Retired NBA Vet Derek Anderson Convinced Michael Jordan to Make Air Jordan XI’s a Low Top Sneaker

Derek Anderson may be an NBA champion as a member of the Miami Heat, an NCAA National Champion as a Kentucky Wildcat and a published author, but guess what?

You can add shoe designer to his resume!

While chatting with the A&M Sports Academy during their March Madness Fundraiser, Saturday in Manhattan, Anderson, who has a lifetime contract with the Jordan Brand, mentioned to folks in attendance that he helped in the design of the low top version of the Air Jordan XI sneaker.

After his keynote speech, Scoop B Radio Overtime got the skinny on the particulars of that design process.


“I was sitting in the office with Michael Jordan,” Anderson told me on Scoop B Radio Overtime. “We were all sitting at the table. I was used to playing in low cuts, so I told him, ‘Can’t we cut these shoes off? He looked at me and was like: ‘What?’ And I was like: ‘I just wanna cut that shoe off, I like these in a low cut. He said: ‘Let’s try it.’ We tried it and we came up with a low cut shoe and I’ve been wearing low cut ever since.”

Check Out Derek Anderson and Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson the Air Jordan 11 sneaker


Anderson was one of the first Jordan Brand signees when MJ decided to make current players ambassadors of that shoe company. That exclusive list included athletes like Eddie Jones, Ray Allen, Vin Baker and  Derek Jeter. Today it has expanded by leaps and bounds with athletes like Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony, Joe Johnson, C.C. Sabathia and Blake Griffin.

Any chance Derek Anderson has a top three favorite Jordan shoe? “I don’t have a top three Jordan,” he said. I played in everything. Everything low cut. But to me, 3, 4s and 11s.”

Anderson was the 13th pick in the 1997 NBA Draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers. He’d play ten years in the league where he’d average 12 points a game playing for the Portland Trail Blazers, Charlotte Bobcats, Houston Rockets, San Antonio Spurs, Los Angeles Clippers and Miami Heat.

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About Brandon Robinson

Brandon 'Scoop B' Robinson is a managing editor and columnist at RESPECT Magazine. Follow him on Twitter: @ScoopB and Instagram: @Scoop_B. As a 12 year old, he was a Nets reporter from 1997-1999, co-hosting a show called Nets Slammin' Planet with former New Jersey Net Albert King and Nets play-by-play man Chris Carrino. He's also been a writer and radio host at CBS and a staff writer at The Source Magazine. He's a graduate of both Eastern University and Hofstra University. You can catch him daily on the Scoop B Radio Podcast. Visit to listen. For inquiries and to contact Brandon 'Scoop B' Robinson visit