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Nike CJ81 Trainer Max Unveiled

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Behind every great on-field moment lies an athlete’s relentless dedication to training. Calvin Johnson’s first signature training shoe, the Nike CJ81 Trainer Max is designed to amplify his powerhouse athletic ability on the field and his dedication off it.

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The Nike CJ81 Trainer Max features adaptive traction, lockdown support and a cushioning system that will sustain Johnson’s grueling training regimen.

“Nike designers approached my CJ81 Trainer in the same way they approached my cleat, taking insights directly from the way I train,” said Johnson. “I told them my cleat should be built like a sports car for game day – low and lean with a tight suspension so I can feel the ground. But my trainers should feel like an SUV — a comfortable ride for my long training days that doesn’t sacrifice performance and protection.”

His size, speed and quickness demand a trainer that offers full range of motion resulting in a low-cut version with the performance benefits and ankle support of a mid. Much like the cleat, the CJ81 trainer features a new lightweight proprioceptive collar that allows full freedom of movement without sacrificing lateral ankle stability and support.

The CJ81 Trainer Max provides a strong arch foundation to support Calvin’s powerful, explosive movements while training. A dynamic mid-foot arch strap provides side-to-side and heel lock-down, as well as cradled customized support around the arch.

The outsole features a responsive on-demand traction system and an enhanced traction pattern designed for multiple purposes and varied surfaces. The Max Air unit provides the ultimate cushioned ride and enhanced impact protection for intense training. The engineered diamond star perforation pattern across the forefoot and side panel enables the upper to conform to the foot for a more customized fit, while also delivering enhanced breathability.

Baseball came naturally to Johnson as a kid, but Sandy Creek High School is the place where he fell in love with the game of football. The game didn’t come easily at first. Johnson struggled in his ability to catch the ball and almost walked away from the sport completely. The red, white and blue CJ81 Trainer Max “Sandy Creek” pays homage to the Sandy Creek Patriots and the coaching staff who helped him stick with the game, focus on his training and ultimately hone his skills to become the powerhouse athlete he is today.

Nike designers chose slick, smooth overlay materials on the upper as a nod to Johnson’s “slick hands” that hindered him from catching balls in his younger years. Johnson’s transformation in high school also mirrors the school’s motto “From Good to Great,” which is printed on the inside of the strap.

Sandy Creek High School recently retired the No. 81 in honor of Calvin, and he continues to hold a free community camp at the very school that helped him realize his dream.

The CJ81 Trainer Max “The Opening” colorway launches on the heels of The Opening presented by Nike Football — the seventh annual ultimate football competition among the nation’s top high school prospects.

Johnson has defied athletic boundaries both on and off the field from an early age. His 6’5”, 236 lb. frame wasn’t likely to produce a 42-inch vertical leap or a 4.35 second 40-yard dash at the NFL Combines – especially when he wasn’t even able to catch the ball at the start of eighth grade. No one knew that his size, strength and speed would add up to an almost superhuman athletic ability. To that end, “The Opening” colorway honors Johnson’s great athletic feats.

The shocking contrast of volt with blue accents highlights Calvin’s “shock the world” performances – a phrase that is also printed on the inside strap of the trainer.

Small details are inscribed inside touting his height, weight, vertical leap, 40-yard dash time, and his mammoth 6’10” wingspan. Johnson’s “shock the world” performances were a signal of his arrival, and continue to be a testament to his training.

The CJ81 Trainer Max “Sandy Creek” will be available starting June 29, and the CJ81 Trainer Max “The Opening” will be available July 10 at Nike retail locations and online at

Source: Nike, Inc.

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