After a strong rookie campaign that saw him finish second in voting as the NBA Rookie of the Year in 2004, Carmelo Anthony had shown much promise as a scorer. Jordan Brand took notice of his basketball accolades and decided to release one of their classic silhouettes with a fresh new colorway to honor him. The Air Jordan 2 “Melo” released during his second pro season in 2005 with the Denver Nuggets, capping a successful first season and earning his “wings” on the court. Marking one of the first times a Jordan Brand sneaker with a player exclusive make up released to the public, the Air Jordan 2 “Melo” was not an immediate sell out as is the custom trend with most Air Jordans these days. Struggling to find a home in both brighter colors and one of the least popular silhouettes in the Air Jordan line led to tough sales for such an underrated piece of history.
Air Jordan II “Carmelo” uploaded by Elliott.Curtis
The Air Jordan 2 was finally receiving its second renaissance, not having seen a retro release prior to that since 1994. Following up an original colorway (White, Varsity Red, Black) and retro plus release (Black, Chrome), the Air Jordan 2 “Melo” was a big leap forward for Jordan Brand. Prior to this release, JordanBbrand athletes saw special colorway make ups to match their current teams, but none of those sneakers had a public release. Owning a pair of these meant being one step closer to wearing something only the player would wear. The color make up of White, University Blue, and Varsity Maize matched Carmelo’s former NBA team, the Denver Nuggets. A mainly white based sneaker, the blue came up through the tongue logo, heel tab, and midsole. The maize was lightly featured on the “NIKE” logo on the heel, lettering on the tongue logo, and rear panel of the sole. What made this colorway really stand apart though was the blue piping running along the side. Though Carmelo’s tenure in Denver may have ended unceremoniously, this colorway will be remembered by #sneakerholics for making on-court colorways available from Jordan Brand athletes.