Nike filed a continuation in their suit against Warren Lotas following last week’s news that he is offering customers replacements. In a document submitted on November 2nd, Nike made it very clear they disapprove of the move by the designer. Incorporating imagery of the issues over the initial WL shoes, the Swoosh continues the dispute tackling his replacement shoe from the bottom-up.
According to unconfirmed images, Nike’s claim shows the sole’s similarities between the Reaper (WL’s replacement) and a genuine Nike Dunk. While the profiles of the midsoles look virtually identical, Lotas did publish images of the base of the Reaper outsole. The Reaper features a scythe and a skull – though there still remains a strong likeness to Nike’s Dunk. While it seems that Lotas is having a hard time moving away from the trademarked Dunk outsole, one wonders if it is part of his strategy. The WL Reaper “Electric Blue”, one of the three replacement colorways unveiled, evokes memories of Nike’s featured UNC colorways.
Taking a step back to look at broader comparisons between the Nike Dunk & WL’s Reapers, certain similarities stand out. The heel branding, lacing system, toe-box & tongue could be arguments made by the Beaverton giants in their efforts. In Lotas’ defense, he has notably swapped the Jason Swoosh for a larger Reaper logo & introduced a heel counter. He also has extended the lace eyestays into a scythe design.
This is definitely shaping up to become the most prominent sneaker-related lawsuit in recent memory with Nike’s unrelenting pursuit. Warren Lotas has until the November 9th to formally respond to the latest claim from Nike. With a notable uptick in the amount of “customs” that play on legendary Nike models it will be interesting to see how the industry responds to how this case unfolds.
Let us know what you think will happen next, and as always, be sure to stay tuned to Nice Kicks for all the latest developments.