by Brendan Dunne
Given how much Tinker Hatfield and Michael Jordan have worked together on sneaker designs, it's not exactly surprising that the duo had disagreements from time to time.
Apparently the shiny nature of the Air Jordan 11 was a point of contention. In an interview captured in Dutch documentary Sneakers from 2004, recently unearthed by Gary Warnett, Hatfield explains that Jordan had been asking for a shiny shoe for years but that he'd tried to convince him it wasn't a good idea.
"He always wanted to do a shiny basketball shoe that looked shiny, reflective, just real flashy," Hatfield explains. "And I always talked him out of it. Every year I said 'No, no, no, I don't think we can find a good material for that.'"
In the clip, Hatfield goes on to explain that the solution to Mike's request was the patent leather that eventually landed on the Jordan 11. Hatfield also reminds Jordan historians that part of the reason for the material choice was that the patent leather was easy for basketball players to clean and keep pristine.