July 25, 2013 BY Aaron Kr. / 32
Dating back to their first team-up with Reebok, Packer Shoes has made a habit of telling poignant sports stories through their collaborative releases. It started with a trio of Pumps inspired by Dominique Wilkins and his legendary Slam Dunk Contest heroics. Next up was the “Practice” Questions, immortalizing one of the most infamous moments in Allen Iverson history. Their latest project honors another human highlight film, Shawn Kemp, and one of his most memorable All-Star Game appearances.
Underlying them all is a cohesive “what if?” concept, which poses the question: if brands were making special PEs for their guys back then the way they do nowadays, what would they have looked like? The NBA All-Star Game eventually became the place to showcase special player editions and turn heads on a huge national stage, but at the time these guys were playing, things hadn’t progressed to that point quite yet.
Packer Shoes has re-imagined what some of these hypothetical PEs could have been, with the latest being the Reebok Kamikaze II, originally worn in a navy/white colorway by the Reign Man in the 1996 NBA All-Star Game in San Antonio. Packer’s version takes its cues from that year’s vibrant uniforms which featured the classic chili pepper graphic inspired by the host city’s famed local export.
Using elements of the 1996 All-Star color scheme combined with a clean gradient grey upper and topped of with the chili pepper Reebok Vector logo, Packer Shoes has once again managed to capture a sports moment in time. This interpretation gives the shoe a unique identity unlike anything that’s been done on the model before, but somehow, it still maintains a look that is not too far fetched to imagine as an actual mid-90s All-Star PE.
To amp things up a bit further, Packer joined forces with Mitchell & Ness to round out the release with a collection of ’96 NBA All-Star apparel. In addition to a Shawn Kemp Hardwood Classics jersey, the capsule also features a chili pepper snapback and a Kemp caricature shirt where he’s actually wearing the All-Star uniform and even the Packer Shoes Kamikaze.
All these goodies will be hitting their store next week, but before you start gearing up for the release, get better acquainted with the collection with an extensive gallery of images and an interview with store owner, Mike Packer, who gives us the full scoop on the “Remember the Alamo” Kamikaze II, as well as his take on what collaborative projects like this mean to the store and the ever evolving sneaker market.