The moment we’ve all been waiting for is finally here. John Wall has his shoe deal and he’s back with Adidas, according to a report from Yahoo Sports’ Shams Charania.
Sources: Washington Wizards All-Star John Wall has agreed to a five-year endorsement deal with Adidas. Wall returns to the brand after testing shoe free agency over the past couple years.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 7, 2018
Wall turned down an eight year, $66 million extension from Adidas in 2015 before hitting the sneaker free agent market. His deal expired in September 2015, just after James Harden got a 13 year, $200 million deal from the brand. Wall believed his value was closer to what Harden’s deal was but couldn’t find a deal better than his initial offer.
The Wizards’ star point guard had been in talks over the last two years with multiple brands, according to sources, but had never managed to strike a deal until now. We don’t know the dollar amount of the deal at this point, but a 5-year deal is what typical mid-to-top tier sneaker free agents would get. It’s not close to Harden’s deal, but it’s a solid commitment to a legitimate All-Star player.
Why’d Wall go back to Adidas?
This was probably the best offer Wall was going to get. Not that he isn’t worth a lot of money for a brand, but this is his third major sneaker deal. He signed a 5-year, $25 million deal with Reebok when he came into the league and had that deal transferred to Adidas where he ended up with his second signature shoe.
Having a third signature shoe for a different brand is a hard thing to do and something that was likely only possible under Adidas. Signing with Nike is appealing until you realize that they’ve only got 22 athletes that have had signature sneakers throughout their history and five of them are playing today if we include Giannis Antetokounmpo and his upcoming signature sneaker. And that’s despite having 63 percent of the league signed to deals. To make a long story short, Wall wasn’t going to get the attention he wanted at Nike.
Under Armour could be appealing, but it’s also a company still trying to find it’s way in basketball and hasn’t been known for their sense of style in the past. Plus, before signing any major signature athletes, the brand has to figure out it’s best direction for this year.
This is a major brand that’s familiar with him with a roster that has the room for him. The brand’s athletes aren’t too big to overshadow Wall but also are good enough to help him carry the brand to new heights. Adidas basketball isn’t the biggest in the market now, but it’s certainly on the rise.
This is a solid move for both sides. Adidas missed out on Antetokounmpo this fall but still managed to grab an All-Star. Wall missed out on signing a new deal with the brand two years ago but returned with two signature shoes already in place.
Will he get his signature shoe back?
Maybe. Only time will tell. The details of his deal haven’t been released just yet, but it’s hard to imagine Wall returning to the brand without having a plan for bringing his shoe back in place.
Wall has been wearing the J Wall 1 in games so far, so he seems to be interested in his own sneakers with the brand. Adidas also had the J Wall 3 in development before his deal expired. They ended up becoming the Crazy Explosive 2016’s.
A gentle reminder that the Crazy Explosive 2016 was originally John Wall's third signature shoe.— Michael Sykes, II (@MikeDSykes) January 7, 2018
Wall is back with Adidas now, so maybe we'll finally get the J Wall 3? pic.twitter.com/jchT1UYGEo
The brand could start the line over or they could just continue where they left off. There’s room to go in different directions here with Wall’s sneakers. Either way, he’s sitting pretty back on a roster with some solid star power at guard. They’re all great, but play in totally different ways. It should be fun seeing what shoes they come up with.
This was a great move for Wall. You should be excited to see what comes next for him.