The 5 Most Slept-On OG Sneakers, Ranked

It’s time we give these releases the love they really deserve

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Recently, Jordan announced that it plans to reintroduce the black-and-red Air Jordan I sneaker to the public. Last retro’d in 2016, the shoe will include its original details: the high ankle aesthetics, the leather materials, the red shoelaces and accurate dimensions. As sneakerheads worldwide circle Black Friday—November 29—on their calendars as a reminder of when these classic kicks will be coming out, the sneaker champs at ONE37pm wanted to highlight a few sneakers that flew under the radar and didn’t get enough attention.

Here’s our selection of kicks that do not get the respect they so rightfully deserve. 

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5. Air Jordan II (OG White / Red Colorway)

After MJ missed almost half of the 1985–86 season due to a broken foot, Nike made it a priority to have its shining star come back in style. Shoe designers Peter Moore and Bruce Kilgore added an extended heel counter to give Jordan stability during his cutting maneuvers. Besides the faux–iguana skin detail, the sneaker-building geniuses also added the Air unit in the heel and a polyurethane midsole to provide maximum cushioning.

The shoe didn’t make its official debut to the masses until November 1986, just days after MJ lit up the Knicks for 50 points at the world’s most famous arena.

4. Nike LeBron IV (Black/White/Maroon)

The King solidified his spot in the sneaker game with the release of the Nike LeBron IV. En route to making his first NBA Finals appearance in 2006, Nike did what hadn’t been done since 2003 and featured the Foamposite technology on a shoe. It had become a rare commodity in the sneaker world due to its rare composition. With no midsole, an inner mesh sock liner and the stable Foamposite technology, the Nike LeBron IV was the first shoe in the Nike/LeBron era to successfully cross over to a must-have sneaker in the streetwear culture.

Debuting in ten different colorways, the LeBron IV attracted a new fan base that saw the King dominate on the court and in sneaker retail stores worldwide.

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3. Air Jordan XVII (College Blues/White Colorway)

Paying tribute to MJ’s third and final return to the league, the Jordan brand designed a fitting homage. Instead of the usual Bulls red/black/white colorway, it debuted the college blue/white colorway to represent the team he once partly owned, the Washington Wizards. Sneaker designer Wilson Smith found inspiration for the shoe’s design from an Aston Martin luxury car, as he felt that the smooth lines of the vehicle, combined the flow of a jazz solo, perfectly represented Jordan’s legacy in sneaker fashion.

Originally debuting in February 2002, the release was controversial because the sneaker was the first to retail for $200. The price was well worth paying, though, with the shoes presented in a very sophisticated briefcase that included a CD with a free song on it.

2. Nike Total Air Foamposite Max (Silver/Black)

It’s been roughly eight years since we’ve seen this shoe on the streets, and it’s become one of the most demanded sneakers Nike has ever released. Debuted in 1997, the Nike Total Air Foamposite introduced a first of its kind: a new technological advancement that meshed Foamposite with Air Max to provide more support for the forwards and centers in the NBA. Who would be the face of this new technology? Future Hall of Famer Tim Duncan, of course.

Fresh off an NBA Rookie of the Year campaign, Duncan would carry on the tradition to sport the sneaker in one of the San Antonio Spurs’ championship runs. This led to the sneaker becoming an important staple in hip-hop and streetwear culture. Just ask D.C. rapper Wale, one of the many emcees who was seen rocking the classic shoe on various occasions.

It’s time for Nike to pay homage to a future Hall of Famer by bringing back the classic silver/black colorway to shut down the sneaker game for good.

1. Nike Air Flightposite III (Black / Blue)

Nike wanted to add a much more intricate dimension to the Foamposite family, so it introduced the Flightposite III series, a sneaker that is a part of the Alpha Project. Debuting in its black/blue colorway, the sneaker caught the eye of many hoopers and streetwear enthusiasts thanks to the top ankle magnetic strap and the hologram air bubbles on the front and back sides of the shoe. NBA stars such as Allan Houston and Kevin Garnett popularized the shoe by bringing their unique swagger and even wearing the sneaker during games.

Released only in 2001, the Air Flightposite III sneaker is a head turner and a must-have for any sneaker collector. A rarity in the sneaker game, it’s about time for Nike to bring back these hologram jewels to hypnotize the streetwear scene for the summer.

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