Blazers' Damian Lillard inks contract extension with Adidas
Blazers guard Damian Lillard has signed a long-term contract extension with Adidas, the apparel company announced on Monday.
USA Today Sports reports that the lucrative agreement is one of the richest ever given to a professional basketball player, while ESPN.com reports that the contract could be worth as much as $100 million over 10 years.
Lillard, the 2012 No. 6 pick out of Weber State, has worn Adidas throughout his pro career. After unanimously winning the 2013 Rookie of the Year award and earning selection to the 2014 All-Star Game, Lillard was in position to opt out of his contract this summer. Instead, he will remain with Adidas, which also counts Derrick Rose, Dwight Howard and John Wall among its top endorsers.
“Adidas has been great to me over my first two seasons,” Lillard said in a statement. "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."
Although Lillard has not yet had his own signature line, he's had a number of special-edition shoes crafted for him. Adidas released a pair of sneakers recognizing his Rookie of the Year award, offered black-and-red All-Star sneakers back in February and unveiled a Portland-themed "Rose City" edition of the Crazy 1s last month. All three sneakers can be seen in the gallery below. During the 2014 All-Star Weekend, Lillard made headlines by become the first player to participate in five different events, and he wore a different pair of sneakers in each event.
“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,” Adidas head of global basketball sports marketing Chris Granchio said in a statement. “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.”
Lillard, 23, has averaged 20.8 points, 5.6 assists and 3.6 rebounds per game this season. The Blazers are set to face the Rockets in the first round of the Western Conference playoffs, marking the franchise's first postseason trip since 2011.
Here's a look at a few of Lillard's special edition Adidas shoes.