J Balvin's Air Jordan 3 "Rio" Sets the Horizon for This Week's Best Footwear Drops

Joining releases from Wales Bonner x adidas, Supreme x Clarks, Futura x Nike SB and more.

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The sports world was just treated to an exciting week with the WNBA kicking off its season while the NBA and NHL had their respective playoffs wrap up their second round with several game seven showdowns. In the meantime, the world of sneakers has stayed busy with yet another week of much-anticipated releases hitting shelves this week thanks to adidas, Nike, Jordan Brand, New Balance and Clarks. Though before we give you the full rundown on what to look out for this week, let’s review what went down on the news side of things in the seven days that have taken place since our last installment of Weekly Footwear Drops.

Our latest footwear feature spotlighted the viral New Balance 1906L sneaker loafer with a conversation featuring the senior designer and product manager who oversaw the concept’s creation — unpacking their inspiration, surprise surrounding the public’s reception to the divisive sneaker and more.

As for the traditional news, Nike had a quiet week with the unveiling of Sabrina Ionescu’s Nike Sabrina 2 as the brand’s most prominent headline. Though its Jordan Brand subsidiary stayed busy with a myriad of previews and rumors. Initial previews of an Air Jordan 4 “Paris Olympics” and Air Jordan 5 “Reverse Metallic” caught the eyes of many sneakerheads while the Air Jordan 4 RM had a moment with close-ups of its “Oxidized Green,” “Canyon Rust” and “Black/Light Bone” colorways surfacing. As for the rumor mill, the latest updates include word of next year’s Air Jordan 5 “Black Metallic” being part of the “Reimagined” series while two new Travis Scott x Air Jordan 1 Low OG takes in “Sail/Shy Pink” and “Dark Pony/Pink Oxford” were discussed. A few corrections were made to previous topics of note as well — the rumored Air Jordan 4 “Atmosphere Grey” pair is actually said to be a “Rare Air Laser” colorway while the discussed return of the Air Jordan 12 “Flu Game” turned out to be a new “Bloodline” iteration instead.

Elsewhere in the sneaker space, Aimé Leon Dore made noise with the release of two new New Balance T500 pairs. COMME des GARÇONS similarly found itself in the collaborative footwear spotlight, though for a very different reason, as its wildly-colored, $1,545 USD Salomon SR811 Platform bewildered sneakerheads. In other collaboration news, Nikola Jokić dropped a SpongeBob-themed collection with 361 Degrees and Crocs revealed its second set of Naruto Shippuden x Crocs Classic Clogs.

Now that you’re caught up on all of the key headlines from the past week, let’s go ahead and review what sneaker releases you should have your eyes on this week. Afterwards, don’t forget to slide by HBX to shop styles that are available to purchase now.

Wales Bonner x adidas Samba & SL72

Release Date: May 21
Release Price: $180 USD to $250 USD
Where to Buy: adidas
Why You Should Cop: Wales Bonner and adidas are back with a footwear-filled capsule, this time looking to East African runners for inspiration with their “Rift Valley Runners” collection. Alongside a refined apparel range, six footwear styles have been prepared — featuring the SL76, Samba and the Samba Millennium. The various sneakers offer unique color compositions paired with mixed material builds that are sure to stand out.

Futura Laboratories x Nike SB Dunk Low

Release Date: May 22
Release Price: $135 USD
Where to Buy: SNKRS
Why You Should Cop: In case you missed out on the two drops last week, Nike is serving up its release of the long-awaited Futura Laboratories x Nike SB Dunk Low this week. The legendary artist and prolific footwear collaborator has again equipped the beloved silhouette with his own take — applying a “Geode Teal” to its overlays that host several of his motifs, including his signature at the lateral heel and the “FL” stamp at the medial heel.

J Balvin x Air Jordan 3 “Rio”

Release Date: May 22
Release Price: $250 USD
Where to Buy: SNKRS
Why You Should Cop: Colombian artist J Balvin made noise with Jordan Brand once again last year by outfitting the Air Jordan 3 in a gradient-equipped “Medellín Sunset” colorway. Revisiting the purple-to-yellow coloring, a new “Rio” colorway has been crafted as an homage to his son Rio. Swapping out the off-white upper for black, he again revisits the peaceful sunset of Medellín with its gradient details at the heel.

District Vision x New Balance FuelCell SC Elite v4

Release Date: May 23
Release Price: $265 USD
Where to Buy: New Balance
Why You Should Cop: Los Angeles-based running brand District Vision has reunited with New Balance for their third collaborative project, this time looking to the high-performance FuelCell SC Elite v4. Equipping it in two monochromatic makeovers of black and gray, the two have emphasized the race day shoe’s detailing, especially its sculpted midsole. Its sophisticated colorways see simple “N” logos applied in place of the typically-oversized ones that the silhouette sports while also carrying a “District Vision” branding hit at the lateral heel.

Nike ISPA Link Axis “Triple Black”

Release Date: May 23
Release Price: $300 USD
Where to Buy: SNKRS
Why You Should Cop: Nike’s ISPA division takes innovation seriously and has demonstrated this commitment time and again with its boundary pushing designs. With the ISPA Link Axis, modular design returned to the team’s mind as the foundation of the design, resulting in not only a design that can be completely recycled, but one that is constructed without glue and of 100% recycled materials as well. Its “Triple Black” iteration is the model’s most versatile to date, making it a great option for anyone eager to give the new silhouette a spin.

Sporty & Rich x adidas Handball Spezial

Release Date: May 23
Release Price: TBC
Where to Buy: adidas
Why You Should Cop: Emily Oberg has grown Sporty & Rich from an Instagram mood board to a streetwear staple, in part thanks to her tasteful collaborations with the Three Stripes. For her fourth project with adidas, the two looked to the Handball Spezial and assembled three crisp colorways of green, pink and brown. All three sport a suede build and leather detailing at the Three Stripes and heel tab while also carrying “SPORTY & RICH” text at the lateral above the aforementioned stripes. From there, a gum sole rounds out each pair.

Supreme x Clarks Wallabee

Release Date: May 23
Release Price: TBC
Where to Buy: Supreme
Why You Should Cop: Supreme is back at it with another footwear project, this time connecting with Clarks to assemble three takes on the brand’s legendary Wallabee silhouette. The two have worked on the model many times in the past, including a capsule last spring featuring four embroidered pairs. This time around, Supreme has applied patent leather to the upper of three colorways — crafting a Gucci-esque red and green, an all-black and a taupe pair. Supreme branding arrives at the lateral heel while co-branding hits are included at the sockliner and hangtag.

Reverie by Caroline Hu x adidas Samba

Release Date: May 24
Release Price: TBC
Where to Buy: JUICE
Why You Should Cop: Since teaming up with adidas via his label CLOT last year, Edison Chen has utilized the partnership to invite rising talent such as LVMH Young Designer Award finalist Caroline Hu to bring their own flair to the newly-formed alliance. With the Reverie by Caroline Hu x adidas Sambas, the five resulting designs balance beauty and tradition with their lace and textured silk builds taking on the distinct shape of the Samba.

Air Jordan 12 “Taxi Flip”

Release Date: May 25
Release Price: $200 USD
Where to Buy: SNKRS
Why You Should Cop: With a label rich with as much sneaker history as Jordan Brand carries, there are many avenues by which it can harness nostalgia. For its latest work, the Air Jordan 12, a historic silhouette in its own right, sees its “Taxi” colorway remixed with a new “Taxi Flip” take. Starting with the black and white base, it sets aside the look’s signature yellow hue in favor of “Gym Red” accents at the midfoot, tongue and the toe portion of the outsole. In addition to this, its eyelet hardware towards the collar sees a slick silver finish.

Travis Scott x Air Jordan 1 Low OG “Canary”

Release Date: May 25
Release Price: $150 USD
Where to Buy: SNKRS
Why You Should Cop: Swing and a miss — early intel misled us last week when the newest Travis Scott-designed Air Jordan 1 Low OG was thought to release. Alas, it’s likely to land on shelves this week after Scott awarded pairs of the shoe to the graduating class of Lawerence E. Elkins High — the high school he once attended and the point of inspiration for this white, yellow and blue take on the sneaker. Equipped with La Flame’s typical motifs — including reversed Swooshes at the lateral and Cactus Jack branding at the heel and medial midfoot — this pair is yet another surefire hit from the duo.

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