Oklahoma City Thunder’s Steven Adams is one of the best centres playing in the league today. He’s midway through a $100 million USD contract and a playoffs series that OKC is (currently) losing to the Utah Jazz — so why is he playing in broken sneakers?
Adams was just featured in a great piece by ESPN. It covers everything from his New Zealand heritage to his penchant for anime and gaming, and his relationship with Russell Westbrook. But, slipped in almost as a sidenote, is a sentence mentioning that Adams plays — in the NBA — wearing busted adidas sneakers.
It's the little quirks about Adams that make him so endearing. Such as wearing Stoney Creek camouflage — the New Zealand equivalent of Mossy Oak — basically everywhere. Or donning a fur hat — Stoney Creek, of course — after almost every game, and always backward for some reason.
Or that during games, he wears the same old pair of orange Adidas shoes so worn out they have holes in the sides (Adams is a sneaker free agent this summer, by the way). Or that he goes most places barefoot.
Watching game four of the OKC vs Utah Jazz while writing, Adams is indeed wearing orange adidas sneakers. He’s laced in a pair of D Rose 7s that, looking back, he’s been wearing for a while. It’s difficult to tell whether they’re broken, but it'd be even harder to answer just why he’d be playing in them if they were. On-court blowouts do happen, and some players have hit the hardwood in retro or aged pairs, but it’s curious that anyone would play in a compromised pair.
Just as Adams got his contract, his agent was unable to contact him because he'd broken his phone and hadn’t gotten around to replacing it.
Maybe this is a classic New Zealander she’ll-be-right attitude, or maybe the shoes aren’t as worn down as ESPN claim; either way, Adams should probably get some new kicks.