A Defiant Michael Jordan Returns in Resurrected Nike Ad

Jordan Brand Announces a New Era

Published On
Jul 14, 2016

Editor's Pick

Back in 1984, the NBA banned the black and red version of Nike's original Air Jordan shoe from its courts because it didn't conform to its "uniformity of uniform" rule that required players' shoes to match their uniforms as well as the kicks of their teammates. According to legend, Michael Jordan continued to wear his signature shoe anyway, while Nike picked up the bill on any penalties imposed.

The incident led to a quietly defiant commercial from Chiat/Day, which depicted Michael Jordan, standing proud, dribbling a basketball slowly as the camera slowly dropped from his head to toe, ultimately settling on those same shoes before a pair of black bars block them out. A voiceover then read (in a style oddly reminscent of Apple's "1984"): "On September 15th, Nike created a revolutionary new basketball shoe. On October 18th, the NBA threw them out of the game. Fortunately, the NBA can't stop you from wearing them. Air Jordans from Nike."

This week, Nike's Jordan Brand and Wieden & Kennedy, New York released a re-mastered version of the ad via Twitter and YouTube and during the ESPYs broadcast, this time announcing that "on 7.20.16, a new era will be unveiled."

Previous reports from sneaker pubs had noted that the new version of the "Banned" shoe would be dropping on Sept. 3, to $160.