Update: Adidas will put out the first Damian Lillard customized, signature basketball shoe early next year, we're told.
Portland Trail Blazers Damian Lillard and adidas have finalized a deal that makes it the third richest shoe endorsement deal in history, a source informed CSNNW.com.
The deal, according to another source, is an eight-year contract that has the potential to stretch out to 10 years if he reaches certain incentive clauses. We’ve confirmed Lillard’s new contract is slightly less than that of Derrick Rose.
“adidas has been great to me over my first two seasons,” Lillard said in the adidas release. “I’ve had the opportunity to wear a lot of great product, help design special versions of shoes, be a part of TV commercials and travel the world with the brand. I’m excited for what the future holds for me and adidas.”
CSNNW.com reported a few weeks ago that the deal was on the cusp of being finalized. The deal was actually signed in Los Angeles on April 1 prior to the Trail Blazers defeating the Los Angeles Lakers 124-112.
Due to Lillard reaching certain performance incentive clauses in his adidas rookie shoe deal, he was able to opt out at the end of the season to pursue a long-term, prosperous contract with adidas, Nike or other major competitors. Instead of waiting, Lillard's representatives gave adidas an exclusive 30-day window to renegotiate before checking out other offers. That 30 days was up on April. 1.
In two seasons, Lillard, 23, has become an NBA household name and borderline superstar. The reigning Rookie of the Year point guard was the first player in NBA history to compete in all five major All-Star weekend events – the Rookie/Sophomore Game, Skills Challenge, Three Point Contest, Slam Dunk Contest, and of course the All-Star Game.
USA Today reported the deal is finalized.
Release from Goodwin Sports:
PORTLAND, Ore. (April 14, 2014) – adidas today announced a long-term partnership extension with NBA All-Star point guard Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers. The young star will continue to be an integral part of adidas Basketball’s marketing campaigns, product launches and global initiatives moving forward.
“adidas has been great to me over my first two seasons,” said Lillard. “I’ve had the opportunity to wear a lot of great product, help design special versions of shoes, be a part of TV commercials and travel the world with the brand. I’m excited for what the future holds for me and adidas.”
Lillard’s dedication to basketball brought immediate success in his young NBA career, including being named the unanimous Kia NBA Rookie of the Year. This season, Lillard took another step forward, earning a spot on the Western Conference NBA All-Star team where he also became the first player to complete in all five events at All-Star weekend. Lillard’s improvement has led to team success, as the Trail Blazers have clinched a playoff spot in the tough Western Conference for the first time in three seasons.
“Damian has proven to be not only an amazing basketball player, but a great partner, member of the community and someone who creates excitement for our products,” said Chris Grancio, adidas head of global basketball sports marketing. “His leadership and commitment to success on the court and his ability to interact and relate to fans through social media and the community make him the perfect fit to be one of the cornerstones of the adidas brand.”
After being overlooked by large collegiate programs coming out of high school in Oakland, Calif., Lillard attended Weber State University where he excelled for three seasons. Lillard quickly raised his draft status in 2012 where he was selected by the Portland Trail Blazers with the sixth overall pick. Lillard is currently averaging 21 points, six assists and four rebounds per game for the Trail Blazers.
Other adidas athletes include Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls, WNBA MVP Candace Parker and FIFA World Player of the Year Lionel Messi FC Barcelona.