We talked to sneaker fanatic Jason Burke about his epic collection
You’re an avid sneaker collector, and you also sell them on snkrbox.com. How many pairs do you own? I’ve probably owned thousands of pairs of sneakers over the past 30 years. Lately I’ve been downsizing— right now I only have 250. Maybe 500.
How did you get into collecting? I worked as a buyer for Thomas Bata, but I didn’t really get into sneakers until Nike released the Air Jordans. Michael Jordan was respected as an athlete, regardless of race—and his sneakers had street credibility. Back then, we couldn’t buy sneakers online. We had to hunt for them.
What are your favourite brands right now? I wear Vans a lot, whether I’m at the beach or cliff-jumping in Jamaica. And of course, Jordan is close to my heart, but I only wear them on the basketball court.
Which pair would you like your kids to inherit? My OVO Jordan 10s. They were released here during the NBA All-Star weekend in 2016. They represent Toronto at the top of its game.
How many shoes is too many shoes? Too many shoes is when you’re in debt. That’s when you need to turn those shoes into cash. —Giordano Ciampini
Designer Yohji Yamamoto reworked some of Adidas’s most popular shoes using high-tech materials. These Y-3 Ryo high-tops are made using winterized leather, with a detachable waterproof cover. $525. Store.y-3.com.
The Nike Cortez debuted as a distance shoe in 1972 and achieved true pop-cultural clout as Forrest Gump’s runners. Catch this iteration in a Blue Jay colour scheme. $120. Nike.com.
John Mayer designed his Rick and Morty– inspired Air Max 90 IDs. He calls the design Pickle Rick. $200. Nike.com.