Michael Air Jordan Nike Posters
via warymeyers

by Brandon Richard

Earlier this week, Jordan Brand previewed the "Poster Collection," which includes new colorways of Air Jordans 2 and 12 inspired by vintage Michael Jordan Nike posters. The collection will make its retail debut next spring.

It could be argued that Jordan is the quintessential poster athlete. His unprecedented combination of athleticism and flair made for dunks that were somewhat artistic in nature, like he was posing for photos in mid-air. Every kid who wanted to be like Mike had a poster of his tacked to the wall and dreamed of being able to have one of his or her own someday.

In the spirit of the upcoming poster-inspired Air Jordans, here's a rundown of the 30 Best Michael Jordan Nike Posters of All-time.

30. Return Flight

Michael Jordan 'Return Flight' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1994)

Year: 1995

This poster was fairly simple, but that's all it needed to be. Michael Jordan had officially returned, ready to make history in his greatest signature sneaker.


29. Play Ball

Michael Jordan 'Play Ball' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1994)

Year: 1994

One could probably count the number of athletes with official posters of them playing multiple professional sports on one hand. Jordan's unexpected retirement from the NBA in 1993 was a blow for Nike, but they continued to market him while he struggled on the diamond.


28. Slam Dunk

Michael Jordan 'Slam Dunk' Nike Jordan Poster (1991)

Year: 1991

In the Flight Club era, Michael Jordan went reverse Jumpman in what would go on be his first championship sneaker.


27. Do You Know?

Michael Jordan 'Do You Know?' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1990)

Year: 1990

Nike turned Mars Blackmon's catchphrase into a factoid about Michael Jordan's hangtime years before ESPN's Sport Science.


26. Great Moments in Flight

Michael Jordan 'Great Moments in Flight' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1993)

Year: 1993

According to this poster, Michael Jordan is responsible for nearly half of the greatest moments in flight.


25. Windmill

Michael Jordan 'Windmill' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1988)

Year: 1988

The free-throw line dunk is the lasting image from the '88 contest, but MJ's leaning windmill was quite a visual itself.


24. No Bull

Michael Jordan 'No Bull' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1996)

Year: 1996

There may not be a better trio than Jordan, Pippen and Rodman from the Chicago Bulls' second three-peat. This poster captured the intensity of the team that won 72 games.


23. Wing It

Michael Jordan 'Wing It' Air Jordan II 2 Nike Air Jordan Poster

Year: 1987

Nike promoted the Air Jordan 2 with the tagline "Imagination." Playing on that idea, they rolled out the "Wing It" poster, which referenced Michael Jordan's spontaneity in the air and the shoe's logo.


22. A Death-Defying High-Flying 360 Slam Dunk

Michael Jordan 'A Death-Defying High-Flying 360 Slam Dunk' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1989)

Year: 1989

After Michael Jordan revolutionized the slam dunk in the Air Jordan 3, Mars Blackmon imagined all possibilities when the Air Jordan 4 was launched.


21. Welcome to Sunny Portland

Michael Jordan 'Welcome to Sunny Portland' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1991)

Year: 1991

When arriving at the sneaker capital of the world, travelers don't have to go far for a fresh pair of Nikes. In fact, they can be purchased at the airport, and this Jordan poster was staged at PDX as a reminder.


20. Aerospace

Michael Jordan 'Aerospace' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1993)

Year: 1993

Foreshadowing a certain animated movie, Michael Jordan's efforts in aerospace began when he first linked up with the Looney Tunes years earlier.


19. Look, Up in the Air

Michael Jordan 'Look, Up in the Air' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1987)

Year: 1987

Not a bird, not a plane. Just Michael Jordan being more photogenic than any athlete in history.


18. Art of the Dunk

Michael Jordan 'Art of the Dunk' Nike Air Jordan Poster

Year: 1992

Like a lot of Michael Jordan posters, "Art of the Dunk" showcased his dunking prowess, ending in the Jumpman pose.


17. Genie

Michael Jordan 'Genie' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1991)

Year: 1991

Before there was Kazaam, Mars Blackmon summoned Little Richard as the Genie of the Lamp to help him fly.


16. I've Failed...

Michael Jordan 'I've Failed' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1993)

Year: 1993

Crediting failures for his success not only made for another great Jordan poster, but it's arguably his most famous inspirational quote.


15. Imagination

Michael Jordan 'Imagination' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1986)

Year: 1986

Michael Jordan had a way of making dunks look artistic. The "Imagination" poster showcased how graceful he was from every angle.


14. Graffiti

Michael Jordan 'Graffiti' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1989)

Year: 1989

After elephant, there was the cement-printed Air Jordan 4, which seemed right at home on the pavement and next to graffiti-painted brick walls.


13. The Master

Michael Jordan 'The Master' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1996)

Year: 1996

Now more cerebral than aerial, Michael Jordan was featured on "The Master" as a dribbler in his element. The lines on the poster were reminiscent of the sun ray panels on the Air Jordan 12.


12. The Best on Earth, The Best on Mars II

Michael Jordan 'Marvin the Martian' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1993)

Year: 1993

After moving on from Mars (Blackmon), Michael Jordan took on an inhabitant from Mars (Marvin the Martian).


11. Is It The Shoes?

Michael Jordan Is It The Shoes Nike Air Jordan Poster (1990)

Year: 1990

In one of the all-time great marketing angles, Michael and Mars once convinced the world that the gift of flight was because of "the shoes."


10. Sky Jordan

Michael Jordan 'Sky Jordan' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1992)

Year: 1992

Also the name of the original kids' Air Jordan, Sky Jordan beautifully captured the grace of His Airness and the cleanest colorway of the Air Jordan 7.


9. Wings 20th Anniversary

Michael Jordan 'Wings 20th Anniversary' Nike Air Jordan Poster (2005)

Year: 2005

For the Jordan Brand's 20th Anniversary, MJ recreated his iconic "Wings" poster, but in reverse and covered in tattoos that were also the laser print on the Air Jordan 20.


8. The Best on Earth, The Best on Mars

Michael Jordan 'Best on Earth, Best on Mars' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1988)

Year: 1988

With Michael Jordan re-committed to Nike and wearing his most innovative sneaker to date, they brought in Spike Lee as "Mars Blackmon," a character that debuted in Lee's 1986 film She's Gotta Have It. The chemistry between Jordan and Spike was undeniable and the history created by the two started here.


7. Runway

Michael Jordan 'Runway' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1985)

Year: 1985

The "Royal" Air Jordan 1 is a shoe that most people have never seen Michael Jordan actually wear. However, it did hit the runway along with an awesome matching tracksuit for this rare poster.


6. Playground

Michael Jordan 'Playground' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1989)

Year: 1989

One of the greatest Michael Jordan photos ever taken, "Playground" took the new face of the NBA back to where it all began — the blacktop. Kids in the photo represented the dream every youngster had at the time.


5. 6 Rings

Michael Jordan '6 Rings' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1999)

Year: 1999

Michael Jordan is the standard by which all players are measured, and his 6 championship rings are tops for the modern era. When he called it quits for the second time, this portrait was a statement of his excellence.


4. Hare Jordan

Michael Jordan 'Hare Jordan' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1992)

Year: 1992

Twenty-four years later, this poster is back in the spotlight as Jordan Brand celebrates its 30th Anniversary with the return of Bugs Bunny. The Jordan x Looney Tunes partnership debuted in 1992 and helped marry Michael Jordan to pop culture. It would eventually lead to the movie Space Jam, the highest grossing basketball movie of all-time. 


3. Wings

Michael Jordan 'WINGS' Nike Poster 1985

Year: 1989

There probably isn't a Jordan fan that didn't have this tacked on the wall growing up. "Wings" was a poster for anybody who dared to dream. Flight is possible and Michael Jordan was the proof.


2. Free Throw Line

Michael Jordan 'Free Throw Line Dunk' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1988)

Year: 1988

The duel between Michael Jordan and Dominique Wilkins had a little bit of everything. The two best dunkers of the era going head-to-head, power, style, innovation, a little home cooking and a dramatic finish. Jordan closed the show with this picture perfect free throw line dunk, which clinched the win and will go down as his defining slam.


1. Jumpman (The Air Jordan Has Landed)

Michael Jordan 'Jumpman' Nike Air Jordan Poster (1985)

Year: 1985

The top 3 posters on this list are pretty much interchangeable, but it's hard to argue against the poster that has come to define Michael Jordan's brand and the Air Jordan line. The almost perfectly symmetrical pose is one of the world's most recognizable logos, helping establish Jordan Brand as its own entity in 1997. Earlier this year, this exact photo was printed on the side of the Air Jordan XX9, bringing the campaign full circle. It's origin may be up for debate, but it's impact can't be questioned.