Verdict from 8 user reviews

9 reasons to buy

  • Several fans of Mastermind designs copped a pair of the collaboration design on the first week of release.
  • A large number of customers are impressed with the premium materials used in the Mastermind Japan x Adidas NMD_XR1 collaboration from the boost soles to the Primeknit upper.
  • Quite a lot of users say the low-top sneakers felt lightweight as they have not felt any fatigue in using the sneaker.
  • Some users say the collaborative branding details of Adidas and Mastermind Japan looked striking yet subtle as they are prominently placed in the back, tongue, sides, and insoles without overwhelming the sneaker with too many details.
  • A few reviewers find the black and white color blocking quite attractive and versatile to allow wearers various styling options.
  • Some wearers like the flexibility and breathability of the Primeknit material in this NMD_XR1 model's upper.
  • The smooth leather cage in the middle of the Mastermind Japan x Adidas NMD_XR1 allows for more stability
  • The Boost midsole allow for precise landing and a soft bounce according to some reviewers as they feel the sneakers offer energy return and comfort.
  • A few reviewers mentioned that they found the extra pair of laces useful as a styling option to the issued reflective laces while the Adidas detailing on the lace tips are pretty stylish.

4 reasons not to buy

  • One user says the Mastermind logo could have been placed in a more prominent area like the back heel.
  • Some sneakerheads complained that the shoes are quite expensive for a collaboration sneaker.
  • One commenter says the plain Primeknit material could have been better in terms of design as the knit material used are too plain for an expensive sneaker.
  • A reviewer said it would have been better “if there were more colors used” in the collaboration as “there have been too many black NMDs released already.”

Bottom line

A special collaborative shoe that is the talk of the sneaker world once it was released, the Mastermind Japan x Adidas NMD XR1 is a collectible kick meant for display of a street-style spectacle. The all-black design with a white boost sole with Mastermind detailing of skulls and crossbones are extremely stylish yet functional to wear every day. While its expensive price of $220 might be a concern for many buyers, the low-top sneaker offers superior comfort, cushioning, breathability, and a lightweight built meant for longer strides.

Tip: see the best sneakers.

Good to know

The low-top Mastermind Japan x Adidas NMD XR1 runs true to size and comes in medium men’s width. The collaborative sneaker is available only in limited men’s sizes. Women may opt wearing them by going 1.5 sizes down for an equivalent fit.

An attractive low-top pair that looks expensive on foot, the Mastermind Japan x Adidas NMD XR1 is a versatile sneaker that warrants every sneaker fan’s attention. The black and white kicks are flexible to wear for casual to rugged looks. Don them with easy shorts or tapered jeans for a sharp look that would not distract but complement the athleisure style so popular nowadays.

Wear them with black or white plain shirts or a hoodie and loose overalls for a casual day out with friends that is oozing with street-style swag.  The black and white combo of the collaboration sneaker allows transition to casual night events smoothly as one goes bar hopping with friends or some random street or rave parties and concerts.

Eyes are glued on the skull and crossbones design of Japanese label mastermind that is neatly placed all over the low-top sneaker. The unique placement of the detailing on the black Primeknit upper over the boost sole common with the NMD XR1 sneakers is a good reason to cop a pair of the comfortable, well-cushioned, breathable, and stylish sneakers.

Released on September 20, 2016, the MMJ x Adidas NMD XR1 was launched together with the Adidas Tubular Instinct collaboration with the Japanese label. With a revamped look the protective outer cage in the middle was replaced with a leather material to match the leather used at the heel. The design also featured crossbones and skull Mastermind Japan branding details on the heel, insole, and tongue interchanged with Adidas branding. The premium detailing is also the main attraction of this collaboration low-top sneaker that has Japanese street fashion at its heart.

  • Heel pull tabs at the back with Adidas and Mastermind Japan detailing for quick on and off.
  • Reflective flat laces with extra laces are issued on every pair.


How Mastermind Japan x Adidas NMD_XR1 ranks compared to all other shoes
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The current trend of Mastermind Japan x Adidas NMD_XR1.
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Danny McLoughlin
Danny McLoughlin

Danny is a sports nut with a particular interest in football and running. He loves to watch sports as much as he loves to play. Danny was lead researcher on RunRepeat and The PFA’s report into Racial Bias in Football Commentary. His football and running research has been featured in The Guardian, BBC, New York Times and Washington Post.