For an athlete who made the impact that Michael Jordan did, it should be no surprise that his birthday serves as an opportunity to toast one of the all-time greats. Many of the greatest players in the game today grew up watching highlights of the Bulls guard who couldn’t be stopped en route to six championships. There’s an entire brand built around his name and likeness.
So with Jordan turning 56 on Sunday, it’s been cause for celebration across the basketball world. There have been countless tributes and remembrances of his greatest moments. We’ve gotten awesome dunk compilations and old school ball fake compilations. We’ve gotten another teaser of ESPN’s big documentary on the 1998 Bulls, which cruelly won’t be out until 2020. We’ve gotten reminders of his most hilarious interview moments.
When you have a career like Jordan’s, there’s no shortage of memories to look back on.
So in honor of the 56th birthday of the former Bull, here’s a look back at 56 of our favorite photos from the Sun-Times archives.
Chicago Bulls All-Star Michael Jordan | file photos. (Photo by Tom Berg/WireImage)
Michael Jordan broke the Bulls single-game points record Feb. 26, 1987.
Jerry Krause, left, general manager of the Chicago Bulls, is shown with Bulls legend Michael Jordan in this Sept. 20, 1988 file photograph after Jordan agreed to an eight-year contract extension. (AP Photo/Mark Elias, file)
AUBURN HILLS, MI – 1988: Isiah Thomas #11 of the Detroit Pistons stops his drives against Michael Jordan #23 of the Chicago Bulls during an NBA game in 1988 at The Palace in Auburn Hills, Michigan. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 1988 NBAE (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
Chicago Bulls great Michael Jordan and his father, James Jordan. | Sun-Times file photo
It took Michael Jordan seven seasons to beat the Detroit Pistons in the Eastern Conference Finals and advance to the 1991 NBA Finals.
Michael Jordan speaks to the crowd at a Bulls’ championship celebration at Grand Park in 1997. (Photo by Matt Kryger)
Ditka, Harrelson, Jordan and McMahon
FILE — Chicago White Sox Michael Jordan follows through on his sixth inning RBI double against the Chicago Cubs April 7, 1994 in Chicago. Jordan. the greatest player in NBA history and the most popular athlete since Muhammad Ali is expected to announce his retirement Wednesday at a news conference in Chicago, a source with close ties to the NBA told The Associated Press on Monday night Jan. 11, 1999. (AP photo/Mark Elias)
1-14-98–Michael Jordan signs autographs along the outfield wall at the White Sox training facility in Sarasota, Florida during his tryout with the Sox in 1994. Photo by Tom Cruze.
Chicago Bulls’ Michael Jordan (45) and Scottie Pippen return to the floor after a time-out in the fourth quarter against the Indiana Pacers Sunday, March 19, 1995. The Pacers defeated the Bulls in overtime103-96 in Jordan’s first game back from his 18-month retirement. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen are a given on any Bulls all-time starting five, but who fills the other three positions? | Sun-Time s Media
In this June 9, 1996 file photo Chicago Bulls Michael Jordan stands during a break at the end of an NBA Basketball game against the Seattle SuperSonics in Seattle. (AP Photo/Beth A. Keiser, File)
The Chicago Bulls’ Michael Jordan collapses in the arms of teammate Scottie Pippen, right, at the end of Game 5 of the NBA Finals with the Utah Jazz Wednesday, June 11, 1997, in Salt Lake City. Jordan, fighting flu symptoms, scored 38 points as the Bulls beat the Jazz 90-88 to take a 3-2 lead in the series. (AP Photo/Susan Ragan)
Kobe Bryant has drawn comparisons to Michael Jordan his entire career, so why not one more time. | AP
Matt Kryger/Coley News Service Michael Jordan drives on Minnesota’s rookie Kevin Garnett during the second quarter of Tuesday night game at the United Center.
Michael Jordan | AP Photo
Chicago Bulls’ Michael Jordan drives for the score past Indiana Pacers’ Dale Davis (32) during the second quarter of Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals Sunday, May 31, 1998, in Chicago. Jordan became the NBA’s all-time leading playoff scorer during the first half. His 5,758 points trailed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar by 5 at the start of the game and he scored 15 in the first half. (AP Photo/Mike Fisher)
Chicago Bulls’ Michael Jordan pulls the ball out of reach of Utah Jazz guard Jeff Hornacek, right, during third quarter action in Game 2 of the NBA Finals in Salt Lake City, Friday, June 5, 1998. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Michael Jordan, right, hugs teammate Scottie Pippen after winning the NBA title in 1998.
Ron Harper says there’s no way the Warriors would have defeated the 1996 Bulls and Michael Jordan. | AP
Michael Jordan won six NBA championships with the Bulls. | Sun-Times Photo
President Barack Obama awards the Presidential Medal of Freedom to National Basketball Association Hall of Fame member and legendary athlete Michael Jordan during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House November 22, 2016 in Washington, DC.(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Washington Wizards’ Michael Jordan, East, moves the ball on the West during first half play of the 2003 NBA All Star Game in Atlanta Sunday, Feb. 9, 2003. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
Jimmy Butler (left) and Michael Jordan took shots at Jordan’s Flight School in California. | Photo via Instagram
Michael Jordan was seen dancing at the Hornets’ annual holiday party. | Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images