eBay And Nice Kicks Present The Nicest Kicks Of 2021

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We’re reaching the end of 2021 and with that comes the best sneakers of the past year. We’ve sifted through the sneakers and highlighted 10 sneakers in partnership with eBay, 1 sneaker per day until the New Year that we feel deserves some recognition, regardless of the hype. So come back every day as we’ll update the list as we head into 2022.

Air Jordan 5 Retro “Raging Bull”

12 years ago, Jordan Brand dropped the Air Jordan 5 “Toro Bravo” Pack which featured two pairs of the Air Jordan 5, and the bright red “Raging Bull” colorway of the pack returned in 2021.

The Tinker Hatfield-designed sneaker features a bright red suede upper with the iconic tongue featured in a reflective 3M. Black accenting is seen throughout, with the 23 stitched on the heel of the sneaker. The quarter mesh panel is seen in a translucent white with the Jumpman on the heel stitched in black. The black midsole features the teeth in white and black inspired by the P-51 Mustang and the Flying Tiger art on the nose of the plane with a visible Air unit in the heel. Lastly, a translucent outsole is featured on the forefoot and heel which works its way up onto the midsole.

Released in April 2021, the Air Jordan 5 “Raging Bull” dropped on SNKRS and at select retailers and sold out instantly. The bright red might be too much for some, but one thing that it does is stand out. The iconic silhouette took on the Chicago colorway in a fashion never seen before and holds a sentimental value for a lot of sneakerheads out there today. The Air Jordan 5 “Raging Bull” can be purchased on eBay.

adidas Yeezy 500 “Ash Grey”

Among the numerous Yeezy models released this year, the adidas Yeezy 500 has been a constant since its initial release in 2018 and more colorways and iterations dropped in 2021. But nothing beats a good tonal Yeezy 500 colorway and that’s why the Ash Grey colorway makes our list.

The Yeezy 500 uses a mesh base with suede overlays in Ash Grey, giving off a tonal look. A TPU rand surrounds the majority of the sneaker near the midsole with an adiprene+ cushioning setup with a Feet You Wear-inspired midsole and outsole.

The adidas Yeezy 500 “Ash Grey” can be purchased on eBay.

Air Jordan 11 Retro “Cool Grey”

The holiday release of the Air Jordan 11 has been a thing for a while now and 2021 brought back the “Cool Grey” colorway of the sneaker, the first time since 2010.

When the Air Jordan 11 “Cool Grey” was originally released in 2001, it really was a game-changer, as sneakerheads have never seen such a colorway at the time as Jordan Brand typically stuck to Chicago and UNC colorways for Air Jordans.

The upper used grey nubuck instead of the mesh upper typically used on the AJ 11 and the patent leather overlay is seen in grey as well. The 2021 pair uses the OG cut of the patent leather, with the Jumpman also facing the OG directions as well. A white midsole is used alongside an icy translucent outsole.

The Air Jordan 11 “Cool Grey” left a legacy that’s still felt today as Jordan Brand drops Cool Grey colorways on other sneakers and was the start of ushering in new colorways to Air Jordans in general. The Air Jordan 11 “Cool Grey” is available for purchase on eBay.

Reebok Answer IV “Step Over”

2021 celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Reebok Answer IV and that also means the 20th anniversary of one of the most iconic moments in NBA history when Allen Iverson stepped over Ty Lue after hitting a midrange jumper and went off for 48 in Game 1 of the 2001 NBA Finals.

To celebrate that moment, Reebok brought back the Answer IV that A.I. wore in Game 1 of the finals dubbed the “Step Over”. Released in June 2021, the sneaker uses a split tone look in black and white with the signature shroud the Answer IV is known for. The I3 logo is seen in grey on the medial and lateral design panel, with a black midsole using DMX cushioning and a black outsole to finish off the sneaker.

The Reebok Answer IV holds a lot of nostalgia for sneakerheads as the impact Allen Iverson left on and off the court still lives on today. The Reebok Answer IV “Step Over” can be purchased on eBay.

Nike Dunk High “Syracuse”

An OG colorway of the Nike Dunk High returned in 2021 in the Syracuse colorway. A part of the “Be True To Your School” pack from Nike back in the ’80s for Syracuse University, alongside 11 other universities.

The sneaker features a white leather base with orange overlays, again using the classic two-tone color blocking on the Nike Dunk with white and orange seen again on the midsole and outsole respectively.

In a year of a plethora of Nike Dunks releasing, the Syracuse colorway holds its own and sold out immediately. The Nike Dunk High “Syracuse” can be purchased on eBay.

Air Jordan 4 Retro “Lightning”

2021 brought back the return of some highly-sought after sneakers and one of them was the Air Jordan 4 Retro “Lightning”. Originally released by Jordan Brand in 2006 as a part of the limited Air Jordan 4 “Lightning and Thunder” Pack, the sneaker returned in a wider release in August 2021.

The sneaker features a bright yellow nubuck upper with black netting and eyestays. Grey nubuck is used on the wings and grey is seen again on the heel Jumpman and tongue tag as well. A white midsole featuring a visible Air unit in the heel is utilized with a grey outsole to finish off the sneaker.

The re-release of the Air Jordan Retro 4 “Lightning” pleased both OG sneakerheads as well as newcomers, as the iconic silhouette mixed with the eccentric colorway makes it onto the shortlist of best Jordans of the year. The Air Jordan Retro 4 “Lightning” can be purchased on eBay.

Aime Leon Dore x New Balance 550

2021 was a big year for the New Balance 550 with multiple collaborations with brands such as size?, AURALEE, and Rich Paul, but the one that kicked off the success of the 550 is the collaboration with Teddy Santis and Aime Leon Dore.

The Steve Smith-designed and ’80s basketball silhouette is more popular today than it was in the ’80s and we have Aime Leon Dore’s help for that. Dropping in two colorways and restocking three from late 2020, the ALD x 550’s presence was everywhere. Premium leather uppers with a slight patina to them with a pre-aged midsole made these a constant presence on the internet and rightfully so.

Aime Leon Dore took pre-orders on the collaborative sneaker for fairness and appeasing as many sneakerheads as they can. The Aime Leon Dore x New Balance 550 can be purchased on eBay.

Nike Dunk Low “White/Black”

Simplicity and boring are sometimes synonymous with each other but the Nike Dunk Low “Black/White” sides for the former more than the latter.

Originally released in March 2021, the classic two-tone colorway of the Nike Dunk comes to this colorway, featured with a white leather base with black leather overlays. White and black are seen again on the midsole and outsole respectively as well.

This colorway of the Nike Dunk Low makes it almost impossible to find a fit it doesn’t go with and like most of the other Nike Dunks that released this year, sold out immediately. No worries though, they’re available for purchase on eBay.

adidas Yeezy Slide “Pure”

Due to COVID-19, people had to get comfortable around the house and looked to slides to bring coziness, comfort, and style and the adidas Yeezy Slide checks off all of those boxes.

The adidas Yeezy Slide “Pure” dropped in April 2021 with numerous restocks throughout the year and still, they sold out immediately every time. The slide is dressed in a tonal light earthy tone made of EVA foam with minimal branding, only the adidas logo on the heel of the footbed. The exaggerated teeth on the outsole combined with the soft edges and lines of the slide gave the adidas Yeezy Slide a unique look.

The adidas Yeezy Slide “Pure” is found everywhere and in every situation. On the way to hoop sessions, grocery store runs, and just chilling in the house, the slide is versatile. The adidas Yeezy Slide “Pure” is available for purchase on eBay.

Air Jordan 1 Retro High OG “University Blue”

Released on March 6, 2021, the Air Jordan 1 isn’t a stranger to University Blue, but never before have we’ve seen the UNC hue used in the Air Jordan 1 “Chicago” color blocking.

The Air Jordan 1 “University Blue” uses supple white tumbled leather on the quarter panel and toebox with University Blue nubuck placed on the overlays. Hits of black are seen on the Swoosh, Wings logo, ankle collar, and tongue tag with white and University Blue seen on the midsole and outsole respectively.

The sneaker was highly sought after upon the release of photos, and even with a wide release across a multitude of retailers, the AJ1 “University Blue” was an instant sell-out. Even with the amount of Air Jordan 1s released this year, the University Blue colorway made the shortlist on a lot of sneakerhead’s best sneaker in 2021 list.

Whether they’re freshly out of the box or everyday beaters, the Air Jordan 1 “University Blue” holds up well due to the use of quality materials on the upper. The Air Jordan 1 “University Blue” can be purchased on eBay.

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