Its fair to say that the Air Jordan 11 is one of the most beloved Jordan’s of all time. And how could it not be? Its creation revolved around the goal of making a shoe that both preformed well and looked good. I mean what else could one want right? The Air Jordan 11 was designed by, the now legendary, Tinker Hatfield while Michael Jordan was playing with the Birmingham Barons. Tinker could have called it quits like MJ did but instead continued to work his magic by continuing to design for MJ in hopes that he would one day wear the Air Jordan 11 on the basketball court.
Sooner than later, to both Tinker’s and the fans surprise, MJ did just that when he made his return to the hardwood. The Jordan 11 debuted in a very unusual way in the year of 1995. The Bulls were playing the Orland magic in the playoffs and Michael had a little surprise up his sleeve for his friends over at Nike. MJ had previously taken a sample pair from Nike and Tinker after a meeting in which he told them he wanted to wear the shoe. Nike and Tinker did not want MJ wearing the shoe due to it only being a sample. MJ had other plans and as game time approached both Nike and Tinker were hoping that MJ wouldn’t do anything brash, like wear them in the game. Of course he wore them. He is Michael Jordan. As you would expect Nike and Tinker were very upset because the sneaker wasn’t in production and they knew once Michael wore it in front of the masses they would have to rush it out to accommodate the demand. This decision by MJ turned out to be a great one in a few ways, Nike and Tinker were given confirmation that it was designed and engineered correctly by they way it preformed and that the design wasn’t only functional but was highly attractive. So attractive that Ahmad Rashad held the shoe on camera during pre-game coverage and proceeded to explain to everyone what MJ was wearing and that it was the “newest” Air Jordan. That was indeed what happened, the Air Jordan 11 “Concord” became the first color way in the Air Jordan 11 series.
The Air Jordan 11 “Concord” is now an iconic shoe and highly coveted by many. It has seen many different changes over the years but has never lost the feel of the original. On Tuesday, June 18, 1996, during the Chicago Bulls championship celebration we got to see of the Air Jordan 11 “Concord” in a low top version. This was before the advent of DVR and HDTV so it went unnoticed by many for a long time. In the time since the picture you see above of MJ, Dennis, Scottie and the Zen Master was taken the “Concord” 11 Low has been added to the list of “Holy Grails” by thousands of sneaker heads around the world. Now, the chances of one acquiring that particular shoe are slim to none. However, there is another version on the “Concord” 11 Low and that would be the Air Jordan 11 Low “Concord” Derek Anderson PE. The DA “Concord” Low is considered to be one of DA’s greatest PEs as well as one of the hardest of his PEs to obtain. As you can see in the pictures below the DA “Concord” 11 Low is identical to the pair MJ donned in 1996 with the exception of the embroidered “DA1” on the tongue.
The Air Jordan 11 isn’t reserved just for just basketball players like most would think. Derek Anderson isn’t the only professional athlete to have his own PE either. The Yankee ace, C.C. Sabathia, has a couple himself. Again, these “Concord” 11s see some changes from the original “Concord” 11. The two C.C. PEs you see below feature some major changes with the first being a “Concord” 11 cleat with a modified mid-sole and spikes to accommodate the needs of a professional baseball player. It also features C.C.’s number “52” on the back instead of the “23” found on the production version of the “Concord” 11. C.C. also has a pair of “Concord” 11s that he wears during games that are played on astro turf. This particular “Concord” 11 features the biggest departure from the original “Concord” 11 as this pair features a completely different out-sole. This pair of “Concord” 11s has a turf out-sole and sole to provide the right traction and cushioning needed to play on an artificial surface.
Again, the “Concord” 11 seen another big change in the release of the Defining Moments Package in 2006. This pair features Metallic Gold in the place of the “Concord” color we had grown to love so much. The DMP was highly anticipated in the months leading up to its release. and the hype lead to, what we consider the norm now, long lines and astronomical prices. Getting your hands on a pair of these DMP 11s isn’t nearly as hard as obtaining say a MJ or DA “Concord” 11 Low but it will run you upwards of $600 for a DS pair.
Through the years the Air Jordan 11 “Concord” has seen the feet of many people around the world time and time again. From NBA & MLB players to kids and adults just like you and I. And once again, we all will get the opportunity to purchase this iconic shoe this coming December. The 2011 release of the Air Jordan 11 “Concord” is set for December 23rd and will most likely be the only Christmas present many of us are looking forward to getting.