History of Air Jordan Retros with “Nike Air” Branding

February 7th, 2013 by | 56 comments


air jordan retros with nike air logo History of Air Jordan Retros with Nike Air Branding

Jordan Brand’s impressive appetite-filling series of Retro releases over the last decade or so should have satiated even the hungriest of Air Jordan collectors and enthusiasts. Should have. The original Defining Moments Package of 2006, the Collezione in 2008, the Bin 23 Collection, the in-depth plot-driven Kilroy Pack – all of those and more gave us enough reason to perpetually shell out our savings to lace up in Jays, but one gaping hole continues to be left unfulfilled since 2001 – the appearance of the original Nike Air. It’s nothing more than a piece of molded plastic, but its absence was still a void that was eventually left ignored seeing that a return of Nike Air had less to do with production and more to do with brand identity (Jordan would branch out to form its own label, albeit under Nike, Inc.) – but the desire was still there. Even today, hardcore enthusiasts continue to shell out hundreds and hundreds of dollars to get their hands on Nike Air branded Jordan Retros from the 1999-2001 era – shoes that are on the cusp of complete physical breakdown.

Why is Nike Air so cherished? Because it’s the perfect embodiment of a Retro release. It’s the undeniable original form that we were graced with back in the late 1980s, so even the most well-done Air Jordan Retros – the Air Jordan VI ‘Infrared’ from the 2010 Pack release, the Air Jordan IV ‘Bred’ from 2008/2012, the Air Jordan V ‘Black/Metallic’ in 2007 to name a few – would be unable to achieve a 100% grade. The era from Air Jordan III to VI is considered by many to be the most lustrous period of the Air Jordan Golden Era (or when Tinker was the architect), and it just happens to be the same span that utilized the large Nike Air logo on the heel.

A quick side-note: The Air Jordan 1 and even the Air Jordan II shouldn’t be ignored either as both featured ‘Nike’ as well, but they aren’t exactly part of the exclusive III-VI fraternity. Without a large Nike Air branding and with someone other than Tinker behind the wheel, the two earliest chapters of the Air Jordan legacy are seen on a different regard.

Yesterday, Jordan Brand filled that twelve-year long gap by releasing the Air Jordan III Retro ’88. Like the original, these featured Nike Air on the heel as well as the inner lining, but the outsole was labeled with JORDAN rather than Nike Air – that detail alone would’ve made the MSRP more than it already was. Even at the elevated $200 MSRP, which to this date is the highest MSRP ever for a single Air Jordan Retro release (more than the Premio, but less than the single-pair Pack style releases like the 2006 Thunder/Lightning, the Levi’s Pack, etc.), droves of consumers swarmed their computers for the online-only release. The interesting detail of yesterday’s release was that it wasn’t a completely random or out-of-place occurence, but a calculated retelling of a memorable moment in Jordan’s career and sports history as a whole – the 1988 Dunk Contest. Twenty-five years ago, Michael took off from the free-throw line in acrobatic fashion and froze in mid-air to create an iconic piece of sports imagery that speaks volumes on motivation and human ability.

So with Jordan Brand using events in Jordan’s career to bring back original Air Jordans, will we see more Nike Air in the future? Perhaps the Air Jordan VI ‘Infrared’ to commemorate the first NBA Title? The Air Jordan IV ‘Bred’ as a throwback to ‘The Shot’? What we do know is that whatever wall was between the Retro and the original branding has been broken down to some degree, so enjoy this chronological review of every Air Jordan Retro to feature Nike Air and let us know what you think this signifies for future Retro releases.





52 comments
KicksMart
KicksMart

Follow Kicks Mart on Instagram, @KicksMart. Advertising is FREE and you can get your product/shoe exposed to over 1000 sneaker heads. 

iamromierome
iamromierome

The prices was beautiful in 94 tho lol.. I still think $160+ is too high but I ant trippin foams & LJ is 220+

RPena009
RPena009

Does anyone know if the kicksole.com website is legit? Let me know or post your opinion thanks!!!

Njnicjohnson
Njnicjohnson

I got first remake 1's black and red, made of them 35000. Says in the shoe I got number 03542. Mint condition gotta be worth something right ?

merteskinova
merteskinova

Correct me if i'm wrong but didn't the 'Maroon 6s' have nike air on the back ?

obamakb
obamakb

I purchased the 3s on wednesday and I don't ever want them even want them, size 10.5

Cut Up
Cut Up

I love how we take so much time out to discuss shoes like they are sequestration, or medicare, or more strict gun laws....unemployment or something lol. They are shoes. Hot Damn, everybody all sensitive and shit. You either like a shoe or you don't. You are either copping or you aren't. I knew I was not copping and have not lost any sleep over it. They still sold out with no problem. Nike nor Jordan gave a shit about me not copping.

gotjordans
gotjordans

I still have all of these, except for the 2013s... Sheesh!And I don't have any of the 1994s... :/ 

Staxx13
Staxx13

It Crazy because a lot retro had price drops in 1999-2003 because they didn't sell to well in 1994. Now shit double priced because of a Nike logo. I believe OG should come in there true form. Then we won't have this problem, Jordan I-XI has some form of Nike on it and thats fine with me. 

Cbrigz
Cbrigz

So many pple that where beasting over the 88's and didnt get them are hating on them know, even pple that didn't want them are hating saying they got real og's. But they have 99' retros, lol, and ya call ya self "sneaker heads ". Tip of the day there is nothing more hypebeast then calling pple hypebeast

Vintageloafdame
Vintageloafdame

If you have a true pair of OG 3s,4s,5s or 6s hold on to them. They'll be worth even more now that the Jordan Brand has released these poo putt ass so called "Nike Air" 3s.

powder245
powder245

i think it'd be dope to see some retro 2's that are made in Italy. 

TheTeflonDon21
TheTeflonDon21

This is the future of retro guys. You haven't noticed the OG Vault has been depleted to almost nothing? Everything has been retroed in the past 5 years ago so to re retro these either nike air will be added or quality will be stepped up. This is what I believe is the future of JB retros of og colorways.

DreamChaser
DreamChaser

Dont matter if they release jordans with nike air on them. They will never be toe to toe with the originals.

donadamsky1
donadamsky1

some so-called jordan fans are so gullible. OOH, there's "nike air" on the heel. but the bottom still says jordan...

Sole_2_Sole
Sole_2_Sole

they did it for the 88's , why not continue the trend.. get it together JB.

Trip1325
Trip1325

 @RPena009  I've had good experiences with them. I have gotten orders from Nike and them at the same time because I was so pressed and worried I wouldn't get the shows I wanted, and they're exactly the same... I've read reviews where people say bad things, but I would def recommend if you're hard pressed

Brazy_ness
Brazy_ness

@Vintageloafdame hold on to them to wear??? Lmao

Lusinmader
Lusinmader

 @TheTeflonDon21 I doubt it.  Retro's in their current form are both the present and future of this brand.  The idea's/resources may appear depleted, but every day, week, month, and year introduces hundreds of thousands of sneaker enthusiast to this culture of rocking and stocking J's for the first time in their lives.  Both JB and Nike know this.  With that said, JB has NO need to apply NA on the back of J's or increase the quality when they're selling now.  If the numbers (sales) continue to rise year after year, you can kiss that dream of Nike Air returning permanently "Goodbye".   Remember, "If It ain't broke, don't try and fix it".

LongSummerNight5
LongSummerNight5

Well how many REAL(the ones w/ Nike on the bottom sole) 88's exist? I doubt at least 15 pairs.

Sole_2_Sole
Sole_2_Sole

 @donadamsky1 not sure how i should respond to this.. so here it goes. i personally bought the "88's"  not because im gullible but for the simple fact that i could afford em and desperately wanted them..  everyone feels differently bro, more importantly, for their OWN pleasure . jst saying

Lusinmader
Lusinmader

 @HeGotShoeGame Why?  J's are selling perfectly fine.  Look how many times they've restocked 2012 hits in 2013 and sold out.  I've counted 3 times so far on NDC and FNL.

NuttyKicks
NuttyKicks

 @Lusinmader  @TheTeflonDon21

 EXACTLY why I'm done with newer retro Js. All of them. 1) I think of the brand for young kids now with them beasting over every retro with a Jumpman. And 2- If you jack up prices on shitty sneaks, I'm not going to be a sucker for that. And 3- Its been well-known MJ is a c#cks#ucker in real life, and my money is not going towards people like that. Yeah, GOAT, in relation to basketball, but not in life in general (which sadly applies to the great majority of athletes). I'd buy a product from a Newtown school teacher at Sandy Hook before buying another junk-ass, overpriced Air Jordan retro from a greedy company with a Nike Air gimmick.

Sole_2_Sole
Sole_2_Sole

 @Lusinmader  one word - Preference, my friend. the way i view is this, we already paying  more than ever before. if ima pay  rising retail, then i would prefer a nike brand logo on the heel tab than a jumpman.. hope that makes sense to most people; but i agree on jays selling out anyway.

RPena009
RPena009

@boodle81 @Snpdo @ForeignEntity i was looking at Flight Club and I'd rather pay there prices instead of paying for a fake on eBay or any other website that sells the kicks. What I find ridiculous are the shipping cost that some people are posting!!!

Snpdo
Snpdo

 @boodle81  @ForeignEntity   @RPena009 People hate on flight club but they are just doing what anyone else in their position would do, that is taking advantage of the current situation.  Truth be told, newjacks may not remember but prices on flight club use to be straight, got a pair of aquas ds in 2010 for 250+ and I will post a pic if you dont believe it.

LongSummerNight5
LongSummerNight5

Last part makes sense.

I wouldn't wanna make retro's with the shoes saying Nike Air & Jordan

LongSummerNight5
LongSummerNight5

Yeah i feel it i mean Tinker designed many of the shoes & he worked with Nike before Jordan

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