Will Bynum checks in with ATR.
Last week, Detroit Pistons point guard Will Bynum took time from working out at Attack Athletics – which has been his second home during the NBA lockout – to team up with the National Runaway Switchboard for their 12th Annual Thanksgiving Dinner that helps raise the public’s awareness of issues surrounding runaway, homeless and at-risk youth as part of National Runaway Prevention Month.
Counterkicks caught up with Bynum to talk about his decision to part ways with the Swoosh and pair up with Above the Rim.
Aside from the Q&A you’ll read below, Bynum talked about ATR making an Under Armour grassroots-like-movement to help push awareness for a brand that prides itself on understanding players and dedicating itself to helping them Rise.
CounterKicks: You’ve been a Nike guy for a long-time, going back to your high school days. What led to you joining ATR?
Will Bynum: I had a few deals on the table with Nike, Reebok and K1X and I choose Above The Rim. When I met with Above The Rim, it was a total family atmosphere. I had a lot of input in creating my shoe. My shoe is a little bit different because I actually did everything. I was involved with every step in making the shoe, step-by-step. It’s for people that play the style of game that I play. It fits my feet well. Everyone in the Above The Rim family is just like me. We’re humble individuals who want to succeed, want to learn and want to grow. I couldn’t turn down that opportunity.
CK: With the input you’ve had in helping design your shoes, what’s been some of the things that you’ve stressed?
Bynum: I’m looking for a light shoe that’s grippy on the court; that makes that [squeak] sound every time that I stop. I’m obsessed with that sound. I have to have that. I can’t be sliding all over the court. It has to be firm around the edges so I won’t worry about rolling my ankles because I’ve had some ankle injuries and that’s been tough. It has to grip your foot like a sock and that’s what the shoes do. It’s the most comfortable shoe I’ve ever worn.
CK: When did you first hear about Above The Rim?
Bynum: I had been talking to them the whole year. I was talking to them all last year when I was in Nike’s. I got to meet with them out in LA and after that, it was a done deal.
CK: Was the input part a huge part in your decision to go with ATR?
Bynum: That was the main reason. I have so much input in what’s going on and the people there. I can’t say enough about how cool the people are. They listen and it’s not just “wear this shoe,” “Put on this shoe,” “This is the shoe you’re going to wear.” They want to hear every input and they want you to step out there and tell them and they actually listen to everything that you’re saying and doing. I couldn’t turn that down because it’s one of those things that comes once in a lifetime.
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