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A Derrick Rose comeback is upon us, but his return to basketball won’t happen in a Bulls jersey. Getting a jumpstart on the NBA season, the Chicago icon is taking his talents to Team USA for this summer’s FIBA Games. He’ll have a new haircut and a new pair of shoes, but will it be the same D Rose?

While talking to Greg Anthony at the adidas Basketball “Boost Your Game” event, Rose emphasized his new approach to hitting the hardwood. Ready to return, as demonstrated by his performance at the first day of FIBA practice, he’s focused on letting the game come to him and helping his team in any manner possible. This approach stands as a mature contrast to the hungry but sometimes hurried style seen at the start of the 2013-14 season. In good spirits and in strong health, we talked to Derrick about his FIBA return, the adidas D Rose 5 and what music he’ll be listening to this summer.

Nice Kicks: The D Rose 5 has you just behind T-Mac as the longest tenured signature athlete in adidas Basketball history. How important is it to have your own signature line?

Derrick Rose: Going on five shoes is an honor. This is my seventh year in the league, and just thinking about where I started, when I came in, I didn’t know which shoe company I was going to sign with. adidas gave me a chance to go out there and show my talent and I’m grateful for that. This is my fifth shoe and I think it’s going to be a great shoe. We’re making history here, and I think that this is something that should be recognized.

Nice Kicks: Over the past couple of seasons, we’ve seen both your signatures and the 773 series on the feet of your peers and amateur talent. What’s it like seeing others support your line on court?

Derrick Rose: It’s good. Especially the 773, that idea came from my brother. He said that I needed a cheaper shoe just for the Chicago-based fans. They actually took that idea and took it to college. For everyone out there that’s even buying my shoes, it’s kind of cool. I’m only 25, and to have my own signature shoe and just thinking as a designer [regarding] what new ideas you can add to your next year shoe is alright.

Nice Kicks: Boost for basketball is obviously a big deal. What makes Boost technology a good fit for your game?

Derrick Rose: Because of the capsules, once you plant and put weight on them, they release energy. That energy is all my game. Whether it’s getting past people by jumping or crossing people over to get to a spot as quick as possible, these shoes are going to do fine.


Nice Kicks: Looking at the D Rose 5, what details were important to you in the making of this shoe?

Derrick Rose: With the black shoe, it’s the shine. I love style. Once I hit the court with these, people are going to automatically look at them. This is not your typical adidas shoe, looks-wise. All of my shoes in the past have been kind of crazy, but still great looking. On this one, I told them I wanted a simple shoe. They gave me like three models before they finished it, and they were totally different. This was the outcome of all the meetings that we had and them fixing everything that I told them to fix.

Nice Kicks: You debuted the D Rose 5 at a shoot around during the playoffs. Was that your idea or adidas’?

Derrick Rose: It was my call. I just put them on. [Laughs] Nobody was supposed to see that. I wanted to play in them and I didn’t think that someone was recording or it was even going to get out. Until you told me that now, I didn’t know anyone even paid attention to what I was wearing at that time.

Nice Kicks: This summer, you’re playing in the FIBA Games. Why is it important to you to get back on the court in that setting?

Derrick Rose: I think it’s perfect timing with me coming back and nobody having seen how I’ve played or how I’m looking right now – and just my new shoe. I think the players are going to be in awe of how adidas designed this shoe. I’m happy that I’ve got the shoes.

Nice Kicks: Last year, you told us you were listening to the Drake album. What will you be playing this summer before the FIBA Games?

Derrick Rose: I listen to a couple of people. I listen J. Cole, I listen to Drake, of course, and Meek Mill. I think Meek Mill right now is kind of tough. He’s the one I’m listening to because he gives you the energy you need to get out there and be amped to play.

Nice Kicks: Fellow Chicago native Kanye joined adidas since we last talked. Will we see you work with Ye on a shoe?

Derrick Rose: If the idea comes up and the concept comes up, of course I wouldn’t mind working with him. But, he’s a busy person and he has his own shoe coming out soon. If I have the opportunity to work with him, it’d be great and I think it’d be huge for adidas. I haven’t got a chance to see the new Yeezys yet. I don’t think anybody has but him. [Laughs] That’s Ye, though. You already know how he is.

Nice Kicks: Lastly, what can Nice Kicks readers expect this season from Derrick Rose and adidas?

Derrick Rose: Just make sure you pay attention, make sure you look out, because we’re going to make some noise and that’s for sure.

Check out Derrick this summer in the FIBA 2014 Basketball World Cup. The adidas D Rose 5 releases on October 23rd at adidas.