CONVERSE — the original basketball brand — is back in the game with the launch of its new performance basketball silhouette: the All Star Pro BB.
The sneaker marks the brand’s official return to performance basketball, the sport it helped to galvanize more than 100 years prior.
In 1917, Converse introduced the Non-Skid, the first athletic sneaker specifically engineered for a new sport that was just starting to gain popularity in the US.
In 1922, a basketball player who joined Converse as a salesman would host the first-ever basketball clinic in North Carolina. The player/salesman's name? Chuck Taylor.
Chuck Taylor’s ingenuity and dedication to basketball would eventually make him synonymous with the Converse All Star sneaker (as the Non-Skid was later renamed) and his name would be added to the silhouette in 1934.
Inspired by the expressive nature of the game, Converse took on a challenging endeavor: create a basketball sneaker for fluid on-court performance, where style is as vital as function.
In its ethos, the Chuck Taylor All Star represents the purest basketball design. The simple rubber sole and minimal canvas upper with performance innovations (such as the multi-textured toe bumper, ankle patch and peg top upper, which helped prevent chaffing on the Achilles tendon) were iterated on and obsessed over to deliver the best performance of the time.
The ideals of the most storied basketball silhouette -- minimal construction and maximum benefit -- were guiding principles when reimagining a modern basketball sneaker from Converse.
With access to Nike, Inc.’s pipeline of innovation and collaboration in the development process, the All Star Pro BB delivers on the promise of peak performance and ushers a new era of design for the brand — one that reimagines iconic Converse DNA to represent style and performance function.
Developed in partnership with a cross-functional team across Converse and led by Nike’s Eric Avar, the team engineered a system that allows the body and feet to move naturally without the shoe getting in the way.
It’s position-less and inspired by the modern basketball player who is multi-directional.
The shoes are slated for a May release.