Drake's NOCTA label under Nike is officially in the rollout phase, but if the rumor mill is to be believed, it was very close to not becoming a reality.
In early 2018, sources told Sole Collector that the Toronto-born rapper was in advanced talks to leave his previous previous partnership Jordan Brand to sign a mega-deal with Adidas. The agreement would have reportedly given Drake more creative control over his product, presumably the kind of control he now has with NOCTA. In the months that would follow, Drake was often spotted wearing Adidas, even lacing up eventual rival Kanye West's Yeezys on occasion. Everything appeared to be in line for Drizzy to make his pact with Adidas official—then the feud with Pusha T happened.
In response to Drake's "Duppy Freestyle" diss that May, Pusha dropped "The Story of Adidon," a scathing record that, among many things, exposed that his adversary in rhyme had a son he had not yet revealed to the world. In fact, "Adidon" was in reference to Drake's would-be Adidas label, named after his son Adonis. Almost instantly, any talk about Drake joining forces with Adidas was quieted, he stopped wearing Adidas, and he gradually rekindled his relationship with Nike.
Not surprisingly, those in the know at Adidas have remained silent on the specifics of the Drake deal and whether or not Adidon was a ever real thing. Leave it to one of Pusha's best friends and long-time collaborator Pharrell Williams to add some validity to the story. During a recent appearance on Drink Champs, Pharrell spoke about the feud between Drake and Pusha T, briefly touching on the rumored deal when questioned by Noreaga.
"He did. He did have a deal there. But again, all of this was unbeknownst to me," said Pharrell. "Drake told me that he had a situation there, but I didn't know that any of this would ever come up."
This marks the first time that someone important at Adidas, other than Pusha himself, has publicly confirmed the Drake and Adidas deal.
A friend of both Drake and Pusha, Pharrell expressed disappointment over their feud, stating that he would have loved to produce a collaboration between the two. However, he was also pretty honest in an assessment that they'll likely never be cordial enough toward each other to make that a reality.