One of the worst public relations nightmares in Nike’s history occurred during Wednesday night’s game between Duke and North Carolina, and the sports apparel juggernaut is working hard to remedy the situation.
Just over 30 seconds into the game, freshman superstar Zion Williamson was forced to exit with a knee injury after his shoe literally fell apart. Williamson is the best player in the country and is expected to be the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft, so the equipment malfunction could not have happened in a worse situation.
After UNC’s 88-72 win over the Blue Devils, Nike issued a statement about the broken shoe. A spokesperson wished Williamson a speedy recovery and said the manufacturer is working to identify the cause of the “isolated incident.”
Isolated or not, the situation is a horrible look for Nike. Williamson is fortunate to have only suffered a knee sprain, though it is unclear how much time he will miss. The freshman has already been urged by some former NBA players to sit out to protect himself from injury, but no one envisioned his footwear being the issue.
As you might expect, Nike was ruthlessly mocked by the competition over the debacle.
Puma sent a tweet disparaging Nike after Zion Williamson suffered an injury while wearing their shoes, but they thought better of it.
Puma has ventured into the basketball market, signing players such as Deandre Ayton, DeMarcus Cousins and Marvin Bagley to try and take some market share away from Nike, the leader in the field. After Williamson’s Nike shoes blew out in the first minute of the Duke-North Carolina game on Wednesday, Puma took a shot at Nike, saying the issue wouldn’t have happened if he were wearing Pumas.
Puma later deleted the tweet, possibly after learning that Williamson was out for the game with a knee injury.
Before Puma sent the tweet, Terry Rozier, another Puma athlete, had made his recruiting pitch.
This type of tweet probably won’t earn Puma many more fans. Separately, they could benefit as the malfunction of the Nike shoes could lead some to question wearing the brand.
Nike’s worst nightmare occurred on Wednesday night.
In the first minute of the high-profile Duke-North Carolina game, Blue Devils star Zion Williamson exited with an injury after his shoe broke. Williamson was wearing the Nike PG 2.5 PE, and the shoe literally fell apart, resulting in a knee injury.
This is the biggest stage in college basketball and the biggest star in the sport, and to have the equipment fall apart and cause an injury could not have been a worse turn of events for the Swoosh. Instantly, people pounced.
Boston Celtics guard Terry Rozier said Williamson/Duke should join Puma, a new brand in the basketball shoe market.
Puma joined in as well before later deleting their tweet.
Others on social media instantly knew what the injury and shoe failure meant for Nike and its competitors.
We’re not about to say Nike’s stock price is going to fall on Thursday, but this really couldn’t be worse for them.
Williamson was soon ruled out for the rest of the game due to his knee, raising questions about his future at Duke, and whether he might actually follow Scottie Pippen’s advice.
As the backlash from Nike’s “Just Do It” campaign featuring Colin Kaepernick continues, one company in Colorado is so disgusted it is offering customers a rare opportunity to purchase discount apparel.
As KRDO NewsChannel 13 noted discovered, a sporting goods store called Prime Time Sports in Colorado Springs has hung a sign in its front window announcing that all Nike products are now 50 percent off. The sign reads “Still choosing to stand.”
Stephen Martin, who has owned Prime Time Sports for 21 years, says he understands how much profit he could lose because of the large inventory of Nike NFL jerseys the store sells. That didn’t stop him from sending a letter to Nike expressing frustration over the Kaepernick campaign and calling the sports apparel juggernaut the “mother of all harlots.”
“According to me, (Kaepernick) has sacrificed a salary,” a note in the window of Prime Time Sports reads. “Nothing compared to what every soul on our ‘Honor the Flag’ memorial wall that was built a few years ago has suffered and died for.”
The note, which was written by Martin, is surrounded by photos of fallen service members. Martin started the sale Tuesday and said he intends to permanently rid the store of all Nike products.
Nike knew having Kaepernick as the face of a campaign would draw strong reactions, though some numbers indicate the decision was a good one. Martin’s opinion is shared by many, but it doesn’t appear to be discouraging Nike at all.
Nike launched its new advertising campaign featuring Colin Kaepernick this week in advance of the start of the 2018 season, and the timing was hardly a coincidence.
The “Just Do It” ads featuring Kaepernick and other star athletes were only the start. As Darren Rovell revealed on Wednesday, an ad that is voiced over by Kaepernick is set to air during Thursday night’s game between the Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles. Here’s the commercial:
Nike has received plenty of backlash for using Kaepernick to commemorate the 30th anniversary of its “Just Do It” slogan, but the sports apparel company obviously knew that was coming. Even if there have been strong negative reactions, the social media numbers tell the story.
Nike’s new campaign features star athletes like Serena Williams and Odell Beckham Jr. in addition to Kaepernick. It has also been endorsed by LeBron James, so there is plenty of support.
There have been plenty of strong reactions to Nike’s decision to make Colin Kaepernick the face of its new “Just Do It” ad campaign, but the amount of publicity the sports apparel juggernaut has gained because of it is already undeniable.
According to some figures from the social media analytics firm Talkwalker, mentions of the Nike Brand were up 135 percent from the previous week as of Tuesday. While the mentions have been both positive and negative, mentions of Nike were approaching the 3 million mark in a 24-hour period, which was a 1,400 percent increase over the day before the new campaign was released.
Many athletes and celebrities have already tweeted about the new “Just Do It” campaign, and the reactions have ranged from support from NBA players like Kyle Kouzma to one member of the music community destroying his own socks in protest. Nike obviously expected the campaign to create a buzz, and it has done just that.
Nike unveiled a major new ad campaign on Monday to commemorate the 30th anniversary of its “Just Do It” slogan, and Colin Kaepernick is the main face of it. There has been speculation that the free agent quarterback will also be getting his own clothing line, but that is apparently not the case.
Yahoo’s Charles Robinson reported that Nike plans to give Kaepernick a “star” endorsement deal, which means shoes, shirts, jerseys and other apparel items. However, ESPN’s Darren Rovell was told that is not happening.
Kaepernick has been under contract with Nike since 2011, which was the year he entered the NFL. The company has stuck with him even though no team has signed him, and his new legal representation is said to have negotiated his latest deal with the apparel juggernaut. Robinson said Kaepernick was receiving interest from other shoe companies, which gave Nike a sense of urgency.
The Nike ads featuring Kaepernick have already drawn some strong reactions, including one that has a link to ESPN’s “College GameDay” program.
Nike’s decision to make Colin Kaepernick the face of a new ad campaign has drawn plenty of strong reactions, and one of them already has ties to ESPN.
After Nike debuted its new “Just Do It” campaign on Sunday, a sound production worker for the band Big & Rich decided to protest the sports apparel company by cutting the Swoosh logo off his socks.
As you may know, Big & Rich’s song “Comin’ to Your City” has become the theme song for ESPN’s “College GameDay.” The song plays at various points during the broadcast and the band has performed it live in several cities.
Nike has kept Kaepernick under contract even though he has been unable to find work in the NFL. Kaepernick has been with Nike since 2011, and the details of the current endorsement deal are pretty noteworthy.
Colin Kaepernick has kept his endorsement deal with Nike even as he has been unable to find work in the NFL for well over a year, and the sports apparel juggernaut has unveiled a powerful new campaign featuring the quarterback.
On Monday, Nike debuted a series of intense “Just Do It” ads to commemorate the 30th year of the popular slogan being coined. Kaepernick is one of the faces of the campaign with a powerful image that reads “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”
Serena Williams, Odell Beckham Jr. and NFL rookie Shaquem Griffin are among the other athletes who are featured:
The timing of Nike’s release speaks volumes, as we recently learned Kaepernick’s collusion case against the NFL is set to go to trial. Kaepernick, of course, began the movement of kneeling during the national anthem, and we were reminded of how much support he still has with the way fans reacted to him attending the US Open over the weekend.
Nike got a ton of exposure this weekend thanks to Patrick Reed’s winning run at Augusta National, but they didn’t exactly do a lot to capitalize on it.
Reed, who signed an apparel deal with the company that was announced in January, wasn’t listed on Nike’s golf site as of Saturday, when he was leading the Masters through 54 holes.
On Sunday, Reed finally had a spot towards the bottom of Nike’s golf athletes. He was listed below Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day, Brooks Koepka, Alex Noren, Francesco Molinari, Thomas Pieters, Kevin Chappell and others.
Between leaving him off the website and not letting him wear a specific outfit, it wasn’t all great attention for the swoosh and their major-winning golfer.