by Ryne Nelson / @slaman10
Long and dedicated hours of training are required to increase quickness on the court. But that’s only part of the quickness equation.
The right gear helps an athlete perform—and long and dedicated hours of research at adidas have produced a sneaker, the Crazy Quick, specifically engineered to help make athletes quicker.
“From making explosive cuts into the lane, grabbing a loose ball or being a lock-down defender, quick is the key to elevating to the next level,” says Robbie Fuller, adidas advanced footwear designer. “We designed the Crazy Quick with athletes in mind. Every player needs to be quick to out-perform the competition and this shoe gives them a unique advantage.”
Wizards guard John Wall may be the singular best judge of quickness in the game right now, and the PG immediately gave it his co-sign after debuting the Crazy Quicks against the TWolves.
“One play, when we threw the ball away, I chased Ricky Rubio down and blocked Luke Ridnour’s layup. That showed me I was getting quick; I was getting fast,” Wall says. “Just stopping and getting more traction when I was going.”
Being close to the floor is crucial to quickness. Four “Quick” zones comprised of 17 independent pods piston beneath the foot like mini shock absorbers. This allows for a thinner midsole, while providing a greater perception of cushioning.
“We broke the bottom up into segments to allow the outsole to adapt and keep most of the forces on the medial side, so the foot doesn’t spend more time on the ground,” explains Al VanNoy, global head of the adidas Innovation Team. “That was the theory, the idea, the genesis of the Crazy Quick.”
A snaking center line separates medial and lateral completely. “Originally, it was more down the center,” says VanNoy, “but through lab evaluations with high-speed cameras and filming from the bottom, we saw that if we moved the center line, it would work better with the joints and increase the high area of traction.”
The pods link to a first-ever TECHFIT upper built specifically for basketball movements. A re-engineered SPRINTFRAME adds “torsional rigidity” to moderate movement.
The Crazy Quick endured the most extensive testing of any adidas basketball sneaker yet. NBA athletes ran the sneakers through the same drills tested at the pre-draft combine. The nation’s top high school talent raved about the shoe at last year’s adidas Nations tournament (VanNoy says co-MVP Noah Vonleh deeboed his pair). More than than 1,000 distinct basketball movements were examined before the sneakers were first seen on national TV during last season’s Big East championship.
“This technology is totally different than anything I’ve ever worn,” says Wall, who notes there was practically no need to break in the shoe. “It allows you to better stop, break, change direction, accelerate. It changes the game for me. It makes me quicker, and I’m already known for being quick.”
Dame Lillard and Nic Batum of the Blazers will soon debut the Crazy Quick in Portland. Beyond basketball, the line includes football, running and training footwear to help athletes be quicker on the field, court and all phases of preparation.
“I want a shoe to fit my style of play, and this fits me perfect,” Wall says. “The Crazy Quick is super light, and makes it easier for me to go against my opponents. In a League of fast guards, being quick is what makes my game unique.”
The Crazy Quick will be available May 1 on adidas.com and other leading retailers nationwide for $140.