We’ve got a special pair for this week’s edition of “Kickin’ Facts,” as the origin story of the Air Jordan 14 “Laney” is one for the books. The year was 1998 and it was Michael Jordan’s sixth consecutive appearance in the NBA Finals. Co-designer and sneaker legend Tinker Hatfield just dreamed up his latest addition in the Jordan catalogue — the XIVs — which unknowingly would be the last signature model worn on the court by Jordan with the Chicago Bulls. In 1999, the first iteration of its colorway was released followed by the Retro drop in 2015. After much demand, this year sees the inventive model rereleased in a mid-cut version. Let’s get into my review.
The AJ 14 Retro “Laney” takes inspiration from the beginning of Michael Jordan‘s basketball journey and is named after his high school. Its smooth nubuck upper is a striking royal blue color with a black nubuck forefoot overlay on top of its white midsole. Yellow coloring creeps in throughout the sneaker on the tongue, back heel, and outsole. On the lateral side, there is a Ferrari-inspired badge with a Jumpman icon corresponding with the back heel that features both the Jumpman logo and 23 letterings. Additional details include black laces, its Phylon midsole that provides lightweight cushioning, and Zoom Air units offering more comfort and support. Lastly, to complete the pair is a silver sneaker box reminiscent of packaging from the early 2000s.
Adding to the legend of the Air Jordan 14 is the backstory of how MJ was dropped from his high school basketball varsity team. He would use that rejection as fuel for his formative years at University of North Carolina and the NBA.
What are your thoughts on the newly released mid-cut version of the Air Jordan 14 Retro “Laney”? Would you cop?