February 24th, 2012
12:17 PM ET

Disturbances prompt cancellations of some Nike releases

[Updated at 4:13 p.m. ET] Concerns about disturbances among large crowds waiting to buy special-edition Nike shoes tied to this weekend’s NBA All-Star Game prompted stores in several states to cancel the releases, media reports say.

Of particular interest among many would-be shoppers, according to the reports, was the $220 Nike Foamposite One Galaxy, a space-themed, glow-in-the dark shoe that nods to the space legacy of Florida, where this weekend’s game is happening in Orlando.

In Orlando on Thursday night, a Foot Locker House of Hoops store at Florida Mall cancelled a special 11 p.m. opening after police were called to handle a crowd of about 1,200 people, CNN affiliates Bay News 9 and WFTV reported.

The crowd outside the mall was moved across the street before the late-night opening. But at one point, people rushed toward the store, which was to sell the Foamposite One and other All-Star-related releases, the affiliates reported.

“People tried running over the cops. People tried just getting into that line,” witness Youssef Abounouadar told WFTV. “Everyone ran to the door, and it started getting really hectic.”

Law enforcement officers in riot gear pushed back the crowd, the store did not open Thursday night, and the release of the Foamposite One there Friday was canceled, the affiliates reported. No injuries or arrests were reported.

A message on a Foot Locker website said the company was canceling All-Star weekend shoe releases at seven malls in four states Friday because of unspecified "safety concerns." Besides the one at Orlando’s Florida Mall, the cancellations included stores in Tampa and Pembroke Pines, Florida; Morrow, Georgia; Hyattsville, Maryland; and Charlotte and Raleigh, North Carolina.

The release also was cancelled at a store in the Mall of Louisiana in Baton Rouge on Friday morning, CNN affiliate WAFB reported. A witness told WAFB that authorities sent home a crowd of more than 100 people because the would-be shoppers wouldn't line up in an orderly fashion.

A call to Foot Locker's corporate offices wasn't immediately returned.

In an e-mailed response to a call seeking information about the cancellations, Nike said that it encouraged "anyone wishing to purchase our product to do so in a respectful and safe manner" and that "consumer safety and security is of paramount importance."

One of the cancellations was at Tampa’s University Mall, where police called off a midnight release because of concerns about a crowd of 800 to 1,000 people that gathered there Thursday night, CNN affiliate WTSP reported.

Kingsley Boateng, a witness, told WTSP that the release was canceled after people “tried to bum rush the door.”

At the Hyattsville, Maryland, mall, one person was arrested on suspicion of disorderly conduct after a large crowd gathered there, CNN affiliate WUSA reported Friday morning.

At the Southlake Mall in Morrow, Georgia, the Foot Locker House of Hoops store will be closed Friday because of safety concerns surrounding the shoe releases, a mall representative told CNN.

The Foamposite One was one of 17 types of shoes that Foot Locker House of Hoops stores were releasing over the weekend.

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Filed under: Basketball • Florida • Georgia • Maryland • NBA • North Carolina • Sports
soundoff (291 Responses)
  1. ProperVillain

    We live in the most pathetic country in the world. Hooray for out of control consumerism.

    February 24, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Reise

    This isnt a race issue.. it is just poor people.. guarantee you over 3/4 of these people are a month behind on their bills

    February 24, 2012 at 2:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • wobbles

      bet you 3/4 of them have their bills paid by the tax payers who can't afford the $220 shoes these animals are buying.

      February 24, 2012 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Sagebrush Shorty

    And we thought that Muslims were crazy.

    February 24, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Good Point

      So "Muslim" is a race now? I thought it was just religion, meaning anybody could be one??

      February 24, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      Sagebrush didn't say anything about race.
      YOU did.

      February 24, 2012 at 11:19 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Good Point

    Don't you guys realize there is a higher percentage of white people on gov aid (welfare, medicaid) than black people?

    February 24, 2012 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sindy

      There are a higher percentage of whites in this COUNTRY, so those numbers are a bit skewed.

      February 24, 2012 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • pattysboi

      You are correct.

      February 24, 2012 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Good Point

      Agreed, but the point I am making is that each race or group has their garbage...Today, its Blacks, tomorrow it may be evangelicals (white) bombing an abortion clinic..

      February 24, 2012 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Good Point

      @Sidney – I was referring the the PERCENTAGE numbers, not the actual amount of people on welfare for each group. If we are going by percentages, total numbers should not be as much of a factor. In fact, the group with a larger total number would have an advantage when we are talking percentages. White people have a higher PERCENTAGE on welfare than blacks.

      February 24, 2012 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Triple A

      And why did you have to add religion in with the white guy?? So shut up

      February 24, 2012 at 2:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Good Point

      @ Triple A I added race to that because many white people seem to think only blacks are capable of displaying this type of stupidity.

      February 24, 2012 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Good Point

    Yes, this crowd is majority Black, but don't white people (and other groups) riot during Black Friday sales?

    February 24, 2012 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sindy

      They 't riot...they stampede...lol.

      February 24, 2012 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Good Point

      lol, good point

      February 24, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Mike O

    Punk ass kids...most can't afford these i;m sure....F Nike, Reebok, and all as crooks of crook....

    February 24, 2012 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Joe

    Any white folks there? Thought not.

    February 24, 2012 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Nike off

    What a shame. $220 for a pair of sneakers. How much World of Warcraft could that buy?

    February 24, 2012 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Cass

    Those shoes people are mobbing the stores for are so UGLY. I really can't understand the draw.

    February 24, 2012 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  10. LINDY

    We've got war, poverty, unemployment, right wing extremism, bullying, parents killing kids on & on..And peoples focus is on a pair of tennis shoes!! I prefer to be defined by more than what I wear on my feet and what they cost. Indicative of how low people have sunk.

    February 24, 2012 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  11. faboge

    How about some of these people getting real lives? How about getting a job or maybe even reading a newspaper?

    February 24, 2012 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  12. mikebo

    I guess as time goes on,is it possible to have more stupid people than these?Just think if some of these nut jobs will be setting laws that will affect myself in a few short years.

    February 24, 2012 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
  13. kioku

    Black teens wearing glow-in-the-dark sneakers? Isn't that what every cop wants for Christmas?

    February 24, 2012 at 2:52 pm | Report abuse |
  14. faboge

    When I was growing up we camped out one day to get the first copy of a certain book. Everybody in that group grew up to be successful grown ups. I wonder what awaits these kids camping out for a pair of Nike shoes!

    February 24, 2012 at 2:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      Scary, isn't it.

      February 24, 2012 at 3:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Real


      February 24, 2012 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • f_webster

      like me correct you, 220 dollar pair of nike shoes haha. What i don't get is why the store wasn't giving numbers to the first people in line so they could just pick them up at the counter when the store opened, instead of a crazy free for all.

      February 24, 2012 at 3:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • whaddya mean?

      Being able to run and apply for food stamps, as they stand there in $200 sneakers with a smart phone in their pocket.

      February 24, 2012 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
  15. deb

    Admit it....most of you all knew when you saw the headline about rioting shoe buyers that it would be a sport shoe and the majority if not all of the rioting buyers were black.

    February 24, 2012 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • TB

      Who knew it would come to this the day they set the monkeys free. Sheeeeesh. Gotta be a gangsta.

      February 24, 2012 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • J

      TB what's ya name? Your real name?

      February 24, 2012 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
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