In the wee 90's Nike had 'Air' and Reebok had its 'Pump'. The Coke and Pepsi of sneakers locked horns to corner the basketball and "cross-trainer" market.
The Reebok Omni Zone II was released by the perennial sneaker war underdog in 1991. This was the shoe that people may recall that the Boston Celtic rookie at the time, Dee Brown wore when he won his Slam Dunk title. He wore the Black/White-Orange colorway and pumped them up right before he commenced his winning jam! Upon completing his winning dunk the crowd went silent as Dee bent forward to deflate his sneakers silent and then crowd roared... a magic moment for the Reebok Pump.
Look, 1991 was a much simpler time, OK?
According to Reebok, The Pump System let you "surround your foot with just the right support where you need it most. Squeeze The Pump to inflate the lining inside your shoes. The more you squeeze, the better the fit. You determine what feels right. The release valve gives you complete control for a perfect fit every time."
So yeah, I was never all that into sneakers but I had a pair of Reebok Pumps. Mines were mad high hi-tops, black with grey trim and laces. Big orange basketball on top so I could surround my foot with just the right support where I needed it most. Ha!
But then my Pumps got stolen. Stealing sneakers back then was rampant. You'd hear folklore about kids getting stuck up after school by a few kids that said "Run yo sneakers". Tales of kids torn and tattered walking home barefoot traveled like a roving rainstorm.
But I didn't get jacked for my Pumps, they were stolen from my hallway in my mothers building. I had stepped in some sweet dog shit and left my Pumps out in the hallway to dry after washing them off. The next morning they were gone. One of the Russian's who was doing work in the building must've ran off with them. I hope he's doing well.
I saw Pumps have returned now with all this neon hysteria over the unremembered 80's. I saw a pair the other day and got nostalgic. I almost wanted to try on a pair, just to, y'know, feel my feet surrounded with just the right support where I needed it most.
I nearly bought a pair of the Voltron ones. I woulda bought a fake gold rope chain on Canal, some sort of awful Bape zip-up, and a retro-boombox so I could bl'ast my Cut Copy and Chromeo mp3's at the food court.