Nike International Soccer: Rock the Right Kit This Summer

Nike International Soccer: Rock the Right Kit This Summer

It’s about that time again — the greatest tournament in soccer is just around the corner. The feeling is palpable, the intensity is unmatched; fans’ emotions hang on every pass, every shot, and every save. But before the madness starts and chaos ensues, you need the correct kit to display your pride.

This year, Nike designed all their kits with detailed input from professional players, followed by 3D scanning and motion capture in the Nike Sports Research Lab to properly define their women’s-specific fit. On many kits, they also added slogans on the inside of the neckline to give inspiration to the wearer.

Let’s take a closer look at each country’s newest Nike jersey and what makes the designs special to the athletes who sport them.

United States Home Kit

Inner Pride – “Climb Again”

The USA home kits have a deep, personal meaning to many of the players on this year’s national team. The Nike Swoosh and red-and-navy stripes on the arm cuff pay homage to the 1999 team, whose iconic tournament win inspired many current athletes to get into soccer in the first place. The jerseys feature three stars above the crest to signify the United States’ three tournament trophies while the 50 states print on the back represents the nation’s collective support for the team.

United States Away Kit

Inner Pride – “Hold Fast. Stay True.”

While the home kits pay tribute to the past, the away design is a nod to the future. The inspiration behind these kits is that being American is about standing out and boldly displaying your pride. The stars-and-stripes pattern spread across the all-red jersey is symbolic of the American flag. Although these kits focus on what’s next, Nike still wanted to pay tribute to the USA’s past accomplishments, so they placed three white stars representing the three championships on the royal stripe at the back of the neck.

Brazil Home Kit

Inner Pride – “Mulheres Guerreiras Do Brasil” meaning “Women Warriors of Brazil”

Pelé, Ronaldinho, Marta. When you think of these famous Brazilian footballers, you think of the iconic yellow they sported while creating some of the most memorable moments in international soccer history. Nike didn’t stray far from Brazil’s traditional look with these kits, embracing the colors the Brazilian national team has worn since 1954.

Brazil Away Kit

Inner Pride – “Mulheres Guerreiras Do Brasil” meaning “Women Warriors of Brazil”

Brazil’s royal away kits start with a bold geometric pattern at the neck that slowly fades towards the bottom of the jersey. The pattern is inspired by bright stars and the royal color represents the sky on a cool, clear night in Rio. Brazil also pays tribute to their men’s team tournament wins with five stars above the crest.

England Home Kit

Inner Pride – “The Lionesses”

Clean and Classic. That’s the best way to describe England’s home kits. The traditional white is sacred to England and Nike wanted these jerseys to display the country’s loyalty and heritage. If you look closely, you’ll find a very subtle, tonal floral print that represents the roses specific to the neighborhoods around London. These jerseys also display red-and-maroon striping on the sleeve cuffs to punctuate the crispness of the white base.

England Away Kit

Inner Pride – “The Lionesses”

Where England’s home kits embrace a minimalistic design, the away jerseys boast an aggressive maroon floral print, hand drawn to include poppy, primrose, and rose – the native flora of the country. Nike separated the pattern into four quadrants, a nod to St. George’s Cross. These kits use an off-white color for the logo that keeps the overall theme bold, but still evokes the history of a proud nation.

France Home Kit

Inner Pride – “Nos Différences Nous Unissent” meaning “Our Differences Unite Us”

For this year’s host country, Nike decided to honor tradition by staying true to France’s “Les Bleus” national team nickname. The solid navy base is accented with rose gold lettering, providing the proper pop for the iconic French Football Federation crest. The jerseys also include a subtle hint of red, white, and blue taping at the sleeve to represent the French flag. According to Nike, these kits personify the sophistication of the French and are a nod to the high-end, exclusive clothing produced by the country.

France Away Kit

Inner Pride – “Nos Différences Nous Unissent” meaning “Our Differences Unite Us”

To contrast the solid blue home jerseys, Nike’s white away kits feature a pattern of small hexagons, spread across the shirt like polka dots, that pay tribute the France’s unique border shape. The inner pride phrase, “Nos Différences Nous Unissent,” is printed with a small “o” to represent Chanel and France’s rich history of fashion.

Australia Home Kit

Inner Pride – “Never Say Die”

Described by some as the most exuberant kit in the bunch, Australia’s home jerseys use white, yellow, and green brush strokes to represent their creative, youthful team. Incorporating design elements from Melbourne’s famous Hosier Lane, Nike created a ’90s-style look that combines the colors of the Australian countryside with the graffiti art culture seen in the country’s urban areas.

Netherlands Home Kit

Inner Pride – Crown symbol to represent the country’s monarchy.

For the newly designed Dutch kits, Nike created a digital tulip, a geometric design that represents the country’s iconic flower. These kits also mark the first time the Netherlands will forgo the traditional lion crest for a lioness, representing the pride and ferocity of the women’s team.

Norway Home Kit

Inner Pride – Snowflake and Flower symbols

This year, Norway’s home kits combine the team’s trademark red and blue into a “winter sweater” print inspired by the country’s decorated ski jumpers. The design combines snowflakes and flowers to honor the beauty and variety of Norway’s weather.

China Away Kit

Inner Pride – Phoenix logo

To remind the Chinese team of the powerhouse spirt of the 1990s, these light grey kits feature an intricate phoenix pattern. The design was created to represent femininity and virtue, paying tribute to the “Steel Roses” nickname given to the team.

Fans experience Project Harden in China

Fans experience Project Harden in China

James Harden China

The next wave of adidas Basketball is upon us, and James Harden is leading the charge. After inking a ground-breaking deal with adidas, the two are teaming up to change the game with Project Harden, which tells the superstar’s story like never before.

One of the major focal points of Project Harden is allowing creators the ability to do what they do best. Harden is well known for his ability to create on the court, and adidas is renowned for allowing its collaborators to be heavily involved in the shoe-designing process. Project Harden is taking those ideas to the next level.

The first chapter of Project Harden allows fans to see the co-creation process of the shoes through the lens of virtual reality. Fans can hear directly from Harden and see sneak peeks of the projects that are in the works. Harden took a recent trip to China to share the Project Harden Experience, and even carried things a step further.

Fans in Beijing got the chance to design custom colorways of the Crazylight Boost 2016, with Harden choosing his favorite design. He will wear that design on the court when he returns to China this October. He also spent time taking pictures with fans, signing autographs, and playing a little one-on-one during his trip.

Check out more photos from his trip below.

James Harden China

James Harden China

James Harden China

James Harden China

James Harden China

China: Allen Iverson’s Final Frontier?

China: Allen Iverson’s Final Frontier?

words_Nick Engvall

Stephon Marbury might have pulled some unbelievable stunts in the last few years, but his biggest stunt might be what helps lure some of the league’s aged and ripened elite athletes around the globe to China in the future.

Stephon Marbury won an All Star MVP playing in China, will Iverson follow?According to the Associated Press, 35-year-old Allen Iverson may be the next NBA star to add his name to the list of players taking their talents overseas to a new, only slightly-tapped fan base. A fan base that is as eager to see NBA superstars playing as we once were here in the States, back when they were young that is.

Marbury became the first (former) star to make the move – unless, of course, you consider Bonzi Wells a star, then I apologize – when he moved to the Chinese Basketball Association earlier this year to play for Shanxi, one of the lowest-ranked teams in the 17-team league. Unlike when he took Youtube and UStream by surprise by devouring Vaseline, singing oh-so angelically and crying like only a grown man can, Marbury made the most of the opportunity to live and play in China. Marbury averaged nearly 23 points per game, 9.5 assists, 5.9 rebounds, and 2.6 assists in 15 games during the 2009-2010 season. In the process, Marbury scored 30 points to lead the North All-Star team to a victory-grabbing MVP honors for the game, and probably grabbing more new fans than he has left here in the U.S.

The difference between Iverson playing overseas and Marbury playing overseas is night and day, though.

Marbury had a handful of good years as an NBA player, sprinkled with highlight reels that will keep his questionable antics balanced with skills from his past. For Allen Iverson, though, he’s easily one of the top players in the last 20 years, possibly of all time. His scoring ability, which includes four NBA scoring titles, is on par with that of the greatest scorers to ever sport the Jerry West silhouetted NBA logo. On top of that, AI has an NBA MVP Award in his collection, 11 All-Star appearances in which also grabbed two All-Star MVP Awards, and despite career low numbers over the last few years, still holds a career average of over 26 points per game.

Is Allen Iverson better off finishing his playing days in China?What Iverson has that most stars in the NBA have right now is an incredibly dedicated fan base. Despite his troubles on and off the court, and walking away from his last two NBA franchises, the Grizzlies and the 76ers for “personal reasons,” Iverson, if given a deal with an NBA team, would likely take the court to thunderous applause no matter where he were to land.

Iverson is a potential NBA Hall of Fame member, and his decision to play out his last days on court, whether it be a three-game ordeal as it was for the Memphis Grizzlies, or a couple more productive years as one of the fan favorites, finishing his career in China could be detrimental to the legacy of the NBA.

Iverson wants to play in the NBA. Maybe I’m being to sentimental thinking about Iverson crossing up Michael Jordan back in the late ’90s, but I think most fans would still rather see Iverson suit up for a year or two more, possibly get a chance at the NBA Championship that has eluded him over his 14-year career.

Then again, heading to China and becoming the first former NBA Superstar to win a title in a basketball market that will eventually belittle the United States’ market isn’t a bad way to go out either.

Should he stay or should he go? I don’t know.

My money is on Iverson doing what he always does . . . whatever he wants to.

images via yahoo

China: Allen Iverson’s Final Frontier?

adidas Basketball FIBA Player Exclusives

words_Nick DePaula
images_Zac Dubasik

Yesterday afternoon, the US Men’s National team and Chinese National team squared off in a closed-door scrimmage as both teams prepare for the upcoming FIBA World Championships in Turkey.

Adidas Basketball players represented for both rosters, with Sun Yue and Wang Zhizhi spotted in Stripes for China, and Eric Gordon, Chauncey Billups and Derrick Rose all wearing Team Signature models.

China’s Sun Yue was seen wearing the Adidas TS Ace Commander, which happens to be Candace Parker’s signature shoe.adidas Basketball FIBA Player Exclusives
Chauncey Billups has been sticking with the TS Lightning Creator for the past two seasons, and once again showed up wearing a Team USA version of the Formotion guard shoe.

Chauncey Billups has been sticking with the TS Lightning Creator for the past two seasons, and once again showed up wearing a Team USA version of the Formotion guard shoe.Derrick Rose was once again wearing his new Adidas TS adiZero Creators, which will be available at the start of the upcoming season.
Derrick Rose was once again wearing his new Adidas TS adiZero Creators, which will be available at the start of the upcoming season.
And lastly, Eric Gordon was wearing the adiZero Infiltrate, a more traditional mid-cut Puremotion model. Also, Wang Zhizhi can be seen in the background in his very own TS Heat Check player exclusives.
 And lastly, Eric Gordon was wearing the adiZero Infiltrate, a more traditional mid-cut Puremotion model. Also, Wang Zhizhi can be seen in the background in his very own TS Heat Check player exclusives. And lastly, Eric Gordon was wearing the adiZero Infiltrate, a more traditional mid-cut Puremotion model.

China: Allen Iverson’s Final Frontier?

WBF: USA vs. China Scrimmage

words_Nick DePaula
images_Zac Dubasik

World Basketball Festival - USA vs. ChinaEarlier today, the US Men’s National Basketball team squared off against the Chinese National team at Madison Square Garden. The relatively unpublicized matchup resulted in a pretty modest crowd for a game serving as a basic tune-up for both teams.

As part of the World Basketball Festival, the highlighted players were of course Kevin Durant and Yi Jianlian, who expectedly were wearing the Nike Hyperfuse and Nike Hyperdunk 2010.

The game was filled with far more intensity than Thursday’s US intersquad scrimmage, and it was also filled with quite a few missed dunks and botched fast breaks, as is expected in any kind of exhibition game. Even more impressive was the fact that USA Basketball continually changes the actual rules of the sport whenever they feel like it. Thursday’s game at Radio City Music Hall included a sudden death overtime period, clearly decided on the spot, and today’s games were the usual four quarters long, but the score was re-set to 0-0 at the start of each quarter. Perhaps to spare the Chinese team from a 40-point loss.

Either way, it was a great display of shooting and defensive intensity for the US and a complete turnaround from Thursday’s game. Tyson Chandler dominated the paint, talking excessively on defense and orchestrating great rotations when the team was in zone. Eric Gordon impressed with a smooth and consistent outside shot. And Javale McGhee pulled off some ridiculous dunks with amazing extension in warm-ups, but didn’t play at all. Enjoy some shots below from Zac.

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