“It’s no secret that Warrior lacrosse pushed the limits of taste and truthfulness in its advertising efforts over the years. Utilizing negative advertising along with references to drugs, prostitution, pornography, pimping, and general womanizing.” – John Weaver, 2004
Selling your soul for Sex, Drugs, & Rock n’ Roll
In 2003, Warrior released a new line of lacrosse shafts with names like “Day Trippin”, “Kind Green”, “Krown Royal”, and “White Lightening”. These obvious drug references weren’t limited to product names either and Warrior’s ad campaign continued a similar “sex, drugs, and rock n’ roll” theme . The company was shamelessly trying hard to portray themselves as “cool” and “edgy” to high school kids across the nation regardless of the consequences.
Warrior was going all-out; touting sex, drugs and “coolness”, and not giving a crap about the impact on the young kids who make up their customer base. I am FAR from the morality police and enjoy non-PC ads just like the next guy. However, nonexistent in these ads was the sentiment of running company to grow the game. Instead, the big wigs who greenlit this campaign were clearly willing to throw morals out the window as long as they made a quick buck. If a kid was wearing a “W” logo, Warrior execs like Dave Morrow were getting paid. And we all know getting paid is the most important part, right?
“The inability of the folks at Warrior to create something original that doesn’t rely on the disgusting, perverse or simply immature is obvious”, he challenged parents and veterans of the game to ask themselves if this was what they wanted for the sport.
Was this the culture parents wanted their kids to be exposed to? In a smooth, sincere fashion, he exposed Warrior and called Dave Morrow, Warrior’s founder, out for his inconsiderate and inappropriate abuse of the game.
Why is this Lacrosse Warrior case relevant five years later?
I came across Weaver’s article yesterday afternoon right before heading out to a Superbowl party. Watching the game and the traditional expensive commercials, I wondered how the lacrosse community would want the sport portrayed if it had one $3 Million ad spot during the Superbowl.
What organization would we choose to represent the game? Would we want a Warrior commercial? Brine? Nike? Gait? MLL? NCAA? MCLA? Inside Lacrosse? Who would we hold up as the visual flag bearer of the game to a worldwide audience during the biggest sporting event of the year?
There are many right answers but I think we can all agree on one wrong one. Warrior hasn’t shown they deserve to be in the limelight. Unless, of course, there are Ninjas OR Gorillas involved. Then I guess we might let it slide just a little.
Rejected Warrior Lacrosse Commercials
To dive deeper into this topic, check out John Weaver’s article here. After you read it, tell me what you think. Was he overreacting or did Dave Morrow deserve to be called a d-bag? Who should represent our sport in the national spotlight?