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Is Adidas keeping Dwight Howard out of Chicago?

Dec 26, 2011, 1:45 PM EDT

Miami Heat v Orlando Magic Getty Images

Bulls fans don’t get why Dwight Howard doesn’t have the Bulls on his list of teams where he will sign an extension.

The Bulls are big market team, they are contenders with a good core of role players, and with Howard and Derrick Rose they would be in title contention for a decade. Plus Chicago has Lou Malnati’s — what more could you ask for?

But Howard’s list is Lakers, Mavericks and Nets. And maybe the Magic (if you really think he would stay). Even though the Bulls could probably offer the best trade package of young players and picks the Magic would see. So what is holding this up?

It might be Adidas, the shoe company of both Howard and Rose, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo (via Eye on Basketball).

And as one high-ranking sneaker executive says, “Adidas simply cannot have its two signature players on the same team in the same market. … Derrick is the face of that market, owns that market, and Adidas can’t possibly have maximum bang for its buck with Dwight there.

“It serves Adidas no purpose. They need them as rivals in competing markets.”

Howard knows this, too. He has an Adidas renewal on deck in the next year, and Los Angeles and Brooklyn guarantee him maximum money. The shoes aren’t the sole reason, but it’s a reality. In an NBA where the owners want the superstars worth $50 million and more to make far less than market value, it’s hard to imagine you’ll get them to take far less on endorsements.

In today’s NBA world, this seems completely plausible. Adidas and shoe money will not be the sole determining factor, but it will be in the mix. If you don’t think this is how business gets done in the sometimes shady world of the NBA, you are kidding yourself. This is exactly how it gets done. And Woj is right that the big stars consider endorsements and what their shoe company thinks choices for where to play.

Right now this is all moot, the Magic have put the breaks on talks. But when those talks get rolling again, know that Adidas is not rooting for Howard in a Bulls uniform.

  1. cancionisimas - Dec 26, 2011 at 1:48 PM

    Well, so Adidas don’t want this and won’t put all the money in… so Nike or Reebok will not offer the same money because they are gentleman with adidas, right?

    • pointphive - Dec 26, 2011 at 2:16 PM

      I can say from personally speaking with my brother, who designs both of their signature shoes, that he has never mentioned the market as a factor in adidas’ thinking. Oh and btw there isn’t any type of gentlemens agreement and reebok is owned by adidas so they don’t count as competition.

    • pistolpeatear - Dec 26, 2011 at 2:23 PM

      i think reebok are “gentleman with adidas” since adidas bought them in 2005

  2. bparmalee - Dec 26, 2011 at 1:55 PM

    I dont see how the Bulls can make the best offer. The Magic wont want Boozer. So you are looking at Noah, Deng, Gibson and Brewer or Korver (to make the money work) plus picks (bad picks) for Howard and Hedo. Do Deng and Noah really excite you if your the Magic considering they make 11 and 13 mill next season? I cant see it.

    • passerby23 - Dec 26, 2011 at 3:55 PM

      I get what you’re saying, but Orlando doesn’t have a lot of leverage at this point. The Nets have already traded away Lopez which severely limits their involvement in a potential trade. The Lakers have given up Odom. Sure, they could move Gasol and Bynum but to me that doesn’t make the Lakers THAT much better and depletes their frontline. Dallas has good players, but not young ones to build a franchise around.

      Noah, Deng, Gibson, and Brewer may not be all-star caliber players but they are nice pieces. If nothing else, they get Turkoglu off their books, concede this season, and aim for next year with draft picks and free agency.

    • yanivvinay - Dec 26, 2011 at 11:08 PM

      They got the Charlotte pick too as well as rights to mirotec who just won player of the week in euroleague. It’s better than Lopez and trash though prob not as good as bynum and gasol

  3. toegoat - Dec 26, 2011 at 2:36 PM

    Am I the only one that thinks Adidas sucks anyway?
    Remember when Kobe’s shoes were made by Adidas? They were ASSSSSSSSSSSSSS.
    Time for rose to switch to Nike

    • pointphive - Dec 26, 2011 at 4:13 PM

      Get out of here…ASSSSSS???…No Way! I knew the guy that did those too and “feet you can wear” was a pretty cool idea. My brother brought the concept back on the howards last year and they are coming out with a new version soon. You really don’t like the crazy lights? I get a lot of compliments on my red ones I got for free from him. Wait till you see the new ones cause they are beautiful.

    • chicitybulls - Dec 26, 2011 at 10:02 PM

      Nike didn’t want to sign D. Rose out of college saying he will never be a good point guard in the league. So I’d keep telling Nike to kiss my asssssss.

  4. rgledz - Dec 26, 2011 at 3:29 PM

    This is exactly why I’m a hockey fan. What a bunch of garbage, only in the NBA.

    • jibbajones - Dec 26, 2011 at 4:56 PM

      So you’re saying no player in the NHL make decisions on where to play based off how much money they can make playing there?


  5. thebigkahuna23 - Dec 26, 2011 at 4:29 PM

    I’ve got to agree with the guy above. That would really disappoint me if that was the case. Dwight can just get a new sponsor.

  6. rgledz - Dec 26, 2011 at 5:39 PM

    Hey Jibba……I didn’t say anything about money, what I’m saying is that you’d never see a players future dictated by a shoe company, or in the case of hockey by a skate company, in the NHL. Read the post before you comment bright guy. In the NHL you don’t have guys trying to get on a team with their buddies to form a super team and forcing the team they’re on to trade them. If I ever hear that the Oilers traded Gretzky to the Kings because Messier and he both wore CCM skates I’ll bet back to ya. Until then, just keep it quiet

    • beagle11 - Dec 26, 2011 at 5:51 PM

      Thats because consumers can care less about Hockey. Its about to be passed by soccer as far as relevance is concerned in the USA. And I like Hockey but reality is reality, Hockey is not sending consumers to Dick’s and Champs the way Basket Ball is.

  7. goforthanddie - Dec 26, 2011 at 6:40 PM

    That is the dumbest load I’ve ever heard. Adidas wouldn’t want to advertise itself as “the shoes of the champs”? Please.

  8. ezwriter69 - Dec 26, 2011 at 7:46 PM

    If this is true, my respect for Howard continues to plummet… made worse by playing with all the passion of Derrick Coleman yesterday. Shut up and play like you want to, or just go pout at home. Dogging it in the first game of the season on Christmas on national tv is just as weak as it gets. Bah humbug on Howard.

  9. speedy138 - Dec 26, 2011 at 7:46 PM

    maybe im wrong but i thought LBJ DWADE & BOSH are all with Nike. so wats da difference with Howard and Rose playing together

  10. dirksimmons - Dec 27, 2011 at 3:14 AM

    I honestly think the money will roll in if/when he’s on a championship team. I could see a lot of potential with them being in the same market. But I understand that most Bulls fans would want Derrick Rose shoes. I don’t know. If you make a great run at titles for the next five years, I would think a guy with a great personality like Howard could find endorsements to make up the money in other areas. If he’s that concerned with money, he’ll go to one of those other markets. But money can’t buy rings, Dwight.

  11. helinhater - Dec 27, 2011 at 11:20 AM

    Aren’t Lebron and Wade both Nike guys?

  12. chitownmatt - Dec 27, 2011 at 3:51 PM

    Did I miss something? I don’t remember anyone in Chicago (other than the media) offering any notion of actually wanting to trade for Dwight Howard.?.?.?

    I really don’t think Dwight Howard would be a good fit or be willing or able to commit to the “basketball-is-life” mentality of Tib’s Bulls.

    I don’t blame him. He obviously has and wants other things in his life outside of basketball. Good for him, he’ll have a great time in Brooklyn.

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