Did Nike misrepresent the technology used on a recent Air Jordan retro? A complaint about the "Stealth" Air Jordan 15, released as a retro this month, was leveled against the brand on social media this week.
Instagram user @nightwing2303 of Wear Testers fame began the conversation on his feed after noticing that this year's Jordan 15 appears to have Zoom Air cushioning only in the heel where the original had it in both the heel and forefoot. At the time of his post about the shoe on Tuesday, the Nike SNKRS product page for the Jordan 15 described the 2017 version as having "Zoom Air Units in the forefoot and heel." A dissection of the shoe from Chinese sneaker site Fast Pass shows no Zoom bag in the forefoot.
Nike has heard the complaint, which garnered a substantial response on social media. The brand has since changed the product description for the sneaker here, which still mentions Zoom Air in the heel but makes no reference to it being used in the forefoot. In a statement issued to Sole Collector, Jordan Brand said it took steps to update the inaccurate description upon being made aware of it. "We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience brought by this case," a spokesperson said.
Jordan is further correcting the situation by extending an offer to anyone misled by the description. Those who bought the Air Jordan 15 from Nike and want to keep their pair will receive a 25 percent discount for a single item for their next purchase at nike.com. Alternatively, Nike is offering a full refund for customers who bought the Air Jordan 15, along with a 25 percent discount for a single item at nike.com.
In Nike and Jordan's defense, the vast majority of people buying this shoe in 2017 aren't using it to actually play basketball, so skimping out on tech here means a lot less than it would on, say, a new Nike Basketball design. What's more, the brand did the right thing by offering refunds on the shoes. That being said, there's still no excuse for claiming cushioning where it isn't, and Wear Testers deserves credit for calling out the ruse.