Skechers Files Lawsuit Against Adidas Amid FBI College Basketball Investigation

Eileen GuzmanMay 11, 2018

An FBI investigation that launched last fall determined employees of Adidas were going to convey money to high school and college basketball athletes as well as their families, "in return for their endorsement with the company upon their turn to the professional ranks", writes CBS Sports' Kyle Boone.

Skechers USA Inc.is taking aim at Adidas America Inc. for its allegedly questionable basketball recruitment tactics.

An Adidas spokesperson responded to the suit with this statement: "The Skechers complaint is frivolous and nonsensical and should be summarily dismissed".

A US appeals court on Thursday said Adidas AG can protect its famous Stan Smith tennis shoe against an alleged Skechers USA Inc knockoff, but that Skechers could sell another shoe mimicking Adidas' familiar "three-stripe" design.

On Thursday, a US appeals court ruled in a case in which they were in dispute over sneaker design rights, according to a Reuters report. Nike and adidas have always had competitions to sign the best athletes to endorsement deals, with relative newcomers such as Under Armour joining the battle more recently. Today, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld an earlier injunction prohibiting the sale of the Skechers Onix shoe.

In Thursday's decision, Circuit Judge Jacqueline Nguyen said the Stan Smith, named for the early 1970s American tennis star, has enjoyed "tremendous commercial success and market recognition", and Adidas might face irreparable harm if similar shoes flooded the market.

However, through its lawsuit, Skechers alleges that Adidas may be guilty of more misconduct.

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