Is There A Better Air Force Than One With A Backstory?

By Jack Cook @TheDripQuarterly

We all love the Nike Air Force 1, whether you lean towards a classic triple white or a more lively colourway such as Virgil Abloh’s collaborative efforts, every sneakerhead has at least one pair… but is there a better AF1 than a pair with a backstory?

Nike Air Force 1 ‘Rucker Park’ 

The first pair which we are going to feature is the Nike Air Force 1 ‘Rucker Park’ which has seen a worldwide release over the past few weeks. This Air Force 1 is a tip of the cap honouring the famous basketball court located in Harlem, New York City. This historic spot has seen the likes of Kobe Bryant, Lebron James and Allen Iverson take to the court, as well as numerous other NBA greats.

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The upper of the sneaker is dressed predominantly in white with the stitching, lining and outsole in orange. This colourway is the same used on that of the Rucker Park Entertainers players jerseys during the park’s yearly streetball tournament. But the nod to the court does not stop there. The pair comes complete with basketball dubraes, rather than the typical silver lace dubraes, as well as the court’s zip code embroidered on the heel with the Nike Swoosh. The insoles even feature the pattern of a basketball court. Every detail of this Air Force 1 release has been carefully thought out to properly pay homage to the iconic Rucker Park.

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It comes as no surprise that the shoe selected for this tribute is an Air Force 1, due to New York City’s longlasting relationship with the model. Nike has done a great job with this release to ensure Rucker Park, Harlem and New York City have been represented to the fullest.

Nike Air Force 1 ‘Puerto Rico’ 

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The next shoe we are going to look at is going to be an instant classic when it drops on the 26th of June 2020. The Puerto Rico Air Force 1 is a re-release of the classic PR colourway from 2005, with some minor alterations. The most obvious difference between the two is the white Swoosh featured on the 2020 pair, compared to a navy Swoosh being used on its predecessor back in 2005.

The premium leather upper features the Puerto Rican flag embroidered on the heel, a sign of appreciation from Nike to the Caribbean Island its citizens who reside in the USA. This release brings back a wave of nostalgia for sneakerheads, many of which can almost rewind time and picture Fat Joe rocking in these in his ‘Lean Back’ video.

Nike Air Force 1 ‘Puerto Rico/Panama’ Controversy

A Puerto Rican themed Air Force 1 was originally scheduled to drop a while ago however it was cancelled by Nike due to the controversy involved. The shoe was met with a whole load of backlash after the sneaker appeared to be dressed in Panamanian artwork. It’s fair to say that Nike dropped the ball on this one, under the impression that is was Puerto Rican artwork. The release was axed soon after the backlash and it is now almost impossible to find a pair of the banned ‘Panama’ Air Force 1’s on the resell market.

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What do you think about these upcoming Air Force 1’s, are any of them instant classics to you?

Written by @TheDripQuarterly, edited by @CrepCultureBlog

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