Dunk History – The Story of the Nike Dunks

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Nike Dunks HistorySneakerheads possess their own individual loves, and these range far and wide across the sneaker spectrum. Converse or Prada, Diesel or Reebok, we all have our poisons. But no shoe has as wide a fanbase as the glorious Nike Dunk. (Cue chorus of angels to sing its praises.)

Bastard child of the Nike Terminator, the Dunk spun off its daddy shoe in 1985. Specially engineered to be the leading basketball shoe of its day, the Nike Dunk conquered the courts of college basketball. Nike struck exclusive sponsorship deals with several college teams and produced the Dunk in team colors, in combo with uniforms and various other Nike gear.

After one season though, the Dunk retired. Nike moved on to new designs leaving the Dunk to the vaults. The pioneers of the Dunk – Michigan, UNLV, Villanova, Kentucky, St. Johns, Arizona, and Iowa – would be the only ones to enjoy its style and performance until more than a decade later.

The year was 1998. Google was founded but remained an unknown. It was the year Bill Clinton told us all he “did not have sexual relations with that woman,” Monica Lewinsky. And Nike revived the Dunk. Soon the color scheme grew like the offspring of screwing-like-rabbits rainbows.

Then, DUN DUN DUN … Nike Dunk SB hit the streets in 2002. Originally designed for skateboarding, hence the “SB”, these kicks packed in extra padding and a special insole. Skaters and street fashion aficionados fell in love. The passion continues. Today, Nike Dunks and their SB brethren clothe the feet of the sneakerhead legions, with no signs of another misguided retirement any time soon.



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