Air Jordan

From - Online Sneaker Encyclopedia

Nike Air Jordan

We have a completed list of Nike Air Jordan shoes 1 through 21. We have release dates, pictures, production number, production date and more for almost every Air Jordan shoe. We have a completed list of Nike Air Jordan shoes 1 through 21. We have release dates, pictures, production number, production date and more for almost every Air Jordan shoe.

Nike Air Jordan "Jumpman" Logo
Nike Air Jordan "Jumpman" Logo

Air Jordan Series

Nike Air Jordan Release Dates

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More Jordan Shoes


More Jordan Shoes

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Nike Air Jordan General Information

-The Air Jordan is a brand of Nike basketball shoe named after Michael Jordan. Jordan signed an endorsement deal with Nike in 1984. Today, Air Jordans are generally classified by their release and model: Originals (OG), Retros, Retro's, Samples. Air Jordans are worn and endorse by athletes such Roy Jones Jr and Carmelo Anthony. The company started to break ground in 1985 with the release of the Air Jordan I. - -

History - -Early in 1984, Nike was a struggling shoe company. The running shoe phenomenon that has fueled their sales in previous years was slowly dying and they needed a way to revitalize and reinvent themselves in order to appeal to another segment of the market. At the same time, rookie player Michael Jordan was already endorsing several products, but Nike hoped that his appeal would generate sales. Jordan, though, had other ideas. He had always preferred Adidas or the Converse shoes endorsed by North Carolina Coach, Dean Smith, and hoped to sign on with either company. Converse, with Larry Bird and Magic Johnson on board as spokesmen, were not interested in offering a better deal than Nike, and Adidas wasn't interested at all at the time; perhaps due to Kathe Dassler's death the same year. While Jordan, himself, did not initially see the significance of Nike's offer, his agent, David Falk, saw a golden opportunity in Nike's offer to create a new line of shoes called "Air Jordans." and urged him to give Nike a chance. - -

Really Not That Interested..

-At that time, there was not a tremendous impact from a shoe endorsement, and few companies were willing to risk so much of their marketing budget to bet on one athlete to promote their products. An athlete as paid for wearing the products but little else resulted from an endorsement.It's possible that Jordan's reluctant attitude stemmed from this fact as much as his allegiance to Converse and Adidas products. - -Nike saw something special in Michael Jordan, though. They saw a chance, an opportunity. He was a champion with personality, charisma, and heart, and they were willing to put the company on the line. They knew from the beginning that he would be a star and wanted to help him get therer. Finally, after much persuasion from his manager and parents, the reluctant rookie agreed to fly to the Nike headquarters in Portland, Oregon to view a special video presentation and proposal though he later stated in retrospect that he went with no intention of signing with Nike. - -The video presentation featured slow-motion clips of Jordan's college career and some of his high-flying Olympic moves with a background of then hit music "Jump" by the Pointer Sisters. Nike Head Designer, Peter Moore presented sketches of AJ1 shoes, jumpsuits, and sports apparel, all in black and red. Michael's remarks upon seeing the designs were less than enthusiastic. He is reported to have said, - -"I can't wear that shoe, those are Devil colors" - -Throughout the entire meeting Jordan was reported to seem disinterested and bored, but as he and Falk left the meeting, Jordan said to his agent, "Let's make the deal." - -

A Legacy (and a Controversy) is Born

-With those four words, the Air Jordan legacy was born. Nike signed Jordan to a $2.5 million deal for 5 years, plus royalties and other fringe benefits. Peter Moore created the first AJ Logo with a basketball with wings lifting it. The introduction of the Air Jordan I turned the athletic shoe industry upside down. Before the AJ I, most basketball shoes were white, but the bold black and red styling of the Jordan I flouted this convention. The NBA banned the shoe from the league in response, but Jordan wore them anyway, racking up serious fines of up to $5000 a game. Nike, of course, was more than happy to pay these to keep the shoes on Jordan's feet and in the public eye. All this controversy and Jordan's spectacular numbers that year served to put the Air Jordan line on the road to becoming a household name. - -


-After winning 1986-87 Slam Dunk competition at Seattle Colliseum, the Jordan logo changed to the familiar Jumpman logo of today, but when it came time to talk about the Air Jordan III, Michael was ready to bolt. Reaction to the Air Jordan II, due in part to the high retail price, hadn't been stellar and designers Peter Moore and Rob Strasser had left Nike to start their own company. They began to court Jordan, hoping to develop the business around him This was a turning point for the line; a make-it-or-break-it moment. It was at this time that Tinker Hatfield stepped in to help the struggling shoe line. Immediately, Hatfield did something completely new and unheard of. His first instinct was to sit down and talk with Michael one on one and ask for his input about the design. Hatfield has stated that this was a very tense time. No one had ever approached the business of designing a shoe like this and Jordan had never had anyone ask his opinion until that time. Ultimately, though, it was the good advice of Michael's father that saw it through. It's reported that he advised his son to staty with the people who had done a good job for him. Eventually the process of designing the shoes and matching apparal drew Jordan in and helped reinforce his commitment to Nike. At Jordan's request, the Air Jordan III was a three-quarter cut basketball shoe made of high quality, lighter than average materials. This non-standard approach to the process of designing basketball shoes led the Air Jordan III to rocket off the charts with its popularity, and Tinker went on to design all the Jordan models up to the Jordan XV. With the release of the Air Jordan XV and Jordan's second retirement, both Hatfield and Jordan stepped back from the Jordan line and other designers took the reigns to continue to the legacy. - -

Moving Out

-Air Jordan Shoes were a part of the Nike, Inc. family until late in 1997 Nike unveiled a new marketing plan and Jordan became its own sub-brand of Nike. To mark this change, the new Jordan Brand released the Air Jordan XIII, Air Jordan Team, and Air Jordan Trainers. From this point on, Jordan Brand products no longer featured the Nike name or Nike Swoosh, and their only connection to Nike,Inc is a fine print address for Nike headquarters to be used for insurance purposes. - -=== The Shoes Changed the World === - -Air Jordan shoes have consistently been among the best selling basketball shoes since their creation in 1985. The Jordan brand is a household name and people of all ages and social strata line up eagerly for the release of the latest model. Some of this success can be attributed to the fact that the shoes, from the Jordan III to the most recent model, have always started with their namesake, Michael Jordan. The designers take his ideas, hobbies, and life into account and incorporate these feelings into the shoes. A number of Jordans have been designed after Jordan's cars and some of the more recent models, like the the Jordan XXI (Jordan 21) on the way, some wonder when the Air Jordan line will be retired while others speculate that, in honor of the man, the last Air Jordan will be the Jordan XXIII (Jordan 23). No matter what happens to the signature Air Jordan line, it's a good bet that the brand and its tradition of quality, high-fashion basketball and athletic shoes will continue long after Air Jordans have retired. - - -== Evolution == - - -

General Info

-Apart from the new Air Jordan models that are being released, Jordan Brand also provides a whole line of apparel and shoes for fashion, training, and casual wear. Not just a basketball shoes, the Jordan brand has released the Jordan Trunner, the Team Deuce-Trey, the Jordan Cue, and the Jordan Jumpman Team FBI. The following is a brief look at the evolution of signature Air Jordan shoes. -

The Jordan I (1985)

-The Air Jordan I was designed by Peter Moore and marked a new era in the design of basketball shoes. The black/red model was banned by the NBA due to NBA color rules and this actually helped to create more publicity and more interest for the shoes. Whether this was a marketing ploy from Nike or not, it helped to generate the interest that, to date, has supported twenty-one different Air Jordan shoes, numerous retro versions, and limited editions. - -The original Air Jordan I came with a double set of laces to match the two colors of the shoe. For example, the black/red's came with one set of black laces and one set of red laces. - -The white/black-red and black/red Jordan I was released as a retro in 1994 and sold very poorly, however in 2001 they released them again in patent leather and the demand was much greater. Despite the changing of the times, the Air Jordan line has managed to survive controversy and changes in fashion while producing a quality basketball shoe. - -Fact: The Nike Air Jordan I is one of the most counterfeited shoes of the Air Jordan line. - -

Air Jordan II (1986)

-The Air Jordan II was designed by Bruce Kilgore and just as its predecessor it showed a great innovative design. The low-tops were produced in Italy and and were far more stylish than the ordinary basketball shoe. - -Surprisingly this is the only original Air Jordan ever that has not been made in a black version. While there were plans to release the Air Jordan II in black, these never became a reality for the original release of the Jordan II. - -The white/black AJ II's were retroed in 1994 in limited quantities. Just like the Air Jordan Retro I they sold very poorly and were often found deeply discounted at shoe stores nationwide. - -The Jordan II have been recently re-retroed, finally in black leather. The Jordan Retro II is also available in white/varsity red-black. -

Jordan III (1988)

-The design of the Air Jordan III was totally different from the Jordan I and Jordan II. It was the first pair of Jordan shoes that showed a visible air sole. The designer behind this innovation was Tinker Hatfield who designed every Air Jordan model up to the 15th and has recently returned to design the Jordan XX. - -This was also the very first Air Jordan to feature the Jumpman logo instead of the Wings logo on the first two Jordan shoes. - -While the Jordan III might be one of the most popular Air Jordans ever, it was nonetheless highly unpopular when retroed in 1994. -

Air Jordan IV (1989)

-The design of the Air Jordan IV, courtesy of Tinker Hatfield, kept a lot of the feeling from the third model. It wasn’t as innovative or groundbreaking as the previous designs, but by the this time the Air Jordan shoes line had gained the public’s attention, leading to sell outs everywhere. - -The Jordan IV was even featured in director Spike Lee’s movie Do The Right Thing. Apparently, the director really liked these shoes and decided to show his allegiance to them by giving the Jordans a cameo. - -In the movie, one of the characters has his new Air Jordan IV shoes scuffed by a bicyclist. He places his shoe upon a fire-hydrant and cleans it with a toothbrush. - -The Jordan IV was retroed 1999 in white/black and black/cement grey. Stores sold out after a few hours and demand was high; a complete change from the retro versions of Jordan I, Jordan II, and Jordan III. At the same time, Nike/Jordan realized an opportunity to create more sales by releasing Retro models with a similar design but different colors or very small design changes. These Retro models sold fairly although reactions to them are mixed. -

Air Jordan V (1990)

-Once again Tinker Hatfield introduced a revolutionary design for the Jordan V. A few design elements were carried over from the Jordan IV, but the Air Jordan V featured a great silver/reflex tongue and a clear/see-through rubber sole creating a completely unique look. With the addition of lacelocks and shark teeth shapes on the midsole, this shoe is rumoured to have been inspired by a World War II fighter plane. - -The clear rubber sole also seen in later Air Jordan Models such as VI, XI and XVI has upset many collectors due to its tendency to turn yellow. These Jordan shoes were retroed in late 1999 in white/black-fire red and black/black-met silver meeting great demand and enthusiasm in the marketplace. Retro models were also produced; one model featuring Michael Jordan’s high school colors. -

Air Jordan VI (1990)

-Yet another Hatfield design. The Jordan VI kept the clear soles and lacelocks from the Jordan V, but added a rubber tongue with two holes for getting the shoe on. - -The pattern on the shoe was interesting. If you look at the shoe the right way, the number 23 appears with the number 2 standing upright on the back of the shoe and the number 3 laying down, facing the ground near the laces. - -The retro release of the Jordan VI is exactly like the original release, although a an incorrect sample caused quite an uproar among fans of the Air Jordan line. -

Air Jordan VII (1991)

-The Air Jordan VII seems to be Hatfield’s fusion of the Nike Air Huarache and the previous Jordan model, the Jordan VI. The Nike Huarache technology was used to create a locked-down fit which sneakerheads really loved, but the visible air sole and the Nike Air logo disappeared, creating joy for some and consternation for others. This is the only shoe in the Jordan shoe line that has been released with the number 9 instead of the number 23. The number 9 was his Olympic jersey number and this model, featuring Olympic colors and jersey number, was a special edition. - -The Air Jordan VII was met with strong feelings of love or hate. This is the first of the Air Jordans to create division among the ranks of loyal fans and customers. -

Air Jordan VIII (1992)

-The eighth model of the Air Jordan could politely be called “chunky”. The base of the shoe was clearly modeled on the design of the Jordan XVII, but the Air Jordan VIII added more colors and details. Thick padding for and criss-crossing Velcro straps over the upper made for a great fit but some players experienced problems with heat buildup and a clumsy feeling due to the weight. - -The Jumpman logo on this model vaguely resembles a Peace sign, especially on the white/grey Retro version with it’s shaggy carpet-like jumpman, leading to the Jordan VIII’s nickname: the flower-power Air Jordan. - -vailable in only three color combinations, the Air Jordan VIII sold very well in its original and retro versions. The model has since been discontinued. - -

Air Jordan IX (1993)

-On October 6th 1993, Michael Jordan announced his decision to retire from the NBA, spelling potential doom for the signature shoe line. The Jordan IX was a durable and plain shoe at first glance, but it came with lots of interesting details such as the large 23 stitched on the back of the shoe and the multi-lingual words on the soles of both shoes. The words and the available translations are listed below. - -Right Shoe - -* dédié (French) dedicated -* fuerza (Spanish) - force -* intenso (Italian) - intense -* liberté (French) - freedom -* anmutig (German) - graceful - -Left Shoe - -* спорт (Russian) - sport -* uhuru (Swahili) - independence -* свобода (Russian) - freedom -* athletisch (German) - athletic -* muundaji (Swahili) - hope - -

Air Jordan X (1994)

-Nike was caught off guard with Michael Jordan’s sudden return to the court. Before releasing the Jordan X, they re-released several older Jordan models. The Air Jordan X is nothing special and relatively plain even when you stop to consider that the white/black/light steel grey colorway looks like it just broke out of prison or a herd of zebras. The design is clearly a combination of several older Jordans. -

Air Jordan XI (1995)

-The Air Jordan XI heralded a triple comeback; Jordan’s return to the NBA, the return of designer Tinker Hatfield, and disappointingly, the return of the unpopular clear soles that yellowed with age. - -While the design of this model was premium, the quality was sadly lacking and despite the release of low-top versions, the Jordan XI was not the most popular of all the Air Jordan shoes. - -When the Jordan XI's were retroed in 2000-2001 they became the fastest selling, most popular Jordan retros of all. - -

Air Jordan XII (1996)

-The Jordan XII was a completely new design for Air Jordan shoes with ribbed leather that matched and blended with the midsoles. This unique design was inspired by the flag of the Japanese Army & Navy in which the red circle is surrounded by a sunset. - -The Jordan XII was the most durable Air Jordan to date, but they did have one major flaw. The Jordan XII attracted dirt easily and were hard to clean. - -In September 1997 Nike decided to launch a new sub-brand of Nike called Jordan Brand. The Jordan XII was the first Jordan shoe of the new Jordan brand and was also the first Air Jordan that did not have a Nike logo or Swoosh. -

Air Jordan XIII (1997)

-Now that Nike and Air Jordan designer, Tinker Hatfield, were a little more prepared, they were able to keep producing original designs for the Nike Air Jordan line. One of the nicest features of this Jordan model was a hologram on the ankle showing a basketball, the number 23, and the Jumpman logo. The low-top versions of the Jordan XIII were released without this nifty feature though, much to the disappointment of many. -

Air Jordan XIV (1998)

-The design of the Air Jordan XIV, inspired by Michael Jordan’s Ferrari 550M, was a stroke of sheer genius on the part of Hatfield and fitting shoe to accompany Jordan’s second retirement from the NBA. The Jordan XIV is a sleek, performance driven shoe that states, “is as close to perfection as we’ve tested.” . Features include, laces with metal aglets (the tips on the ends of the laces) and seven Jumpman logos per shoes equaling a total of fourteen. Overall, the Jordan XIV is a stylish, lightweight shoe that is perhaps the best Air Jordan model of them all. -

Air Jordan XV (1999)

-The Jordan VI. It was the first shoe released after it’s namesake’s retirement, but despite missing it’s endorser, the Air Jordan was a decent product that sold fairly well. With a designer look, based on NASA’s 1950’s X-15 aircraft, the look of the shoe was a radical change from its predecessors. -

Air Jordan XVI (2001)

-Former Air Jordan designer Tinker Hatfield had moved on by the time of the Jordan XVI. The Air Jordan XVI was designed by Hatfield replacement, Nike Senior Footwear Designer, Wilson Smith. With a little fresh blood in the design process, the Jordan XVI was perhaps the first truly fresh design since the Jordan III, despite the fact that Smith decided to recycle a few of the design elements of earlier releases, such as the clear soles and patent leather. What made the Jordan XVI new was a removable gaiter/shroud, giving the shoe two looks for the price of one. Not only a stylish addition, this feature helped to control temperature and comfort for the wearer. Like all new things, this design had a few bugs to be worked out. The overall feel of the shoe was a little stiff and the shroud easily came off during very active wear and the patent leather didn’t wear as well as other materials. Even with these problems, the overall concept and design of the Air Jordan XVI was excellent and Wilson Smith certainly lived up to the example of his predecessor. -

Air Jordan XVII (2002)

-According to, the Air Jordan XVII design was inspired by; "the fine details from an Aston Martin, the smooth lines and flow of a jazz solo and the long Air Jordan history of innovations in style." - -Like the Jordan XVI’s, the Jordan XVII came equipped with a removable midfoot cover, giving the wearer two looks for this model. This Jordan model came in an embossed metal carrying case with a cd rom. One of the most expensive models from the Jordan Brand of shoes, their original retail price was $200. While this may seem overpriced, the shoe seems to have been fairly popular. -

Air Jordan XVIII (2003)

The Jordan XVIII is the brainchild of new Senior Jordan Footwear Designer, Tate Kuebis. The inspiration for this model is said to be a number of things, but primarily a design based on the sleek lines of the racing world and the quality of Italian dress shoes. Mostly, the Air Jordan XVIII is known for its unique accessories, a pull-out opening box and a brush and towel for cleaning the shoes. - -

Air Jordan 18.5

-While both the Jordan XVI and the Jordan XVII were later released with modified models called the "" model, the Jordan XVIII design was so radically altered that Nike released a whole new shoe. The basic design was similar, but the Jordan 18.5 lacked a lace cover and came with a plastic pant-leg stopper and a more prominent Jumpman logo. -

Air Jordan XIX (2004)

-Michael Jordan’s retirement from NBA basketball has meant a turning of the page, the ending of one chapter and the beginning of another. The Air Jordan 19 was inspired by an African snake, the Black Mamba, a fast and deadly snake found in central and southern Africa. Black Mambas are awe inspiring animals, powerful and tense, and not black but a gun-metal olive. When threatened they raise their bodies high into the air and present a wide open mouth and reveal just how they got their name. The inside of their mouth is jet black. - -The Jordan XIX are extremely comfortable and designed to be the lightest and most flexible of all the Jordan shoes. The fit is exceptional and the tongue is well-padded to help improve the midfoot fit. A powerful magnetic heel strapping system, speed lacing toggle, and innovative flex material combine to create a first rate performance that is perhaps the greatest tribute to Michael Jordan’s career and exemplifies the greatness that only Jordan could achieve. -

Air Jordan XX (2005)

-First and foremost, Tinker Hatfield, the genius and master, is back by popular demand to work on the Air Jordan XX. The most noticeable feature of the Jordan XX is the laser etched design on the lace cover depicting various past Air Jordan’s and Michael Jordan’s achievements through his careers. Also prominent is the vaguely huarache-like design. The XX is inspired by motorcycle tyres and Jordan Brand Racing team called Team 23 Racing Team 23 Racing. Representatives have confirmed companies affiliated Michael Jordan will sponsor Montez Stewart in 2005’s AMA Repsol Superstock and Pro Honda Oils Supersport classes. - -But when the world’s most famous athlete becomes even remotely involved in any form of sporting or business activity, it’s fodder for much speculation. Reports slowly began to appear on the web that Jordan was putting together an AMA road racing team. - -Jordan owns several sports motorcycles and met Stewart through a mutual friend in the Chicago area and decided to help the successful CCS rider. The Air Jordan XX is set to debut in early 2005, packaged in a black & red box with a flip top in the middle which is secured by velcro. The side of box is expected to be embossed with the word “JORDAN.” This model should feature an special 20th Aniversary Edition Coaster.

Air Jordan XXI (2006)

-Released in February 2006. From the Jordan Brand catalog, we have the following information: -Upper:The upper is expected to be a combination of luxurious Italian suedes with rich full-grain leathers. Forefoot breathability features are combined with a newly engineered durable textile for suppot and durability in key performance areas. Extended heel counter construction provides enhanced ankle support. New foam-backed quilted collar complements the seamless booty contruction to provide maximum comfort. Breathable mesh is brought to the tongue to dissipate heat while hte adjustable tongue cover flips up to expose the breatable technology or flips down for a more sophisticated look. -Midsole:Fully-double lasted phylon midsole provides a low-profile stance. Evolution of the I.P.S (Independent Podular Suspension) now includes interchangeable cushioning technology with a customizable heel zoom pillar or heel encapsulated pillar. Carbon Fiber shake plate offers midfoot and arch support. -Outsole: I.P.S. (Independent Podular Suspension) technology is integrated with the outsole through raised herringbone pods for traction in strategic performance areas. New innovative outsole pattern offers multi-directional traction. -Profile: The future is now. The next generation of the greatest performance basketball shoe, designed for the greatest player to ever play the game. The Air Jordan XXI shoe embodies all the elements: The man, the style, the legend...Michael Jordan.


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