Prime Time Sports in Colorado Springs, Colorado, is closing up shop after “21 mostly good years,” store owner Stephen Martin says. His shop quit selling Nike products due to the company’s controversial ad campaign with NFL player Colin Kaepernick.
Martin made the announcement on Facebook.
PRIME TIME SPORTS is closing. All merchandise 40% OFF. Thank You for 21 mostly good years.For everybody that has offered help and support through the “Honor The Flag” memorial wall and NIKE boycott, now is your time to help me liquidate. Please do your Facebook thing with everyone you know so this can go as quickly as possible.
PRIME TIME SPORTS is closing. All merchandise 40% OFF. Thank You for 21 mostly good years.For everybody that has…
Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Kaepernick became a household name when he began kneeling before NFL games during the national anthem as a way to protest police brutality.
Nike teamed up with him after professional football teams refused to hire him as a quarterback.
— Colin Kaepernick (@Kaepernick7) September 3, 2018
Many Americans took offense to the protest, just like Martin, and boycotted both the NFL and Nike in various ways. But Martin’s decision to stop selling Nike products is not something his business could withstand financially.
“Being a sports store without Nike is kind of like being a milk store without milk or a gas station without gas,” Martin told KOAA-TV. “How do you do it? They have a monopoly on jerseys,” Martin said.
Martin said his decision to boycott Nike products and all players who knelt during the anthem was undeniably part of the reason he’s closing.
“As much as I hate to admit this, perhaps there are more Brandon Marshall and Colin Kaepernick supporters out there than I realized,” Martin said. The sports store owner had canceled an autograph event with Marshall, who plays for the Denver Broncos, back in 2016 because the linebacker kneeled during the anthem.
Martin still believes he did what was right.
“I didn’t give in to big Nike and big dollars. I didn’t give in. I did it my way,”Martine said. “That part of the military respect that’s in me just cannot be sacrificed or compromised, as I believe Brandon Marshall and Colin Kaepernick both did. I don’t like losing a business over it, but I rather be able to live with myself.”