A store in Colorado will be closing down after more than 20 years in business after its decision to stop selling Nike merchandise.
The store, Prime Time Sports, first made headlines in September when it announced it would pull Nike merchandise to protest the company's decision to feature former NFL player Colin Kaepernick as the face of its ad campaign.
Stephen Martin, Prime Time's owner, told a local NBC station that he made the decision to close the store permanently on Sunday night, saying he “can’t keep the doors open anymore.”
“Being a sports store without Nike is kind of like being a milk store without milk or a gas station without gas. How do you do it? They have a monopoly on jerseys,” Martin told the station.
Martin said he realized last year that he could go out of business over the decision to remove Nike merchandise, given that a sizable chunk of his inventory was NFL jerseys that are exclusive to Nike.
Martin, at the time, called the brand was "the mother of all harlots." Martin added that although Kaepernick "sacrificed a salary," nothing "compared to what every soul on our 'Honor the Flag' memorial wall that was built a few years ago has suffered and died for. "
He told KOAA News 5 this week that he canceled an autograph session at his store with former Denver Broncos player Brandon Marshall in 2016 to protest the athlete’s decision to take a knee during the national anthem.
“As much as I hate to admit this, perhaps there are more Brandon Marshall and Colin Kaepernick supporters out there than I realized,” he added.
Kaepernick, a former quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, first sparked controversy in 2016 when he began on-field demonstrations during the national anthem in protest of racial injustice.
The former NFL player, who has remained unsigned for two years, has been targeted frequently by President TrumpDonald TrumpOmar, Muslim Democrats decry Islamophobia amid death threats On The Money — Powell pivots as inflation rises Trump cheers CNN's Cuomo suspension MORE and his base for protesting during the national anthem.
Nike unveiled its ad featuring Kaepernick last year with the slogan "Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything."