Nike Is Continuing the Doernbecher Freestyle Program With an Air Jordan 1 ‘What The’ Blending Designs from 14 Kids

Update on March 2, 2021 at 6:50 p.m. ET.

The Air Jordan 1 “What The” Doernbecher auction was forced to come to a halt last week after OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital detected suspicious bidding. On March 2, the OHSU Foundation revealed in a statement that due to an “overwhelming number of invalid bids” the “integrity” of the auction was “compromised.”

As a result, the sneaker will now be included in an eBay auction launching at 12 p.m. PT today. The bidding will close at 12 p.m. PT on Sunday, March 7.

What We Originally Reported

Nike is continuing to honor hospitalized children at the OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital with its Doernbecher Freestyle program.

Although the initiative was forced to pause in 2020 due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Nike found a way to push forward this year with one unique shoe rather than a collection. A small team of Nike designers banded together to create a special-edition Air Jordan 1 that pays tribute to the patients of OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital.

Called the Air Jordan 1 “What The” Doernbecher, the shoe features original Air Jordan Doernbecher designs created by the 14 patient-designers of the hospital. Details of the sneaker include the right and left shoe grounded in even and odd numbers, respectively. There are also elements of each shoe where the even and odd numbers cross. Nike explained, “This is a nod to the ups and downs that the patients may face throughout their lives.”

Other elements of the shoe include paisley patterns, tropical elements, metallic accents, black and red colors and more.

Nike Doernbecher Freestyle "What The" Air Jordan 1.
Nike Doernbecher Freestyle “What The” Air Jordan 1.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Nike

Seventeen pairs of the special Air Jordan 1 will be auctioned off between Feb. 5 and March 3 to benefit OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital. The first pair will be auctioned off to the highest bidder during the Virtually Freestyle event today. The remaining pairs will be auctioned on eBay beginning at 12 p.m. PT on Feb. 26 and ending at 12 p.m. PT on March 3.

The annual program calls on patients from the hospital to design their own Nike shoes. It first launched in 2003 and has since raised over $29 million for the hospital.

Past designs include reinterpretations of the Nike SB Zoom, the Air Max Triax 96 and the Zoom Pegasus Turbo 2 to name a few.

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