Kick Game VERSUS - Travis Scott VS. Tinker Hatfield

May 01, 2023 by Joey Birch

Kick Game VERSUS - Travis Scott VS. Tinker Hatfield

The 30th of April marks the birthdays of two of the biggest names in the sneaker industry - Tinker Hatfield and Travis Scott. While both come from different backgrounds with regard to their craft, Tinker being a designer and Travis being a collaborator, both parties have shown exceptional prowess in their curation of sneakers and the legacy they’ll leave behind.

The question is, who is better? 

We’ve looked at some of the duo's best projects to try and get an answer to that question.

OG - One of the earliest sneakers that each individual released. 

Air Max 1 ‘University Red’ (Tinker Hatfield) - The sneaker that kickstarted Nike’s illustrious Air Max lineage. At the time of its release, the Air Max 1 was a highly controversial shoe despite being a technological marvel for its time.

Defying the odds, the Air Max 1 was eventually released in 1987 providing the wearer with the opportunity to wear visible air within the sneaker - a challenge that had been faced during ‘86 as told with the recent Air Max 1 ‘86 model

Nevertheless, the original Air Max 1 is still a popular silhouette with new colourways and collaborations continuing to release.

Air Jordan 1 ‘Mocha’ (Travis Scott) - While not his first collaboration with Nike, the Air Jordan 1 ‘Mocha’ does mark the beginning of Travis Scott’s unparalleled rise within the sneaker industry with many remembering the OG Air Jordan pair as being the sneaker that brought them into the fold. 

What set the Air Jordan 1 ‘Mocha’ apart from the rest, was the re-introduction of the backwards Swoosh. First brought in by Dennis Rodman on the Nike Air Darwin in the 1994-95 NBA season, the design feature stood front and centre in making it so popular. 

Most memorable - Widely regarded to be the biggest release from each individual's collection.

Air Max 90 ‘Infrared’ (Tinker Hatfield) - After the Air Max 1’s release in ‘87, Tinker Hatfield was under pressure to follow up the high level of discussion, controversy and technological advancement. It’s safe to say that he didn’t disappoint. 

Channelling the ethos behind the Swoosh with speed and motion at its core, the Air Max 90 quickly became, and has since remained, one of Nike’s biggest sneakers. Featuring an enlarged Air Unit, light mesh and leather construction in addition to being released in the bold Infrared colourway, a patterned design by Nike, the sneaker is instantly recognisable; sitting in the rafters as one of the, if not the, greatest Air Max silhouette

Nike SB Dunk Low ‘Paisley’ (Travis Scott) - Travis Scott’s contribution to the rise of the Nike Dunk and SB Dunk is undoubtable. Images began to emerge online of the Houston rapper wearing previously converted, since forgotten, pairs of the popular skate shoe which, as can be expected in the modern sneaker climate, meant that the prices of the pairs he wore skyrocketed to new dizzying levels. 

Scott quickly became the face of Nike SB and was eventually rewarded for his influence in 2020 when he received the opportunity to create his own take on the converted silhouette. A blend of paisley print bandana materials in conjunction with thick rope laces ensured that the collaboration was one of Scott’s more intriguing and memorable releases.

Most hyped - The most hyped pair of each individual's collection. 

Nike Mag (Tinker Hatfield) - Arguably Nike’s most hyped sneaker of all time. The Nike Mag was first introduced in Back to the Future 2, providing an iconic pop-cultural moment. After seeing the film in 1989, just two years after the Air Max 1, it seemed near impossible to create a sneaker that could be so technologically advanced. 

However, in 2016, the groundbreaking shoe was lovingly recreated as it was in the original film. Despite taking 37 years for the sneaker to be created for the market, early signs that Nike was looking to bring back the silhouette emerged in 2008 when they created the patent for a self-lacing sneaker which has since become the Nike BB line.

Despite the Mag initially returning in 2011, it was in 2016 that the magic from the original pair was captured with only 89 pairs being created, the raffle brought in over $360,000 from sneaker sales alone with proceeds going to the Michael J. Fox Foundation.


Air Jordan 4 ‘Houston Oilers’ (Travis Scott) - The aforementioned Air Jordan 1 ‘Mocha’ is Travis Scott’s biggest sneaker with regards to the impact it had on the industry. However, the Air Jordan 4 ‘Houston Oilers’ remains one of the most converted and beloved sneakers from the ever-growing collection. 

Scott’s second release with Nike, following the inaugural Air Force 1, the Air Jordan 4 ‘Houston Oilers’ marked the beginning of Scott’s relationship with Jordan Brand, giving an early glimpse of what the duo would bring to the table in the future. 

As Travis Scott’s sneaker influence was beginning to bubble up, so too was the hype around his releases with AJ4 being an early boiling point. With friends and family pairs being spotted including a deep purple suede pair, the interest around the bold blues only grew larger with the sneaker remaining one of the duo's most sought-after projects.

Classic - A sneaker in the designer's collection widely considered to be a ‘classic’ pair.

Air Jordan 4 ‘Bred’ (Tinker Hatfield) - 2022/23 has seen the resurgence of the Air Jordan 4 more than ever before. The second Air Jordan model that Hatfield worked on was a pivotal one off the back of the success of the Air Jordan 3, the sneaker that kept Michael Jordan signed with Nike. 

Playing on the idea of flight, Hatfield constructed the upper to include wings on the medial and lateral sides in addition to featuring his signature Visible Air Unit in the midsole. Out of the original four-pack, the classic Black and Red (also known as Bred) rendition stood head and shoulders above the rest maintaining its title as one of Nike’s greatest classic sneakers. 

Air Force 1 ‘White’ (Travis Scott) - The sneaker that started it all. There’s nothing more classic in Nike’s catalogue than a triple white Air Force 1. Similarly, there’s nothing more classic than Travis Scott’s original Air Force 1 which took the all-leather original and switched out the materials for a thick canvas sitting atop a creamy off-white midsole and a clean gum outsole. 

Early signs signalled that Scott was here to shake up Nike’s equilibrium from the jump. On the heel, Scott turned the ‘Nike Air’ logo upside down, adding Cactus Jack lace covers as well as a range of detachable, swappable, Swooshes that allowed the wearer to customise their shoe on the fly. 

Further amplifying the release and the ‘classic’ title that the Travis Scott Air Force 1 has, the sneaker dropped during ComplexCon in 2017, an event in which sneakers were shoved into the limelight more than ever. Surrounded by other similarly pivotal unveilings including the Pharrell x adidas N.E.R.D Hu NMD, Union LA Air Jordan 1 and the illusive ComplexCon exclusive OFF-White Air Force 1, the Travis Scott Air Force 1 will always be remembered within the pantheon of sneakers that turned the tide on the footwear industries explosive popularity. 

Iconic - Timeless, recognisable and popular. These sneakers are iconic in their design and impact.


Air Jordan 11 ‘Concord’ (Tinker Hatfield) - Trying to whittle down Tinker Hatfield’s most iconic sneaker is no easy feat, but it’s hard to argue against the Air Jordan 11 being a top contender for the title. 

While Michael Jordan is known as the greatest basketball player of all time, there was a time when it appeared that the legendary sportsman may not be playing on the hardwood floor anymore; instead swapping out basketball sneakers, for baseball cleats. When MJ returned to the NBA, it was the Air Jordan 11 that the superstar had on his feet. 

An iconic design inspired by a tuxedo with a patent leather wrap around the midsole in addition to a semi-translucent midsole and carbon fibre shank plate, the Air Jordan 11 has since become a timeless classic within the Air Jordan lineage; so much so that an annual celebration of the shoe takes place each December with fans gearing up for a new yearly colourway.

Air Jordan 6 ‘Olive’ (Travis Scott) - In the same year that Travis released his Air Jordan 33, Air Jordan 1 ‘Mocha’ and Halloween-inspired Air Force 1, he also released the surplus-inspired Air Jordan 6. Marking his third collaboration with Jordan Brand, Scott was well on his way to creating an incredibly strong lineup. 

Whereas before Travis Scott had worked on more converted pairs such as the Air Jordan 1 and Air Force 1, the Air Jordan 6 project showed that the serial collaborator had more up his sleeve, ensuring that the release stood within upper echelons (pardon the pun) of his collaborative projects. 

Illusive - A harder-to-get pair which remains incredibly popular and sought after.


Air Jordan 3 ‘Black Cement’ (Tinker Hatfield) - If there was ever a perfect sneaker, the Air Jordan 3 ‘Black Cement’ is certainly a close contender. The sneaker that kept MJ at Jordan Brand after the lacklustre release of the Air Jordan 2, the 3s are Tinker Hatfield’s magnum opus within his Jordan Brand career creating a shoe that channels every element of Michael Jordan into a wearable commodity. 

With the recent release of the Reimagined Air Jordan 3 ‘White Cement’, one of the original four colourways, thoughts were inevitably dedicated to the sneaker's more popular cousin - the Air Jordan 3 Black Cement. While the shoe has been retroed a couple of times, it’s been 12 years since we last saw it on the market when it was lovingly revived in 2011. 

Nowadays, it’s hard to come across a deadstock pair of the Air Jordan 3 Black Cement which isn’t falling apart from ageing. It’s safe to say that should the Black Cement make a return, it would be a strong contender for the sneaker of the year.


Nike Dunk Low ‘PlayStation’ (Travis Scott) - There are many Travis Scott sneakers that are illusive, from friends and family pairs of the Air Jordan 4 to the artist's first collaboration with Jordan Brand on the Jordan Trunner PE in 2017; getting your hands on a pair of Travis Scott’s sneakers was, and in many ways still is, an illusive process as was shown with the recent release of the Air Jordan 1 Low ‘Olive Swoosh’; said to the final Air Jordan 1 from the duo. 

Nevertheless, there is a sneaker that the Swoosh and Scott have worked on that remains even more inaccessible - the Nike Dunk Low ‘Playstation’. Supposedly released in an extremely limited quantity of 24 pairs, with some wondering whether the sneaker ever actually came out at all, the project remains the rarest pair on the market. 

No stranger to a triple collaboration, Travis Scott and Nike partnered with PlayStation to create an insanely limited friends and family release arriving in a numbered Playstation console box with the artist hinting at this yet-to-be-released studio album Utopia. 

So, we ask the question again. Tinker Vs. Travis, who’ve you got? Let us know in the comments of our recent Instagram post for your chance to win a £150 gift card. Click here to shop the full Tinker Vs. Travis collection. 

To keep up to date with Tinker Hatfield and Travis Scott’s latest projects, keep it Kick Game.