#FactsFriday - The Air Jordan 2
With Off-White x Jordan 2 rumours and alleged pictures circling like crazy right now, we thought it was a fitting time to look at the history of the often-overlooked Air Jordan 2 silhouette.
Released in November 1986, the Air Jordan 2 stood apart from the beloved Air Jordan 1 model it succeeded. It was designed by Bruce Kilgore, also known for the Air Force 1, who created it with high-end luxury in mind. Made in Italy with Faux Lizard skin while opting for sleek lines and no Swoosh elevated the Jordan even further. But there was more behind the creation of Air Jordan 2...
In only his second season, a 22-year-old Michael Jordan had already established himself as one of the dominant players in the NBA. When he landed awkwardly during the second quarter, Jordan suffered a fractured bone in his left foot that sidelined him for six weeks, and nearly threatened his career. This injury called for some adaptation to the Air Jordan 1 design - a change that would give Jordan the same agility as before. Nike came up with Air Jordan 2.
Aside from the faux iguana skin and quality leather upper, the Air Jordan 2 boasted plenty of other top-of-the-line features. The speed lacing system offered quick and even fit adjustment. There was an extended polyurethane heel counter for improved stability during cutting maneuvers. Finally, the Air unit in the heel and polyurethane midsole provided maximum cushioning. Its soft midsole created luxurious cushioning that not only introduced the concept of luxury into sports shoes but also married the two.
Rumour has it the original Air Jordan 2 molds were destroyed, so when the "away" was retro-ed for the first time in 1995, the mid and low silhouettes weren't perfect matches of the original. The “away” mid was retro-ed again in 2004, along with new black/chrome and white/university blue/maize colorways. The “home” low also got a retro in 2004, along with a white/midnight navy/university blue version.
Donning the Air Jordan 2, MJ got the first of his seven consecutive scoring titles, maintained an average of 37.1 points per game and scored 40 points in 9 straight games during the season. With the model set to be a cut above the Air Jordan 1, it also had to be a bit most costly. It was the first Jordan shoe to cross the $100 mark due to its production in Italy instead of Asia. One of the first colourways was the iconic red, white and black or 'Chicago' with a low version also hitting shelves in 1987. And it's that very same low that Virgil Abloh is rumoured to now be giving the Off-White treatment. See some alleged "real" images below of the white and black versions. Other notable collaborations to come before are the even more luxurious Just Don Jordan 2s that released in 2015 and followed on with the 'Beach' colourway in 2016 (retailing R8k in SA).