Air Jordan XX9 Introduces a New Customized Fit
The Air Jordan 29 was designed to be the best performance basketball sneaker ever produced. To achieve this goal, the Jordan Brand introduced a new technology that creates a customized fit for every athlete's foot. The style is classic Jordan on the feet, but the engineering is unlike anything Air Jordan has put on the court.
XX9's Groundbreaking Technology and Construction
The Air Jordan XX9 is "Tailored for Flight" due to two defining features—an evolved Flight Plate and a first-ever performance-woven upper. Legendary designer Tinker Hatfield enlisted Italian master artisans and highly specialized machinery to produce the unique material. By varying the density of stitches on the upper's panels, Hatfield could control precisely where the material supports and cushions the foot.
The AJ XX9 performance weave's single lightweight layer provides structure, support, comfort and durability and features these construction highlights:
- Extremely breathable with an instantly broken-in feel and a sock-like fit that molds perfectly to the wearer's foot
- "Flight Web" tunnels employ a series of straps that run through the upper and connect with the round laces to anchor the shoe securely at the midfoot for superior comfort and flexibility
- Padded collar further reduces heel slippage
Note on cleaning the fabric: The woven upper may soak up moisture and sweat. If this causes stains and odors, invest in some sneaker balls to absorb moisture. Use a soft brush to remove dirt trapped in the weave.
Nike created a new iteration of its Flight Plate for the Air Jordan XX9, a technology first introduced on the AJ XX8. The Flight Plate expands the shoe's sweet spot by maximizing the responsiveness of the Nike Zoom Air units in the forefoot through a Pebax® moderator plate. This allows the wearer to elevate more explosively with less fatigue. The outsole consists of two high-traction pieces—a Zoom Air unit up front and a foam heel—connected by a tendril that bridges the midfoot to provide fluid heel-to-toe transition. A TPU midsole cage stabilizes the shoe and features a back cutout exposing where the woven upper and outsole connect.
Debut and Design of the XX9
The Air Jordan XX9, also known as the AJ XX9 or Air Jordan 29, was released in 2014 in high- and low-top versions. Unlike previous releases that launched during the NBA All-Star Weekend, the Jordan Brand debuted the XX9 during the NBA Playoffs before unleashing it on the market that fall. Earlier Jordans were released on a similar schedule under the rationale that athletes at all levels should have the most cutting-edge technology on their feet as they train and prepare for the upcoming season.
With a retail price of $225, the XX9 was cheaper than its predecessor, the XX8. AJ 29 Retros hit stores after the release of the AJ XXX in 2016. The Air Jordan XX9 incorporated familiar Jordan design elements like the Jumpman logo, the number 23 and a few classic colorways. However, it also broke new ground by introducing revolutionary new technologies.
Air Jordan XX9 Colorways and PEs
The OG XX9 released in 20 colorways. Some of the more sought-after colorways include:
Elephant Print in Black/White/Gym Red and Black/Team Orange/Dark Grey
Pantone Pack featuring the Pantone Blue AJ XI and the Legend Blue XX9 for $500
Bold colorways dominated by Black, Blue, Red and White
Photo Reel/Team Orange/Gym Red is among the most valuable and features an image of a real-life Jumpman on one side and the Chicago skyline on the other
Player Exclusives for teams including UNC, Michigan and Marquette and several players—with 12 variations for Russell Westbrook
The innovative weaving technology offered tremendous design flexibility, allowing the Jordan Brand to print new colorways that incorporated a variety of tones, images and effects to make the XX9 catalog exciting additions to sneakerheads' collections.
Authenticity of the Jordan 29
The XX9's upper is a unique, highly-detailed piece of technology that's difficult to replicate. Authentic XX9s feature a one-piece upper. The weave should be tight throughout and stretch in specific spots and remain rigid in others. A fake pair won't have the same weave panels and will likely have reinforcing layers to give the shoe structure.
Beyond the uppers, inspect the outsole components with a close eye on the tendril, which should seamlessly connect the heel and the forefoot. Logos and numbers should be clean and detailed. If the original box is provided, ensure the product information on the box label matches the shoe's tag.
Jordans Release Dates, News and Articles
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