The Weekend of Saturday, the 29th of October was always going be tame one resale-wise.
As it is most of the time, the headline sneaker was a sneaker release from Jordan Brand. This time around, that sneaker was the $400 Air Jordan 4 Pinnacle ‘Ginger‘, a beauty of a shoe.
The ‘Ginger’ 4 was always likely to follow the pattern set by previous ‘high end’, premium-priced Jays over the past year : selling out in minutes, then reselling for anywhere from two to three- hundred bucks above its retail price on the quick flip. Since relatively few sneaker buyers would ever even lay eyes on what was surely a raffle release in most stores around the country (barring Sneaker Capitals like NYC , of course) the shoe would mostly be an afterthought as it did its thing in the aftermarket, and on-foot sightings would surely be few and far between.
Jordan brand’s two other offerings for the weekend – a Grade School exclusive III in a new ‘Charlotte‘ colorway, plus the latest installment of the current model – the XXXI – in ‘Battle Grey‘ cracked leather were always going to be slow-sell throughs. The GS market is nothing if not finicky about which releases it buys into, and Jordan Brand has long since spoiled Jordan Heads with its focus on OG, retro product. The lackluster retail performance of new styles and colorways is a direct result of this strategy.
After Jordan Brand, it was Nike that with the most salient ‘hype’ shoes on tap for Sneaker Saturday, with the NSW (Nike Sportswear) offerings, the ‘Greedy’ Air presto, and Nikelab Air Zoom Talaria ‘Safari‘, both of which dropped in limited numbers.
The Presto retailed for $130, sold out in due order, and has been quick-flipping for about $100 over retail as data from StockX shows. That’s a decent profit margin for those able to grab multiple pairs to resell.
The Talarias, on the other hand, retailed for the premium price of $175, and, have done very little in the aftermarket.
The Presto has quietly been Nike’s antidote to three stripes’ NMD takeover in 2016. The stylish, comfy, lightweight sneaker with a price comparable to general release NMDs has gained a loyal following since making its return last year, and gained favorable attention via a handful of very fresh limited editons and collaborations this year.
As the seasons changee, the resurrected silhouette is undergoing the same materials bolstering to stay coppable through the holiday season, a time traditionally dominated by HUGE drops from all of the major sneaker brands. The NMD may have been the ‘it’ shoe in its first year run, but the Presto might just give it a run for its money in the near future.
Speaking of adidas, that brand chose the middle of the week – as opposed to Saturday – to begin its release cycle, releasing three 2.0 Ultra Boosts from the ‘Reflective’ pack – one ‘Uncaged‘, one Black, one White – on Wednesday , the 26th. The following day, it released two styles from its collaboration with White Mountaineering, an EQT and an NMD ‘City Sock’. On Saturday it dropped an overlooked Gazelle style in collaboration with Chicago outfit, St. Alfred.
To date, the two Ultra Boosts have sold out (natch) and are reselling for more-or-less the retail, while the City Sock collab is flipping for about $70 over retail. the Uncaged Ultra Boost style is the only one still available on the adidas website, an indication that it is one of the least-favored ‘Boost’ sneakers in production.
…….Now back to Nike.
The Swoosh dominated the final weekend of October in terms of the number of sneakers it dropped. In typical Nike fashion these days, however, the majority of styles have been ‘sitters’ in likely need of a deep MSRP discount to sell through.
On the day the aforementioned City Sock dropped, Nikelab countered with seven colorways across three silhouettes : the Air Force 1 Low (3) ; The Air Unlimited heritage (3) ; and the aforementioned Air Zoom Talaria. They are all sitting in virtual full-size runs, even the Triple Black pair, which is absent from Nikestore, but available for $150 via spots like Jimmy Jazz and Philly boutique, Villa.
On Friday the 28th, the first of the Nike Basketball coterie dropped: the Kobe 11 Elite ‘Oreo‘, a shoe that yours truly got excited about (prematurely, as I would soon learn).
In the days leading up to the release of the ‘Oreo’ Kobe 11s, I checked the Sole Collector Release Calendar, and the blog had the price of the shoe listed as $135.
That number seemed awfully low, but it’s a known fact that Nike has sought ways to spur sales of its signature hoops kicks (which have lagged heavily in recent months) via lower price points. Current kicks like the Lebron Soldier 10 retail for low as $130-$140, while the KD signature line has returned to its KD 7 – level price of $150, down from the $180 of the KD8. The Kobe 11 retails for $160.
But not the Kobe 11 Elite, sadly.
Not only was that $135 price on the SC website wrong, but it was nowhere near the actual retail price of $200 the sneaker actually cost.
Yours truly found this SC faux pas quite ironic, to be honest. This is because the Kobe signature line has, in recent history, been the Nike Hoops shoe that many sneakerheads would love to own, but do not want to pay for.The lows especially look fantastic and boast flyknit, but, the Kobe 11 is too expensive for shoe without the clout of Jordan Retros, yet priced in the same bracket.
Kobes are an excellent study in how a brand can ruin the legacy of a sneaker by stubbornly trying to squeeze its ‘market value’ (the highest price buyers want to pay) out of its retail price. Most sneakerheads only want to pay about $200 to $250 tops for a pair of Kobes, so for Nike to retail sneaker for that price is to make most potential buyers hesitate on copping the shoe for just long enough to move on to upcoming drops. As a result, the shoe sits, goes on deep disco, and then (finally) sells-out months later.
So, perhaps by accident, the $135 SC price on the calendar was a tongue-in-cheek joke subtly suggesting the price the Oreo kobe 11s should have retailed for. For had the MSRP actually been $135, the shoe would have sold out at that price, and then would have resold for about 200-225, a price reflecting the ‘true value’ of the shoe, the most people generally want pay for pair of GR Kobes. The Swoosh continues to overvalue shoes from that signature line.
Well, that was Friday’s happenings. Saturday saw more even more Nike Hoops drops, as a Lebron KD and Kyrie released, while another Kobe 11 Elite dropped.
And, well, it was more of the same from Nike’s Hoops division.
The Nike Basketball ‘Battle Grey Pack’ is sitting.
The pricey ‘Pale Horse’ Kobe Elite had a bit more action on its release day. The signature silo sold through its limited number of sizes on NDC. It is, however, readily available from other retailers like Foot Locker.
In other news, despite questions among the SB Dunk faithful of Niketalk as to whether or not the latest release would be limited like the first in the ‘Box Series’ – the Orange Lows – the Gray Box Highs were indeed a general release, and at $110 MSRP, they sat for a while on NDC in all sizes below 12.
Welp, that was the retail/aftermarket story for the Heavy Hitters in the Sneaker Game, but what of any other brands and their releases for the 29th?
UA was only other brand with notable drops during week ending the 29th. Perhaps wisely, UA chose a midweek release for a trio of colorways from Chef Curry’s 4th signature style, dropping a pair on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
Needless to say, the hype around the Curry line has declined heavily since the halcyon days of Spring 2015, and the Curry One MVP madness. Whereas the excitement of Curry’s on-court exploits , the newness of UA’s relevance in the sneaker game, and the low-low prices were a knockout combo then, increasing familiarity with line has led to significant cooling of the hype for the Curry line. Core fans (mostly youth) still cop and rock the kicks to show support for their favorite player, but the notion of reselling Curry kicks nowadays as a come-up is basically a joke.
The latest offerings , two of which come in the historically most popular colorways at $140 MSRP, are sitting on the UA website in a full-size run, while, in a bit of intrigue, the third, teal colorway is impossible to find, and is consequently the only one seeing action in the aftermarket on ebay.
The Curry 3 may actually be the best Curry silo yet, however, so it could be worthwhile to keep abreast of how subsequent colorways perform in the market.