Photo: Andrew Goble
During a recent chat with GQ Magazine, Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls spoke candidly about his love for Jordan Brand, while throwing a few sneak disses adidas' way. After sustaining a turf toe injury last season, the player has changed allegiances from the Three Stripes to the Swoosh, and even took a 75% pay cut in the process. After that trim he's still worth a reported $16M a year (including Bulls wage), but still, was it love for Jordan or disdain for adidas that sweetened the deal for him? It seems a little bit of both.
Speaking of his injury, he says, "When I got an opportunity to switch from adidas to Jordan, I just thought it was the right choice, because I’ve never had problems with my feet." He plays diplomat by saying that he's not trying to bash adidas, but then goes on to do just that – "I got turf toe one year and rolled my ankles a few times. That’s never happened whenever I was at Marquette with Jordan." Even before he signed on with Jordan Brand he says he was anxious to jump ship, saying that he told his team mates, "When this year’s over, y’all can count on not seeing me in adidas."
Going on to talk of Jordans, he names the Space Jam Black 11 as his favourite of all time, says he prefers to play in 28s or 29s, and has his eye on the Superfly 4s that have just come out – "That might be the sneaker for me." Jay-Bee has even made him dip on his famed cowboy aesthetic of cowboy hats and boots in favour of the Jordon joints. "Since I became part of Team Jordan, I love the Jordan brand," he says, "so I’m always in a pair of Jordans".
In regards to guarding LeBron, his philosophy is that getting in his grill works best – "My thing is, just make everything hard for him. Just get in his face. It works sometimes. Sometimes it doesn’t. I think that’s part of the game. I think good offence beats good defence every time."