The NBA Logo Ranking Project:
#2 – The Chicago Bulls

It’s probably impossible to be objective about Chicago’s logo as purely an element of design.

The mythos and success of Michael Jordan combined with the fact that the bull imagery accompanied the creation and rise of what was perhaps the biggest global marketing personality of all time means that when I look at the the Bulls’ logo, I’m not just looking at a logo. I’m looking at six rings. I’m looking at Mars Blackmon. I’m looking at the Double Nickel. I’m looking at ProStars. I’m looking at the Flu Game. I’m looking at Wheaties. I’m looking at 63 in Boston Garden. I’m looking at the Dream Team.

I’m looking at the hangtime. I’m looking at the flying motion.

It might not be quite as iconic as the Jumpman logo in this regard, but looking at the Bulls logo is essentially looking at the coat of arms for basketball perfection — or at least the memory of basketball perfection that my adolescent and teenage mind created, which is what really matters in this case.

For me, even more than a decade removed from the MJ era, trying to see the Bulls’ logo as just a cartoon beast of burden is as difficult as trying to see a swastika as a sacred emblem of Navajo culture; intellectually, I know it’s just a symbol, but my brain attaches an emotional memory to it that clouds rational thought. (Although the connotation and physical reaction to the sight of the symbol is obviously very different.)

Still, the Bull is undeniably hardcore. You definitely don’t want this guy chasing you through Pamplona. And if you’re the matador unlucky enough to run into this dude in the ring, you might just wanna hang up your cape before this happens.

chicago bulls logo

2 thoughts on “The NBA Logo Ranking Project:
#2 – The Chicago Bulls”

  1. It’s also the only pro franchise logo featuring blood, which is seen on the horns. Petty sinister and appropriate for communicating brutal dominance for an era. It is also the longest standing design in the NBA without a redesign since it’s inception.

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