SALT LAKE CITY — Donovan Mitchell has sported everything from the Adidas Dame 4 to the Pro Bounce Low, and more recently the Pro Vision sneakers, but was spotted in a brand new model at the Utah Jazz practice facility.
Mitchell officially broke out his D.O.N Issue #1 kicks on Thursday morning after his first Adidas signature sneakers were announced ahead of the Jazz’s marquee game versus the Philadelphia 76ers on TNT.
Details on the price and date of the sneaker release won’t get announced until 2019, but he has been privately wearing the new product for a couple of weeks now, while hiding them from the media.
“With this comes more,” Mitchell said during shootaround. “So I have to bring more, do more and I know that but at the end of the day this is just a blessing.”
D.O.N. is an acronym Determination Over Negativity, as the sneaker will also feature his personal self-owned Spida logo, which was first featured on his signature Stance sock.
“I’m happy for him, I think it’s great,” said Jazz center Rudy Gobert. “He’s gotta work on his title.”
Mitchell is the first Jazz player with a signature shoe since Hall of Famer Karl Malone in 1998 with the Apex Mailman, which never were really a hit with the public. Malone also had the LA Gear Catapult, which were released in 1991, but he hasn’t had any discussions to bring back any retro models.
“I just keep mine in mothballs,” Malone said. “You be careful because them LA Gears make you run faster and jump higher.”
Representatives from Adidas have made it clear that the brand will push Mitchell as the future of its basketball line.
“We definitely see him the same way the Jazz do, definitely the future of Adidas Basketball and being a great partner there,” senior director of footwear for Adidas Basketball Rashad Williams told the Deseret News at the adidas Brooklyn Farm in November. “So, it’s been exciting.”
In fact, the sneaker was released in an untraditional manner through two aspiring sport writers Rory Ashmeade (ninth grade) and Blaise New (eighth grade) at his alma mater, Greenwich Country Day School in Greenwich, Connecticut. Both Ashmeade and New have known Mitchell for most of their lives and it was his mother, Nicole’s idea to present them in that manner.
The brand of Mitchell continues to grow, as he becomes a rising star in the league. He is also an ambassador for Stance socks and New Era and now joins a short list of NBA players with his own signature sneakers.
Mitchell said he likely won’t to play in the sneaker until February or March of 2019, which could change, as he continues to fine-tune some details within the product. He was surprised with the process happening so soon in his sophomore year, as other marquee Adidas signature athletes such as Derrick Rose, Damian Lillardand James Harden had to wait a bit later, but is honored by the feat.3 comments on this story
“Kind of? I was completely surprised when I find out that this was happening,” Mitchell admitted. “Just to be in the same name as Dame, James, D. Rose, and T-Mac, to be in the same lineup as that is an honor in itself so for this to even happen, it definitely took me by surprise.
“It’s here and now I’ve got to work and prove myself over and over again and it’s not going to stop,” he continued. “Just because this happened doesn’t take away anything we’re doing this season with the team and I don’t want it to at all. This is definitely a blessing for myself.”