Sneaker Showdown: adidas Yeezy BOOST 700 or Nike M2K Tekno?
Ever felt a sense of déjà vu when trawling the latest sneaker releases? You're not alone! Sneaker brands know better than to let a competitor hog the spotlight, so we're seeing a whole lot of imitation and copycats emerge. However, just because a sneaker comes first, doesn't mean it's the best. A good designer can take an existing design and come up with something even better.
We've decided to look at the growing number of lookalike sneakers on the market and face them off in a fight to the death. This week, we're kicking things off by pitting the adidas Yeezy BOOST 700 against Nike's M2K Tekno. Let's get ready to rumbleeeeeeeee!
When images of the Yeezy BOOST 700 first emerged, the sneaker world didn't know what to make of Kanye's newest footwear design. It was unlike anything else that 'Ye had produced in his time at the Three Stripes, and was deliberately chunky in a time when the market was fawning over sleek sock-fit trainers. The 700 was a wholly new sneaker from tongue to sole and each element fit perfectly together to warm the public to Kanye's new fat fetish. The blazing midsole hits, sneaky reflective Three Stripes, and unusual colour combination made for a new sneaker that commanded attention with merit.
Over at camp Swoosh, the M2K Tekno was Nike's unashamed counter-punch to the 700 — even stealing its signature bright orange pops for its debut. That said, Nike had every reason to come out guns blazing. The M2K Tekno was not a sneaker we expected, but is a sneaker we are glad to have. Nike's design team essentially looked to the reigning king of dad shoes — the Air Monarch IV — and completely overhauled it in every way possible. The M2K Tekno is chunky and sleek at the same time and manages to turn Nike's most ironically hip silhouette into the epitome of cool.
Every M2K release has been worthy of praise, but we can't overlook Kanye's bold move to go against the grain and experiment with something completely new.
WINNER: YEEZY BOOST 700
When the 700 first went on sale through Yeezy Supply, it took a surprisingly long time to sell out, but — like anything in this world that defies convention — it can take the public some time to appreciate a new idea. In the 12 months after its original debut, the OG Yeezy BOOST 700 was re-released a further two times and, with each, the public's opinion began to change. By the time the third drop hit, the 700 had suddenly turned into a must-have sneaker and self-appointed 'sneakerheads' were suddenly declaring it the 'Sneaker of 2018', despite the fact it debuted in 2018 and not a thing had changed — not even the colourway!
Nike's M2K is a souped up Air Monarch IV — let's not kid ourselves! It's like a Hyundai Excel with racing stripes, oversized spoiler and an exhaust big enough to fit your whole head inside. It's daggy and proud. The M2K wasn't designed by one of the most influential celebrities of our generation, but it is arguably all the better for it. The M2K is an alluring sneaker on the merits of its design alone, and the people who choose to wear it don't need celebrity approval to decide what is hot or not.
If the Yeezy BOOST 700 had remained the black sheep of the Yeezy family and had not been drip-fed in an effort to win over the public, it would be the king of clout, but, as it stands, the M2K Tekno is loud, offensive and doesn't care what you think — and that right there is true clout.
WINNER: Nike M2K Tekno
Like its spiritual inspiration, the Air Monarch IV, Nike's M2K Tekno retails for USD $100. Technically speaking, your hard-earned Benjamin gets you a very basic faux-leather sneaker with simple lightweight foam cushioning. Some of the more sought-after make-up, including the OG 'Phantom' colourway and community-named 'John Elliott' release might set you back up to a whopping $200, but there are a plethora of designs out there and many more in the pipeline, all surprisingly as good as each other.
Over at adidas, the Yeezy BOOST 700 boasts a hefty retail price of USD $300 — three times that of the M2K. Hold your horses though! Let's not rule this contest over just yet — after all we're talking apples and oranges here. That'd be like declaring the Hyundai Excel a better car than the Porsche 959 just because the Excel cost not even a hundredth of the 959's sticker price when both hit the market in the late 80s. So, what does your extra $200 get you? A cushy BOOST midsole, more premium materials, and a more complicated design. The RRP is so expensive that the resale mark-up is barely $50 — probably because the resellers are ashamed at asking anything more with so many better shoes available for so much less.
Are all the improvements of the 700 truly worth the extra money in comparison? As an owner of the 700 I hate to say it, but no! Stash that extra cash and put it towards a grail purchase instead!
WINNER: Nike M2K Tekno
I wasn't quite sure how this battle would play out when I sent these two contenders into the ring and — as an owner of the Yeezy BOOST 700 without a pair of M2Ks to my name — I thought my own personal bias would get in the way. However, breaking these two chunky trainers down on their merits I was forced to face the ugly truth: for the money, Nike's M2K is undeniably the superior sneaker. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to list my Yeezys on eBay — US size 12, VNDS, going cheap!