The quest for an NBA Championship has never been an easy journey. Few have the strength, talent and teammates to win against the world’s elite athletes. Consistently regarded as the best to ever play basketball, Michael Jordan dominated the NBA throughout the ’90s, racking up six championship rings and six Finals MVP trophies over an eight-years span. Each of those championship runs ended in similar fashion – with cigar smoke and champagne showers. As a toast to Michael Jordan’s playoff excellence, and in anticipation of the release of the upcoming Air Jordan 6 “Cigar and Champagne” Pack, we revisit some of the best celebratory moments of MJ’s career.
1990-91 NBA Championship
The Chicago Bulls defeated the Los Angeles Lakers in five games to pick up their first NBA Championship. Michael Jordan averaged 31.2 points, 11.4 assists, 6.6 rebounds per game en route to his first ever NBA Finals MVP award while rocking the Air Jordan 6.
1991-92 NBA Championship
The ‘92 NBA season ended with the Chicago Bulls prevailing over the Portland Trail Blazers to win their second straight championship in six games. His Airness averaged 32.3 points, 6.5 assists, and 4.8 rebounds, claiming his second Finals MVP award while wearing the Air Jordan 7.
1992-93 NBA Championship
In the 1993 Finals, Jordan and the Bulls conquered MJ’s 1984 draft mate Charles Barkley and the Phoenix Suns in six games to claim their third straight championship. The Bulls were the first team to three-peat since the Celtics in the ‘60s. Jordan ended the series averaging 41.0 points, 6.3 assists and 8.5 rebounds a game, taking home his third consecutive NBA Finals MVP award while wearing the Air Jordan 8.
1995-96 NBA Championship
After two years of watching the NBA Finals from home, the Chicago Bulls made their way back to the NBA’s biggest stage. This time, they defeated the Seattle Super Sonics in six games to take the Larry O’Brien Trophy back to the Windy City. MJ was honored with his fourth Finals MVP trophy while lacing up the Air Jordan 11 during the championship chase.
1996-97 NBA Championship
The Chicago Bulls went on to triumph over the Utah Jazz in six games in the ’97 NBA Finals. The world witnessed another stellar series performance from MJ, in which he averaged 32.3 points, 6 assists, and 7 rebounds a game, which propelled him to his fifth Finals MVP trophy. He did it while wearing the Air Jordan 12.
1997-98 NBA Championship
His Airness graced the court in the Air Jordan 13 for a majority of the playoffs, but switched over the to the Air Jordan 14 for a portion of the finals. MJ averaged 33.5 points, 2.3 assists and 4 rebounds to earn his sixth and last NBA Finals MVP award.
For the first time since its 1991 release, the ‘Carmine’ Air Jordan 6 is being retroed without having to make the commitment to a two-shoe pack.
Last made available as part of the VI / XVII CDP in 2008, the classic is making its highly anticipated return to retail this Saturday. Nicknamed after the deep red hue it bears, the ‘Carmine’ 6 was the first colorway of the model to feature colored panels on the upper. Michael Jordan wore the shoe en route to his first NBA championship with the Chicago Bulls in 1990-1991. It makes a proper comeback during a year in which the Air Jordan 6 celebrates its 23rd anniversary.
Ahead of the drop, we’re taking a look back at some classic photos of MJ playing in ‘Carmines.’ From battles with his good friend Charles Barkley to Dream Team Media Day, these kicks were present throughout perhaps the most pivotal season of Jordan’s career. Scroll through to relive some of your favorite memories.
* repost via Sole Collector