Fast Don’t Lie
Q + A with DRose about his new sneaker.
by Chris Cason / @C4DUNK
It took just a few games into his rookie season to see that any comparisons to any other point guard should be thrown out the window. A Rookie of the Year award and the first-round seven game playoff series against the Boston Celtics—followed by being named an All-Star last season—let the world know that Derrick Rose was in a category of his own and respectability for the Chicago Bulls was back.
Entering his third season, Rose is still working to elevate and fine-tune an already impressive arsenal that any floor general would be willing to have.
At one point he was just happy to fit in, but he now knows for sure he’s the face of the franchise and the success of the Chicago Bulls is largely on his shoulders.
Already one of the league’s most popular and most recognizable players, Rose now has his own signature shoe—the adidas adiZero Rose—which was released last week.
Knowing how bad he wanted his own shoe, I had the chance to sit down and thoroughly discuss what it means for him and Dwight Howard to be the face of adidas basketball as the three stripes move forward in developing a signature line for arguably the most athletically gifted point guard in the league.
SLAM: Growing up, you were always wearing Nike and your first time wearing adidas was in college. Coming out of Memphis, what made you chose adidas over what you had been wearing for so long?
Derrick Rose: They told me they were going to be loyal to me and if I did good, they would have give me my signature shoes as the years went on and that’s what ended up happening. They told me if I did good every year, they would think about it and I guess I had two good years and they finally thought about giving me my shoe. It just showed that they’re loyal to the people that they have on their team—The Brotherhood—and I thank them for that.
SLAM: Was it hard turning down a company like Nike that you had worn for so many years?
DR: Yeah, it was. Knowing I was with Nike all those years before college. So, to turn them down, it hurt a little bit, but it’s all about business.
SLAM: Growing up, were you into sneakers?
DR: Yeah, I’m from Chicago. Everybody from Chicago is into sneakers. Somebody will go get a new pair of shoes before they get a new outfit, so I’ve always been a fan of sneakers.
SLAM: What were some of your favorites?
DR: Of course, Jordan’s, shell toes, Barkley’s, Def Jam adidas; I just love high-top shoes.
SLAM: Your shoe dropped last week, how does it feel now to have your OWN shoe?
DR: Those are things you think about when you’re younger. Now, that I see it, I’m happy that it’s going on. Like I said, it’s a blessing to have my own shoe and I appreciate adidas for marketing me the way that they are right now.
SLAM: You’ve been playing in the shoe since the summer, how does it feel compared to the TS Creators you’ve worn the past two seasons?
DR: It feels good–I don’t have any worries. Every time I put them on, my toes aren’t hurting and I feel comfortable throughout the whole game, even when I go down and make a crazy play. My feet feel great after the games and like I said, there’s no worries about putting on my shoe.
SLAM: You also have a second-half of the season shoe, which is the adiZero Rose 1.5. There’s been different prototypes shown online and I’ve seen you shoot around in some of them, but is the shoe really a finished product?
DR: No. It’s not ready. I played in them one game and [adidas] said they still have things to change in them. Right when they change them, they’ll send me the first pair and I’ll be wearing them in practice.
SLAM: Going through the process of the making of your shoe, were you involved with what was being added to it and telling them what you wanted?
DR: Material and all that stuff. At first, they had some cheetah-material and I told them I didn’t want that on there—I told [adidas] to make them as clean as possible, so that kids that are unfortunate are able to buy the shoes, wear it with their uniforms, go to school with them, hoop in them and use them all year-round.
SLAM: Going through that process, was there anything that surprised you or was there something you didn’t know how it would be?
DR: They really go in detail about what they put in their shoes. They ask you everything—where you grew up, favorite color, what foods you like and they find any way to establish that thought into the shoe. I love magic, so inside, it’s a red tab and if you turn it a certain way, it says my name. They just find anything to put it in your shoe.
SLAM: You, along with Dwight, will have your signature shoes, who would you say has the better shoe?
DR: [Chuckles] I don’t know, man. I can’t decide that. You have to ask someone else. I’m going to pick Dwight. I’m not the type to brag on my own shoe.
SLAM: Is there anything else we should be looking out for besides your shoe?
DR: They’re coming out with my own adidas apparel–Hopefully, in a couple of months. They have to find a design and you’ll be seeing me walking around with my own stuff on. That’s going to be crazy.
SLAM: What can people expect from the Derrick Rose line in the coming years?
DR: For adidas to put out a nice shoe that everyone likes. I know I’ll have a say-so about it—I’m young—I know what people my age like in a shoe, especially hoopers. I know what they like and I think adidas has the right idea in what they need to put in the shoe.