"Prince has issues"

ricki

Hall of Fame
Prince was my No.1 by mile for so long.
- they had super line up in EXO series (Rebel, Tour 100, Red, Blue... all great racquets)
- they had good overgrips and best basic grips (ResiPro, ResiThin)
- they had best shoe (old T22)
- they had est quality of racquets - firm, solid, even weights...
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What they totally screw-up:
- ruined rebel line with hideous yellow paintjob and unavailability of more open patterns
- ruined tour line by hideous orange paintjobs (with main logo being "midplus" -WTF?! -)
- ruined both lines by merging under same name "tour"
- ruined all of their racquets by going for oldschool primitive drilled holes (cheapest option - even babolat has wider holes and better grommets)
- totally ruined T22 shoe and that pathetic attempt with T24 shoe
- now they basically dont have any apparel/dampeners etc. No dealers as well.
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I still have some tour 100´s in my stash and will play them as long as possible. Also I have kept my first racquet i bought back in 2009 - Rebel 95 in original nice paintjob.
 

zalive

Hall of Fame
If I was Prince, I'd design and release Textreme Response 97 MP in true 16x20 heritage string pattern, with some good comfy flex with just enough crispness and power to make it a big hitting racquet.
Say, RA 63-64 with 100% graphite+textreme layup made in a way it allows some power.

Response line deserves a true update.
 

jbdbackfan

Semi-Pro
Talked to TW and supposedly Prince after Phantom has plans to release a straight beam graphite/textreme racquet similar to the Graphite 100 but with more stability. I won't hold my breath given Phantom already seems won't be anywhere near to schedule.
 

smalahove

Hall of Fame
If I was Prince, I'd design and release Textreme Response 97 MP in true 16x20 heritage string pattern, with some good comfy flex with just enough crispness and power to make it a big hitting racquet.
Say, RA 63-64 with 100% graphite+textreme layup made in a way it allows some power.

Response line deserves a true update.
With a flat beam with a max thickness of 20 mm.
I'd order that unseen.
 

Seth

Legend
Talked to TW and supposedly Prince after Phantom has plans to release a straight beam graphite/textreme racquet similar to the Graphite 100 but with more stability. I won't hold my breath given Phantom already seems won't be anywhere near to schedule.
With or without a crossbar?
 

Lukhas

Legend
If I was Prince, I'd design and release Textreme Response 97 MP in true 16x20 heritage string pattern, with some good comfy flex with just enough crispness and power to make it a big hitting racquet.
Say, RA 63-64 with 100% graphite+textreme layup made in a way it allows some power.

Response line deserves a true update.
As a Response user I say no thanks. :p What you're asking for is very close to the latest Pure Strike. And even for the sake of variety, I wouldn't want another racquet from Prince that is that close to the Textreme 95. The more diverse the line, the better IMO. I don't see the point of stacking several very similar racquets.
 
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zalive

Hall of Fame
As a Response user I say no thanks. :p What you're asking for is very close to the latest Pure Strike. And even for the sake of variety, I wouldn't want another racquet from Prince that is that close to the Textreme 95. The more diverse the line, the better IMO. I don't see the point of stacking several very similar racquets.
But currently you have nothing...Response is discontinued...
I don't think a gap between 95'' and 100'' is small. And 97'' is not only part of Prince tradition. It's a really interesting head size for the modern game.
I wasn't thinking about anything that is far from classic Response racquet. Update of a good racquet should offer subtle improvements.
 
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Lukhas

Legend
But currently you have nothing...Response is discontinued...
I don't think a gap between 95'' and 100'' is small. And 97'' is not only part of Prince tradition. It's a really interesting head size for the modern game.
I wasn't thinking about anything that is far from classic Response racquet. Update of a good racquet should offer subtle improvements.
I think the contrary. The gap between 95 and 97 isn't that significant. Moreover, the specs change you suggest would bring the Response and the Textreme 95 very close to each other, which as I've written is something I'm not keen to see. While I'd like an update to the Response to touch onto certain things (like the lack of power and the somewhat muted feel), I don't want to see become a 2 pts RA stiffer (which is very much within tolerances) Textreme 95 with another cross string. The Response has to stay stiffer and propose a really different experience to the rest of the line.

Anyway, not sure we'll ever see that anytime soon considering how the Response flopped.
 
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zalive

Hall of Fame
I think the contrary. The gap between 95 and 97 isn't that significant. Moreover, the specs change you suggest would bring the Response and the Textreme 95 very close to each other, which as I've written is something I'm not keen to see. While I'd like an update to the Response to touch onto certain things (like the lack of power and the somewhat muted feel), I don't want to see become a 2 pts RA stiffer (which is very much within tolerances) Textreme 95 with another cross string. The Response has to stay stiffer and propose a really different experience to the rest of the line.

Anyway, not sure we'll ever see that anytime soon considering how the Response flopped.
If you release a racquet as a 'Classic Response' in 'era' of new Textreme line, you can't expect it would appeal to a wide circle of players.
However mid 60's flex is nothing new to Response line. Look at these specs:
https://www.hdtennis.com/grs/pro_racquet_specs/rafter_prince_prtmp.html

Though racquetfinder specifies Response 660 at flex 67. Perhaps the difference was in taiwanese vs. china versions of 660, those two were described as being different. Anyway, mine 660 should be from Taiwan, and it feels like...65? This one has bit dead upper hoop, but 3 grams strip at 12 o'clock makes wonders.

As for Classic Response 97, it was an attempt to recreate a classic using a raw material as available today, which is I guess not quite the same as what was available back then.
 
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Lukhas

Legend
If you release a racquet as a 'Classic Response' in 'era' of new Textreme line, you can't expect it would appeal to a wide circle of players.
That's a different issue from TW/TWE getting rid of the frames for 50€ each. Because that's how much I've paid for mines. That qualifies as a flop as far as I'm concerned.
However mid 60's flex is nothing new to Response line.
That doesn't change my opinion: I don't see why you would want two extremely similar racquets. Because with such modifications, the Response 97 would become very similar to the Textreme 95 and I do not wish to see that. I'd much prefer to see more variety and differences between frames.
As for Classic Response 97, it was an attempt to recreate a classic using a raw material as available today, which is I guess not quite the same as what was available back then.
Recent racquets who are not completely dead in the upper hoop and don't have a muted feel do exist. Even with "modern" materials, or whatever that means. That's unrelated with the supposed quality differences between past materials compared to todays.
 

zalive

Hall of Fame
That's a different issue from TW/TWE getting rid of the frames for 50€ each. Because that's how much I've paid for mines. That qualifies as a flop as far as I'm concerned.
An acquitance of mine, long time user of Response 660, considers Classic Response 97 a flop too, but not because of price discount. He simply thought reissue was nowhere near as good, without its feel and that it felt significantly stiffer and even hollow. So he sold it and he keeps playing with his 660. So it's not only about marketing appeal: seems like update failed to meet even expectations of some old time Response players.
 

Lukhas

Legend
An acquitance of mine, long time user of Response 660, considers Classic Response 97 a flop too, but not because of price discount. He simply thought reissue was nowhere near as good, without its feel and that it felt significantly stiffer and even hollow. So he sold it and he keeps playing with his 660. So it's not only about marketing appeal: seems like update failed to meet even expectations of some old time Response players.
I meant that the price discount in is a consequence of it flopping, not a cause. As for the cause, for me it's just that in that "modern player's racquet" market (somewhat heavy but not brick-like, 97-95in² headsize), there are plenty frames that perform just as well if not better than the Classic Response; at least stock.
 

jonestim

Hall of Fame
My local shop manager said he received an email this morning from headquarters (it's a shop with a few locations) that Prince is "going out of business" and he was to pack up and return all Prince merchandise from the store and ship it back to HQ today. He was selling all Prince stuff at half price this morning so he didn't have to pack it up. Anyone else hearing something similar?

I picked up another Textreme Warrior 100 just in case.
 

JohnBPittsburgh

Hall of Fame
That would suck, especially right before they release the Phantom. I just went on the dealer website, and Prince is still selling the Textremes at regular price (for dealers). TW is also selling them at full retail. I tried calling, but it says all reps are busy....I spoke with them yesterday though, and he said Phantom will be out in 3 weeks. (I didn't get an email, but I am not a brick and mortar store)
 

jonestim

Hall of Fame
I agree it would suck. I am wondering if they are truly going out of business or it is another bankruptcy or something similar and people are misconstruing it. When was the first bankruptcy? 4 years ago? I remember people saying they were going out of business then, and they stuck around for a while.
 
There was one of these rumors last year, and I was hoping to get a bunch of textremes at a good price. But it turned out to be false. Let's hope the Phantom will see the light of day!
Yeah, Id hate to see prince go... would be a bad sign for the industry as they have always been a comfort centered brand. Babs, Wilson and now head... not so much.

Rip Dunlop, Fischer and Prince as major tennis industry players. We need options with diverse design philosophies. Hopefully it is just a rumor or a restructuring.
 

JohnBPittsburgh

Hall of Fame
Angell is a great option as well, and I am glad that no matter what the industry trends are. I believe that Paul Angell will continue to produce what he knows are great frames that are as comfortable as they are beautiful. (He also realizes the importance of grommet availability, something Prince doesn't recognize)
If Prince is out of business, I will head to Angell for my next frame for sure. We shall wait and see.
 

lefty10spro

Semi-Pro
My local shop manager said he received an email this morning from headquarters (it's a shop with a few locations) that Prince is "going out of business" and he was to pack up and return all Prince merchandise from the store and ship it back to HQ today. He was selling all Prince stuff at half price this morning so he didn't have to pack it up. Anyone else hearing something similar?

I picked up another Textreme Warrior 100 just in case.
I am a long time Prince dealer and have not heard anything remotely like this. A new VP of sales contacted me recently and said all issues are being "worked on." Prince is owned by ABG (Authentic Brands Group). They are huge and in no danger of bankruptcy.
 

Bartelby

Bionic Poster
Private equity groups do indeed keep on going, but they change their businesses and brands more often than most people change underwear.

I am a long time Prince dealer and have not heard anything remotely like this. A new VP of sales contacted me recently and said all issues are being "worked on." Prince is owned by ABG (Authentic Brands Group). They are huge and in no danger of bankruptcy.
 

o0lunatik

Professional
I am a long time Prince dealer and have not heard anything remotely like this. A new VP of sales contacted me recently and said all issues are being "worked on." Prince is owned by ABG (Authentic Brands Group). They are huge and in no danger of bankruptcy.
Thanks for the clarification. Whatever the disconnects are with Prince and /or ABG, it's evident that whatever they're doing or lack of doing just suck as they continue to lose what little market share they have left and once loyal customers. I hope that this new VP of sales will guide Prince in a positive, new direction.
 

Lukhas

Legend
Can someone tell me if Prince Japan is a separate entity from Prince "rest of the world"? Surely that would explain the difference in catalog and product between Japan and what's available worldwide.

Also, if you happen to live in Europe, TWE has absurd sales on some Prince strings.
 
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Seth

Legend
Can someone tell me if Prince Japan is a separate entity from Prince "rest of the world"? Surely that would explain the difference in catalog and product between Japan and what's available worldwide.

Also, if you happen to live in Europe, TWE has absurd sales on some Prince strings.
I believe you're correct.
 

themitchmann

Hall of Fame
Can someone tell me if Prince Japan is a separate entity from Prince "rest of the world"? Surely that would explain the difference in catalog and product between Japan and what's available worldwide.

Also, if you happen to live in Europe, TWE has absurd sales on some Prince strings.
Prince Asia is a separate entity.
 
Tennis Warehouse is going to take over the Prince brand, at least for the high end products (***** Sporting Goods will take on the mid/low end products).
I sure hope that you are right. TW would be a great way to get Prince back in the mainstream of things. TW will give Prince more exposure and credibility. I talked with my sponsor, who is the Prince distributor here in Denmark, and he told me that Authentic Brands owns the Prince brand name and are working on getting them established as a major player again. What better way than with the help of TW.
 

ollinger

G.O.A.T.
......and speaking of Prince, does anyone recollect the website mentioned on this board some time ago where you can buy hard-to-find Prince grommet sets??
 

RedBeard

Rookie
Tennis Warehouse is going to take over the Prince brand, at least for the high end products (***** Sporting Goods will take on the mid/low end products).
Heard this last week, but dismissed it as one of those crazy tennis industry rumors (like prince going bankrupt). The new TW warehouse in Atlanta makes a little more sense now.

Any idea if they'll be actively managing the product and player development as well?
 

JohnBPittsburgh

Hall of Fame
I wonder if all of the playtesters will get their own Prince prostocks with their own preferred specs!!!!!! If I owned Prince, I would be getting personal paintjobs and prostocks :) Prepare for the Chris Edwards Signature Prince prostock!!!
 

RedBeard

Rookie
I wonder if all of the playtesters will get their own Prince prostocks with their own preferred specs!!!!!! If I owned Prince, I would be getting personal paintjobs and prostocks :) Prepare for the Chris Edwards Signature Prince prostock!!!
I've never tried an extended racquet, but if a Chris Edwards Signature was a 27.5" 100P with a 16x19 sting patten I'd be firing up a "take my money" meme.

It'll probably take a little bit to get things in order, but I'd imagine this will be a permanent solution to your grommet troubles.
 

themitchmann

Hall of Fame
Heard this last week, but dismissed it as one of those crazy tennis industry rumors (like prince going bankrupt). The new TW warehouse in Atlanta makes a little more sense now.

Any idea if they'll be actively managing the product and player development as well?
They'll be the operating company for the brand. As such, they'll be the ones making decisions. However, I'm sure they'll be getting help from the ABG design team.

I hope TW does well.
 

dimbmw

Rookie
I am so happy I was able to purchase a Neos 1500 stringer this year !!!

By the way any idea where I can get some parts for it? With Prince out of business I might need to stock on some I guess?
 

JohnBPittsburgh

Hall of Fame
Currently "Tennis Machines" takes care of all grommets and stringing machine parts/service

(This may change in the future if TW starts to take a more active role in everything. But that is the current setup)

Google it, and you will find their website. They have been good to deal with for my grommet needs so far. I haven't had to deal with them for stringing machine stuff, but I heard they are great to deal with and knowledgeable if you speak to their staff.
 
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