Thursday, September 6, 2007
You got a taste in the latest issue of Kicks, but here's a better look at the Big Ben, Ben Wallace's signature shoe for the 2007-08 NBA season. As with all the Starbury on-court kicks, the Big Ben's will cost $14.98 and will be sold exclusively at Steve & Barry's. It drops at the start of the NBA season -- the only colorway missing here is the black/black. From my perspective, the issue will be whether Starbury's $14.98 sneakers can get respect on the court. While sales numbers of the I and II are rumored to be in the range of 1-2 million pairs sold, people seem pretty divided between the "you get what you pay for" camp and the "if these had a jumpman logo on the side, everyone would love them" camp. But a product that polarizes means the people care -- and that's half the battle in the sneaker industry. Does the Big Ben extension to the Starbury line inspire? Does it add performance authenticity to the Starbury brand? Will the sneaker industry respond with other hoops shoes priced below $30? Are other brands missing out?