While there are a lot of versions of the Air Jordan 1, this may be the first time you’ve seen this iteration of the classic silhouette.
As you know, Jordan only played a handful of games during the 1985-86 season due to a foot injury. However, when Jordan returned he played in this modified version of the Air Jordan 1 which has an interesting ankle support system.
“Each exterior ankle features a heavy nylon and aluminum buckle customization that was crafted to provide an extra degree of support to Jordan’s delicate left foot (and to provide weighted balance on the right). The bulk of the support appears at interior, where a leather and velcro strap would lock tight to each ankle.” —Heritage Auctions
It’s an archaic modification that is easy to laugh at now but in 1986, this was probably cutting edge technology. Oh, how the times have changed.
According to Heritage Auctions, where these are listed for auction, there are only two pairs of this modified Air Jordan 1 known to exist and each pair is estimated to be valued at $20,000 and up.
Jordan switched back to the original design of the Air Jordan 1 right before he dropped 63-points on the Boston Celtics, where Larry Bird said afterwards, “I think he’s God disguised as Michael Jordan.” Imagine what could have been had Jordan kept wearing these modified Jordan 1s during his historic performance in Boston.
Source: Heritage Auctions