The 1996 NBA All-Star Game in San Antonio stands out in the minds of NBA fans and sneakerheads for a variety of reasons. It featured one of the best collections of talent ever assembled for an All-Star Game, with future Hall of Famers in their prime like Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Clyde Drexler, Hakeem Olajuwon, David Robinson, Scottie Pippen, Karl Malone, John Stockton, Patrick Ewing, Shawn Kemp (yeah, I said it) and Gary Payton and rising stars like Shaquille O’Neal, Jason Kidd, Grant Hill, Penny Hardaway and Alonzo Mourning. And Reggie Miller, I guess. San Antonio would also host one of the more memorable All-Star Saturday Nights in history, with Brent Barry taking home the Slam Dunk crown and a Rookie Game that included Kevin Garnett, Rasheed Wallace, Jerry Stackhouse and Michael Finley. Oh, and those uniforms. If we should lament one change that has
improved ruined All-Star weekend, it should be the ahead-of-its-time experiment of designing All-Star uniforms to match the hosting team’s colors. Imagine the past few All-Star Games in the colors of the Houston Rockets (ok, not that great), Orlando Magic (better) and the Los Angeles Lakers (there we go).
But what sneakerheads remember the most were the stunning display of kicks during All-Star Sunday. From Hardaway’s Nike Air Penny 1, Kemp’s Reebok Kamikaze II Kidd’s Nike Air Zoom Flight ’95, Hill’s FILA GH2 and of course Jordan’s “Columbia” Air Jordan 11, if we had the social media tools that we have today back then, the internet would have broken from the sheer number of tweets talking about everybody’s kicks.
One of the standout kicks from that game will be making a comeback today in the form of the Reebok Shaqnosis. Few kicks ever had a name that fit so perfectly with the design story and the Shaqnosis was a shoe that had everybody talking the moment they saw it. And the shoe was also featured in one famous highlight that took place before the game. During warm-ups, Shaq and MJ were going at it in a little game of one-upmanship trading baskets and post moves. While MJ was talking smack to Shaq at every opportunity, the normally loquacious Diesel was oddly silent, possibly because he was about to set up Jordan with a post move
that would make us think even less of Dwight Howard for the ages. If you thought MJ got worked by Allen Iverson and his famous crossover, this was worse better…
Check out the Reebok Shaqnosis and plenty of other All-Star goodness in this special edition of NBA Kicks.
Shaquille O’Neal – Reebok Shaqnosis