Young basketball players and their parents now have a difficult choice to make. Stephon Marbury’s much-publicized ‘Starbury One’ shoe is out. The cost is a very non-prohibitive $14.95, and hey, that’s awesome. Stephon Marbury’s doing a good thing here. The cost of basketball shoes is absurd, it has been for a long time, and it’s not cool if a kid gets made fun of on the playground because he’s got a pair of Payless specials on.
I don’t spend a lot of time on playgrounds, mingling with the young ballers, so I can’t really say how these are going to be received. But kids are going to know these are $15 shoes, and let’s be honest… I don’t think shoes are seen as cool or uncool because of what player endorses them. Let’s be honest, a big part of what makes shoes hot is the price tag. No one would be murdering people over Air Jordans if they were $9.99 at Target. It just wouldn’t happen.
Maybe I’m wrong about that. I’m speculating. Like I said, I don’t spend a lot of time at Rucker, hanging out with THE PROFESSA! THE PROFESSA! or HOT SAUCE! HOT SAUCE! OHHHH, HOT SAUCE! We just don’t chill together that often. So I could be wrong about this, and I hope I am. I hope the $15 shoes are as acceptable and as hip as any other shoe.
And even if the Starbury Ones were acceptable street wear… well, you know my thoughts on Stephon Marbury the basketball player. This is not a player to be emulated. If you find yourself at a playground picking teams for a run, identify the guys wearing Starbury Ones, and get as many of them as you can on the other team, and watch a fistfight erupt before either team gets to five points, because everyone on the other team wants to shoot.
If it was me, and I couldn’t afford the Jordans or the Iversons or the Kobes… I’d hold up a liquor store, just like Raymond in White Men Can’t Jump, before I put my foot into a shoe called the “Starbury.”. And if I went to jail and did a stretch of 5 to 7 in Rikers, including countless instances of prison rape, and I got out and I needed a new pair of kicks, and the choice was the same… I’d hold up that liquor store again.