Changing of the Guard in the Sneaker World
Are we finally witnessing a changing of the guard within the world of sneakers? Is the always dominant conglomerate Nike losing its chokehold on the industry where they have been the most prevalent for the last three decades? And finally has Kanye West’s lyric come full circle and “The Yeezy has jumped over the Jumpman”; and on another team at that?
These are some extremely bold stances on the sneaker culture, and many enthusiasts including myself, would immediately discredit anyone with these views. But, after further review and looking into it all in detail it may be more rational than you think.
Adidas has always been a major player in the athletic world with their products, and always a staple in the sneaker culture. Adidas is usually viewed as a classic company with many clean silhouettes that influenced the culture. Over the last decade of course they haven’t seen they “hyped success” that Nike has received due to their signature lines, limited releases, collaborations, and SBs line. But, with Adidas now snagging one of the most influential and controversial people of his era, it looks like it is all going to change.
Looking in detail, Adidas in its recent years has revamped to appeal to a more high-end market. With Raf Simons, Jeremy Scott, Rick Owens, Y-3, Big Sean, 2Chainz, Pusha-T, Teyana Taylor, Adidas may have struck gold. These collaborations and designer lines have offered an angle, and alternative that Nike has yet to really dive into. Also, Adidas has taken a page from Nike by offering these lines in a more limited availability, which has created great hysteria around them.
Reviewing what we alluded to, this year may be HUGE for Adidas. Those “In the Know” and the “OG’s” don’t discriminate and have always supported many brands. Looking into the recent All-star release; NIKE LOST. Years back Adidas released a nice collaboration with Wale at All-Star Weekend that was a nice pickup, but wasn’t a game changer. Nike’s signature lines were ok at best his year for the ASG. We are not saying that the Adidas basketball line was much better either, but their “Originals” releases were not only highly coveted, but greatly appreciated. Adidas released their Xeno Pack, consisting of the Metro Attitude, Superstar, and Flux; as well as the third installment from Kanye West. The first Adidas release from Yeezus was not only handed to some lucky early adopters by Ye himself, but is also said to “Hopefully be as available to as many, any, and everyone who wants them”.
Some may say “So….it means nothing….it’s only one release”, but has anyone noticed the sense of urgency from Nike? That weekend they released an All-Star LeBron, Kobe, Kyrie, KD, Hyperchase (James Harden), Hyperrev (Paul George), Jordan CP3, XX9, Melo 11, Superfly, AND two pairs of Jordan 10s. Factor in the the recent releases of Jordan’s (Columbias, Oreos), and what seems to be a new Kobe, LeBron, and KD every week, its obvious something is up. In my opinion it may be too much. It seems every three days and, at minimum twice a week, there is a more major signature release. It can be a bit overwhelming, and is definitely nearing a point of oversaturation.
In the past there had been a gap in some releases, but now we seem to be bombarded by new “Heat” every week. Is this due to having so much in the plans? Or could it be due to possible pressure they are receiving from the competition? With the quality of recent year’s releases, and collabs from everyone other than Nike, it’s a strong possibility. Time will tell and when it does, I intend to tell you about it.