6 Best Air Jordans, 50+ Shoes Tested in 2023

Dimitrije Curcic
Dimitrije Curcic on
6 Best Air Jordans, 50+ Shoes Tested in 2023

No matter what generation you belong to, basketball is still Michael Jordan; and Michael Jordan is basketball. He is that legendary. He is that influential. 

Given all that, it should not surprise anyone that his main line of signature shoes is still releasing new models almost two decades after his final retirement. There are now more than 50 Air Jordan models, including retros and special releases.

Through the years, the Air Jordans are known for their quality and performance. They feel premium and they play so well. But there is hierarchy even among the best. It is our job here at RunRepeat to test the Air Jordans and help you tease apart the legendary from the great. It’s not an easy task, but it sure is worthwhile.

How we test basketball shoes

Like many review sites, we give a CoreScore for each Air Jordan model on record. This number is based on the ratings given to it by experts, regular basketball players, and hobbyists. Of course, these individual ratings are weighted accordingly. Experts’ scores have the most weight. 

Yet, we acknowledge that a numerical score is not descriptive enough. So, we also come up with a concise qualitative review for each shoe:

  • Test Air Jordans and other basketball shoes in actual games.
  • Buy the shoes using our own cash. Don’t get us wrong, we are grateful for freebies, but they may steer us away from being bias-free.

Best Air Jordans overall

Air Jordan XXXVI
Air Jordan XXXVI

CoreScore

97
Superb!
5.0 / 5 from 332 users
92 / 100 from 14 experts

Pros

  • Dust-proof traction
  • Springy cushion
  • Impact protection
  • Lightness
  • Breathability
  • No-frills foot containment

Cons

  • Narrow
  • Needs break-in
  • High price
  • Not for outdoors

Verdict

The Air Jordan XXXVI is not perfect, but it does not have real performance issues either. It effortlessly checks all the right boxes, and its wearer is guaranteed to have a really good time on the hard court. Quite frankly, it won't be surprising if this shoe tops the list of the most preferred basketball shoes in 2021.
Air Jordan XXXVI full review

Best performance Air Jordans

Air Jordan XXXV
Air Jordan XXXV

CoreScore

91
Superb!
4.5 / 5 from 99 users
91 / 100 from 15 experts

Pros

  • Dependable grip
  • Strong impact protection
  • Premium materials
  • As-expected fit
  • Reliable foot lockdown
  • Smooth steps
  • Lightweight feel

Cons

  • Needs to be broken in
  • Dust-prone
  • Not for outdoor use

Verdict

As expected, the Air Jordan 35 was released to so much anticipation and fanfare, which in all fairness did not go to waste. The Air Jordan XXXV indeed delivered in terms of performance. Sure, there are complaints here and there, but they are never serious or major enough to be absolute dealbreakers. 

Air Jordan XXXV full review

Best retro Air Jordans

Air Jordan 1 Retro High
Air Jordan 1 Retro High

CoreScore

91
Superb!
5.0 / 5 from 16,922 users
74 / 100 from 11 experts

Pros

  • Wide range of colorways
  • Fits true to size
  • Ample ankle support
  • Protective rearfoot section
  • Multisurface grip
  • Remarkable court feel
  • Grungy appeal
  • Flexible forefoot section
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Too warm for the summer season
  • Lacks impact protection

Verdict

The Air Jordan 1 Retro High is based on the first shoe that Nike released on 1985 under Michael Jordan’s signature line. In light of this, most of the technologies on the shoe are considered outdated compared to other basketball shoes in the market. Due to the shoe’s history, many people consider it a collector’s item and a fashion sneaker rather than a performance basketball shoe. Its classic silhouette makes it attractive.

Air Jordan 1 Retro High full review

Best casual Air Jordan sneakers

Air Jordan 1 Mid
Air Jordan 1 Mid

CoreScore

94
Superb!
4.7 / 5 from 38,189 users
98 / 100 from 6 experts

Pros

  • All-day comfort
  • Cushy sole
  • Hip and cool style
  • Adaptable flair
  • Wide selection of colorways
  • Long-lasting
  • Low-maintenance
  • Budget-friendly

Cons

  • Run-of-the-mill leather
  • Creases easily

Verdict

A hybrid between the high and the low, the AJ1 Mid allows you to enjoy the best of both worlds. It furnishes you with ample ankle support the High provides and the adaptability the Lows deliver. Although it continues to live behind the shadow of its taller and much pricier sibling, the Mids offer a hint of freshness into the familiar, well-loved silhouette. Simply put, you can't go wrong with the Mid version. 

Air Jordan 1 Mid full review

Best value Air Jordans

Air Jordan OG
Air Jordan OG

CoreScore

79
Good!
4.2 / 5 from 292 users
80 / 100 from 1 expert

Pros

  • Stylish appearance
  • Comfortable to walk in
  • Perfect fit
  • Soft quality leather
  • Lightweight
  • Great ankle support
  • Superb comfort
  • Reliable grip on indoor & outdoor courts

Cons

  • For wide forefoot only
  • Lacks the original forefoot Zoom Air unit

Verdict

After spending over two decades in the vault, Jordan Brand finally decided to bring back the first women's Air Jordan basketball shoe. Buyers love the premium and supple feel of the genuine and synthetic leather upper. They also appreciate the all-day comfort of the heel Air-sole unit. Overall, Jordan Brand did an excellent job with this almost perfect retro release. The Air Jordan OG is an excellent casual and performance hoop shoe.
Air Jordan OG full review
Author
Dimitrije Curcic
Dimitrije Curcic

Dimitrije Curcic has been playing basketball for over 22 years. Like Manu Ginobili, he’s a left-hander whose moves led him to a better career-shooting percentage than the Argentine himself. After playing professionally for 10 years, Dimitrije moved to coaching for two seasons before he became a basketball statistician for StatScore, and FanSided contributor for the San Antonio Spurs. Dimitrije loves to tell hoop stories through numbers and graphics and has been featured on Fansided, FiveThirtyEight, Eurohoops, and TalkBasket among the others.