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It’s Clear How Nike Plans To Reach The Next Generation but They May Not Need To…

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As we hit ‘Win Like ’96’ season with the Air Jordan 11, we look at the pivotal training routine leading into 1996 that prepared Jordan…

Source: Training To Win Like Mike

The Breakfast Club is part urban legend, part reality and all 90’s. Anyone who played ball in the 90s remembers the stories told about Michael Jordan getting a group together to practice early in the morning. These stories and training sessions were the foundation upon which Jordan’s Six Rings were crafted.

Nike and Jordan Brand realizes that the further MJ is removed from the game the less influence he carries with the next generation of athletes. Nike also realizes that the only way the legacy and brand of Jordan carries on is via education. The launch of was not only a marketing strategy but an educational strategy for the new generation. The problem is the new generation doesn’t read in detail and the abundance of information being delivered by Jordan Brand falls short.

I’m interested in the stories because they are familiar to me. They resonate with me. My son grew into a size 12/13 last year at 14 years old. He’s 6-4. I played college basketball and coached. My son plays guitar and wore my grey box 95-05 Air Jordan 13 Last Shots to hang out and basically kicked the 23 on the tire tread off of the shoes making them worthless. He took my Retro 2 QF Bulls and scuffed them up so bad they can’t be cleaned and then left them out of the box and they yellowed. My son is a 6-4 guitar player and gamer… which is cool with me, but is not so cool for Nike and Jordan.

So while the instructional nature of the blog is exactly what is needed to make kids aware of who MJ was and why we celebrate him via footwear, the information kind of misses the target of the next generation, but it lands squarely in the lap of my generation and maybe that’s what’s missing. Maybe sneaker collecting and footwear is aging like Hip-Hop. The new generation really doesn’t get why we collected or created the culture of worshipping footwear. They have so much more they are interested in that they don’t care about the footwear for the same reasons we did and do.

Maybe I’m wrong though… maybe Jordan Brand gets it. My generation the 35 and up crew are actually the target as well as the next generation. Maybe Nike realizes that we still see MJ as a goal and the next generation simply wants to wear what others deem as fresh or dope. I think there is a disconnect not just with Nike, but with every sneaker brand except maybe adidas. Sneaker culture is Hip-Hop and Hip-Hop culture is 40 years old. That generation still rocks Jordans and Nike shoes, but no one is catering to that crowd. Well I guess Nike is with the abundance of retros being dropped so maybe I am wrong. Then again if you ask a kid wearing a pair of Jordans, “What was MJ’s Breakfast Club?” I’m pretty sure all you’ll get is a blank stare and ultimately that will be a problem for Jordan Brand. A big problem.


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Chris B. is the founder of ARCH.

The ARCH network is unlike other sneakerhead sites. ARCH is a more informative look into sneaker culture. By presenting information about the business of sportswear through marketing analysis, updates on stock prices and introductions to new brands and styles, the site is easily distinguished from the everyday site only giving you release dates.

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