DeMar DeRozan: Man On A Mission

DeMar DeRozan: Man On A Mission

DeMar DeRozan San Antonio Spurs

DeMar DeRozan is a man on a mission this season. Despite all the noise that surrounded him this offseason, DeRozan found a way to block out the distractions and focus on what’s most important: taking his game to the next level. He prepared for his 10th season in the league by training harder and smarter than ever before, fueled by a chip-on-the-shoulder mentality and a need to send a message to the rest of the league. He’s more determined than ever to be at the top of his game. He’s out to prove a point. We caught up with the All-Star ahead of his first season in San Antonio to talk about what’s next for one of the league’s fiercest competitors.

Q: You’re heading into your tenth season. You’ve obviously had a ton of success in the league already, what kind of personal goals are you setting for this year?

A: Going into my tenth year, I’m looking forward to a new challenge. Being in the Western Conference for the first time on a new team, I want to put together everything I’ve learned from my whole career – all the ups and downs – and really make that transitional move to understanding all the ins and outs of the game from the business side and the floor.

Q: Going into this new chapter, what challenges are you expecting with the grind of the Western Conference every night?

A: As a competitor, the Western Conference is something you definitely want to be in. You want to be in the midst of the greatest competition every single night, no matter who you’re playing against. It’s important to understand how to separate being as good of a player as you are now from testing that every single night. That’s what brings out the best in you. I’m looking forward to that – I think that’s going to be the biggest challenge, but as a competitor you want to face those challenges and test yourself.

DeMar DeRozan Performance

Q: What do you want people to see as you step on the floor that first game?

A: I want people to see a bigger and better DeMar. Learning from the failures, the changes, and the challenges that come every single year. Going out the way we did last year in the playoffs, that’s a part of my hunger and motivation just to get back on the court, then being traded, being on a new team – that motivation kind of creates an emotional dark side that I want to bring out when I step on the court.

Q: That covers a lot of the adversity you’ve faced over the last year. What advice do you have for others who might be facing similar challenges?

A: Treat it like a diamond in the rough. Adversity does nothing but make you better. You can’t bow down to adversity, because it’s just testing you on how much better you can be. If anything you’re doing becomes comfortable, you shouldn’t like that. Anything that comes with this game should be uncomfortable because it should be pushing you to want to be better, every single day. When adversity comes, just understand that it’s going to bring out something in you that you didn’t even know you had.

DeMar DeRozan Nike Casual

Q: You’re now the face of the Kobe line with Nike. As someone who looked up to Kobe growing up, can you talk about what it means to you be the face of that shoe line?

A: Being the face of the Kobe shoe is definitely an honor for me – I grew up watching Kobe. From day one as a kid to playing in the same All-Star Game as Kobe – his last All-Star Game – it’s been amazing. When it comes to the shoe, it’s always been one of my favorites to wear. I love the shoe, and I think the honor I wear the shoe with, the loyalty that I wear the shoe with, speaks for itself every time I go out there on the court.

Q: You’ve played in the new one – is there something specific you would call out, or what was your first reaction to the Kobe?

A: I’m real big on how a shoe fits your whole foot and, for me, as soon as you put the shoe on it’s kind of like a glove – a perfect fit. The grip on the shoe is definitely great, the stability of the whole bottom of the sole is great, and it’s still a light shoe. I’d probably have to put this in my top-2 favorite Kobes of all time.

Q: We’re so excited to have you on our latest cover.

A: It’s an honor. This dates back to when I was a kid. If you didn’t have an Eastbay magazine growing up, you weren’t a real sports fan. Every month, if there was a new Eastbay sitting on the porch or in the mailbox, that’s the only thing you looked for. You didn’t care about the newspaper or your mom’s bills, you were throwing that to the side and picking up Eastbay no matter what. I remember going through it wishing I had this, this, this, and this, so for it to come full-circle now is crazy.

 

DeMar DeRozan Basketball

1.31 Release Report: KD X, Kobe A.D., Dame 4, or Curry 4 – Which Signature Shoe Will You Grab?

1.31 Release Report: KD X, Kobe A.D., Dame 4, or Curry 4 – Which Signature Shoe Will You Grab?

Each week, we’ll showcase the most popular upcoming shoe drops. We’ll give you the lowdown on the prices and sizes, break down the history of each shoe, and fill you in on the newest tech features. Check back every week for the hottest shoe drops. If it’s hyped, it’s here. You can check out the full list of releases on Eastbay’s Release Calendar. Here’s what you have to look forward to this week:

NIKE KD X – FEB. 1 AT 10 AM ET

1.31 Nike KD X

Kevin Durant has been ballin’ out all year and seems to take his game to another level every single season. Whether it’s his clutch shooting, his lockdown defense, or his elite passing skills, there seems to be nothing he can’t do on the court. The latest colorway of his KD Xs are equally versatile. The black and white upper complements a marble outsole for a look that you can rock anywhere and with anything. Men’s $150.00. Boys’ $125.00.

NIKE KOBE A.D. – FEB. 1 AT 10 AM ET

1.31 Nike Kobe A.D.

Kobe Bryant’s game was like a fine wine — it got better as his career went on. So, it makes sense that the Black Mamba’s other nickname is Vino. That’s the inspiration behind the latest colorway of the Kobe A.D. The Port Wine colorway features some touches of blue, white, and pink for a luxurious look. The fit and comfort are equally first-class thanks to a luxe suede ankle collar and Snakeskin material along the lateral side of the shoe. Men’s $150.00.

ADIDAS DAME 4 – FEB. 1 AT 10 AM ET

1.31 adidas Dame 4

Few players deliver more in key moments than Damian Lillard. So how does he do it? Is it his cool-headed confidence? Or the endless hours he spends practicing in the gym? Those definitely help, and so does wearing the perfect signature shoe. The Dame 4s have the comfort, fit, and explosiveness that Dame needs to knock down those game-winners. And on Thursday, he’s dropping a new black and white colorway with a stylish grey pattern along the upper — just what you need to stand out when it’s time to step up in the clutch. Men’s $115.00.

UNDER ARMOUR CURRY 4– FEB. 2 AT 10 AM ET

1.31 UA Curry 4

Fans of the best shooter on the planet, and his signature Curry 4s, are in for a treat this Friday. A new colorway of the Mid drops with a red, synthetic-suede overlay and a black knit collar. The gum rubber outsole with black splatter paint makes this a standout look. But if the Low is more your style, there are multiple colors dropping this Friday as well. Take your pick, lace ‘em up, and get bucket after bucket from deep. Men’s Mid $130.00. Men’s Low $120.00.

8.31 RELEASE REPORT: JORDAN RETRO 5 ‘TAKE FLIGHT’ DROPS THIS WEEKEND

8.31 RELEASE REPORT: JORDAN RETRO 5 ‘TAKE FLIGHT’ DROPS THIS WEEKEND

Each week, we’ll showcase the most popular upcoming shoe drops. We’ll give you the lowdown on the prices and sizes, break down the history of each shoe, and fill you in on the newest tech features. Check back every week for the hottest shoe drops. If it’s hyped, it’s here. You can check out the full list of releases on Eastbay’s Release Calendar. Here’s what you have to look forward to this week:

JORDAN RETRO 5 ‘TAKE FLIGHT’ – SEPT. 2 AT 10 AM ET

The iconic Jordan Retro 5 takes design inspiration from WWII fight planes, and the all-new ‘Take Flight’ colorway plays into that theme perfectly. The Retro 5 ‘Take Flight’ is armed with a military shade of green and a reflective camo print on the heel and tongue, as well as the classic ‘Shark Teeth’ design and an iced outsole. Men’s $189.99, Grade School $139.99.

GIRLS’ JORDAN RETRO 5 ‘SUNBLUSH’ – SEPT. 2 AT 10 AM ET

8.31 Womens Retro 5

Jordan Brand is also dropping a fresh Retro 5 colorway just for the ladies. The women’s-exclusive ‘Sunblush’ colorway features a classic white-and-black upper, and offers pink accents on the tongue and the ‘Shark Teeth’ for a pop of color. The iced outsole completes a look that will have guys wishing they could squeeze into girls’ sizes. Girls’ $139.99.

NIKE KOBE A.D. ‘RISE – SEPT. 2 AT 10 AM ET

8.31 Kobe Blog

Following the release of five monochromatic ‘Mamba Mentality’ colorways, Nike is dropping the Kobe A.D. ‘Rise’ colorway this weekend. The fresh look features a dark blue obsidian color with yellow midsole that resembles a rising sun. Let us know what you think of this new Kobe colorway in the comments below. Men’s $149.99.

NIKE KD X ‘RED VELVET’ – SEPT. 1 AT 10 AM ET

8.31 KD Blog

KD’s jumper is smooth as velvet, so dropping the KD X in a ‘Red Velvet’ colorway was the perfect way for Nike to celebrate KD’s first championship and the sweet taste of victory. The KD X ‘Red Velvet’ comes with a mouth-watering red and black colorway with a white speckled midsole finishing off the look. The KD X is focused on top-tier performance on the court, and a colorway that looks this good is definitely icing on the cake. Men’s $149.99. Grade School $124.99.

NIKE KYRIE 3 ‘KYRACHE LIGHT’ – SEPT. 1 AT 1O AM ET

8.31 Kyrie 3 Blog

Last year, Nike dropped a Kyrie 2 colorway inspired by the original Nike Air Flight Huarache, and now the Swoosh is back with a similar theme. The Kyrie 3 ‘Kyrache Light’ takes inspiration from 1993’s Air Huarache Light with a mix of black, red, purple, and teal colors. Old school Nike fans and Kyrie Irving fans should all be hyped for this fresh release. Men’s $119.99, Grade School $99.99.

The Kobe A.D. NXT: Rethinking, Redefining, Reinventing

The Kobe A.D. NXT: Rethinking, Redefining, Reinventing

Kobe Bryant may have hung up his basketball shoes after last season, but that doesn’t mean he’s stopped obsessing about achieving greatness on the basketball court.

With his latest signature shoe, he’s rethought, redefined, and reinvented his shoe line to create an innovative new basketball sneaker that’s designed to give athletes an edge on the competition.

Bryant and the Nike design team worked tirelessly to develop a low-profile, highly responsive shoe that is unlike any other basketball shoe on the market. The Kobe A.D. NXT features an unconventional look, most notably because of its new lacing system.

The team integrated the lacing with the shoe’s upper. Pulling the laces up and out of the lace lock draws the structure together, creating a fluid system with the drop-in insole. This promotes optimal containment during the game by naturally adjusting to the athlete and providing a secure fit for each individual’s foot.

“The updates we’ve made to Kobe’s line demonstrate a new way of thinking about performance design,” said Eric Avar, a Nike footwear designer and longtime Kobe Bryant collaborator.

The Flyknit upper features a circular pattern that was inspired by a lotus flower and represents rebirth, while other design elements on the shoe feature secret Kobe codes that translate to “unhinge” and “end and begin.”

The shoe’s theme plays heavily off of Kobe’s retirement, as the previous Kobe A.D. shoes have done. The shoe’s innovative tech and creative design combine to represent a reawakening of the Kobe signature shoe line. Even in retirement, Kobe Bryant continues to grind for greatness by rethinking traditional conventions and redefining basketball innovation.

The Kobe A.D. NXT is available here.

RELEASE REPORT: NIKE ‘FLIP THE SWITCH’ COLLECTION + AJ XXXI ‘PURE MONEY’

RELEASE REPORT: NIKE ‘FLIP THE SWITCH’ COLLECTION + AJ XXXI ‘PURE MONEY’

Each week, we’ll break down the most popular upcoming shoe drops. We’ll give you the lowdown on the prices and sizes, break down the history of the shoe, and give you the scoop on the newest tech features. Check back every week for the hottest shoe drops. If it’s hyped, it’s here. You can check out the full list of releases on Eastbay’s Release Calendar. Here’s what you have to look forward to this weekend:

NIKE BASKETBALL SHOES – MAY 5 AT 10 AM ET

As the playoffs intensify, Nike Basketball is dropping the ‘Flip the Switch’ collection to match the postseason’s electric atmospheres. Athletes have to bring the energy as they make their charge toward the championship, so Nike is releasing brand new signature shoes for LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and Paul George. The collection features similar textural elements throughout, but each shoe also has unique traits that connect to the player’s playoff push. In addition to the ‘Flip the Switch’ collection, Nike Basketball is also dropping a new Kobe A.D. colorway that is not a part of the collection. LeBron 14 $174.99, Kobe A.D. $159.99, KD 9 $149.99, Kyrie 3 $119.99, PG 1 $109.99.

JORDAN AJ XXXI LOW ‘PURE MONEY’ – MAY 5 AT 10 AM ET

The AJ XXXI has been outfitted with a number of iconic Jordan colorways, ranging from the ‘Banned’ to the ‘Royal’ to the this weekend’s ‘Pure Money’ release. The AJ XXXI ‘Pure Money’ comes in a fresh white, silver, and pure platinum colorway with an iced outsole. The AJ XXXI is made to dominate the court, and this colorway is perfect for the spring and summer circuit. Like a smooth jumper, this AJ XXXI is pure money. Men’s $159.99, Grade School Boys’ $119.99.

JORDAN TRUNNER LX OG – MAY 3 AT 10 AM ET

One of the original Jordan trainers returns this weekend in an OG colorway. The Jordan Trunner LX represents Jordan Brand’s move into off-court training gear and the classic Bred-inspired colorway is always a fan-favorite. The Trunner provides legendary training in the gym and keeps you fresh with an OG look. Men’s $119.99, Grade School Boys’ $99.99.