Reebok has been using the popularity of retro styles to its advantage, and now plans to bring back one of its most beloved seminal styles. The brand confirmed it would be re-releasing Allen Iverson’s Answer IV “OG” sneaker, first debuted by Reebok and the 6-foot guard during his historic 2000-2001 MVP campaign. Arriving just in time for its 20th anniversary, the sneaker features a unique silhouette and a racing-inspired upper.
In the fall of 2000, ahead of Iverson’s fifth season, Reebok brought to the table a brand new sneaker that would seamlessly “Answer” the demands of the basketball player’s on-court energy and defiant off-court style. As the fourth installment from Iverson’s signature Reebok “Answer” series, the sneaker “is the crown jewel of Iverson’s journey and the cultural shift he helped to lead,” said veteran Reebok Footwear Designer Xavier Jones in a press release. “By his ‘00-’01 season, ‘Chuck’ was already so beloved for his style and how he approached the game, but that year truly cemented A.I. as a cultural icon. On his feet, Answer IV became a symbol for the new era of modern athletes and a celebration of self-expression. It is without a doubt one of the most iconic sneakers to ever grace the hardwood.”
Classic construction — While the Answer IV sneakers won’t provide you with the same basketball skills as the legendary NBA player, you can don the same swagger that Iverson so notoriously maintained. Unlike modern silhouettes, these retro shoes feature a zip-up shroud and a wave-like upper. With white and bright red color blocking, the sneaker stands out from the pack — similar to the basketball star that made it famous in the first place.
Original design elements, including the fading gradient “I3” logo cascading down the tongue and veiled by the zipper shroud, remind wearers of a time when sneakers were appreciated, rather than solely bought for “hype.” 3M reflective details bring further attention to the “I3” quarter panels, while the shoe’s outsole is complemented by OG graphic executions like the Iverson head sunken underfoot. The sneaker also features smaller details like an engraved “Only The Strong Survive” tagline and “I3” and Vector logos at the bridge and forefoot.
Alongside the sneaker’s notable zip-up shroud, wearers can find a Velcro strap for added security — a feature added by Reebok after Iverson found the zipper would undo itself during the action. Whether you decide to take the exclusive sneaker to the court or not, though, know the silhouette has been perfected not only by Reebok, but by the basketball legend himself.
Collectible(s) dropping soon — The nostalgic but classic Answer IV OG is set to retail at $130 and returns April 15 on Reebok’s website and at select retailers. With this year marking the shoe’s 20th anniversary, pairs are sure to go quickly — but trust the sneaker won’t be the only collectible dropping that day.
Further celebrating the Iverson and the Answer IV OG, Reebok has partnered with rising sports illustrator Peter Richter — also known as Floppy Action — to design and issue a limited run of 199 serial-numbered commemorative “Answer-Versary” trading cards paying homage to the iconic sneaker and Iverson’s 2000-2001 MVP season.
A hundred of these trading cards will be distributed at third-party retailers carrying the sneaker, including Finish Line, JD Sports, Foot Locker, Champs Sports, and Shoe Palace. Then, 25 others will be distributed pre-release for premiere Reebok UNLOCKED members, while 25 more will be given at random to UNLOCKED members who purchase the Answer IV OG sneaker.
Also, 3 to 4 exclusive trading cards are actually autographed by Allen Iverson himself, and have been set aside for the Reebok archive, future auctions, and upcoming consumer giveaway. With so many options, consumers have multiple chances to score an exclusive trading card — but the real prize here is landing a pair of the Answer IV OGs.