Where there is smoke, there is fire, at least that’s what Nike and Jordan Brand hope as they release yet another blazing hot retro edition of the Air Jordan I’s. The “Smoke Grey” J’s are another banger in a long line of revisions of Mike’s first, rulebreaking sneaker, proving again that simplicity is just as strong as splashy. Utilizing a four-color palette, this drop speaks volumes with contrasting shades and a variety of tactile materials to reveal a fresh take on a stone-cold classic. This sneaker is an essential addition to the collection of any Air Jordan completist and will look iconic whether it’s on the shelf or out on the block.
This high top heater begins with on the bottom with a solid black outer sole cradling the white rubber midsole, a clean combo without excessive adornments. The shoe’s mid and toe box are constructed with white leather, overlaid by a grey suede mudguard, eyestays, and heel, providing a neutral base for the thrilling throwback. The black ball-and-wings Air Jordan logo emblazons across the lush Varsity red leather collar, the brightness of color that springs forth amidst a generally plain sneaker. Black padding around the ankle joins this contrast, providing backing for the kick’s bright highlight, and serving as the top-layer in the heel’s full display of the colorway. That view from the rear also sees a vivid red heel tag, stripes of white leather and plush black fabric, and the shoe’s signature smoke grey suede. Nike’s trademark swoosh slashes across both sides in black, providing the shoe’s profile with additional visual variation. As is often the case with classics, sometimes basic is better.
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Along with the many accolades in his young basketball career, the Jordan I was the shoe that made Michael Jordan a household name. When His Airness was still a rookie with nothing more than an NCAA Championship to his name, footwear and fashion were not the dynamic duo of today. Sure, basketball fans could rock a pair of Converse “Dr. J” signatures if they were Philly fans, and Walt “Clyde” Frazier made Pumas popular for Knicks die-hards and wanna-be gangsters, but it was the collaboration between Nike and MJ that married style and star-power to create an iconic brand that would transform both the worlds of basketball and sportswear. Fueled by the creative prowess of designer Peter Moore, and matched only by the tenacity of the GOAT, the inaugural Air Jordan was born on September 15, 1985, forever changing the landscape of marketing and professional athletics.
Since the Chicago Bulls pulled the lucky number three in the draft lottery, and both the Houston Rockets and Portland TrailBlazers passed on the raucous rookie, Jordan was primed to begin his career in black and red. Unfortunately, the first draft, cleverly called the “Air Ship,” was deemed too striking in its crimson for NBA Commissioner David Stern and the league’s antiquated uniform rules of the ‘80s. After making some major changes, the first releases of the Air Jordan matched his team’s bold and strong shades while including the addition of clean white contrasts. Nike famously paid Mike’s penalty to the League for donning the predominantly black and red Jordan I’s before marketing the shoe as the secret to the star’s skills, setting the stage for the most successful marketing campaign in sneaker history.
In today’s digital world, social media is the prime platform to display your kicks, search out grails, or discover upcoming releases. Instagram has become a major platform for promoting collectors’ stock, so make sure to check out our exclusive offer for free Sneaker Shields if you want to stay photo-fresh. Our product is guaranteed to keep your J’s crease-free for years, either with regular wear or in storage. Nobody wants to be seen wearing Air Jordans that look cheap or busted, so make Sneaker Shields a part of your routine shoe care. Tag us and spread some love!
Although hypebeasts will inevitably find hotter, more eye-catching releases to sink their teeth into, these Jordans are easily the sleeper selection of the summer. Come to think of it, the Air Jordan I is the quintessential canvas for creating simple yet memorable retros. After shocking sneakerheads with blue variations in the original run, the icon kicked off the throwback trend in 1994 with the first in a long line of Jordan reruns beginning with the unmatchable black/white/red colorway. The three colors that represent the basketball dynasty of the 1990s are peerless in their ubiquity, instantly identifying the wearer as a member of the Chicago congregation. For the March Madness maniacs, why not rock a pair of powder blue and white Jordan 1’s in honor of his North Carolina Tarheel tradition. These Smoke Grey Jordan I’s have taken traditional elements of the OG and introduced minute changes, making it a harmonious hybrid that can hang with the new kids on the court. The blocking of the Air Jordan’s panels and partitions makes the perfect pattern for any palette, especially one that reminds you of the glory days.
While the other heads around the block is sitting and staring at their screens waiting for a winning bid on some flashy footwear, the discerning collector can be seen on the street hurting feelings while keeping it classy. Feel free to add these to the must-have list of 2020, and whether you are a collector, reseller, or an everyday trendsetter, make sure to pick up some Sneaker Shields and keep your new J’s crease-free.