We obviously got into the Jordan shoe deal last night and it's absolutely fascinating. Why? Because there is no bigger athlete to shoe connection than Jordan and Nike. Everyone knows all about Jordans. It's the peak of sneakers and we are now seeing Jordan Brand slapping its logo on college teams, etc. But the fact is it almost never was. Why? He wanted to go to Adidas:
Couldn't make a shoe work? COULDN'T MAKE A SHOE WORK! That's the biggest fuck up in company history and that includes the fact people associated with the company were in a FEDERAL TRIAL. Yeah, that whole investigation into college hoops thing? No matter how dumb it is, it was still an Adidas thing too. The schools were Adidas schools. Jim Gatto and Merl Code were former Adidas employees - an executive and a consultant.
Hell, Adidas even made these and it's not even close to the worst decision!
Sure, there's the what-if of whether or not Jordan shoes take off with Adidas, but the fact is you still are selling a billion of them. It's Michael fucking Jordan and you said you couldn't produce a shoe for him. That's such an outrageous decision to make - but as David Falk said they were dysfunctional. Jordan could move product. Look at Gatorade, Nike, etc. There's no doubt that he moves Adidas shoes. I just wonder what they look like.
That's before we even get into the cultural significance of it all. Think about the Spike Lee commercial. Think about Mars Blackmon. The tag lines. Shit, do we even get Air Jordan? That's one of the most iconic names in the history of the world. What if the Adidas shoes don't take off like it did with Nike?
Adidas has had some fine players, don't get me wrong. But you want to talk about missing out on billions of dollars? Sheesh. They have or had James Harden, Derrick Rose, Tim Duncan, KG and John Wall. But man what an all-time what-if from a shoe and cultural impact of MJ going to Adidas. And I know Adidas has a ton of soccer players now, but there is no one and I mean no one that had the cultural impact like Jordan. No one goes around just wearing cleats in 2020. Everyone wants a pair of Jordan 1's, 3's, 4's, 11's, whatever.
Just insane to think how much they missed out on here.