Shoe brand deals are one of the most unique things about the NBA. As NBA players traverse their way through stardom, big shoe brands approach them for shoe deals. James Harden signed a $200 million deal with Adidas. LeBron got his first multi-million dollar deal with Nike before ever stepping a foot on an NBA court. While Golden State Warriors legend Stephen Curry left Nike for Under Armour after they disrespected him at a meeting. This cost Nike millions of dollars. 

Shoe deals are dealt with a lot of seriousness in the NBA. Stephen Curry once violated NBA’s shoe regulations and got fined for his collaboration with Then POTUS Obama. Kanye’s Yeezy brand shoes are also banned in the NBA’s rules. Zach LaVine wore the Yeezy shoes in an NBA All-Star contest. This motivated players like Brandon Ingram and Andre Iguodala, who wore the rapper’s shoes in the regular season. This led to the NBA’s first reversal on a shoe ban. 

This is just the tip of the iceberg. James Harden did the craziest thing that could have cost him $200 million dollars. For decades Adidas and Nike have battled at the top of the mountain for being the best sneaker brand. Harden entered the debate as he once violated his own brand. As an Adidas athlete, he got clicked rocking a pair of Nike Jordans. This did not sit well with the sneaker giant. They banned him from ever wearing a Nike shoe! 


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Khloe Kardashian almost cost James Harden $200 million.

James Harden and the Adidas debacle may be old news now since it was back in 2015. Harden was dating Khloe Kardashian at that time. Khloe is an Instagram celebrity. Her rise to stardom came with her reality show ‘Keeping up with the Kardashians’. She has been paired with stars like Lamar Odom, who she was married to before her marriage to Tristan Thompson.

Like Tristan and Lamar, then Houston Rockets star James Harden rose to popularity with his pairing with Khloe. He was constantly around her fans and paparazzi. As an NBA player, he was used to celebrity life, however, Khloe has 218 million followers on Instagram. Other stars the Kardashians have dated include Ben Simmons, Devin Booker, and Blake Griffin. 

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This kind of popularity was why Harden almost lost out on his shoe deal. Harden once wore a pair of Nike Jordans to a club with Khloe, and the paparazzi caught it. The photo spread like wildfire, as anything involving a Kardashian usually does. 

Later, Harden said, “Nike is cool, but Adidas is about to be amazing!”. When it came to Adidas’ attention, they told him he could lose out on his $200 million. Furthermore, there was a possibility of him getting sued.

Adidas tells Harden to wear their lifestyle line shoes

According to an ESPN interview with an Adidas spokesperson, the Philadelphia 76ers star Harden must only wear Adidas shoes as it is a part of the deal. Moreover, Adidas signed ex-Nike athlete James Harden to an unmatched $200 million deal.


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The Adidas spokesperson told ESPN, “The difference between football and basketball is that a guy like Aaron Rodgers doesn’t have a walk-around shoe. Harden does, and he will be in our lifestyle stuff.” 


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Adidas dealt with the issue and later, Harden released several sneakers with the company. The most latest sneaker he released was the Harden ‘ Vol-4’.