didn’t just design Air Jordans. A comprehensive look at his portfolio would include any number of significant Nike
shoes, from the Air Trainer 1 and the Air Max 1 to the Safari
and the Mowabb. He was also responsible for the entire “Huarache
” concept, which looked to sandals to inspire an entire line of minimalist shoes, from runners to cross-trainers to basketball shoes. The Air Jordan 7 (Air Jordan VII) wasn’t a part of the Huarache line per se, but it was heavily indebted to the style.
The upper was sleek and mostly unlined, layered over a bootie that incorporated the tongue. And for the first time since the Air Jordan 2 (Air Jordan II), an Air Jordan did not feature Visible Air, long one of the status signifiers of high-end Nike product. And “Nike Air” was gone from the upper entirely, appearing only on the insole. Instead, the Jumpman was featured on the outer ankles, and Jordan’s number 23 took a prominent place on the heel. African art inspired the colorful tongues, which carried over to the outsoles, which once again featured a pattern of circular holes.
Jordan went on to win his second NBA
title in the Air Jordan 7 (VII), but there was also a new addition to the family—1992 marked the first year that professional basketball players were welcome on the Team USA basketball team, and a Dream Team was assembled for the Summer Games in Barcelona. Jordan would play alongside Bulls
teammate Scottie Pippen, legends Larry Bird
and Magic Johnson, draftmate and friend Charles Barkley, along with a plethora of other All-Stars. His Olympic shoe featured gold and silver detailing on a red, white and blue base, as well as his Olympic number 9. These would become one of the most sought-after Air Jordan models and be retroed multiple times. Funny what a (second) gold medal can do.