Nike Air Jordan III Retro

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For many, the Air Jordan III heralded a ‘golden age’ of Jordan releases when it first hit the shelves in 1988. In a year that saw the great Michael Jordan capture his second dunk title, win the NBA’s coveted Most Valuable Player and Defensive Player of the year awards, slamming his critics who’d long since labeled him an a strictly offensive player, it was the AJIII that broke boundaries and redefined the rules to what constituted the prefect basketball shoe.

Key Nike product designer Tinker Hatfield became chief in-charge of design duties on the AJIII, working closely alongside Michael to make the III the first signature shoe to truly represent an athlete’s personality. Indeed it was MJ that requested for animal print on his shoes, which spawned the ‘elephant-print’ leather accents around the toe guard and heel sections of the silhouette and help cement the print in trainer design history.

Along with ‘elephant-print’, the AJIII was also the first Jordan release to drop the ‘winged’ logo in favor of a ‘Jumpman’, which Hatfield added to the shoe without consulting Jordan himself. Luckily Michael liked it and since that day the ‘Jumpman’ has become one of the most iconic brand logos in the world.

A year after visible Air first debuted on the Air Max 1, Hatfield and MJ incorporated it in the design of the AJIII to finish the aesthetics of the shoe and for the first time in their history, Nike used comedy in their advertising campaign to help promote the shoe, featuring unknown (at the time) film maker Spike Lee and his Mars Blackmon character.

Fast forward 23 years and Jordan Brand release the Air Jordan III (black/varsity red-cement grey) for autumn/winter 11 after much anticipation and we must say; we’re very pleased with the outcome! While the ‘Nike Air’ logo on the heel and ‘Nike’ branding on the outsole maybe long gone, Nike have pretty much captured all elements of the original this time round. Key features to note are the good use of premium tumbled leather on the upper and the OG-esqe box, both of which compliment what is bound to be another sellout release from Jordan Brand.

This reissue is only the 3rd individual retro of the blk/cement (the other two individual reissues being in 1994 & 2001, while 2008 saw the AJIII released alongside the AJXX as part of the Countdown Pack) and we expect it to be as popular as the previous two when it drops.

The Nike Air Jordan III (black/varsity red-cement grey) will be available from size? stores and online on Friday 25th November (providing Nike don’t push back the release date again that is).






Original Air Jordan III ‘Hang Time’ advert featuring Mars Blackmon:


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