If you’ve ever owned a pair of Michael Jordan sneakers, you remember your first pair.
Mine? The Jordan XII’s. Black and red colorway, that funky digi-pattern on the bottom, and the No. 23 lightly imprinted on the back. They were the hottest thing out at the time. Not only did you need to somehow come up with 100 bucks, you also had to find a Footlocker in PG County that had anything left following release weekend.
Despite stuffing my fat feet in shoes that were entirely too heavy for my young cankles to shuffle around, Jordan sneakers were a sign. A status symbol that screamed, “I’m frickin’ awesome.”
Unfortunately, priced at a then-absurd $100 per pair, those shoes were the subject of schoolyard brawls and thieving beatdowns when the street lights came on. And until this day, it seems as if Jordan’s and their high price tags are the only cause for ridiculous violence over footwear.
Which is why I’m surprised that LeBron James (although chasing the legacy of MJ) would join the sneaker ranks with the most expensive signature shoe ever to be released in the history of Nike.
The reigning MVP’s latest signature shoe, the LeBron X, will come in two different versions. The standard will retail at $180, while the LeBron X Nike Plus — which will include Nike+ technology — will set you back $315.
As much as I enjoy the idea and culture of sneaker heads everywhere, there’s no way I can justify paying $315 for basketball shoes. I don’t care if LeBron James wore them personally — anything over $150 for athletic sneakers and you should consult a financial adviser.
There’s no doubting Nike’s latest flash in the pan — the LeBron X’s are some fly kicks. But what’s the rationale behind the price? Sure, cite the rising cost of cotton and Chinese labor. But that doesn’t do it justice. At $315, these shoes would have to be handmade by British royalty using gold and crude oil.
Fly kicks? Does anyone say that anymore?