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Footwear Abridged: Air Jordan IV ‘Bred’

If Tinker Hatfiled’s Air Jordan III saved the Jordan line from extinction, then the Jordan IV made sure the line remained healthy long-term. The Jordan IV did what all great follow-ups should do – build upon past models and enhance the product for the better, much like The Godfather II. There’s a simple elegance to the IV that transcends categories; they’re simultaneously sporty and casual! The IV’s playability to this day remains solid after nearly 30 years of technological advancement, and overall wearability on the streets hasn’t changed since the jump.

Over the years numerous exclusive collaborations have released using the Air Jordan IV’s silhouette (Undefeated, Travis Scott, Eminem, etc), and demand for the OG colorways has never dipped. The ‘White Cement’ and ‘Bred’ IVs can each be seen as the best pair of IVs and in our eyes they’re both amazing, but for today’s learning purpose we’ll say the ‘Bred’s are the best. The black/cement/ true red AKA ‘Bred’ Air Jordan IVs released in 1989, the season after MJ’s first league MVP award. From a basketball perspective the IVs are best remembered as the shoe’s Jordan wore as he hit the game winning shot against the Cleveland Cavilers in Game 5 of the 1989 Eastern Conference Playoffs. The shot over Craig Elo wasn’t MJ’s first primetime moment, but the shot (and overall offensive sequence) helped build-up Jordan’s legacy as a ‘closer’. Mike laced up the ‘Bred’s for the 1989 All-Star Game too. The ‘Bred’ IVs are a staple Hip-Hop footwear just as much as basketball footwear with countless MC’s lacing up the shoes from Easy-E to Eminem, and from Jay-Z to Drake. ’80’s heads will associate the Jordan IV with Spike Lee’s iconic character Mars Blackmon than any rapper because of the IV’s uber famous commercials:

 

Retros of the ‘Bred’ IVs come around from time to time; they were retro’ed in 1999, 2008 and 2012, and will make another appearance in 2019 with OG Nike Air branding on the heel. We’ve known about 2019’s return for quite some time and as Feb ’19 draws closer anticipation builds. We personally cannot wait to get our hands on another pair of these timeless kicks. Checkout some pictures of various versions of the ‘Bred’ IVs and tell us on IG if you plan on buying a new pair!

 

The OG ‘Bred’s are the most curvy of the iterations and we hope 2019 brings back those beautify curves. The plastic overlays around the ankle sit much higher up on the shoe and the mesh window has a unique shape unseen on future retros.

1999’s ‘Bred’s have a much more streamline look and shape while retaining all of the OG’s basic elements. The classic ‘Nike Air’ hang tag made its return along with ‘Nike Air’ branding. The shoe’s toe box is very flat when compared to the OGs and the heel shape is more vertical than round.

The 2008 installment came in a 2-shoe pack (the XIX was included) dubbed the C.D.P set (CountDown Pack… countdown to the Air Jordan 2009). The reds are a deeper color and the overall height of the shoe shrunk from a true mid-top to a very tall low-top. ‘Nike Air’ branding is not found on this pair but overall craftsman ship is very high.

 

The 2012 ‘Bred’ used a totally different upper material than past installments, this pair used a much longer nubuck that felt like almost like suede but the material was less durable than what we’ve seen in the past. Like the 2008, 2012 also has ‘new’ Jordan branding on them and the hue of the cement grey is a bit darker. These also have the largest mesh side window we’ve seen on a pair of ‘Bred’. Lets hope 2019’s don’t come out looking like these because the 2012s are easily the least desirable pair of ‘Bred’s ever released.

Las Vegas native living in Portland, OR. Interests include: shoes, sports, music, video games and food. Extremely passionate about Nike and the Lakers. I've been collecting shoes for over 15 years! Follow me on IG & Twitter to see my personal collection and if you have questions. #rahbeekicksit

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