Lobster SB Dunks

The shoe may be rad the pursuit of it is not.

A few posts ago, I wrote the Nike Air Max Penny 1s won’t make for a great investment because they don’t have the same pulls as Jordans or SB Dunks. And I stand by that statement. 

But today I’m gonna rant on the SB Dunks a bit. There are some rad SB Dunks out there, but the pursuit of them is anything but.

First I’ll give a little background. The SB in Nike SB stands for skateboarding. Back in the 1990s when skateboarding was at its peak, Nike wanted to move into the skateboarding market. I skateboarded back then it the topic came up fairly often. We would wonder when the Nike skateboarding shoes would arrive and how would skateboarders react, and if the small skateboarding shoe companies would be able to compete. My thought was skateboarders would reject Nike as being too “corporate.” I was right, for a little while.

In 1997, Nike finally released some shoes marketed to skateboarders and they bombed. At the time no one wanted them. Skaters were mostly loyal to the shoe brands they were already wearing. Brands like Enties, es, DC, and Emerica ruled the day. Nike’s effort failed, this time.

In 2000, Nike tried again, this time creating a new brand called SB within the Nike umbrella. The initial rollout of shoes included the SB Dunk Low. This was the same as the classic Nike Dunk. This worked better than the 1997 effort but still not great.

Then in 2004, Nike made the SB Dunk different from the regular dunks. They massively increased the padding in the tongue. Added some padding to the shoe collar and heavier stitching to hold up to the wear and tear of skateboarding. This was coupled with the signing of some superstar skateboarders in 2004 and 2005. They were starting to find traction now. Nike then began the process of issuing special edition SB Dunks often times in collaborations with other brands.

In 2005, two events firmly established the SB Dunks in the streetwear scene. The SB Dunk Tiffanys and the Staple Pigeon SB Dunks. The demand for these limited editions shoes was huge and immediate. There was even a small riot outside the Staple store in New York when they were issued. The streetwear scene was crazy for SB Dunks. Did you notice the change there? These were skateboarding shoes, but now they are the shoes to have in streetwear. There was always a lot of overlap between skateboarding and streetwear. But there is a nuanced division. Even today, the rest of the Nike SB line is used for skateboarding. It’s rare to see someone skateboarding in Nike SB Dunks. That leads to my rant.

Every year Nike releases some SB Dunks in regular colorways. Nothing special about these. But oddly, they aren’t easy to get. I checked the Nike website today and there are no regular SB Dunks on the site for sale. They used to not even sell them online for awhile, you had to go to a skateshop. But lets look elsewhere. I checked CCS and Skate Warehouse. Both sites carry the Nike SB line and have plenty of shoes in stock, but neither have any SB Dunks. So if you are a skateboarder and want to buy a regular pair of SB Dunks to skate in, it’s going to be difficult because there are none to buy.

In addition to the regular colorways, Nike releases a few limited special editions every year. The demand for these varies from high to insane. If getting regular SB dunks is difficult, getting the special editions is impossible. Most people will never even get a chance.

Let’s look at the “upcoming” drop of the Concepts x Nike SB Dunk Low Orange Lobsters. Concepts is a streetwear retailer/brand in Boston. They have collaborated with Nike before on SB Dunks. Together they have issued the Green Lobster SB Dunks, the Premium Lobster SB Dunks, the Purple Lobster SB Dunks, the Yellow Lobster SB Dunks, and the Blue Lobster SB Dunks. The lobster theme is because they are from Boston and the shoes do have some lobster attributes. It’s cool.

And now we are waiting for the Orange Lobsters. Orange is a more legit lobster color than purple, blue, and green, so demand is going to be very very high.

But if you want a pair that’s too bad because you probably don’t have a chance. If you live near the Concepts store in Boston you have a chance. Otherwise not really. A few collectors will get lucky. But the vast majority will go to resellers.

The resellers will get the bulk of the shoes in a few ways.

One, a lot of the shoes that are sent to resellers will never make it on the shelves. Store employees and owners are either reselling them or colluding with resellers for a share of the profits.

Two, for the shoes that will be sold online, there are bots designed to buy as many pairs of the desired shoes as possible within seconds of availability. If you are lucky enough to add the shoe to your cart, by the time you enter your credit card information and click buy, the shoe is already sold out.

And third, inside information is regularly bought and resold in private telegram groups. People who work at Nike and retailers can sell the information on what will available, when and where. The members of these telegram groups will have an upper hand at snagging these shoes.

The inside information can be critical. For example: On November 15, Hype Beast posted a piece about the upcoming shoe drop. The article states the shoe is “expected” to be released on December 2nd via Nike online and select retailers but Nike hasn’t confirmed. Nike keeps the information secret. It’s easy to see how having insider information can be so important.

The other weird thing is how so many people already have a shoe that hasn’t been released yet. Flight Club has the Orange Lobsters available in every size. And everyday there are new listings and sales of the Orange Lobsters on eBay. And the listings aren’t just coming from the Boston area where a lot of shoes will be going to the Concepts store. How are people in Tennessee getting these shoes before they are out? 😐🙄

36 listings for a show that isn’t out yet?

I’m pretty busy, am I supposed to just check the Nike website daily? And then hourly on December 2nd? I can’t and won’t do that.

So if you really want these shoes and don’t live in Boston. You should probably join a private telegram group for the cost of $100 a month. They will teach you how to use the bots, which you’ll have to pay for separately. Once you get a pair or multiple pairs you can list them for sale on eBay or Flight Club for a massive markup.

Current price for a size 11.5 SB Dunk Green Lobster on Flight Club: $1,734

Current price for a size 11.5 SB Dunk Premium Lobster on Flight Club: $3,554

Current price for a size 11 SB Dunk Blue Lobster on Flight Club: $3,504

Current price for a size 11.5 SB Dunk Purple Lobster on Flight Club: $1,354

These shoes will never be worn at those prices. They definitely never see a skateboard.

And Nike won’t do anything to change it. The hype-sellout-repeat thing is working well for them.

Collectively, I think it’s all a little absurd. Okay, I’m done ranting. Call me jealous or a hater, that’s fine.

That’s it for now.

Stay rad. 😎