Those of you who know me know that I am not a sports enthusiast of any kind. Once in a while I’ll watch a NY Mets game, but otherwise, I avoid sports pretty much like the plague. And yet I have to ask…..how cool is Stephon Marbury, Point Guard for the New York Knicks? Of course this is a rhetorical question since I would not be writing about him if I didn’t think he was very cool. And prior to watching 20/20 on TV last night, I only had a passing acquaintance with his name (and I really have no idea what a point guard is.)
There’s a lot to be said about a man who has a social conscience and who gives back not only to the community that he came from, but to others as well.
“He has been named to The Sporting News list of 'Good Guys in Sports' three times. He was one of the highest donors to the NBA Player Associations Katrina Relief effort, donating 1 million dollars to the effort. He currently has 7 barbers on hire in Coney Island giving free haircuts to neighborhood children.
Recently, Marbury partnered with Steve & Barry's to promote a line of shoes and clothing bearing his nickname, ‘Starbury’. Understanding the pressure that inner-city kids face to spend $150-$200 on footwear sold by other companies such as Nike, Reebok, and Adidas, his line of shoes will sell for $14.98. He will be wearing these shoes on court for the entirety of 2006-07 season. Marbury is not being paid to endorse the shoes, but will be compensated based solely on how well they sell. Now, Marbury has promised to give out a free pair of Starbury ones to every high school varsity basketball player in New York City.” (Wikipedia)
Barbers….the man has barbers on call to give children haircuts. And, he wears the basketball sneakers on the court that have his name on them, that only cost $14.98.
According to Starbury, no basketball sneaker is going to “make you run faster, or jump higher,” whether it cost $200 or $14.98. When an expert shoe designer was asked to cut apart and analyze the expensive shoe vs. his shoe, there was no discernable difference…imagine that? All reason enough for me to take up watching Stephon Marbury/Starbury and the NY Knicks play basketball.
If I’m going to watch a sport, Stephon Marbury is a darn good reason to do so. And for no other reason other than to just watch him run up and down a basketball court in a pair of sneakers that inner-city kids can afford too.