “Hare” Jordan

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — As part of their ongoing celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Air Jordan franchise, Jordan Brand continues to call out to some iconic moments in basketball and the culture. Today, an exclusive look at the latest step.

Back in 1992, following Michael Jordan‘s first championship season, we saw the debut of Hare Jordan, a collaboration between Jordan and Bugs Bunny. During his second title run, MJ wore the Air Jordan VII, and this weekend, as part of the ongoing anniversary celebration, the “Hare” Jordan VII is being re-released at retail.

Which brings us to the ad below. Back in the day, the Air Jordan VII had an iconic commercial featuring gorgeous black and white footage of MJ playing ball, with some beautiful shots of the shoe. Today, Jordan Brand releases this remixed version, with the original side-by-side against a new version, featuring BUgs Bunny showing some of his sick moves…


VIDEO: Air and Hare

President Obama gets personalized Jordans

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — Last week, President Barack Obama was in Oregon, and he stopped at the Nike campus in Beaverton to give a speech to assembled Nike folk, including a bunch of Jordan employees. Well, no one leaves campus empty-handed, so the people at Jordan put together a special gift just for the President, who is of course an avowed hoops head…