Winter is always a slow period in the sneaker world. The post-cold weather thaw has begun, the Spring Training has begun (albeit a little late), and apps like SNKRS and CONFIRMED are pretty bare in terms of upcoming sneaker draws. However, as the year progresses, rumors, leaks, and announcements of what the industry has in store start to rumble. As Spring 2022 is in full bloom, we have to talk about all the best sneakers releases of 2022.
2022 has big things in store for several silhouettes. A few are certified classics, while others are being drawn up from the archives for the first time in years. There are even a couple of brand-new kicks sure to make some noise over the spring and summer. If you’re trying to stay hip to the ever-changing world of sneakers releases (a world perhaps more popular now than ever), these are the best sneakers releases to watch out for this year.
Air Jordan 2
Sneakerheads got a taste of what’s to come in 2022 for one of the more maligned installments in the Air Jordan line last year. We saw the late great Virgil Abloh’s take on the Jordan 2 Low debut with Off White and Jordan in 2021, just weeks before his tragic passing after a quiet battle with cancer. If history is any indicator, we can expect a big year for the silhouette in 2022. Jordan Brand is prone to having some of their most hyped collaborators give their take on a shoe when they’re setting it up for a big year. With links to Jordan 2s by Union and A Ma Maniére having already hit sneaker sites, it’s safe to say that this is one of the biggest, best new sneakers releases to watch in 2022.
New Balance x Aimé Leon Dore 650R
Technically we already know this one is coming. Everything New York boutique Aimé Leon Dore touches seems to turn to gold these days. Last year they launched a special preorder for the silhouette they’re focusing on in 2022, the New Balance 650R. An archival basketball sneaker, the brand has brought it back with simple colorways, high-quality materials, and their standout yellowed sole. Preorders shipped in March, so there’s a good chance you’ll start seeing it on the feet of the best-dressed folks on your Instagram timeline soon enough.
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BAPE x Reebok
Not a single sneaker but rather an ongoing effort, Reebok recently announced it would be continuing its partnership with legendary streetwear outlet BAPE in 2022. The collaboration’s first drop of the year came in January with a tricked-out Instapump Fury and a classic, clean Club C in white (with the iconic BAPE star swoosh adorning the side) which is worthy of making into your best white sneaker rotation. There’s no telling what or how much else is coming, but anyone who’s been in sneakers long enough knows not to bet against BAPE.
LaMelo Ball, the reigning NBA Rookie of the Year, recently launched his first signature sneaker with PUMA, a brand trying to find its space in basketball after reentering the sport a few years ago. The MB.01 is the first effort from the brand that looks like it has real legs. Between it being the signature sneaker of one of the hottest young players in the sport and its stellar on-court performance (seriously, these things feel so good you’ll hardly need to break them in right out of the box), it’s the basketball sneaker to buy if you’re looking to freshen up your pickup game rotation.
Nike LeBron 9
LeBron has been in the league long enough that some of his earlier performance kicks have gotten retro’d over the last couple of years while he’s still playing. It’s a pretty impressive feat for a player and one that doesn’t look like it’s going to stop any time soon. A surprise drop of the coveted ‘Watch The Throne’ edition of the silhouette (which first debuted way back in 2011) hit the SNKRS app in the first week of 2022, and the ‘South Coast’ colorway is hitting soon after.