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Skate Legend Tony Hawk Discusses Air Jordan 1s, Supreme, And More In Sneaker Shopping

Skate Legend Tony Hawk Discusses Air Jordan 1s, Supreme, And More In Sneaker Shopping

Tony Hawk is to skateboarding what Michael Jordan is to basketball. A figure who managed to transcend his sport via his exceptional skill on a board just as much as his marketability off of it, the Birdhouse Skateboards head is a truly beloved figure worldwide. As the latest guest on Complex’s long-running Sneaker Shopping series with Joe La Puma, Hawk both shared old-school skate stories and gave his unfiltered takes on footwear, both then and now. He nods to the genesis of the Air Jordan 1 as a skate sneaker, stating “I don’t know how I came upon them, but they were like, “Here’s these Nikes.” We didn’t know they were going to be iconic, we were just skate rats. We were just looking to get free gear.” He also speaks highly of Vans, stating his belief that the California brand “Was the original skate shoe. When I was young, I wanted Vans. Vans Off the Wall, Vans Off the Wall.”

Hawk goes on to discuss skaters getting in trouble for selling their free gear back in the day — remember, this is before skaters were mainstream cultural figures with six-figure endorsement deals — saying “We definitely had issues with team riders on Birdhouse getting decks and selling them elsewhere. We were like, “Come on, you guys, we’re trying to stay in business to support you.” People who were doing that didn’t last long on their sponsors.” He also touches on why Supreme is still important for skateboarding, mentioning “I love that it validates skating. At its core, it’s not trying to package skating into something else and sell it to another audience. They’re rooted in skating, they support skaters, I fully back it. The resale thing is crazy, and yes it’s all ridiculous and it’s excessive, but at the core it supports good skating.” To hear more of Hawk’s thoughts on skate and kicks and to see what he copped, check the video out in its entirety below.




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