Seldom do we find Mike lacing up another player’s silhouette, Nike Air Flight One at that, primarily because his shoe line alone was the best thing to happen to the sneaker culture since the Air Force 1. Michael Jordan and Nike’s famed line of sneakers were instrumental in bringing about significant changes in the worlds of basketball and sneaker culture. Given how well-liked and well-known the Air Jordan brand is (and remains to be), one would believe that Michael Jordan only ever wore his own sneakers throughout his professional basketball career. However, after returning from his initial retirement, Jordan donned the Nike Air Flight One, which was Penny Hardaway’s first signature sneaker, in the 1994/95 NBA Playoffs.
It was the first and only time Mike stepped out of his realm and wore another player’s signature shoe on the court. At the time, it was thought to be Mike’s competitive nature to taunt Hardaway, who was seen as the next big star of the NBA. But, the rationale for the change in footwear was relatively straightforward. Even though Jordan was playing minor league baseball throughout the 1994/95 season, Tinker Hatfield was still involved in designing the Nike Air Jordan 11, which debuted during the ’95 Playoffs. In games one and two of the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals versus Orlando Magic, Jordan donned the Air Jordan 11s. Due to Jordan’s black sneakers not matching those of his teammates in the first two games, the NBA fined him $5,000. He had been used to following the 1985 uproar over the black/red Air Ship and Air Jordan 1.
So, in game 3, Mike had opted to wear the Nike Air Flight One, which was his opponent at the time. The Nike Air Flight One last made its appearance back in 2012 which was the first time the sneaker was retroed since its inception back in 1995 and wasn’t too well-received as was the Nike Air Foamposite One, but nonetheless, the silhouette grabbed the attention of the Swooshes core following that did not sleep on picking up a pair. So, after a ten-year hiatus, we believe it’s time Nike brings back the Air Flight One, especially for being one of the few Nike sneakers worn-on court by Michael Jordan. Check out the images below and let us know what you think, are you a fan of the Nike Air Flight One? If so, should Nike bring back the classic silhouette to retail? Sound off in the comments.
CHECK OUT IMAGES OF MIKE DONNING THE NIKE AIR FLIGHT ONE BELOW