The Air Jordan 1 has become an “it” shoe within mainstream consciousness over the last four years, but it was once “banned” by the NBA. (It was actually the Nike Air Ship that was regulated by the league, but the Swoosh was trying to push Michael Jordan’s first sneaker.) Jordan Brand fully-embraced that nugget of history with the release of a “Black/University Red” colorway of the pair by the same name in 2011 (denoted by “x” marks at the heel). For its latest walk down memory lane, however, the subsidiary has ostensibly sprawled the words narrated in a commercial from 1985 about the “banning” onto a black and grey retro.
Immediately reminiscent of the silhouette’s original “Shadow” colorway, the newly-surfaced pair features light grey overlays at the ankle, profile swooshes and bottom heel. Surrounding smooth leather, then, indulges in a pitch-dark tone that matches the “Wings” insignia on the collar’s lateral side. Both components arguably play secondary roles to the Jordan 1‘s most distinct detail: ostensibly hand-written text applied in “all-over” fashion.
While an early look at the pair makes deciphering the message difficult, the phrases “stop” and “wearing them” can be made out across the sneaker’s lateral profiles. More than 35 years ago, Nike aired a commercial (narrated in a similar style as Apple’s “1984” spot) addressing how the NBA disapproved its “revolutionary new basketball shoe.” The 32-second advertisement concludes with the following message: “Fortunately, the NBA can’t stop you from wearing them.” It’s possible the text scribbled onto the first Air Jordan sneaker refers to another part of MJ’s legacy, only time will tell.
No Nike SNKRS launch details are currently known, but this pair is likely to land in 2022. In any case, enjoy a first-look at the shoes ahead.
An early mock-up and more in-hand images have been updated in this post. The pair is currently dubbed “Rebellionaire,” a cheeky nod to Michael Jordan’s now billionaire status. To think, it was made possible by not adhering to the NBA’s rules.
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Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG “Rebellionaire”
Release Date: Mar 2021
Color: Black/White/Particle Grey
Style Code: 555088-036