Air Jordan XXI: The Legacy Continues…

Name: Air Jordan XXI

Release: 2006

Designer: D’Wayne Edwards


20 years has elapsed since the first Air Jordan sneaker was released and sneaker collectors as well as Michael Jordan fans just keep wondering if they can continue to put out a satisfactory product. The answer…YES! First things first…there has been a long line of heavy weights that have been lending their brilliant designs to this sneaker line so to keep this trend going D’Wayne Edwards stepped up to the plate next.

For inspiration for the Air Jordan XXI Edwards drew from the Bentley Continental GT Coupe. This demonstrated once again how much Jordan’s love of vehicles was often used to develop the sneakers in his line.  One can see how the Bentley was highlighted in this sneaker by the full grain leather upper, diamond quilted bootie and molded heel counter. This sneaker also showcased the vehicle with its super-clean upper and lower foot air grille.

What this meant is that YOU as the person wearing the sneaker could choose between having encapsulated Air cushioning or Zoom Air in the heel of the shoe.

The Air Jordan XXI also featured a carbon fiber shank plate that would be utilized for maximum mid-foot and arch support. Edwards implemented a double-lasted Phylon midsole that provided a low profile feel, which added a lot of character to the sneaker.

One of the most amazing and innovative features about this sneaker was the evolution of the Independent Podular Suspension (IPS) technology. What this meant is that YOU as the person wearing the sneaker could choose between having encapsulated Air cushioning or Zoom Air in the heel of the shoe. Now…really think about that…you could choose the style of comfort that suits your needs the best! That basically is getting 2 pairs of sneakers for the price of one…simply AMAZING!!!

Another very special feature of this sneaker was that it had a special cipher message that you could see when you place it under a black light it could be viewed. This feature was very different considering most people do not have access to a black light to make out the message on the sneaker…but at the same time it was something that you could come to expect with the Air Jordan sneaker line.

Special Moments:

Having released your 21st Air Jordan sneaker alone made this a very special marker for the Air Jordan line…but as always there was more. During this season the Team Jordan group picked up the NBA Rookie of the Year, Chris Paul as one of their members. Tragedy hit the United States that year with Hurricane Katrina and to help out the relief effort Michael Jordan auctioned off all the Air Jordan sneakers from the serious…I to XXI personally signed by his “Airness” himself. People may not think that it was a big deal…but an Air Jordan signed by Michael Jordan is a sneaker lovers dream come true! In 2006 Michael Jordan also became part owner of the Charlotte Bobcats basketball team; his job title for organization was Managing Member of Basketball Operations.

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Sole Theory is a sneaker lifestyle guide that explores the social impact of the sneaker culture. Users can expect to gain insight on recent trends, historic brands and signature styles that have heavily influenced the shoe industry. Content will be driven by articles, interviews and reviews that will uncover interesting facts and stories that have rarely been told.