Air Jordan is a brand of shoes and athletic clothing designed, owned, and produced by Michael Jordan for Nike’s Jordan Brand subsidiary. The shoes, informally referred to in the plural as Air Jordan’s or simply J’s, were first released for public consumption in 1985 after Michael Jordan wore them in 1984 as a rookie; thereafter, new designs were released annually. Since its introduction into the sports shoe market, the Air Jordan evolved to the original basketball shoes to models for different uses, including I-XXIII). Air Jordan currently sponsors 19 active NBA players, including Chris Paul, Ray Allen, and Carmelo Anthony. They also endorse Nike Air Jordan products.
Air Jordan 1
Air Jordan I, first Nike sneakers for Michael Jordan. The Air Jordan 1 was designed by Peter Moore. The Air Jordan 1 was first released in 1985, in a red and black colorway to match the uniform of the Chicago Bulls, the team for which Michael Jordan played. This red and black color-way was later outlawed by NBA Commissioner David Stern for not having any white on them. Michael Jordan would wear the shoes anyway, and each time he stepped on the court with the Air Jordan 1 he would be fined five thousand dollars.
Air Jordan 2
The success of the Air Jordan 1 encouraged Nike to release the New Air Jordan in 1986 for the new basketball season. Designed by Peter Moore and Bruce Kilgore, the original Air Jordan II was unique in that it was made in Italy giving the shoe a luxury feel. The Air Jordan II was originally retailed at $64.99.
Air Jordan 3
The Air Jordan III was designed by Tinker Hatfield. By that time Michael Jordan was ready to leave Nike, but the Jordan III changed his mind. It was the first Air Jordan to feature a visible air unit on the heel, the new Jumpman logo, an elephant print trim and tumble leather to give it a luxury look. The Air Jordan III was also famous for the humorous ads depicting Spike Lee as Mars Blackmon, the character he played in his film ‘She’s Gotta Have It’. This campaign was known as the “Mars and Mike” ad campaign, which was one of Nike’s most successful advertisement campaigns.
Air Jordan 4
In 1989 The Jordan IV shoe was released into the public, designed by Tinker Hatfield. It was the first Jordan shoe released on the global market. Spike Lee, the director and actor helped in the ads for Jordan IV. Spike Lee had featured the Air Jordan IV in his movie Do The Right Thing. The Air Jordan Bordeaux “Spiz’ike IV” were specifically made for Spike Lee in order to pay respect for advertising the Jordan Cement 4’s.
Air Jordan 5
The Air Jordan V was released on February 1990, designed by Tinker Hatfield again. Some elements were carried over from the Air Jordan IV, but overall they were a completely new look. Some of its new features were a reflective tongue, translucent rubber soles and lace locks. Hatfield is believed to have drawn inspiration for the Air Jordan V from World War II fighter planes, which was most notably visible in the shark teeth shapes on the midsole.
Air Jordan 6
The Air Jordan VI had a new design by Tinker Hatfield and released in 1991. Later that year the Bulls defeated the Lakers in the 1991 NBA Finals, with Jordan named as the most valuable player. That was also the first NBA Championship won by Jordan and the Bulls. The Jordan VI was also seen in the film White Men Can’t Jump, which was produced in 1991 and released one year later.
Air Jordan 7
Air Jordan VII sneakers specially released for 1992 Barcelona Olympics. The Air Jordan VII was released in 1992 with a new design by Tinker Hatfield. This shoe introduced the huarache technology which allowed the shoes to better conform to the user’s foot. A few things were no longer featured on the new model, such as the visible air sole, the Nike Air logo, and the yellowing soles. This was the first Air-Jordan in the line that did not have any distinctive “Nike Air” on the outer portions of the shoe. When Jordan went to compete at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics to play for the US Men’s Basketball Team (also known as the “Dream Team”), Nike released a special Olympic color combo of the Air Jordan VII model which had Jordan’s Olympic jersey number, 9 even though most of the jordans that were made, especially the Air Jordan VII had a “23” on the back.
Air Jordan 8
The Air Jordan VIII was released to coincide with the 1992–1993 NBA season. The eighth model of the Air Jordan was noticeably heavier than its predecessors. This shoe had a lot more detail than most of the earlier Air Jordan’s such as two crossover straps on each shoe and a Jumpman. Thus the Air Jordan VIII model became known as the “Punisher” because of the advanced basketball ankle support and enhanced traction. This shoe contains a full length air sole, polyurethane midsole, polycarbonate shank plate, and two crossover straps (for added support and more custom fit).
Air Jordan 9
Originally released in November 1993, the Air Jordan IX model was the first model released after Michael Jordan’s retirement. Jordan never played a full season of NBA Basketball wearing these shoes. This model was inspired by baseball cleats that Jordan wore when playing minor-league baseball.
Air Jordan 10
This was released in 1995, It was the first Air Jordan to feature a lightweight phylon midsole. The shoe also featured all of Michael Jordan’s accomplishments on the outsole of the shoe.
Air Jordan 11
This model was designed by Tinker Hatfield. When the shoe launched, Michael Jordan (retired from basketball by then) was trying in minor baseball leagues. Hatfield designed the sneaker waiting for Jordan to comeback and hoping he would play in them. The ballistic mesh upper of the sneaker was meant to give the Air Jordan XI lighter and more durable than the past sneakers. Further changes came with the use of a carbon fiber spring plate in the clear out sole, giving the shoe better torque when turning on the court. The highlight and arguably most well-known aspect of the shoe is the patent leather mudguard. Patent leather was lightweight, when compared to genuine leather, and also tended not to stretch as much – a property to help keep the foot within the bounds of the shoe bed during direction changes on the court. The patent leather gave the XI a “formal” look. When this shoe released, some wore this model with business suits instead of dress shoes.
Air jordan 12
The Air Jordan XII was inspired by Nisshoki (the Japanese flag), and a 19th-century women dress boot. However, featuring gold-plated steel lace loops, embossed lizard skin pattern and zoom air, this model set a new direction in style and technology in shoe design. Though not as light weight as previous models, the construction and firmness of the shoe is widely considered to be the most durable and sturdy shoes from the Air Jordan line.
Air Jordan 13
in 1997 Air Jordan XIII’s were released into the public . This model was known for its cushioning along the feet, designed by Hatfield. The Black Panther was the inspiration for the Air Jordan XIII, the sole resembles the pads on a panther’s paw. But also the panther is the hologram on the back of the shoe which imitates a panther’s eyes in the dark when light is shined at them.
Air Jordan 14
The Air Jordan XIV was originally released from 1998 to 1999. The Air Jordan XIV co-styled by the famous Tinker Hatfield and Mark Smith was made race ready and equipped with the Jordan Jumpman insignia on a Ferrari shaped badge. In addition, these shoes include breathable air ducts on the outer sole.
Air Jordan 15
The Air Jordan XVs were released in 1999–2000. Reggie Miller wore it during the 2000 NBA Finals. This was the first shoe after Jordan’s retirement. The design of the XV’s originated from the aircraft prototype X-15, which was developed by NASA during the 1950s. The sides of the XV were made from woven kevlar fibre.
Air jordan 16
Air Jordan XVIs, designed by Nike’s Senior Footwear Designer Wilson Smith, were released in 2001. Unique to the Air Jordan XVI was a gaiter/shroud that covered the shoe and could be removed to give the shoe a new look. Not only was this for fashion purposes, it also had a thermal functionality.
Air jordan 17
This pair of Jordan’s come equipped with Keefer, which held the shoes and a compact disc containing the Air Jordan XVII song. The retail price of the shoe was US$200. The defining functional design element of the Air Jordan XVII model, which was later replicated on the Air Jordan XXIII model, was the reinforced mid-sole which provided a sturdy and stable chassis for the shoe.
Air jordan 18
The Air Jordan XVIII shoe was released in 2003, and was the shoe for Jordan’s last season, in which he played for the Washington Wizards. The shoe was designed by Air Jordan Senior Footwear Designer, Tate Kuerbis, The inspiration for the design came from a number of things; sleek racing lines of the auto world, carbon fibre-based monocoque of F1 race cars, race car driving shoes (rubber heel wrap) and Fine Italian dress shoes (bold stitching on the soles).
Air Jordan 19
Released in 2004, this is the first Jordan release after his third, and final, retirement which came after the 2002–2003 NBA season. The design was inspired by the Black Mamba snake, The Air Jordan XIX used innovative materials. The upper section of shoe was developed in collaboration with the global materials consultancy Material ConneXion, who sourced Nike a sleeving normally used in architectural applications for protecting PVC pipes from bursting.
Air Jordan 20
The Air Jordan XX was also inspired by bicycling shoes. The strap was placed in the center of the shoe over the laces. It also helped to create a tighter fit and increased support.