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MORE HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE SUPER SHOW
Published February 6, 1996
Yesterday, THE DAILY highlighted the announcement of Nike's plans for '96, and today Reebok's outlook for the year ahead is featured. Below are new product lines and news from other Super Show participants: CHAMPION: The apparel-maker was promoting the following: New "progressive styling" in its Fall line; a new line of NFL Throwback wear, through Champion's exclusive license to produce the NFL's "vintage clothing"; the official outfits of the USOC and ACOG -- including USA Basketball and USA Volleyball teams, as well as U.S. team Opening Ceremony uniforms, Award Suits, and casual and dress apparel; new NBA Shooting Shirts; a new youth line with a full size lineup of NBA replica jerseys (Champion). CONVERSE: The shoe-maker "launches its new corporate positioning by looking to its past" with the premiere of the All Star 2000 -- the first time since the mid-'70s that Converse has placed its "All Star" patch on a "performance basketball shoe." Larry Johnson will debut the Illusion in Spring '96, the first of Converse's new BTS '96 collection. Other shoe styles introduced: New styles designed for skateboarders; new colors for old styles such as the Chuck Taylor, Jack Purcell and One Star; the C Star fashion collection for women; new classic styles for kids; the new Touch-EFX collection for kids which allows wearers to change colors by touch; a new training collection; and Wild Things for kids. Also, Bonnie Blair introduced the Active Apparel Group's line of Chuck Taylor-logoed clothes (Converse). EZ GARD INDUSTRIES: The maker of Shock Doctor and Hammer mouthguards reported sales of over 20 million units in '95, an increase of about 15% over the previous year. The company cited an increase in in-line hockey, among other factors. EZ Gard will step up involvement in in-line hockey, sponsoring NIHA, North American Roller Hockey Championships, and NHL Breakout '96 Tour (EZ Gard). GARGOYLES: The eyewear maker announced that Ken Griffey Jr. has signed an exclusive four-year deal to wear Gargoyles sunglasses. A new model with purple lenses will be named the "Griffey Wrap." Also signed were snowboarding champs Mike Jacoby and Michele Taggart (Gargoyles). L.A. GEAR: The shoe-maker introduced "on-trend and fashion" lines for women; two new technologies -- GRAf/x and NEONZ -- for children; and a men's line equipped with "Comfort Zone" technology (L.A. Gear). MARVEL ENTERTAINMENT GROUP: Marvel kicked off its new Marvel Sports program to add licensees to previous programs, which include Marvel comic book art on golf accessories and snowboards. Marvel noted that its comic books reach 56.3% of all kids age 6-12 and the possible tie-ins with Marvel-related companies Fleer and Skybox (Marvel). SONY SIGNATURES: The group's Sports Licensing division promoted its main properties "for the purpose of expanding its list of qualified licensing and marketing partners." Sony Signatures is seeking licensing partnerships for World Cup '98 and partners to develop designs for IHL-licensed apparel, toys, publishing and multimedia products. As marketing representative for Oksana Baiul, they are looking to develop skating and non- skating related products for the gold medalist (Sony Signatures). WORTH INC.: The No. 1 softball manufacturer is introducing a new line of patent-pending Super Dot softball and new technology in its Supercell and Copperhead bats. Supercell features new ALCOA C405 aluminum alloy, "never available outside the defense industry" (Worth). RED, WHITE & SWOOSH: In Philadelphia, Ron Reid bashes Nike and the commercialization of the U.S. Track and Field uniforms. Reid notes the U.S. team jackets have an American flag with a swoosh in place of stars, and writes, "They unveiled the United States of Nike yesterday." Nike officials said the design was a graphic, "not the flag." Officials from ACOG and USAT&F had no comment (PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, 2/6)....In Atlanta, Kristen Eddy takes a sarcastic shot at Nike's "inspiration" (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 2/6).