PUMA First Round

  • ART.NO: 90669W

If you’re like me, you’d agree that PUMA’s generally distinguished by their Suedes and their States and their Clydes, all of which were silhouettes that found themselves heavily entwined with subcultures like hip hop. However I must admit that it’s their high tops I love, particularly because of how seriously slept on they’ve been over the years.

Ignorance or avoidance (take your pick) aside, it’s true that a few PUMA high tops have made the stage memorable, one of those certainly being the First Round. A basketball shoe that has been pushed out over and over by PUMA in various colorways, materials, and styles, one single staple of the silhouette was it’s cut, so it obviously came as a surprise to me when I got these low versions in my hand.

Whether the low came before the high, I cannot say. Nor can I claim to know if PUMA meant for these vintage, Taiwanese made First Round’s to perform as a basketball shoe like their bigger brother (as they certainly look a lot more like a tennis shoe, to be honest). Unfortunately production date or concept behind the name are also unknown details, and while the shoe may seem wrapped entirely in mystery there are some notable features worth mentioning.

First, an all white colorway definitely says something. This is a brave move by any standards, but it certainly fits into two categories: classy footwear and straight forward, no frills, let’s get down to business, basketball kicks. Yes, there are a lot of tennis shoes (and of course other sports wear) that gets an all white release, however it was (and still is) a very frequent move for basketball shoes to go all blanco on us.

Second, check out the sole unit. Interesting side texture and an even more interesting upper trim, featuring a zigzag pattern that runs around it. I’ve never seen anything like this on a PUMA shoe before, and while it’s just a tiny detail, I think we all know that it’s the details that count sometimes.

So even though we’ve got an undeniable chicken and egg situation here, that doesn’t lessen the quality and care that PUMA’s team put into these, at least a couple decades ago.

written by Dylan Cromwell

photography by errol

shoes contributed by Fritze