Choosing a sneaker sponsor is underratedly one of the most important decisions any (worthy) pro athlete will make in his or her career. Not only is this where the real money lies, but also, an athlete's legacy and revenue stream after his or her playing days are over is often dependent on the success of these sales. Guys, like Andrew Wiggins, who are mulling over the decision to join a brand have no idea what the implications of this choice could mean.
In Wiggins' case, while Adidas is reportedly ready to offer the Kansas star a $180 million contract, he might want to think twice before signing on. The curse is no secret at this point. To be honest, it seems like anyone who wears the Adidas symbol is bound to tear an ACL at some point. Poor Derrick Rose... and Tracy McGrady, Gilbert Arenas and RGIII.
While Nike might seem like the only other viable option, Wiggins might want to take a step back and think again. Sure, LeBron James has managed to stay injury-free throughout his career, but aside from that, we see a rapid decline in all other athletes who have signed with the brand known for its "Swoosh" logo.
Could there be literally no shoe safe for athletes? Should they all resort to completely new mechanics, which don't involve their lower bodies? Of course not.
Does Nike protect its players better than Adidas does? Absolutely not. Here are the 10 sports stars who sustained injuries while wearing Nikes.
Blake Griffin, NBA
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Before winning Rookie of the Year honors in 2010, many people actually forgot that Blake Griffin was out for an entire season in 2009, when he injured his knee on a dunk during the Clipper's last preseason game. Of course, Griffin signed with Nike during his first year out of Oklahoma and is always a liability whenever he goes up high for the jam. It doesn't help that opponents are always gunning for him, either.
Rajon Rondo, NBA
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Who would've thought that Rajon Rondo was going to be the last remaining piece from that "Big Three" championship team? I'm kidding; we all knew that. But because of an ACL tear he sustained during last season's playoffs, Rondo hasn't been able to go all year. And with his recovery time taking longer than expected, who knows what kind of player he'll be when he comes back? Better switch out those Nikes!
Tom Brady, NFL
Tom Terrific, aka Tom Brady, seems to be invincible, especially in the post-season. However, the only major injury of his entire career was the worst he could have sustained. In 2008, Brady tore his ACL and MCL in a game against the Kansas City Chiefs, which you can watch here. The Nike-sponsored star hasn't won a Super Bowl since.
Brandon Roy, NBA
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The tale of Brandon Roy is a sad one. Among all of the offensive talent in the world, Roy could have been one of the greats, especially if he were the veteran leader of the Blazers squad today. However, repeat knee and ACL injuries, which all originated during his rookie season (while wearing Nikes), led to his rapid decline and departure from the league. At least he's still getting paid from his fat-ass contract.
Greg Oden, NBA
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Can you believe the Blazers chose him over Kevin Durant? They're kicking themselves everyday for that lapse in judgment. Greg Oden had the potential to be one of the most dominant big men in the league, but his inability to stay healthy hindered his performance and success in the league. Sure, Oden is on the Miami Heat and probably going to win a title, but he's just not what we thought he would be.
Andrew Bynum, NBA
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Despite admitting that he doesn't even like to play basketball, Nike-sponsored Andrew Bynum has had the wildest roller coaster ride of a career. Of course, there was one common theme throughout his ride: injuries. Not only did Bynum rob the 76ers when he went joined them for a season to try out different hairstyles, but he's also now being shipped to Chicago, where he'll likely be dropped... then picked up by the Miami Heat. Bynum was probably the only guy to make it work for himself.
Mariano Rivera, MLB
Mariano Rivera played a legendary career but didn't exactly have a storybook finish. While he was praised at literally every ballpark he visited last season, Rivera was coming back from a leg injury in 2012, which he sustained while trying to catch a fly ball. Who knows, if he hadn't torn that ligament, he could be still playing...
Amar'e Stoudemire, NBA
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In 2010, Amar'e Stoudemire was a top-five player in the NBA. Fast forward to 2014, and he's only allowed to play 20 minutes each game, none back-to-back. A string of knee injuries have taken Stoudemire's explosiveness and he's been fighting to get healthy for some time now. But every time he seems to begin showing strength and promise, Amar'e faces another setback or injury to make things worse. STAT has been with Nike since his rookie season in Phoenix.
Adrian Peterson, NFL
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Adrian Peterson is a special kind of machine. He's big, he's strong, and when it's all said and done, he'll probably be the greatest running back of all time. However, an ACL injury in 2011 put all of that at risk. Peterson defied all odds to come back stronger than ever, winning MVP and coming within 10 yards of the all-time, single season rushing record. Maybe he should tear an ACL after every season!
Kobe Bryant, NBA
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Similar to LeBron James, Kobe Bryant is one of those guys who just never seems to get injured. In 2013, however, that all changed for the worse. Bryant suffered an Achilles injury right before the playoffs and hasn't been the same since. After working so hard to come back and reclaim the West, Kobe sustained another injury, and now, no one knows when he'll make a return. Hopefully this doesn't happen to LeBron at the end of his career. The last thing we want is to see Kobe falling off.
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