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Following the success of the XV’s there was no doubt that Nike/JB would continue to release Air Jordan’s, therefore XVI’s hit the shelves in 2001.

The XVI’s were designed by Nike’s Senior Footwear Designer Wilson Smith. This meaning it was the first design since the III’s that Tinker Hatfield was not behind. Hatfield was said to have moved up and he left Smith with the hard task of creating a revolutionary new design. Smith decided to bring in a few design elements/fabrics from earlier releases. For instance they saw the return of the clear rubber sole (V, VI, XI) and also featured patent leather (XI).

What made the XVI’s unique was the brand new gaiter/shroud that covered the shoe and could be removed to give the shoe a brand new look. Not only was this for fashion purposes, it also had a thermal functionality.

The shoe was said to be a little stiff and that to wear the shroud/gaiter when playing basketball really was not a good idea, as it could easily fall off. The black/red and white/midnight navy versions of the shoe both featured patent leather which very easily creased and cracked.

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