Back in the 86’-87’ NBA season basketball marketing was transformed by an ad campaign brought about by Converse. When EVERY NBA finals during the 80‘s was featuring either the Celtics or the Lakers (sometimes both), Converse saw this as a perfect time to make fans pick sides. They felt it was important to not only come up with a shoe that could compete with the ones a young man in Chicago started wearing a year earlier, but pairs that could appeal to multiple fans. In doing so they told fans to “Choose Your Weapon”. The Converse Weapons were a shoe most notably worn by six stars at the time, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, Mark Aguirre, Bernard King, and Isaiah Thomas. Each of these players had shoes that followed the trend of Jordan by matching their teams colors.
Here is a poster featuring Magic and Bird holding their “Weapons” as if they were guns, getting ready to duel.
Here are a few commercials (yeah I know there dated) but still fun to look back on.
Back in May of 2009 Acapulco Gold realeased a t-shirt based on this shoe ad. This is an awsome design that deserves mad props.
Although we may not have used this same style of these hall of famers back-to-back, we payed respect based on their accomplishments of the 80′s as well, in our Only Kings Have Rings series.
Now it seems like a common practice for shoe companies to customize their shoes to match everything about the teams their players represent. But it was at back in the 80′s when it really took off and took hold of fans wallet’s.