New York Knicks marketing consultant Steve Stoute was found wearing Chicago Bulls shorts in a picture on social media while golfing this week.
The old rivalry between two of the biggest market and most valuable teams (per Forbes valuations) in the Eastern Conference, even in the modern day, are going through a lot of struggles trying to get back their contender status. The Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks were two of the best teams in the East on a consistent basis throughout the 1990’s. But that has since faded since the turn of the century.
Now that the Bulls are Knicks are both down in the East, they’re trying to find a way to retool both their organizations and their brands to reach those heights they once did back in the 1990’s. One of the ways that the latter of those two teams tried to re-brand themselves earlier in the year was hiring a big time marketing agency. The Knicks hired Steve Stoute’s marketing agency back in January 2020 called Translation to try and elevate the image of their brand and franchise.
But that move hasn’t really worked out as the Knicks would’ve hoped so far. The Knicks have had to reportedly “distance” themselves from Stoute right after they hired his marketing agency to re-brand their franchise after comments he made earlier in the year back on ESPN’s “First Take”.
And now to make matters worse for the Knicks, that top marketing consultant Stoute was found wearing Bulls logo shorts while playing golf with a few other big names in the business and sports world. The photo emerged on the Instagram page of sports entertainment and marketing exec Paul Rivera this week.
Stoute was golfing with Rivera, rapper Nas, and the Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green, when this photo surfaced on Instagram if him wearing Bulls shorts. That’s not a great look for the Knicks, and what does it really say about his ties to the Bulls?
It might mean nothing. But it’s definitely not something that is going to help out the Knicks brand in the public eye. The marketing consultant they hired to improve their brand was publicly representing the merchandise of one of their biggest historic rivals.
It would be nice if we can start getting back to talking about the Bulls and Knicks as two of the most potent and prominent big market teams in the East, just like they were in the 1990’s. But for now, we’re stuck talking about the re-branding and rebuilding processes that each are currently going through.