“…I saw the Eastern Conference Finals and we ( the Lakers) knew Michael was going to bring it…and Boy! Did he bring it!”, Magic Johnson
That was Magic Johnson speaking about Michael Jordan’s first NBA Title run in 1991. Magic smiled and laughed the whole time, but he knew how serious the intensity and drive of the man heading his way was coming with. The reoccurring theme from now on in the NBA would be…
“…you’re pretty good, but!,…you’re not Michael Jordan!”.
The Detroit Pistons and their Jordan Rules had been an obstacle for Michael Jordan for a couple of years, but MJ figured out how to beat the Jordan Rules and almost single handily gotten pass the Detroit Pistons that year, it’s probably a personal highlight of his, in a career fill with highlights.
After winning the 1991 Eastern Conference Finals, winning the NBA title for Jordan and his Chicago Bulls was just a formality and Magic knew it. There was nothing that he or any of his Los Angeles Lakers could do to stop him.
Michael Jordan was about to become the best ever and the biggest NBA Star on the planet.
His compulsive obsession with winning would not allow him to settle for just that one title and he would go on to win a total of Six NBA Titles!
Jordan surely would had won more, but he suffered a Life Changing Event in which he needed to take time off from basketball to play baseball and honor the memory of his murdered father.
When he returned it didn’t matter who the Chicago Bulls put on the court with him Bill Cartwight, Stacey King, John Paxson, Will Perdue or Steve Kerr. Just like he had done before, Jordan would you just simply put them all on his back and win another NBA Title. It was an unprecedented display of dominance on the basketball court.
Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, Clyde Drexler, Karl Malone, Gary Payton, among many other greats, all tried to stand on his way, but none of them could slow him down.
Jordan was like The Perfect Storm, unstoppable!
Not even being physically sick could derail his compulsive obsession with winning. The Flu Game must be another one of his personal highlights. Nike had signed him to a contract during his rookie year, but could not keep up with his fame and eventually Jordan left Nike and created his own personal brand, JumpMan23.
Larry Bird and Magic Johnson had saved the NBA, but Michael Jordan had put it on his back like his Chicago Bull teammates and launch it worldwide.
When all was said and done…Michael Jordan walked into the Basketball Hall of Fame with six NBA titles, two Gold Medals and multiple regular and playoff MVP awards.
There was no doubt…Michael Jordan was The Greatest, Ever!
His basketball career honors read like an Ivy League resume…starting with being selected as a McDonald’s All-America in High School, going to a Division I Basketball Program in North Carolina, winning a NCAA Championship and also winning his first Olympic Gold Medal for the United States in basketball as an amateur. He had set the bar so high that even today every basketball super star has a monstrous time living up to his Basketball Legacy.
“Dude!…you’re pretty good, but!,… you’re not Michael Jordan!”.
It still remains the highest NBA standard used to measure a player’s greatness today, and… he set the bar even higher for the Jordan Family Tree!
One of his great grandchildren will have to grow up to be an Astronaut or President just to be considered as successful as Grandpa Mike!
Due to good fortune, I had the opportunity to see one of his sons play basketball at the University of Central Florida once, and the kid does have the very same work ethic that his father has, but it must be brutal having everybody whispering,
“…you’re not Michael Jordan!”, behind your back, constantly your whole life.
Welcome to Marcus Jordan’s world Kobe Bryant!
It’s no secret that MJ has remained somewhat distant from the Chicago Bulls organization for years because he dislikes owner Jerry Reinsdorf, who among other things tried to replace him on the eyes of the Chicago Bulls’ fan base with overrated Toni Kukoc, showed the door to Legendary Head Coach Phil Jackson and dismantled his multiple championship team, which even won a NBA regular season record 72 games, which still stands today.
This has bothered a long line of illustrious NBA folks for a very long time, but Jordan – ever the gentleman – has always managed to walk on The High Road!
Michael Jordan is the very definition of a living legend and all those banners hanging from the rafters in the Chicago Bulls’ arena are all up there because of his contributions.
There’s a statute of the man right in front of the Arena where the Bulls play, but it feels very, very wrong that the greatest player in Chicago Bulls History does not feel welcome in the House He Help Built.
With his recent birthday, the Chicago Bulls Marketing Department will have plenty of things planned, but there hadn’t been a sighting of MJ in that arena for years.