Staff member reviews ‘Air’ movie

Based on the story of how Nike got an up-and-coming young superstar in Michael Jordan, the movie “Air” was released on April 5.

At the time, Nike was a company that mostly focused on running shoes, with not much emphasis on basketball players and shoes. The company’s main competition in the shoe game was Adidas and Converse, both of which already had a much better pedigree when it came to being a shoe sponsor for NBA players.

However, that all changed when Nike associate Sonny Vaccaro began watching film on Jordan. After watching the film of Jordan being unfazed when hitting the game-winning shot in the 1982 National Championship Game for the North Carolina Tar Heels, Vaccaro knew that Nike had to go get their guy. Vaccaro was so set on MJ that he wanted Nike to use their full basketball budget on Jordan.

At first, Nike CEO Phil Knight was opposed to the idea of devoting all of their money on a player who had never stepped foot on an NBA court. However, after thinking it over, Knight decided to give it a shot and set his company’s sights on Jordan. Vaccaro also made an unprecedented move when approaching Jordan about Nike; instead of only talking to MJ’s agent, he went straight to Jordan’s house and spoke to his mother about her son potentially joining Nike.

At first, Jordan was uncertain about joining Nike, because he wanted to do what most of the other players were doing, which was signing with Adidas or Converse. However, a turning point was when Nike decided to create a shoe centered around Jordan – not just any other basketball shoe. This is where the popular shoe the Air Jordans were created, a shoe now worn all around the globe.

Jordan signed with Nike, and the rest is history, with MJ having one of if not the best NBA career of all time.

Overall, I think the movie was pretty interesting and gave viewers a good look of behind the scenes of shoe deals for NBA players.

Rating 9/10