While you anxiously wait to find out if you've secured a pair of the Nike Air Jordan IV Bred this weekend, why not read up on the history of one of the most important Jordans ever? Designed by Tinker Hatfield for the 1988-89 season as a follow-up to the wildly popular AJIII, the IV took the brand-- and sneaker design in general-- to completely new heights.
While certain elements of the Jordan III such as the mid-top height and the visible Air unit made their way onto the IV, there were a number of significant aesthetic changes as well; namely the mesh netting on the sides and tongue, as well as the rubber wings that famously provide 18 different ways to lace the sneaker. This is also the first Jordan model featuring Nubuck, which would become a mainstay on later models.
Not only did the shoe impress from a basketball perspective (Jordan had arguably his best season ever in the IVs, averaging 32.5, 8, and 8), the cultural impact of the shoe-- at the time the most expensive Jordan ever at $100-- was unmistakable. Look no further than this scene from Spike Lee's seminal "Do The Right Thing:"
From the very beginning, the Air Jordan IV represented the pinnacle of sneaker culture: the crossroads of design, performance, individuality, and luxury. Its legend has only grown with time, and the original Bred colorway's return marks a victory lap from the man whose name is synonymous with victory. In case you haven't entered yet, make sure you participate in our raffle via this link. Just make sure yours don't get scuffed by a bicyclist in a Larry Bird t-shirt.