The one that got away. Kinda.
Released in 1993 (even if the outsole says 1994)1 at a time when Michael walked away from the game of basketball and put all of his efforts on the pursuit of a baseball career.
Which made this the first Jordan shoe that he never played in on the hardwood. (Except for the Wizards-stint in his second comeback, but by international hoops rules, we dont talk about that part of his legacy…)
Inspired by his growing international status from the 92 Olympics, and the enourmous interest for MJ and the NBA from Asia, designer Tinker Hatfield added some (a lot) global flair to the IX’s.
Tinker even called it Jordan Internationl in one of his first sketches back in the day.
The outsole is covered in different languages such as German, Spanish, French, Italian, Swahili and Russian spelling out words like Freedom, Force, Dedicated, Independence and Hope. And in times like these with political instability all over the world, this might be some of Jordan Brand strongest political statements that is truer than ever in todays world.
On the heel they used a Jumpman-logo incorporated with the globe.
Looking at the perfomance details on the IXs, the thick and juicy air-sole comes to mind. Just the apperance of the midsole gives you a cushy feel. The full bootie with dynamic fit gave your feet the loving that they needed and not to be forgotten;
The speed lacing-system, basicly one pull of the laces and the whole foot locked down. The plastic lace-loops made this a all feel very fancy and futuristic.
So Michael never played ball in these when they came out?
Not entiterly, if you count (and you definitely should) the Space Jam-movie where he had Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck break into his home and get his kicks from the Trophy Room all the while fighting the house dog. Luckily Michaels kids came to the rescue and the movie could continue and MJ’s entrance to the Tune Squad-gym is magical. And the soundtrack is almost as good.