Michael Jordan’s signature shoe line began in 1984 when MJ signed a $250,000 deal to sign with Nike instead of adidas. adidas offered double the signing bonus in their deal, but Nike offered something that had never been offered before: a percentage of revenue. If Jordan’s signature shoes failed to earn $3M in their first three years on the market, Nike had an out clause.
Jordan’s shoe pulled in $130 million from the jump. The out clause wasn’t necessary.
The Air Jordan line has been helping athletes fly since the beginning. But in 2018, we’re primed for takeoff with their most revolutionary sneaker: The Air Jordan XXXIII.
The Air Jordan XXXIII is the 33rd installment in a long line of widely-coveted basketball sneakers. The knock in recent years is that these kicks are more popular off the court than on it. The Jordan 33 is here to satisfy everyone. The Air Jordan XXXIII combines the DNA that many will recognize from previous models but introduces new energy to take it to the next level. It’s called FastFit Technology.
The Air Jordan XXXIII is going laceless — not hidden laces like you’d see in the Jordan XVIII or XIX, but a tightening system that doesn’t include shoestrings at all. The tightening system still provides an optimal fit while showcasing the future of exterior innovation. Simply “Pull for Lockdown” and the shoe provides a consistent fit from heel to toe.
The customizable fit system includes 12 clicks — the more clicks, the tighter the fit. Pulling an elastic pull tab tights the fit, and a separate elastic tab to “eject” removes the tightening. The function is futuristically simple and could be the best Air Jordan design in the 21st century.
For consumers, the Air Jordan XXXIII and all of its innovative glory is going to run you $175 before taxes at retail in limited colorways (at least through the end of the calendar year), but many Jordan Brand schools have begun to showcase their player exclusives for the upcoming basketball season. They certainly do not disappoint.
North Carolina Tar Heels
North Carolina, the alma-mater of His Airness, was the first school to release their Air Jordan XXXIII colorway showcasing the ‘Carolina Blue’ and UNC logo on the tongue. The Tar Heels are always at the forefront of Jordan swag. Of course they are.
Michigan, the first program in college football history to don the ‘Jumpman’ logo in football, gets their Maize & Blue version of the AJ XXXIII for their National Championship runner-up basketball team. The ‘Block M’ logo is pressed on a Maize tongue making this colorway stand out instantly.
Marquette Golden Eagles
Marquette has been partnered with Jordan Brand since the 2009-10 season and recently signed a five-year extension. In addition to the men’s program, the women’s team will now be added to the Jordan Brand family. The Marquette blue and gold are the primary colors with powder blue on the elastic tab and strap.
The Florida Gators made the switch from the ‘Swoosh’ to ‘Jumpman’ this season, just in time to get the basketball teams into the Air Jordan XXXIII. The men’s version features an orange tongue with the Gators logo and a green strap, while the women’s shows off a white tongue and accents.
Georgetown has been a part of the Jordan Brand family for years. Their grey and navy colorway creates a sleek, neutral looking player exclusive available for the basketball team this season. The Hoyas reveal included a vintage grey t-shirt as an ode to Head Coach Patrick Ewing, who wore one under his jersey as a player.
Oklahoma is one of the latest teams to join the Jordan Brand family and both men’s and women’s hoops programs will be rocking the new Jordan XXXIII. It’s predominantly a white sneaker with the classic “OU” on an Oklahoma crimson red tongue. (OUJordan.com)
Other notable schools who’ve yet to release images of their player exclusives include Cal, Houston and San Diego State.
Most sneaker enthusiasts will suggest that the last handful of Jordan’s have missed the mark, whether it be over-complicated design or lack of on-court comfort. The Air Jordan XXXIII is a breath of fresh air. You get the best of both worlds: a shoe that will push the limits of innovative, new technology without sacrificing the original DNA of the Jordan Brand.
Prepare to fly in the Air Jordan XXXIII.
Images courtesy air.jordan.com, @UNC_Basketball (Twitter), @umichbball (Twitter), @MarquetteMBB (Twitter), @GatorsMBK (Twitter), @GatorsWBK (Twitter), @GeorgetownHoops (Twitter), OUJordan.com.