John Wall re-signed with Adidas in January after spurning a new deal with the brand in 2015. His decision caught everyone by surprise — why return to a brand he left?
With sneaker money drying out and huge payouts going to athletes like Russell Westbrook, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and CJ McCollum, it made sense for Wall to find a home quick and do it with a brand he was familiar with. Adidas was a logical choice.
Now we know the details about that deal. Sports Illustrated is reporting that Wall’s deal is worth about $4.825 million in its first year and with slight increases annually until it goes back down to $4.825 million in 2021.
Wall’s previous offer with Adidas was a $7.5 million base deal, according to the report, with a chance to increase with met incentives. It also included his own signature shoe line. This deal’s total over the next four years will end up somewhere around $20 million.
Along with the totals, there are some other keys to the deal that may surprise you.
There is no clause for a signature shoe
Wall said he’d have to play his way into another signature shoe with the brand, and the contract reflects that. There isn’t a continuation of Wall’s signature shoe line worked into the contract, according to the report.
“While Wall will not have a signature shoe with Adidas, this deal permits him to collaborate on footwear with fellow clients like Kanye West and Pharrell Williams, a likelihood,” the report said.
That’s a good thing and something we haven’t seen with other Adidas athletes to this point. James Harden, Damian Lillard and Derrick Rose are the only three Adidas basketball athletes with signature shoe lines but none of them have collaborated with West or Williams to this point. Lillard has done a collaboration with BAPE for his signature shoe line, but there has yet to be a Yeezy or Pharrell Williams basketball shoe worn on the court.
Wall could be part of a new wave of Adidas basketball where signature shoes are less of a focus but designer basketball lines are premium. Williams has a new Boost You Wear collaboration coming out during All-Star weekend and West has talked about working with Adidas basketball for years. Maybe Wall helps make that happen.
The deal is laced with incentives that can boost its value
When it comes to sneaker deals, incentives are everything. In 2015, James Harden signed a 13 year, $200 million with Adidas basketball. On the surface, that seems like a ton of money — and, honestly, it is. But he might not see all of it.
There are certain clauses and structures in each individual contract that can allow players to hit a maximum dollar amount on that deal. For Harden’s $200 million deal, he’ll have incentives where he’ll get hefty bonuses for things like MVP’s and All-NBA teams and scoring titles and so on.
“People hear and say what they might see about a shoe deal, but they never see the real breakdown of the contract and understand incentives and those type of things in there,” John Wall told SB Nation last month after he decided to re-sign with Adidas. And it turns out he was exactly right — the true value of a deal lies in its incentives.
Wall’s contract is filled with different incentives here that could make the deal even sweeter for the Wizards’ point guard, according to the report. Here are some of them.
- All-Star MVP — $500,000
- All-Star reserve — $150,000
- All-Star starter — $300,000
- First Team All-NBA — $750,000
- Second Team All-NBA — $500,000
- Third Team All-NBA — $250,000
- Defensive Player of the Year — $300,000
- First Team All-Defense — $100,000
- Conference Finals — $150,000
- NBA Champion — $500,000
- NBA Finals MVP — $500,000
- League Leader in Assists $250,000
- 20 points/10 assists — $150,000
- Dunk Contest Champion — $1 million
And there’s plenty more where that came from. Some of them Wall won’t come close to and some of them Wall will hit. But they all matter, to a degree, and will end up affecting the final valuation of Wall’s deal.
It isn’t the same deal Wall passed up three years ago, but it’s a solid one with plenty of opportunity for the Wizards’ star point guard.