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Mike Trout first MLB player since Ken Griffey Jr. to get Nike cleat

Mike Trout Nike cleats

Mike Trout is in his own category as a player on the field, and now he’s in elite company off of it.

Nike has created its first signature for a cleat for a player since they did with Ken Griffey Jr. The cleat is called the Nike Lunar Vapor Trout, and it’s part of an entire “Vapor Collection” of items/accessories.

The cleat, which is available as of June 20, was created with some of Trout’s insights and is lightweight and designed for speed.

Nike Lunar Vapor Trout

Via Nike’s website:

The first signature cleat for star outfielder Mike Trout, the Nike Lunar Vapor Trout redefines the balance of speed and power in baseball and embodies the future direction of the game. Informed by Trout’s own insights, the Nike Lunar Vapor Trout is designed for the directional speed needed to steal more bases, get to more balls in the outfield, and get out of the batters box quickly. Equipped with a durable, lightweight Nike Lunarlon foam midsole for comfort, the cleat features a split Pebax speed plate for ultra-responsive movement across the field. The midsole also informs a lively aesthetic that captures the spirit of Trout’s game and Nike Vapor technology – sleek, modern, athletic, and extremely fast.

In addition to the cleat, the Vapor Collection includes sliding tights, batting gloves, a sleeve, a cap and socks.

Below is a video of Trout talking about the cleat:

You’re probably wondering how it’s possible that Trout is the first Nike player since Griffey to get his own cleat and asking about Derek Jeter. Yes, Jeter had his own cleat, too, but that was made by the Jordan Brand, not Nike specifically.

Forearm bash to Big League Stew

Nike to unveil Marty McFly Back to the Future II power laces

Marty McFly shoesI don’t know about you, but “Back to the Future II” was my favorite movie in the series. Was anything better than when Marty McFly and Doc Brown go to the future and Marty goes to Cafe 80s? I think not. And was anything better than all the gizmos from the future? Not a chance.

Those hoverboards were as sick as can be. And nothing topped Marty’s shoes and outfit.

Nike already released the Back to the Future II Air Mag shoes (eccentric closer Brian Wilson was a huge fan), but those lacked the power laces that took the sneakers to the next level. Now it sounds like Nike will be introducing the power laces before long.

From an article published on Sole Collector Friday:

During an appearance at the Jordan Brand’s Flight Lab space in New Orleans earlier today, designer Tinker Hatfield was asked about the possibility of seeing power lacing next year, and his answer may surprise you.

“Are we gonna see power laces in 2015? To that, I say YES!” said Hatfield.

Heck yes. Game on. There aren’t a whole lot of “wants” I have in life, but this definitely goes to the top of the list. Let’s just hope they don’t cost four figures the way the shoes did.

H/T Gizmodo

LeBron James has a problem with his new Nike LeBron 11 shoes

LeBron James mediaLeBron James apparently isn’t a fan yet of the latest version of his own Nike shoes.

“I could wear them, but they don’t feel as great as I want them to feel,” James told ESPN.com on Thursday. “So we’re redefining them, and I feel like this next round is going to be perfect.”

James apparently is uncomfortable with the fit of the shoes, the LeBron 11, which are cut lower than previous designs. He has worn the sneakers in only two games so far, according to ESPN.com. Before Thursday night’s blowout loss to the Chicago Bulls, James addressed the shoe situation.

“I just want to be able to wear them,” James said, according to ESPN.com. “It has been a frustrating process. But obviously, I know that Nike wants to do what’s best. They’re not going to put me out there in harm’s way. So we’re redefining the shoe to fit what’s best for my foot.”

Despite James’ indifference, sales of the LeBron 11, which retail for more than $200, are up 18 percent compared to sales of his LeBron X at this time last year, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Nike pulls ‘Boston Massacre’ shirts following marathon bombing

Boston Massacre shirt

Nike has decided to pull their “Boston Massacre” T-shirts in the wake of last week’s Boston Marathon bombings.

The shirts are old and unrelated to the bombings, but the company realized they do not reflect well given the context of recent events.

“The shirts being referenced are older baseball shirts that were predominantly being sold through our factory store outlets,” Nike spokesman KeJuan Wilkins said Monday, via ESPN’s Darren Rovell. “In light of the tragedy in Boston, we took immediate action last week to remove this product from distribution.”

Per Rovell, the shirts are being removed from outlet stores and online outlets.

The shirts are navy blue and have blood splattered over white lettering that says Boston. The term “Boston Massacre” is a play on to the historical 1770 incident that is also used to describe the Yankees’ late-season sweeps of the Sox in 1978 and 2006 that contributed to the Sox missing the playoffs.

Nike may have decided to act after Eric Stangel, a producer/writer for “Late Show with David Letterman” tweeted a picture of the shirt which he came across at a Nike outlet.

“We’ve been taking them down. But somehow they keep ending up back on the rack,” a store employee told him.

Even though the shirts have nothing to do with the bombings, it’s good thinking by Nike to remove the shirts. The company also had a recent ad campaign backfire when Oscar Pistorius was charged with murder.

Nike uses photo of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist to congratulate various teams (Pictures)

Michael-Kidd-Gilchrist-Kentucky

The gentleman in the photo that you see above is Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. He plays forward for the Charlotte Bobcats, and as many of you know he helped Kentucky win a national championship in 2012. He does not — nor did he ever — play for Middle Tennessee, Illinois or Ohio State. But that hasn’t stopped Nike from acting like he did.

As Nation of Blue pointed out, Nike posted a series of artsy posters on Twitter on Sunday to congratulate teams who made it into the tournament. For several of them, they took a photo of Kidd-Gilchrist and tweaked it so it appeared he was wearing the corresponding team’s uniform.

[Read more...]

Nike suspends contract with Oscar Pistorius

Oscar-Pistorius-bullet-in-chamber

Nike has decided to suspend its contract with Oscar Pistorius as the sprinter is investigated for charges of attempted murder.

“Nike has suspended its contract with Oscar Pistorius. We believe Oscar Pistorius should be afforded due process and we will continue to monitor the situation closely,” the sports apparel giant said in a statement, via The Oregonian.

Pistorius also had his contract suspended by Oakley on Monday.

Nike is one of the most loyal companies to its star sports figures, so it takes something of this magnitude for them to waiver in support of an endorser. They initially stood by Joe Paterno while Penn State was exposed for the Jerry Sandusky scandal; they stood by Tiger Woods as his sex scandal unfolded; and they re-signed Michael Vick even after he served time in prison for dogfighting charges. But Nike dropped Lance Armstrong last October, and they have suspended their deal with Pistorius. It hasn’t exactly been a banner year for the swoosh in terms of endorsers.

My guess is they’re going to end up dropping him before too long; the reported evidence isn’t exactly looking good for Pistorius.

Nike briefly ran Oscar Pistorius ‘bullet in the chamber’ ad before shooting (Picture)

Oscar-Pistorius-bullet-in-chamber

Talk about an unfortunate coincidence.

Early Thursday morning, South Afrian sprinter Oscar Pistorius, who is known in the sports world as “Blade Runner” because of his prosthetic legs, allegedly shot and killed his girlfriend after mistaking her for an intruder in his home. Pistorius has been arrested in connection with the case. Multiple sources reported that Pistorius’ girlfriend, 30-year-old model Reeva Steenkamp, is believed to have been delivering a Valentine’s Day surprise for Oscar.

The advertisement you see above appeared on Pistorius’ website before the incident occurred and has since been pulled. As you can see, it said “I am the bullet in the chamber” alongside a picture of the world famous sprinter. Of all the analogies that can be made to describe Pistorius’ remarkable story, this has to be one of the worst that Nike could have come up with. Of course, they had no way of knowing what would occur. That doesn’t make the banner any less eery.

H/T Deadspin