Thursday, March 24th, 2011 at 12:23 pm  |  19 responses

Back II The Future

Sprucing up a classic Air Jordan.

by Chris O’Leary/@olearychris

The uneducated eye might not even catch the difference.

There sits the Air Jordan II in an OG colorway, ‘Air’ written high on the heel, around the collar of the shoe. The original Air Jordan logo rests on the tongue and save for a likely changeup in materials that the old ‘heads know enough to complain about, the shoe is very close to identical to its 1987 original.

It’s in the sole of the shoe, though, where things stray into a new territory. Gleaming red like devils’ eyes is a translucent 360 Air Max unit. Underneath that is a redesigned outsole.

One look at these shoes and I expected the gates to open up from the Air Jordan purists. If I know this group — a group whose practices I take on as my own when the time is right — I know that this will set. them. off. There’s no way that the biggest fans of these shoes would let a change this drastic slide.

But what do I know?

It turns out that even the sneaker world’s most refined eyes aren’t opposed to change if it’s done right. The thing is, up to this point we haven’t seen a lot of that kind of change. Fusions of every kind have been poorly received by message board types since their inception. What seems to be the common reaction to the Jordan II Max is that it’s an improvement on a classic sneaker that doesn’t mutilate its overall appearance.

If this release is successful, it opens up a world of possibilities for the Air Jordan line. What could be next? A Flywire Jordan XI? An Air Max Jordan XII? A carmine Jordan VI with Zoom Air?

How do you guys feel about a shoe like the Jordan II Max? Is this a positive step in the Jordan legacy or is it a nosedive in a finely crafted ship?

Pics via CounterKicks and rmkstore.

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  • eugene vazemiller

    takes a little away from the retro look, but i like it. it really plays on performance which is more important then looks? id rock em.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    I. Love. These.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UaUFJ0_L7Qw X

    Too bulky, not feeling these.

  • JTaylor21

    Oh Lord!

  • green


  • izzo

    These are worse than when they put a sleeveless hoody on Spiderman.

  • Nella

    Better than fusions, smart move to go subtle with the current tech. Of course, MJ wouldn’t have played in these as they’re 360 Max Air is too high off the ground, but I get that a lot of people like this set up. What I would like to see is Zoom Air in the retros, and they could do that without changing the look.

  • Jasmine

    These Are Some Dope Shoes!

  • JL

    nice. they’ll make me taller.

  • ALEX 80

    Please Stop!!!!

  • Spursnation

    I got momentarily excited about a Nike McFly and you show me this garbage -_-

  • Airnest

    Full length zoom air for all the retroes!

  • jheck03

    im dying to have this

  • http://Hotmail.com Wayne

    Not feeling it. It takes away from the original Jordan 2′s. I don’t like any of the redone Jordan’s. Any sneaker that MJ wore when he was playing, in my mind is considered a classic to me because he has always been an amazing player every year he played. Why mess with the legacy of MJ and the shoes he wore? If your going to bring out retro Jordans, bring them out as they were.

  • rob stewart

    Remember when Master P was re-doing classic oldies and killing the originals. That’s whats happening to Jordan’s

  • hoodsnake

    Oh nice!

  • http://www.slamonline.com Mars

    wait till the Baby (CAROLINA) Blue joints come out. UNC BABY!. sORRY FSU…WE MADE A GREAT RUN…VCU??? My gawd, poor brackets..if you picked VCU, you deserve it, or you got lucky as sHe-it.

  • gentron33

    @Airnest Yes! Full length Air Zoom Units! From Air Jordan #1 up to #10. I think I speak 4 every sneaker head when I say that the #11 Jordan’s broke the mold in not only the design but more importantly the cushioning!

  • Prude

    now you can hoop in the retro’s with a new tech feel.