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Sneakerking of Memphis Drops a Great Question

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M.Morgan aka Sneakerking of Memphis (photo by J Boyd)

One of the guys I most admire in kicks lives in Memphis. When some people talk about collectors today it’s about guys who have a collection that reflects recent hype. Sneakerking of Memphis though… M. Morgan is hands down one of the dopest collectors in the country. He’s not hyped on websites or on YouTube with a channel, but I’ve bought parts of his collection that he considered not very good, that I went on to make a few thousand dollars flipping. The picture up there is of one of his tables at a Sneaker Expo here in Memphis back in 2011.

What was his question?

“Why is it that the hype has died with the AF1s, Foams, and SBs but not so much with Retro Jordans which have been way more saturated?”

I hit up my AHN (ARCH x Housakicks Network) co-owner Tayib, out of the blue just to see what his answer would be without giving him time to think about it. This is his answer:

Tayib of Housakicks, “Jordan is still Jordan. The Jordan is the BIBLE of Sneakers. It’s the shoe that will sell for all time. Jordans are not going to die. They will still sell and people are always going to want Jordans. Air Force 1 is not the same commodity. The Foamposite… I don’t know. Foams are Penny Hardaway and he’s not a legend. I don’t know… I know why, but I can’t explain it.”

R Clark said, “Variance in design. They’re all the same model with AF1s and Foams. Only so many colors. SBs seem to have followed the career arc of Wayne. Jordans have roughly 20 models that they retro. (You know I know there are more, I’m only counting the most popular models that have been or are likely to retro). So it gives the illusion of something new. Also the illusion of exclusivity they maintained for years still carries on. I can’t think of the last pair I wanted that I couldn’t get for retail now. Just my best guess.”

M Woolridge said, “Jordan’s are attached to greatness and the others don’t have a specific figure with a high level of greatness.”

The question is good and worthy of taking the time to analyze. Here is my opinion based on evidence of how the market has shifted over time. I will break it down by style. Let’s get started with the Air Force 1

Has the Air Force 1 lost its hype?  

I think it seems that the Air Force 1 is not as popular as it once was. We’re talking about a shoe that had a song by Nelly and is a staple of anyone from NYC. The Uptown, all white Air Force 1 has never gone anywhere. I mean we celebrated XXX years of the Air Force 1 with some of the dopest releases a few years ago. The Air Force 1 is currently being celebrated with the White on White Morphology. A collection that will see the release of a shoe that will most certainly be coveted in my opinion an all white Duckboot. For the record the Air Force 1 Duckboot has been one of the hottest releases since it dropped a year ago. The style has been effective in disrupting the Timberland market.

Has the shoe lost its hype? No. Not one bit. Now, the first thing that can be said is that the resale market overall is no longer what it was. The rise of Adidas has contributed to one of the best sneaker markets in a long time. With the Air Force 1 there aren’t a lot of articles, but on this website I just posted artwork about the shoe. Other websites are basically controlled by the brands. They aren’t going to talk about anything different. I control this site, so I talk about everything.

Are there releases like the Supreme, NYC, or Linen (which was recently retro’d by KITH) dropping every week? Of course not. I think what has happened with the Air Force 1 is that so many colorways exist and we see so many styles on sale, that we tend to think that the Air Force 1 is dead since it is available on shelves everywhere. This is the reality though:

B0176L502I Nike Mens Air Force 1 High ’07 LV8 “Wheat” Flax/Outdoor Green Leather 6,327 1.07% 8,598 1.10% 12% 8 0.13% $1,689.92 8
B0187ZXZK6 Nike Men’s Lunar Force 1 Duckboot Boot 18,194 3.07% 23,763 3.05% 1% 6 0.03% $1,374.87 6

The chart above is a reference to the Air Force 1 High Wheat. Last year when it dropped I sold over 75 pair. This year when it dropped I haven’t had the chance to get the Buy Box (the column that has the 12% highlighted). The Buy Box is where you are guaranteed to get the sale. I’ve only had the Buy Box 12% of the time on 6,327 searches and 8,598 page views for this shoe since September 1st. Think about this, the Wheat Air Force 1 didn’t drop this year until October and I’ve had the Buy Box 12% of the time, and I’ve sold 8 (the last column that is in bold print) for a price of 1689.92. This gives this shoe a 211.24 price per pair. The shoe retails for 140.00 That’s a mark up of over 70.00 dollars a pair. The shoe has also sold out twice on SNKRS. Now look at the Air Force 1 Duckboot. I know it’s a variation of the Air Force 1, but it’s still an Air Force 1.  I’ve sold 6 of those in that time, but I’ve only had the Buy Box 1% of the time on 23,000+ page views!!!! BUTTTTT I’m making 229.15 a pair on each shoe. The shoe retails for 165.00. That’s a 65.00 dollar mark up. The recent Camo Air Force 1 is doing similar numbers.

Now this could be considered an isolated thing for Duckboots and Wheats, but with the Air Force 1 low Camo, it shows that the Air Force 1 is always lurking. We all know there are countless colors of the Air Force 1 sitting on shelves, but more limited releases are still selling out. If you take a moment to check out Flight Club the Air Force 1 section isn’t extensive, but there are still grails there. Think about it, the Supreme High Air Force 1 is still going for 700+. The Air Force 1 may be saturated, it may not be a shoe current sneakerheads are interested in, but it still has status and it still makes a nice resale shoe in GR colorways. The same thing can’t be said for the Air Foamposite Pro or One or the Dunk, but those are two different stories and I will do a post on each one with the same questions:

Part 1: Has the Hype Died on the Air Force 1?

Part 2: Has the Hype Died on the Dunk?

Part 3: Has the Hype Died on the Foamposite?

Stay Motivated Fam!