451 Releases

3 upcoming Releases


41 TBA Releases


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610

Jordan 1 Mid USA

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Jordan 4 Desert Moss

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Jordan 1 Mid Christmas

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Jordan 1 Low Malachite

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Jordan 1 Mid XQ

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Jordan 5 Gore-Tex

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Jordan 1 Mid UNC

407 already released


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507

Jordan 3 Fire Red

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290

Jordan 1 Mid Taxi

Air Jordan – brand of a legend

When we think of Nike, we think of sports. Of all the countless professional players who have made the Swoosh famous. And we think of one particular basketball player who is partly responsible for the hype of Air Jordan shoes.

But the hype goes much further, because the Air Jordan brand wasn’t just bought or created by accident. It was created for Michael Jordan, when he was still at the beginning of his career. With the firm belief in a great career.

During his career on the court, not only Michael Jordan, but also the brand behind him became an absolute legend – as befits the collaboration of the world’s best basketball player and the most successful sports brand.

In this article you will learn everything about the creation of the famous sports brand from the house of Nike, the biggest successes and of course the hyped models of the brand.

Business as unusual

In 1984, the still quite unknown exceptional talent Michael Jordan switched from the college league to the NBA and thus started his career. At the same time, the sports brand Nike had only been selling in Europe for a few years and was struggling with declining sales. A short time later, the two parties founded the “Air Jordan” brand that same year – laying the foundation for a decades-long and highly successful collaboration. Jordan was the first athlete to become a real brand and gave Nike the lead among sportswear brands – until today.

 

The story of a happy coincidence

Nike‘s co-founder Phil Knight suspected at the time that this was Nike’s chance. He knew that the basketball player was important for Nike’s future and was eager to sign him. But Jordan didn’t want to sign at first; he couldn’t do anything with the shoes. The deal seemed to be off.

He had to be persuaded and Knight finally managed to change his mind and win him over to Nike. At first, the deal was laughed at and no one expected it to be a success. Against all odds, Jordan and Nike managed to revolutionize the market together and create something completely new – a legend.

 

The hype

Until the early eighties, Nike was not a big player in basketball – the throne was successfully defended by adidas and Converse. But Michael Jordan’s stellar career also pushed the brand: it wasn’t long before Nike secured the top spot on the court and saw off the competition to second place.

One reason for the hype was, of course, the special colorway in red and black, which was developed especially for the professional player. Black shoes were an absolute no-go in the NBA and did not belong in the dress code. Nike was happy to accept the fines that Jordan collected with each appearance in the shoes – because the media run was a real hit from a marketing point of view. Everyone was talking about the scandal, which boosted awareness of the brand and the professional player enormously. The subsequent models were also in demand without end and the brand managed to produce one of the most popular sneakers in the world even after Jordan’s active career ended. The Netflix documentary “The last dance” gave the hype around the Jordan sneakers another huge boost and ensured that especially the Jordan 1 is again extremely in demand.

The collabos with the shoe can also be seen and are sometimes sold for crass sums on the net. Special models like the Jordan 1 Off-White are over 20 times their original price and are real rarities among collectors. Every new release is eagerly awaited and it is not uncommon that special models are sold out in seconds. This strategy makes the sneakers all the more popular!

However, the hype surrounding the shoes is also due to the brand itself. Nike has achieved something completely unique that no other sporting goods manufacturer has managed so far: The sports giant managed to detach the Jordans from the logo – the Swoosh – without removing the identification with the brand. Through the reference to sports and the legend Michael Jordan, the brand has achieved cult status and – perhaps most importantly of all – created an emotional connection with its buyers. The absolute supreme discipline!

 

Successes

That’s exactly why the brand’s hype didn’t just end after Michael Jordan hung up his active career. An emotional connection to a brand creates trust, loyalty and a sense of belonging. It’s no wonder that the success of special models, regular releases or hyped collabos never ceases.

Already the Jordan 2 comes without the Swoosh and with the Jordan 3 Tinker Hatfield introduces the legendary Jumpman logo. In total, the designer was responsible for 21 Jordan models and significantly shaped the success of the design.

The shoes also continue to be represented on the court: Both the Retros and new performance sneakers are appreciated by professional athletes like Kawhi Leonard or Westbrook. But it is not only in basketball that Nike celebrates success with Air Jordan. Just in 2018, the brand has expanded its market and is the official outfitter of the Paris Saint-Germain soccer club. Meanwhile, the Jumpman logo also adorns the club’s home jerseys.

Air Jordan developed its own design for the 1992 Olympics, and the success of the “Dream Team” around Michael Jordan also brought the shoes back into focus. The Air Jordan X, which came out at the temporary end of the player’s career and bore his successes on the sole, also triggered a huge hype. The Jordan 4 or Jordan 1 “Cactus Jack” also speak for the long-lasting success of the brand with the Jumpman logo.

The Jordans have always celebrated great successes with their collaborations. Special models like the one with Travis Scott are sold out within seconds and can later only be obtained for expensive money in the resell. The Jordan 1 Retro High, for example, are sold for over 1600€ at StockX – and five-figure sums are not uncommon.

Models

The first silhouette, the Jordan 1, hit like a bomb. The black and red colorway alone created a lot of media hype and everyone wanted to get their hands on a pair of the banned kicks. And as it turned out over the years, the cooperation couldn’t have gone better: Nike and Jordan pushed each other. The professional player had a stellar career on the court and each step of his career ladder was accompanied by a new pair of Air Jordan.

Not infrequently, queues have formed in front of the stores when new Air Jordan styles were dropped. Particularly popular among sneakerheads and basketball fans are, of course, to this day the OG colorways in which Jordan himself has brought his successes on the court. These are mostly the Jordan 1 to 14, which have accompanied many countless legendary basketball moments that everyone would like to pack into their shoe closet. Which models are the most popular, we now present to you.

 

Nike Air Jordan 1 Mid and Low

The Jordan 1 wrote sneaker history: With this shoe began a collaboration between the sportswear brand Nike and the professional basketball player Michael Jordan, which is probably one of the most successful ever. Both the Mid and the Jordan 1 Low variant convince with sporty style and the proven technologies from the house of Nike – such as the Air damping and the robust sole for ideal grip.

Where the Low variant has always been popular for street style, the Mid variant was long considered a cheap copy of the original High. However, since the Highs are hard to come by, the Mid variant was able to catch up and straighten out its image. Most Mids have a leather upper and feature the Jumpman logo on the tongue, which sets them apart from the Lows and Highs. With popular collabos and special colorways, they are now on par with the original!

 

Nike Air Jordan 4

A year after the launch of the Jordan 3, the AJ 4 was released in 1989 in four different colorways and was somewhat lighter and narrower than its predecessor. The special thing about it: the sneaker appeared as the first model of the sportswear brand on the global market. Its success was helped by its appearance in a movie and the professional player himself: Jordan wore the AJ 4 “Bred” in the year of its release in a legendary game of the Play Offs – afterwards everyone wanted to get hold of a copy of the new kicks.

The shoe has a waterproof exterior and a warm lining, which makes it the ideal shoe for colder days. The mesh and molded synthetic elements made it a pioneer of its time. Particularly popular are the colorways “Metallic Red”, “Retro Black Cat” or even the retro variant “Cool Grey”. Of course, Nike also relied on big collabos for the Jordan 4, for example, with Union LA or Levi’s.

 

 

Air Jordan 6

The AJ 6 is and remains a very special silhouette for the brand – in many ways. After Michael Jordan moved to the NBA, victory was initially some time in coming. Then, in 1991, the time had come and the basketball star won the first NBA title together with his team, beating the Lakers – a milestone in his career and the first of a total of six championship titles. You can imagine what shoe he wore to that game – none other than the Air Jordan 6!

Tinker Hatfield took his cue from Jordan’s penchant for sports cars for the first time with the AJ 6, deviating from the previous look. The dynamic-looking sole with its hard edges and elements such as the strap on the heel are reminiscent of the look of a sports car. Unnecessary padding was also dispensed with to make the shoe lighter and facilitate fast movements.

Since 2002, the 6 is also available as a low version and especially for women. New trendy colorways were added and a few years later Air Jordan brought out the shoe completely in retro design.

 

Uniqueness on point

In the world of sports, there are many very successful brands that have more than earned their place. Air Jordan, however, is and remains an exception. Because a brand like this, packed with sweat, tears and plenty of emotion, can’t simply be conceived on paper. It is lived. With every single muscle fiber.

The dynamism of Michael Jordan on the court is reflected in each and every pair of Air Jordans, connecting the emotions behind his athletic successes to the brand. This creates a sense of belonging that has never existed before. For a brand that is unique.