Quarantine be damned, the New Balance 992 is making a strong case for one of the best sneakers of the year.
Originally released in 2006, the 992 was designed by Jonathan Bacon and functioned as a follow-up to 2001's 991 model. A "dad shoe" before dad shoes were even a thing, the former performance runner saw its first-ever retro this year. In its first incarnation, the 992 was made famous as part of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs' signature uniform—as well as having regional appeal in areas like D.C. and Philadelphia—but in 2020, it's found a wider fan base than ever thanks to its right-on-time reissue and a handful of well-received collaborations.
Yes, there’s still a few months left, but the year’s most important 992 colorways have already arrived. There’s a lot to choose from. Is it the Instagram-favorite JJJJound collabs? Does Joe Freshgoods take the crown after stealing the show in Chicago at NBA All-Star Weekend? And what about the sleeper general release styles that readers may have overlooked? All of that and more was considered, and after much debate, this is where things stand based on cultural impact, connoisseur significance, and overall design.
Read on to find out our picks of the best New Balance 992s of 2020. —Riley Jones