From Instagram
Now playing
00:36
Nike ad features Colin Kaepernick
Getty Images
Now playing
02:18
This airplane-shaped bag is selling for more than some actual planes
Now playing
00:54
See Nike's new 'hands-free' shoe
One of many large boxes of returned products that fill the warehouse. The returned products in this box will eventually be sorted and categorized.
John General/CNN
One of many large boxes of returned products that fill the warehouse. The returned products in this box will eventually be sorted and categorized.
Now playing
05:08
Here's where your 'free' online returns actually end up
Shutterstock
Now playing
04:42
Ever receive a package you didn't order? It could be a scam
Orangetheory Fitness
Now playing
02:13
This gym is actually opening studios during the pandemic
Now playing
02:24
How holiday spirit is surging despite the Covid-19 pandemic
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 19: A view of the window display as Macy's Herald Square unveils Give, Love, Believe 2020 Holiday Windows on November 19, 2020 in New York City. (Photo by Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Macy's)
Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images North America/Getty Images for Macy's
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - NOVEMBER 19: A view of the window display as Macy's Herald Square unveils Give, Love, Believe 2020 Holiday Windows on November 19, 2020 in New York City. (Photo by Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Macy's)
Now playing
00:56
Macy's unveils holiday window display with gratitude theme
CNN/Target/Design by John General
Now playing
02:36
It's official: Black Friday is irrelevant
Now playing
02:23
Party City CEO: Consumers still want to celebrate together
NEW YORK, UNITED STATES - 2020/07/08: People wearing face masks shopping inside a retail store in Manhattan as the city enters phase 3 of reopening amid the coronavirus pandemic
As New York City enters phase 3 of reopening retail stores for indoor shopping, restaurants have been postponed for indoor dinning. The U.S. Department of Health recorded a total of 3,219,999 infections, 135,822 death and 1,426,428 recovered since the beginning of the outbreak. (Photo by Braulio Jatar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Braulio Jatar/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty Images
NEW YORK, UNITED STATES - 2020/07/08: People wearing face masks shopping inside a retail store in Manhattan as the city enters phase 3 of reopening amid the coronavirus pandemic As New York City enters phase 3 of reopening retail stores for indoor shopping, restaurants have been postponed for indoor dinning. The U.S. Department of Health recorded a total of 3,219,999 infections, 135,822 death and 1,426,428 recovered since the beginning of the outbreak. (Photo by Braulio Jatar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Now playing
01:38
US retail sales improved in September
thehouseofdrew.com
Now playing
02:01
Justin Bieber's footwear collaboration overwhelms site
Walmart
Now playing
01:01
See what's new inside Walmart stores
3119 E Third Street Dollar General in Dayton, OH on March 12, 2020.
Maddie McGarvey for CNN
3119 E Third Street Dollar General in Dayton, OH on March 12, 2020.
Now playing
06:07
Dollar General's business is booming. It's also vulnerable to crime, police say
Now playing
03:01
How private equity is gutting retail
Now playing
01:55
All retail bankruptcies are not the same. Here's what you need to know
(CNN) —  

In September, Stephen Martin saw a Nike ad featuring former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

The ad said: “Believe in something. Even if it means sacrificing everything.”

The words “sacrificing everything” stood out to Martin. And he decided he needed to take a stand against Nike.

He sold off the Nike inventory in his Colorado sports apparel and memorabilia store, Prime Time Sports, and made national news as the store owner boycotting the biggest name in sports merchandise.

Martin knew the Nike boycott would hurt.

“Being a sports store without Nike is like being a gas station without gas,” he said.

This week, Martin announced that Prime Time Sports will close in the coming days.

“This was never about property to me, this was about principle,” Martin said Wednesday night while he was in his store, preparing to shut it down.

Martin said the boycott was about principle over profit and even though the lost revenue played a role in his decision to close the store he was absolutely glad he did it.

“You don’t trample over the men who have given Colin Kaepernick and me the right to free speech,” he said.

The former NFL quarterback became a polarizing figure after he began kneeling during the National Anthem during the 2016 season to raise awareness about police brutality against African-Americans and other racial injustices. Dozens of other players joined him and he has become a symbol of the dividing lines over race in America. Some called kneeling during the anthem unpatriotic and disrespectful. Kaepernick has not played in the NFL since the 2016 season.

Nike’s decision to use Kaepernick to promote the 30th anniversary of its “Just Do It” advertising campaign outraged some sports fans, including Martin.

In 20 years in business, Martin said he thought of himself as a guy who sold jerseys, not as an activist. He had never boycotted anything before, though in 2016 he canceled an autograph appearance by Brandon Marshall after the Denver Broncos player took a knee during the National Anthem before a game.

This week, with past due rent bills portending a court fight he decided to tell his nine employees it was time to call it a career. Everything in the store is 40% off.

Other stores in the mall, including a Sears, are closing. Mall traffic is down.

Martin told CNN affiliate KOAA that his sales had also been affected by people buying more items at online retailers. His sales were down 15% in the past three years.

The store will be open until everything is gone, he told KOAA.

“I didn’t give in to big Nike and big dollars. I didn’t give in. I did it my way,” he told the Colorado Springs station.