Michael Jordan’s Mythical “Banned” Air Ship Surfaces
Contrary to Jordan Brand’s marketing efforts, it was, in fact, the Nike Air Ship that Mike wore in a 1984 practice match at Madison Square Garden that NBA prohibited Jordan to wear — not the Air Jordan 1. Shortly after the sneaker’s league appearance, the NBA notified Nike and the Bulls that the black and red sneaker from the October 18th game broke the “uniformity of uniform rule,” and he would immediately have to stop wearing the colorway on court. For many years, Nike had fabricated a story around the Air Jordan 1 “Bred” to build legacy and move units, but it was only a matter of time before the truth came out.
Finally, earlier this year, the brand recognized the Air Ship in its first-ever retro as part of All-Star Weekend’s “New Beginnings” pack; That pair was the oft-seen white/red pairing. And while the “Banned” Air Ship PE didn’t make it to retail for its 35th anniversary, it has surfaced for the very first time since that fateful day in the mid-1980s. The sneaker, shared by Goodwin Sports, is just one of two pairs ever made, is a bonafide Holy Grail of the sneaker world. Custom made for Mike in the lead-up to his debut signature sneaker, the pair was worn during his rookie camp back in 1984, and would go on to become one of the most talked-about sneakers in history — and will be for many years to come.
Nike Air Ship “Banned”
images via Goodwin Sports