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A Brief History of The Nike Air Max 98

    history air max 98

    Exploring the history of the Nike Air Max 98

    Around since 1998, the AM 98 is making a strong comeback in 2018. Knowing about the history of the Nike Air Max 98 is something every fan of the model should get around.

    The recent announcement made by Nike is definitely good news for us, but it’s ironic in every sense. The Air Max 98 is just another gem from the Air Max catalog.

    But, it’s also one of the best examples of how drastically fashion and sneaker taste shift. As you read this, speculation continues regarding the return of the Nike Air Max 98 Gundam, one of its OG colorways.

    Nike has yet to release an official statement regarding an “official” comeback of the silhouette. The truth is that it only makes sense for it to come back in 2018, 20 years after its original release.

    Air Max 98 Early Days:

    history nike air max 98 comeback

    Nike Air Max 98 “Gundam”

    In its early days, the AM 98 releases to something less than overwhelming positivity. Nike was victimized by its own massive success in this way. The previous year’s AM release, the lauded 97, had been all anyone could talk about from Milan to NYC.

    As a result, the 98 was greeted with little more than “eh” reactions and stocked shelves. Today, this is the equivalent to a straight-to-outlet drop that Nike seems to be good at release.

    Additionally, following the 97 was definitely to the detriment of this shoe in terms of popularity. The design of “La Silver” was breathtaking, earning hype from the streets to the runways.

    The shape is sharp, aerodynamic, and versatile. It’s the sort of sneaker you can see yourself wearing with a blazer or a t-shirt.

    The Nike Air Max 98 is just a bulkier, more robust version of that model, finding itself as something of a “dad shoe.” Footwear also was in a moment, leading up to the 2000s, where it was all about sharp cuts and clean forms.

    The history of the Nike Air Max 98 was about to become even more interesting. The last thing anyone needed was a sneaker that took up more room and looked out of place.

    Nike Air Max 98 Present and Future:

    Flash forward to 2016 and the bulky runner is all the rage. Diadora undergoes a renaissance, New Balance has never been so popular, and Ronnie Fieg goes even crazier with ASICS collabs.

    Even Rick Owens and Raf Simons are getting their names on chunkier adidas runners (did you even know what the Ozweego was before last year?).

    This trend hasn’t been lost on Nike, who has been bringing back their more old school runners, highlighted by wider releases of the 95 and 97. But, the return of the Air Max 98 signals that we’re reaching a real peek here.

    With the possibility of the OG Gundam colorway returning, you can bet this will be a hot seller the moment it officially releases.

    nike air max 98 x supreme red

    Air Max 98 Supreme:

    Supreme’s Swoosh collab of choice last year involved the Nike Air Max 98. The Air Max 98 Supreme showed the once cult skateboard brand has a pension for going after shoes that are considered underground favorites.

    As far as the sneaker collector world was concerned, Supreme tabbing the AM 98 was the final indication that this sneaker was about to come back in a big way.

    Though it was executed flawlessly as a collab, it was a pretty good eye-opener for the uninitiated that the 98 ain’t nothin’ to mess with.

    Supreme plays (and will for sure continue to do so in the future) an important role in defining what is really cool and what is not. In shaping what will ultimately become the next thing to have. Stay tuned for more news on this sneaker’s potential return.

    nike air max 98 x supreme

    Nike Air Max 98 x Supreme



    Image Credit: Flight Club

    Image Credit (Featured): Supreme

    Image Credit: HYPEBEAST