Is Penny Hardaway’s Iconic ‘Royal Blue’ Nike Foamposite Being Rereleased Early?

One of the most memorable basketball sneakers of the ’90s is said to be returning to shelves sooner than originally expected.

As the Nike Air Foamposite One prepares to celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2017, Nike Sportswear has readied a retro release of the original “Royal Blue” colorway made famous by former NBA standout Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway. Dubbed the Air Foamposite One XX, it turns out that this release could be hitting retailers ahead of its previously reported January drop date.

Nike Air Foamposite One
The Nike Air Foamposite One in its original “Royal Blue” colorway.

Official images of the sneakers have made their way to the nike.com servers, which is often an indicator that an online release is imminent. Furthermore, a Dec. 15 release date has been circulating for these Foamposites, although there has been no official confirmation from the brand.

The Nike Air Foamposite One is beloved by sneakerheads for its rugged Foamposite shell upper, which is created with a molded polyurethane liquid. During the 2000s, the unique sneakers became a street-style staple throughout the East Coast due to their bootlike durability that was able to withstand winter weather. This led to Nike in 2008 creating the ACG Foamdome boot — a hybrid of the Foamposite One and the ACG Goadome — and that shoe has also recently resurfaced at retailers such as Jimmy Jazz.

Nike’s current “12 Soles: Past, Present and Future of Basketball” campaign has teased a yet-to-be-unveiled “Mystery Drop,” so there’s a possibility that these “Royal Blue” Foamposites could be pegged for a surprise reveal.

Anfernee "Penny" Hardaway
Former Orlando Magic guard Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway (left) wearing the “Royal Blue” Nike Air Foamposite One during May 1997.
CREDIT: AP/REX/Shutterstock

When the Nike Air Foamposite One “Royal Blue” is officially released, it will be priced at $230 with availability from nike.com and select Nike Sportswear retailers.

Nike Air Foamposite One
The Nike Air Foamposite One was originally released in 1997 and made famous by former NBA standout Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway.
Nike Air Foamposite One
This “Royal Blue” Nike Air Foamposite One was worn by Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway during the prime of his NBA career with the Orlando Magic.
Nike Air Foamposite One
The Nike Air Foamposite One “Royal Blue” is set to return this holiday season.
Nike Air Foamposite One
The heel of the Nike Air Foamposite One featuring Anfernee “Penny” Hardaway’s “One Cent” branding.
Nike Air Foamposite One
The Nike Air Foamposite One features a translucent rubber outsole.

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