In honor of Michael Jordan's birthday today, Sneaker Report ranks the playability of every Air Jordan sneaker, starting with the original 1 to todays' 28th version.

Thanks to the expert team over at Sole Collector, here's Ranking Every Air Jordan Based on Playability.

RELATED: The Complete History of Cushioning Technology in Sneakers
RELATED: Today in Performance Sneaker History: Michael Jordan Sets Playoff Record in the Air Jordan 3

Air Jordan 2009

No. 28 - Air Jordan 2009

Released: 2009
Key technology: APT / Carbon Fiber / Zoom Air

With a firm, firm upper, new touted technology that didn't quite work as claimed, and a traction pattern that nearly sliced your hands when swiping, it's no surprise that the AJ 2009 kicks things off at the very bottom here. Few bought them for $190, and even less are known to have made it past the break-in period on-court.

Air Jordan XV

No. 27 - Air Jordan XV

Released: 1999
Key technology: Zoom Air

Bad fit, clunky transition and a harsh collar made the Air Jordan XV almost as unpopular from a performance perspective as it was aesthetically. Regardless, it was still one of the early Air Jordans to be made in a number of player exclusive colorways for the Team Jordan members.

Air Jordan VI

No. 26 - Air Jordan 6

Released: 1991
Key technology: Heel & Forefoot Air / Pull-tab Tongue

Michael won his first ring in the VI, but they haven't aged as well as the moment that surrounded them. The firm cushioning platform, shaky grip and loose fit makes these a rarity on courts these days.

Air Jordan II

No. 25 - Air Jordan 2

Released: 1986
Key technology: Full-length Air / Made In Italy (Once Upon A Time)

The Air Jordan II was originally made in Italy, out of, you guessed it, Italian leather. Italian leather may make for a luxurious shoe, and have the performance benefit of less break-in time, but the shoe is just too bulky in comparison to what’s available today.

Air Jordan Jordan IX

No. 24 - Air Jordan 9 

Released: 1993
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Air

While MJ never wore them originally as a Bull, the IXs have long been said to have less-than-ideal traction and a bit of a clunky ride. So perhaps they worked better as a baseball cleat in Birmingham.

Air Jordan III

No. 23 - Air Jordan 3

Released: 1987
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Air

If it was good enough for MJ to win the Dunk Contest in, in 1988, it should be good enough anyone, right? Well, if it was still 1988, the answer would probably be yes. But its thick leather upper and Air cushioning are better for casual wear these days, compared to today’s performance kicks.

Air Jordan VIII

No. 22 - Air Jordan 8 

Released: 1992
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Air / Two-panel cross strap

Known to be a cult favorite among those thirsting for max lockdown and ankle support, the high-top VIII is perhaps one of the most protective Air Jordan models. Unfortunately, your foot may catch on fire mid-game, and they're not known for their traction of cushioning.

Air Jordan VII
No. 21 - Air Jordan 7

Released: 1991
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Air / Huarache-inspired ankle

The full-bootie huarache concept has been seen many times throughout the years, but this was its only Air Jordan appearance. The upper may have been comfortable, but the shoes traction and cushioning have been surpassed over and over.

Air Jordan IVNo. 20 - Air Jordan 4

Released: 1988
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Air / Rubberized support wing

While the IV has made its fair share of NBA cameos in recent years, that's mostly a credit to its iconic design. As a modern basketball, it boasts great traction and solid heel cushioning, but leaves a lot to be desired in terms of fit, support and lockdown.

Air Jordan VNo. 19 - Air Jordan 5

Released: 1989
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Air / molded collar

The concept of the asymmetrical collar was introduced to the Air Jordan line with the Air Jordan V, to target areas in most need of support or mobility. Outdated cushioning and a stiff upper have left it feeling dated by today’s standards though.

Air Jordan XXI

No. 18 - Air Jordan XXI

Released: 2006
Key technology: Interchangeable IPS / Quilted collar foam

Launched in between the XX and the XX2, the XX1 ranks just below both of its IPS-featuring brethren, as they're far more stiff to start, and are also quick to heat up mid-play. That's kind of the tradeoff you get for its plush quilted lining and thick leather upper.

Air Jordan XVI

No. 17 - Air Jordan XVI

Released: 2000
Key technology: Blow-molded heel Air / forefoot Zoom Air / Removable Shroud / Carbon Fiber Shank

The gaiter of the Air Jordan XVI was not only removable, it wasn’t even intended for court use. Gaiter or not though, the shoe’s less-than-ideal traction hampered an otherwise smooth ride.

Air Jordan I

No. 16 - Air Jordan 1

Released: 1984
Key technology: Heel Air

Sure, they're outdated at this point compared to literally anything currently on the market. But the AJ 1 still has awesome collar protection, screeching traction and surprisingly good support. If you like court feel over cushioning, they're worth a shot. The 1 is also known to be a sleeper hit for players that their own custom orthotics at their disposal.

Air Jordan XI

No. 15 - Air Jordan 11 

Released: 1995
Key technology: Full-length Air / Carbon Fiber Shank

Despite patent leather and carbon fiber becoming the defining aesthetic traits of the Air Jordan XI, their use was inspired by performance insights. And while the XI may not compare favorably to the best of today’s performance kicks, its inspiration can still be seen.

Air Jordan XII

No. 14 - Air Jordan 12

Released: 1996
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Zoom Air / Carbon Fiber Shank

There's a quick distinction to make here, as the Retro version of the XII is exceptionally more mobile and less clunky than the original. That's partly because the original features thicker, higher quality leathers and a more firm midsole. Loved for its ankle support, outstanding traction and support, the XII has lived on as a solid performer all these years later.

Air Jordan XXII

No. 13 - Air Jordan XXII

Released: 2007
Key technology: Interchangeable IPS / Quilted collar foam / Titanium Shank

After debuting with the Air Jordan XX1, interchangeable IPS was back, offering a choice between Air and Zoom heel units. The XX2’s lower cut and titanium shank however made for a better playing experience.

Air Jordan X

No. 12 - Air Jordan X

Released: 1994
Key technology: Full-length Air / Elastic Ghilley Fit Bands

A favorite among NBA players to this day, the X is most appreciated for it's smooth transition thanks in part to its full-length Air unit, it's no-frills upper that fits well, and reliable traction. Nate Robinson says its in his Top 3 to play in, and we're likely to be seeing it on-court for years to come.

Air Jordan XXIII

No. 11 - Air Jordan 23

Released: 2008
Key technology: TPU Support Chassis / Full-length Zoom Air / Carbon Fiber Shank / Considered Construction

Players with wide feet may have issues with the TPU forefoot wrap, which is a shame, because the Air Jordan XX3 had a lot to offer. Smooth transition, an expertly sculpted upper, and the best cushioning available at the time of its release were among the XX3s high points.

Air Jordan XVII

No. 10 - Air Jordan 17

Released: 2001
Key technology: Heel Blow-molded Air / forefoot Zoom Air / Carbon Fiber Shank / Removable Lace Cover

When Michael returned to the league with the Wizards, it brought new meaning to the Air Jordan XVII, his shoe of choice for the 2001-2002 season. At $200 (and packaged in a briefcase), the shoe was certainly spendy, but its reactive forefoot Zoom bag, supportive heel blow-molded Air bag and great fitting leather upper made for a great quality sneaker. One of the more durable game shoes ever made, the traction pattern was actually inspired by golf holes, which an unretired MJ coincidentally spent less time frequenting that season.

Air Jordan XVIII

No. 9 - Air Jordan 18

Released: 2002
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Zoom Air / Memory Foam Collar / Carbon Fiber Shank Insole

The Air Jordan XVIII may have looked a bit bulky for a shoe inspired by a
Lamborghini, but it was still a solid performer. Features like its carbon fiber insole and heel and forefoot Zoom ensured a solid on-court experience.

Air Jordan 2011

No. 8 - Air Jordan 2011

Released: 2011
Key technology: Modular Zoom & Air Insoles With Carbon Fiber Shank

While the brand may have moved beyond its modular insole phase at this point, the AJ 2011 was a solid effort, with a plush tongue, hand-scived quality leather and heavy-duty cushioning for players of all sizes. An underrated gem to be sure.

Air Jordan XIII

No. 7 - Air Jordan 13

Released: 1997
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Zoom Air / Carbon Fiber Shank / Asymmetrical Collar

After being introduced way back on the Air Jordan V, the asymmetrical collar returned on the XIII, and has been seen many times since. That collar, combined with the then-still-new heel and forefoot Zoom Air, created a fast ride that’s held up well over time.

Air Jordan XIV

No. 6 - Air Jordan 14

Released: 1998
Key technology: Heel & forefoot Zoom Air / Carbon Fiber Shank / Asymmetrical Collar

The last shoe worn by Michael as a Bull has always been revered for its responsiveness and low-to-the-ground stance. Inspired by a Ferrari, the XIV also turned corners sharply and kept you fully supported to try to replicate Mike's last shot in Utah as often as possible. I've easily tried at least a couple hundred times over the last 15 years.

Air Jordan XIX

No. 5 - Air Jordan 19

Released: 2004
Key technology: Tech Flex Cover / Double-stacked Heel Zoom Air / forefoot Zoom Air / TPU Midfoot Shank

The Tech Flex lace cover of the Air Jordan XIX did absolutely nothing to improve the shoe’s performance, but it didn’t hurt it any either. Luckily though, the shoe had much more to offer. The cushioning stands out to this day as one of the best, pre-Flight Plate, of any Air Jordan.

Air Jordan XX

No. 4 - Air Jordan XX

Released: 2005
Key technology: Independent Podular Suspension / Ankle Leash System

For the 20th anniversary of the game shoe, Tinker was back on board with a radical design insistent on story-telling. While the lasered strap was most noticeable, the shoe's IPS platform offered up a great ride, reliable traction and responsive cushioning. If people were down with the ankle leash strap, they were in for the best playing Air Jordan up to that point.

Air Jordan 2012

No. 3 - Air Jordan 2012

Released: 2012
Key technology: Modular Zoom & Air Insoles / Flywire / Flight Carbon midfoot shank

Modularity is often gimmicky, and rarely makes for an optimal playing experience. And that makes the AJ 2012 that much more impressive. Credit goes to its fantastic Flight Carbon midfoot shank, which allowed the upper to be so minimal that the shoe was able to maintain the feel of having a traditional construction.

Air Jordan 2010

No. 2 - Air Jordan 2010

Released: 2010
Key technology: Full-length bottom-loaded Zoom Air / TPU molded support panels

After the AJ 2009 quite honestly flopped, Tinker looked to bring the line back to the basics. The 2010 employed full-length Zoom, a targeted assymetrical cut and herringbone, which all worked as well as you would expect and brought the line back to respectability.

Air Jordan XX8

No. 1 - Air Jordan XX8

Released: 2013
Key technology: Flight Plate / Neoprene Shroud / Carbon Fiber Shank & Support Counters

Sometimes the latest and greatest is really just the latest. But in the case of the Air Jordan XX8, it's most definitely the greatest. It's so great, in fact, that we aren't really even upset about the XX9 being MIA, when we have the XX8 SE and M10 siblings still readily available.

RELATED: The Complete History of Cushioning Technology in Sneakers
Today in Performance Sneaker History: Michael Jordan Sets Playoff Record in the Air Jordan 3