photos by Zach Rotstein
Last Sunday we spent the day indoors at the Moda Center for the ICYMI: Trillblazin sneaker show. It was part show, part trade, part sell your wares when the doors opened. The event itself was multifaceted enough to encompass anyone who dared enter through the door. A barber was set up doing fantastic hair cuts, the nacho bar was in full effect, art works were on display and there were more than a fair share of amazing sneakers.
You might start to build a picture of what the sneaker fan in Portland looks like if you travel in certain packs. The design world here is filled with folks that have undoubtably spent time at either of the two big ones in town — Nike & Adidas — so those two tend to be the two camps and everyone falls into one category or the other — or so I had previously thought. It is safe to say that the collectors here in town, while they may lean a bit towards the Jordan end of the spectrum, are still all over the place.
We took a good number of shoes to get ride of, but, as this first time around and is just a learning experience, right? That being said, we may have to bring more in the Show & Tell Department next year. People came specifically to browse collections, when we had thought it would lean more towards the buying and selling end of things. For example, it would have been smart just to bring along my D Lillard 1's because there were people carrying them around just to show off. And they were more than stoked to let you check them out.
Basketball Takes the Cake.
One tends to think along the lines of whatever you are into, this can be said for many things, but especially for sneaker. I for example, have been pretty much only into Air Max's for the last couple years and if we were to break it down even further — the Air Max 90 would rise to the top. No idea why really, the profile of the shoe, the colors that have been available recently, all that play a part in helping you build your own taste. More recently I have gotten into the Asics side of things. However, even with those two options I am in the minority when it comes to the broader spectrum of sneakerheads.
By and large ICYMI was a basketball sneaker collector's dream. Brand Jordan were everywhere with hometown hero's like Lillard occasionally making an appearance. The Li Ning display next to us had everyone blowing their tops as soon as they got near it. The only thing missing was a ANTA fan with all Rondo's Celtic shoes
In any case, the majority of what was going on was Basketball centric and the amazing part was the breadth of the fan. I understand the vintage Jordan collectors. Those things have been made for a long time and have a history behind them. But, the KD people were the ones that got me...and new shoes too! Black History Month KD's, Peanut Butter and Jelly KD's, Aunt Pearl's, shoes that had come out a few weeks before were some of the most coveted.
The Blazer love was also fun to see. Blazer dancers roamed through the crowd while people fawned over Nathan McKee (himself) and his amazing illustrated Shirts. Rasheed is always going to be a stand out favorite. We also got to meet Spikes High! in person.
Yeezy Makes a Guest Appearance
Not the man, the shoe. There were a couple of these shoes floating around the show, but this bummed out dude and his mom made us laugh as they made their rounds. Zach and I have taken to calling these accompanying adults the Dealmakers because they were consulted to such a degree for every sale that (almost) went down. But, it made us question what the hell was going on here? I know, it will make me sound like an oldie here, but how the hell do kids get the dough to carry around a couple extra pair of sneakers to trade? I'm dating myself, sure, but hot damn, these kids know what they've got and they don't back down.
All the while that the show was going on, the Blazers were positively giving a whooping to Sacramento which added a nice tone to the day and set the stage for what was maybe the best part of the whole situation — a tour of the Portland Trailblazers Locker Room. The show was a success, the nachos were great and it still blows my mind to this day to see people get stoked about these PDX Carpet socks. Which they all do. But seriously, the nachos...
FOR SALE: If you want these Air Max 90 ICE (size 11) $100 with a free pair of Galaxie socks.