CLIFF AVRIL BLOG: Ranking the 5 best pairs of Air Jordans
Detroit Lions DE Cliff Avril keeps SOTL.com readers up to date on athletic footwear throughout the season with his "Cliff's Kicks" blog. The 6-3, 260-pound Avril led the Lions in sacks and forced fumbles last season, and had a pair of touchdown returns.
By CLIFF AVRIL
If necessity is the mother of invention let's just say that this blog about sneakers exists because as a kid I couldn't afford the shoes I dreamed of wearing.
Growing up in the Jacksonville area, I was never one of those kids who had the money to buy the latest pair of Air Jordans. That's why I double up on most pairs now, whenever a new model comes out.
There's nothing like a fresh set of J's, but I'll put Air Force Ones in nearly the same class. And since I arrived in the NFL in 2008 -- and got a deal with Nike --
I've been able to obtain virtually all of the shoes I covet.
I'm pretty much a guy who's always in Jordans, mainly I-through-XIV's. I'm not into the Foamposite shoes, but they're growing on me. Those are actually pretty fresh, but my wardrobe doesn't allow me to wear Foamposites, know what I mean? They're kind of uncomfortable for me, too. But they are gaining in popularity and I may try them in the future.
Until then, Jordans remain my passion. It was awesome to get my first pair of Jordan's -- XIV's. They came out in blue and black, back in the day, a university blue and black. But even when I bought my first pair I was wishing I could afford more like them.
Now I can wear them freely, because I get one pair to rock and one to stock with my favorite pairs. The latest ones I picked up were the Olympic Golden Package, with the VI's and VII's. I doubled up on those pairs. The ones I'm waiting on are the Cool Grey IX's with the patent leather, due out Dec. 15, and the bred patent leather XI's, due out Dec. 23.
Now that you know my inventory, here's how I rate the top five Jordan models, all-time:
1. Air Jordan XI "Space Jam." (Pictured below.) I actually just bought a pair of those. I had been looking for them forever and a day and I was lucky enough to hook up with someone on Twitter and make a deal. Part of the trade was that I sent him some Lions gear and he tossed in a pair of Cool Grey XI's along with the Space Jam XI's.
2. Air Jordan III "Cement."
3. Air Jordan IX "Powder Blue."
4. Air Jordan XII "Playoffs."
5. Air Jordan XI "Concord."
As much as I love the Jordans there really aren't too many I like past the XIV's. And on the issue of comfort vs. style I have to admit I honestly don't care whether the Jordans are comfortable, that's how much I like them. It's crazy that the greatest player ever to hoop had uncomfortable shoes, but they're probably good for his foot, which I'm guessing is a lot narrower than mine. Plus, it's not like I'm going to wear them all day long. I'll go out in them and take them off as soon as I'm home, so as long as they fit reasonably well I'm happy. But I should mention that I do work out in Jordan X's because they are so comfortable.
I'm also happy that I already have my son Xavier wearing Jordans. He has a nice collection already, even though we just celebrated his first birthday. (Note to Lions fans: As much as I wanted to be in training camp this year, one of the biggest highlights during my holdout was that I was home for that first birthday party.) We threw a big party for him at a water park, and it makes me proud to be able to buy him the same shoes I'm wearing, especially since his are a lot cuter than mine.
That's it for this week, except for a shout-out to my college team, Purdue. I made it up there for the Boilermakers' season-opener, and they made me a proud alum with a 48-6 victory against Eastern Kentucky. I hope my Lions are that impressive on Sunday, when we open at home against St. Louis. Meantime, let me know what you think of my Jordan rankings, either in the comments section or on Twitter at @cliffavril .
The Detroit Lions DE keeps SOTL.com readers up to date on athletic footwear throughout the season with his "Cliff's Kicks" blog. The 6-3, 260-pound Avril led the Lions in sacks and forced fumbles last season, and had a pair of touchdown returns. The Purdue graduate was a late arrival at training camp this season, staying home in part so he could be at his son Xavier's first birthday party.