words // Luis Sanchez
2013 was an incredibly huge year for the three stripes in more ways than one.
Currently in the spotlight for their newly signed deal with one of the most influential figures today in Kanye West, adidas also blew us away in 2013 with power moves all across the board. The running category claimed to change the game with Boost cushioning, while Originals continued to rise to the top with collaborations with A$AP Rocky and yet another collaboration with G.O.O.D Music's Big Sean.
And although he's been off the court more than any other signature athlete out there over the past year, the DRose brand continued to grow this year as well with the arrival of the Rose 4.0 by adidas Basketball. Y-3 also impressed us yet again with their foward thinking in 2013, introducing the well received Y-3 Qasa High and Low.
As a whole, all the aforementioned elements helped adidas have one of their most successful years in quite some time, building extreme expectations for continued success into 2014 and beyond.
Continue reading for a look at SC's ten best adidas releases of 2013.
10. adidas Real Deal - Damian Lillard 'Rookie of the Year'
When first starting this list, the one shoe that was guaranteed to be included was Damian Lillard's 'ROTY' adidas Real Deal. The special edition Real Deal by adidas celebrated Lillard's memorable rookie season with the Blazers, and paid homage to his Oakland roots and college days at Weber State. Lillard's exclusive by adidas was limited to 510 pairs, and only released in Portland, Oakland and on adidas.com.
9. adidas Originals x Big Sean Pro Model II - Black/Black
After officially announcing their deal with Kanye West earlier this month, its hard to argue that any other brand has capitalized on their relationships with entertainers better than adidas. Rocking with Kanye's G.O.O.D Music MC Big Sean long before 'Ye came on board, adidas and Big Sean followed up their original 'Detroit Players' Pro Model II release with a blacked out take on the classic model. The follow-up collab by adidas Originals and Big Sean couldn't have been any better, immediately selling out across the nation and online.
8. adidas Springblade
If there's one division of the three stripes we had to commend for making considerable strides in the right directions this year, its adidas Running. Not only did they shake things up with the innovative Energy Boost runner, adidas Running also blew everyone away with the Springblade runner. Said to be more than six years in the making, adidas provided runners with one of the highest energy returning runners ever. And when you consider that, it became insanely tough to leave the Springblade off the list.
7. adidas Rose 4
adidas' biggest name in Derrick Rose might not currently be on court, but that still won't change the fact that the Rose 4 was one of the best releases of the year by adidas. Utilizing one of the boldest color blocks we've ever seen put to use by adidas, the Rose 4 features a design inspired by DRose's distinct on and off court personalities. The Rose 4 also marked the debut of the Crazyquick outsole traction system for the Rose line, and also features other marquee performance innovations by adidas such as SprintWeb, GEOFIT ankle support, and a SprintFrame chassis.
6. adidas JS x A$AP Rocky Black Flag WIngs 2.0
2014 also saw adidas Originals finally release their long-awaited collaboration with Jeremy Scott and A$AP Rocky. A longtime supporter of Jeremy's work and adidas' Y-3 label, Rocky did his thing over the ever so popular JS Wings 2.0. Rocky and Jeremy went with a very fitting 'Black Flag' theme over the Wings 2.0, utilizing a full canvas build with a stitched stars & stripes design.
5. adidas ZX 500 Response - '90s Run Through Time Pack
Not only did adidas raise the bar with their innovations in running this past year, they also killed it with the classics such as the ZX5000 Response. Reissued as part of the entirely impressive 'Run Through Time' collection, the ZX5000 returned in an appealing red-based color scheme with just the right amount of mint accents to set them off. Released as part of the '90s set of styles, the ZX5000 was easily the most popular release as part of the 'Run Through Time' collection by adidas.
4. adidas Y-3 Qasa High - Grey/Black-Neon
Y-3's lone appearance on the list is definitely a great one to say the least, with the Y-3 Qasa High coming in at number three. Released in several colorways and both a high cut and low cut, Y-3's clean form-fitting model was by far the brand's most popular release of the year thanks to their uniquely layered upper and 'roll ball' sole.
3. adidas Mutombo - OG Colorway
Not only was the return of the Mutombo one of the biggest releases of the year for adidas Originals, it was also one of the most impressive and well-executed retro basketball releases of 2013 overall. The already iconic Mutombo signature model by adidas returned in several colorways, including the original graphic accented colorway worn on the court by Dikembe. The much celebrated return of the Mutombo is also only the beginning, with the release of the originally scrapped Mutombo TR Block trainer scheduled for early next year.
2. BAPE x UNDFTD x adidas Consortium Collection
If it wasn't for adidas' game-changing innovations in the running category this year, the well-received Bape x UNDFTD x adidas Consortium collection would have easily taken the top spot. The three stripes, Bape and UNDFTD went to work on the Stan Smith, the Campus 80s and ZX500, crafting each model with the most premium materials available, functional natural tones and OG Bape camo.
1. adidas Energy Boost
When adidas first introduced the Boost, they claimed it would change running forever. Proven superior to all other foam-based cushioning currently on the market, the Boost cushioning system consists of small foam capsules molded together which are able to retain their normal properties and provide a maximum energy return over and over again. And although the Boost is number one for its game-changing effects in the world of running footwear, its the trickle down into other categories such as basketball that can really help adidas shake up the footwear industry with Boost cushioning.