Converse’s Plot To Take Back Basketball–With Help From Nike

by MR Magazine Staff

For the first time since 2012, Converse is releasing a performance basketball shoe that will be worn on the courts of the NBA: The All Star Pro BB, which will debut this May for $140. It actually looks a whole lot like any Converse shoe–if the brand had been born today, rather than in 1917. The shoe represents an unprecedented collaboration for the two companies. Nike bought Converse back in 2003, but no one on either team remembers the companies working so closely together on a major product in the 16 years since. It shows: The All Star BB has a silhouette similar to an All Star (aka, Chuck Taylor), and nods to its familiar, century-old design. But its construction is purely based on Nike’s newest technologies. It has a future-forward Nike React core, making it soft and springy, and infusing the shoe with energy return in every step. It has a new cup sole that adds contour and support to the otherwise flat-footed sneaker. And it has a Nike-proprietary “Quadfit” mesh upper that helps the shoe both flex and lock down onto your foot. This combination of tradition and technology marks a new design language for Converse, which its designers have dubbed “future familiar.” Read more at Fast Company.