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PARALLEL UNIVERSE: Kudos to Knicks’ Marbury for Endorsing Budget Sneakers

Posted by kinchendavid on September 14, 2006

By David M. Kinchen
Editor, Huntington News Network

Hinton, WV  – Talk about sports heroes: My vote is for Stephon “Starbury” Marbury, point guard for the New York Knicks basketball team.

Why? Because he’s endorsing a line of $14.98 sneakers sold by Steve & Barry’s clothing stores, which are in major malls throughout West Virginia and many other states. Expensive sneakers have been behind urban deaths and injuries, as youths have been known to attack and/or kill those possessing brand name shoes — for what really should be a commodity.

As editor of Huntington News Network, the other day I selected a Scripps Howard News Service story detailing the crusade of Brookyn-born Marbury, a guy who can afford to buy the best – if he didn’t get them for free for his endorsement. Growing up poor in Coney Island, part of a large family, the 29-year-old, 6-2, 205 lb. player knows the consequences of sneaker envy. Here’s a link to the story on HNN:

http://www.huntingtonnews.net/columns/060914-shns-sneakers.html

For more about Marbury: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephon_Marbury

Like a lot of items, the price of sneakers is often determined by the brand. You can save money by buying store brands in supermarkets – items often made on the same line as brand names. The same concept applies to sporting goods. You’re paying for the “swoosh” or the other “prestigious” logo because the company wants you to.

From the Scripps Howard story on HNN:

“This New York Knicks point guard/revolutionary is bringing his $14.98 Starbury Ones basketball sneakers around the country during a 42-city, 17-day tour.

”The two-time NBA All-Star says he will be wearing Starbury Ones when he plays in the coming season.

“’My first home game I’m going to go to the store and pick up a pair of shoes and bring them to the (Madison Square) Garden and lace them up and play in them,’ he said.

”Marbury says Starbury Ones have the same quality leather and construction as the sneakers NBA legend Michael Jordan and other basketball stars have turned into a near necessity of urban childhood.

”Ironically, the man behind the Jordan marketing is Erin Patton, who is now helping Marbury develop his line.”

Kudos also to Steve & Barry’s for selling bargain-priced but good quality merchandise. We’ve got to get over the idea that higher-priced items are necessarily better. I’ve often believed that a Toyota Camry is as good as a much higher priced Lexus, made by the same company. I’ve had Chevrolets that have given me great service – as good as the Cadillacs or Buicks or Oldsmobiles I’ve driven.

Here’s a list of Steve & Barry’s stories in West Virginia; the chain deserves your patronage: Huntington Mall, Barboursville; Charleston Town Center, Charleston; Grand Central Mall, Vienna; Morgantown Mall, Morgantown; Meadowbrook Mall, Bridgeport.

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