1. Air Jordan XI

Released: 1995

Complex says: To think, this shoe almost never happened. With Michael Jordan flailing at fastballs in Birmingham, Nike was ready to close the book on Air Jordan. But Tinker Hatfield kept tinkering, and the final result was the single greatest shoe of the '90s — and possibly any other time. The patent rand was inspired by a lawnmower, to provide protection where Jordan needed it most, but it quickly became a go-to for lax designers who needed to provide a bit of flash. When Hatfield conceived of it, however, it was revolutionary — so much so that he had to fight for his design. Luckily he had a decade of successes backing him, along with the best basketball player on the planet. Ballistic mesh, patent leather and carbon fiber, existing in perfect harmony. The best there ever was, and the best there ever will be.