We feel it’s only right we kick this off with one of, if not, the most iconic and important sneakers of all time. The 1985 Original Air Jordan 1 or more simply known at the time as the “Nike Air Jordan” This is a sneaker that has changed the game, on and off the court. Well, it turns out things could have been very different. With Michael Jordan previously wearing Converse throughout his college years and being a true Adidas fan, he wasn’t automatically sold on Nikes proposal. After all, Nike was only a 12 year old brand at the time and was struggling with transitioning off the track and onto the basketball court (yes, hard to believe, Nike was just emerging in the footwear industry and wasn’t towering over all other brands).
You see, in 1984 Michael Jordan wanted a sneaker deal with Adidas when he entered into the NBA. As the story goes, Adidas executives in Germany felt that consumers favored taller players and wanted to sponsor centers. This led to Adidas sponsoring Kareem Abdul-Jabbar instead of Michael Jordan. Fast forward 32 years later and it’s safe to say that Adidas made probably its biggest mistake ever, passing up the opportunity to sponsor Michael Jordan! The “Nike Air Jordan” (that took some time to grow on even MJ himself) turned out to be the beginning of the most iconic and significant series of shoes in sneaker history! The Air Jordan 1 today is recognizably the most fashionable, wearable, and most sought after Air Jordan silhouette in the series.
Photography by Peter Mauceri