Thursday, January 3, 2013

Ucasta's Top 10 Sneaker Releases of 2012

Disclaimer – This was not written by jwdanklefs nor does it reflect his opnions. Once again: my list is only a reflection of my personal taste and opinion. It is not intended to represent any public attitude nor that of Jakey (jwdanklefs)..... Aaron aka Ucasta


10. J.Crew for New Balance 998 – New Balance has brought out so many quality collabs this year (Hanon, West NYC, Concepts to name a few). I like the subtleness of the 998 model and J.Crew blessed us with two great color combinations it’s hard to choose between the two. So I’m putting them both at the number 10 spot for the year.
9. Adidas Solebox Torsion Allegra – This was definitely a welcomed end of year release. Neoprene liner, premium suedes, and 3M all on one pair. The swoosh needs to take notes.

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9. Adidas Solebox Torsion Allegra – This was definitely a welcomed end of year release. Neoprene liner, premium suedes, and 3M all on one pair. The swoosh needs to take notes.

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8. Nike Air More Uptempo Pippen – As I mentioned in last year’s list, you can’t go wrong with almost anything from Nike’s 90s basketball catalog. I first had this pair back in 8th grade when I wore them into the ground. Years later I was able to obtain another DS original pair, but later sold it due to the lost air in the air units. I was glad the swoosh finally released them to coincide with the 2012 Summer Olympic games.

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7. RF X New Balance 1300 – The 1300 is my personal tops as far as NB models. This pair is the NB equivalent of last years Salmon Toes: predominately navy upper with hints of salmon on the soles this time. Great combination of nubuck and mesh as well, which any fan of retro runners will ALWAYS appreciate.

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6. Reebok Question Mid White/Pearlized Red/Blue - Easily the best Reebok model ever by far. Packershoes and Burn Rubber put out some quality collab colorways on the Question this year, but original colorways is the way to go for me. I regrettably sold a pair of OG White/Pearlized Reds earlier this year. It would have been nice to have those and retro Pearlized Blues to sit next side by side in my closet.

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5. Nike Yeezy 2 – There was so much secrecy and mystery behind the details of this release. The design is both over the top and subtle at the same time, e.g. solid color uppers versus snake skin panels. This release also brought out the ugly side of usually good people. When pics first started surfacing of the two colorways I was initially partial to the Platinum colorway. However, after I was luckily able to obtain them both, I must admit the Black/Solar red colorway immediately became my favorite of the two. I personally hope they don’t release any additional colorways.

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4. Jordan XI retro Black/Red - “Breds” “Playoffs” or whatever people call these nowadays. The Black/Reds are actually my favorite color combination of the Jordan XI. I can recall so desperately seeking a pair back in 1996. Although I had no luck back then I did purchase the 2001 retros without any concerns on release date. So many memories of MJ dominating in the 1996 playoffs with this pair…

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3. RF X Asics GT II Rose Golds – Another great year for Mr. Fieg and his Kith team. 2011 was all about the Gel Lyte IIIs, but I have to say this particular GT II was the highlight for Asics in 2012. Thick, buttery pigskin suede on a lesser recognized Asics model. I can care less how hyped or limited this pair was, I knew I needed a pair in the everyday work rotation. A very solid, eloquently designed pair that has serious thought and detail put into it.

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2. Nike Flyknit Trainer HTM/ Volts – Reading about the process and development of the flyknit technology was incredible to say the least. The Flyknits will always remind me of the 2012 Summer Olympics games and how the swoosh outfitted the top athletes from team USA with the Volts. I still desperately need a pair of either one of these two colorways: 9.5 anyone?

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1. Jordan IV retro Black/Red – My favorite sneaker silhouette of all time. If this pair released every year it will still sit atop of this list. Do I miss the good ol’ days of better quality/materials/shape/Nike Air etc.? Yes. However, this is such a timeless model that it’s easy for me to let all that slide. I’m sure glad I picked up a pair, because in a year or two the prices will be ridiculous.

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