Deuces: An Appreciation For The Air Jordan 2

Image via Classic Kicks.

The Air Jordan II (2) “Wing It” will be released come March of this year, and while I’m a fan of bold white/black/gray colorways in most shoes, this one I’m not too keen on.

Not to sweat, because this isn’t about the “Wing It” Air Jordan 2.

The Jordan I (1), III (3) and IV (4) tend to get all of the hoopla surrounding most of the early Jordan iterations. The I because, well, it’s the first and has become a fashion staple. The III because it was Tinker Hatfield‘s first crack at the line, AND because it saved Mike from departing the Swoosh (it may have also saved Nike), and the IV because well, it’s just a really badass shoe.

The II tends to be forgotten. Well, maybe not forgotten, but underappreciated. Actually, upon it’s original release there was some speculation that the Air Jordan II was supposed to be called “Air Jordan II: The Imagination”, which was offered in the ad campaign for it. And on the heels of that was supposed to be “The Revolution” which would have been the III, but that idea was scrapped and the Revolution name lived on in another shoe, but I digress.

Peter Moore, who had designed the Air Jordan I had teamed up with Air Force I designer, and a legend in his own right, Bruce Kilgore, to orchestrate the II. It would be Nike’s first ‘luxury’ based shoe. The inspiration was gained from Italian boots of the prior century, and because of that and the nod to luxury, it was then produced in Italy which upped the price point by $35 from the Jordan I.

The “away” version of the Jordan II got most of the publicity as Jordan won his first Dunk Contest in them, but I find the “home” version to be as simple and perfect a piece of footwear that Nike has put out.

Very clean lines. No flash. No risky color blocking. In fact, the only real ‘risk’ taken in this shoe was that there was no Swoosh on it. Simply the ‘Winged Ball’ logo on the tongue, and a block “NIKE” on the heel tab.

Just this week John Wall of the Wizards took us on a trip back busting out a pair of retro IIs.

The shoe looks just as classy on foot with denim as it does on court as it accomplishes the original objective of being a ‘luxury’ piece of footwear beyond its athletic purpose.

Over the course of the last decade players like Carmelo Anthony, Quentin Richardson, Mike Bibby, Derek Anderson, Ray Allen and more have all donned the Jordan II during game play. Not to mention, Sam Vincent, the first player not named Michael Jordan to wear Air Jordans in the NBA while Michael Jordan was playing (in fact they were teammates when he did, you can look it up).

That OG ‘home’ II doesn’t get the love it should as just a beautiful all around looking shoe. In fact, in the recent ESPN article ranking all 29 Air Jordans, the II came in at #14.

We have a month before the “Wing It” colorway of the Jordan II releases. In the meantime, take a look at the print and TV campaigns W+K put out for the Air Jordan II which inspired the look of the “Wing It” colorway.

Image via The Shoe Game.
Image via The Shoe Game.