The Legacy of Air Jordans

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​With the third pick of the 1984 NBA Draft, the Chicago Bulls selected Michael Jordan. With the Houston Rockets and the Portland Trailblazers holding the first and second picks, who knew they’d be passing up the one who would eventually become the world’s greatest basketball player of all time. However, back then many other organizations overlooked his greatness. Jordan initially wanted to be featured on either the Adidas or Converse brand, but they weren’t as interested as he was. At that time, shoe endorsements did not have much impact in the marketplace, but Nike was desperate for any kind of hope to revitalize their struggling business. With Jordan’s likable personality, charisma, and heart, they noticed something special in him. Therefore, they offered him a 5-year contract worth 2.5 million dollars that he could not refuse. Michael Jordan was then officially signed to Nike, and this began the rise of the Air Jordan trademark. ​ With the appearance of his first shoe in 1985, his rookie year, the bold design of the first Air Jordans instantly stirred controversy. Even Jordan himself was skeptical about sporting the shoe. He said, “I can’t wear that shoe, those are devil colors.” The original Air Jordan I’s were vividly black and red unlike any other basketball shoe at that time. Before, all basketball shoes were just plain white, and apparently, the Air Jordan I’s daring color design did not conform to the NBA’s uniform color scheme, which caused the NBA commissioner, David Stern, to prohibit Michael Jordan to continue to play in these shoes. Thus, in just three games into Jordan’s rookie year, the NBA ultimately banned the shoe. However, Nike was actually thrilled rather than disappointed, because they realized that what was happening was more than just a controversy. But in fact, it helped put Nike on the map. With its increasing publicity, Nike told Jordan to keep wearing them in his games. The NBA began fining him $1000 each game. Because he never stopped...
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