Air Jordan 12

The Air Jordan 12 is the twelfth Air Jordan signature shoe designed for Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan. It debuted in 1996 and released throughout the 1996-1997 NBA season. The sneakers originally retailed for $135 and was designed by Tinker Hatfield. Throughout the shoe’s run, five color ways were released – white/black aka “Taxi”, a white/red, “Obsidian”, a black/red “Flu Game” (more on this later), and a black/white “Playoffs”. The Air Jordan 12 was the first Air Jordan sneaker with Zoom Air cushioning. A full-length cushion was encased in Phylon and placed above a carbon fiber mid foot shank. The sneaker mostly built with premium full-grain leather, a detail that ended up being somewhat of a disadvantage due to its lack of breathability.

It goes without saying that the Air Jordan 12 was an immensely popular sneaker. Despite coming off the release of arguably the greatest Air Jordan ever – the Air Jordan 11 – the Air Jordan 12 still drew fans to stores in droves as MJ won yet another NBA Championship. However, the Air Jordan 12 should be remembered more for its place in time in regards to the power of Michael’s marketability. It was the first Air Jordan sneaker to feature no Nike or Swoosh logo anywhere on the sneaker (previous models still had it on the insoles), although the shoes did come in a Nike shoebox. 1997 was also the year that Jordan Brand was formed; it easily became one of the most popular brands in the world, at times rivaling Nike proper.

Some other facts: The design of the Air Jordan 12 was partly inspired by the “Rising Sun” emblem on the Japanese flag. This may have been intentional as Michael Jordan hosted a basketball clinic in Japan in the Summer of 1996. The shoes were also remembered for its high-contrast with the distinctive coloring of the leather upper and mudguard. It was one of the most visible sneakers on television. The aforementioned red/black colorway was later dubbed the “Flu Game” by sneaker heads; it was the color that Jordan wore during Game 5 of the 1997 NBA Finals on June 11th. Jordan had apparently caught the flu the night before and was barely able to stand on his own energy; despite his ailment, he scored 37 points. It was later revealed by Jordan himself during “The Last Dance” documentary series that he caught food poisoning from delivery pizza, debunking conspiracy theories that included Jordan simply being hungover from a night of partying.

Like every other Air Jordan before it, the Air Jordan 12 was immensely popular. It released again in 2003 in colorways both new and old, while a new low-top version also debuted. Since then, the Air Jordan 12 has been in regular production and is a top-seller for Jordan Brand without much effort on the marketing end. Some of the more standout editions include the Jordan 12 “Wings”, which features a wear-away exterior that reveals a custom pattern, and a collaboration with Drake’s OVO imprint. There are no signs of production stopping anytime soon.

Summer kicked off 2024’s Air Jordan 12 releases with the Jordan 12 “Red Taxi” becoming an instant sell-out. The Jordan 12 “Wolf Grey” and Jordan 12 “Blueberry” highlight the pairs set to drop in the latter half of the year.

With a deluge of 2025 Jordan Releases added to the slate nearly a year ahead of time, the Jordan 12 is set to get some time in the sun into next year as well. The iconic “Flu Game” edition will return for the first time since 2016, while the Jordan 12 “Melo” gets its first ever reissue.

Below you can catch our latest coverage of the Air Jordan 12, including release dates, new colorways and product photos.

price range / $200-300

Air Jordan 12

Air Jordan 12 “Melo” Returning In 2025

The vault is wide open. The slate of 2025 Jordan Release Dates is looking unprecedentedly stacked, packed with retros of some of the most iconic...

By Matt Varga July 8, 2024

First Look At The Air Jordan 12 “Wolf Grey”

Until the release of the “Red Taxi,” it had been a quiet year for the Air Jordan 12. As we work towards Fall/Winter, that’s set...

By Matt Varga June 6, 2024

UPDATE: Air Jordan 12 “Bloodline” Release Cancelled

Updated June 11th, 2024: The Air Jordan 12 “Bloodline” release is cancelled. The release was originally reported back in May, said to replace the cancelled...

By Sneaker News May 16, 2024

Air Jordan Retro Releases For May 2024

With a third of the year now behind us, Jordan Brand is looking to deploy what might be its best overall month of sneaker releases....

By Sneaker News May 1, 2024

Where To Buy The Air Jordan 12 “Red Taxi”

The Air Jordan 12 “Red Taxi” releases on May 25th via SNKRS and select retailers, arriving in full family sizing. Officially subtitled the Jordan 12...

By Andrew Rizzo April 30, 2024

UPDATE: Air Jordan 12 “Flu Game” Is Releasing In 2025

Updated June 11th, 2024: The Air Jordan 12 “Flu Game” is in fact releasing in 2025, according to Sneaker Files. In April of this year,...

By Sneaker News April 5, 2024

Air Jordan 12 “Blueberry” Releases On December 18th

Updated April 15th, 2024: Initially reported for an October 19th release, the Air Jordan 12 “Blueberry” has been postponed to December 18th per @zsneakerheadz. The...

By Sneaker News March 25, 2024

Jordan Brand Reveals Full Summer 2024 Retro Line-Up

Jordan Brand has officially unveiled the entirety of the Air Jordan Retro “general release” line-up through the months of May and June. This selection does...

By Sneaker News March 6, 2024

Air Jordan Restock! Red Cement 4s, Gratitude 11s, Cherry 12s, And More

A massive Air Jordan Retro restock is available now on Nike. Currently, the Red Cement 4s, Gratitude 11s, Cherry 12s, Palomino 1s, and Chicago 2s...

By Sneaker News March 5, 2024