MICHAEL JORDAN

MICHAEL JORDAN

MICHAEL JORDAN

Michael Jordan is a retired American basketball player. Over the years, the National Basketball Association has nurtured and produced the best players of all time. With the likes of Lebron James, Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and many more still shining non can fit in the shoes of MJ. This athlete is the Messi or Eminem of this game. Many, including the NBA, recognise him as the greatest of all time.

Michael Jordan age 57 played in the league for fifteen seasons. In his long career, Michael dominated the industry through hard work and determination. The success was evident both on the court and in life as he bagged six championships for the Chicago Bulls. In addition to the titles, he was nominated for six MVP awards and won five out of the six. This athlete is famous in the US and also all over the world. Consequently, in the 80s and 90s, the NBA credits him for the influence he had in the franchise internationally. Instinctively, today if you ask anyone who is MJ, definitely you’ll receive the right response.

When he joined the Bulls in 1984, he immediately had an impact. The athlete entranced fans with his scoring ability, and immediately they fell in love with his style. While playing, he performed incredible dunks that marvelled players and spectators alike. Apart from the league matches, NBA organises other events such as Slam Dunks. This contest brings together the best dunkers of the season. It was during one of these functions that he acquired the names Air Jordan and His Airness because of dunking from the free-throw line. Even to date, other athletes try this technique on such occasions in his honour.

As a person, he has many traits. Michael has both acted in movies and tried his hand in business. Among his bestselling film is Space Jam where he stars as himself. Success both in the court and off it defines his skills. In his illustrious career, he retired a couple of time and all the games he played after being out he still impressed. The many accolades he has gained in his life continues to brand him among the greats of the sport. Being among the top richest African American is a target that seems unimaginable but genuinely defines what champions are made of. It is fascinating how he still earns huge chanks of money than the current top NBA stars.

This exciting blog takes you, the reader through the building of an icon, father, entrepreneur and an athlete.

Humble beginning

Michael Jeffrey Jordan came to this universe in mid-February 1963 at Cumberland Hospital in Brooklyn, New York. He was brought up alongside his four other siblings by their parents. His mother Deloris Jordan worked in a bank while the dad, James R Jordan, was an equipment supervisor. When he was few months old, his parents shifted from Brooklyn to Wilmington in North Carolina. Not much is said about him before joining high school, but as a young lad, the father instilled in him essential attributes like hard work while the mother taught him how to sew and do laundry.

MJ exhibited his interest in sports from the early stages. Many of the world’s best athletes claim that achieving greatness begins when they are young. This he showcased while he joined Emsley A Laney High School. While at the institution he played basketball, football and Baseball. This presents Michael as an all-round athlete. His desire to represent his school in basketball tournaments was cut short because of his height. During this time, he stood at 5 feet, 11 inches and the team told him that he was too short to play.

Despite being rejected, he was called to play in the junior varsity team. Jordan was inspired to prove that he was a quality athlete with a unique playing technique. He surprised many as he averaged 40 points in most games. Michael continued to train hard, and with time he grew. Soon the head coach noticed his work rate and called him to the main team. Though he didn't play many campaigns, in the final two he made more than 25 points in every match. These were signs of the making of a world-class player. Furthermore, his success there earned him a spot in the 1981’s McDonald All-American match. This he did while he was a senior.

In the USA the most-watched leagues are NBA, NFL and Major Baseball League. Athletes in these franchises believe that college sport plays a vital role in building their brand as sports personas. Therefore, after high school, the college you get selected to is central in your success. For this reason, individuals seek to be signed by the country's best institutions. Michael Jordan stats were impressive in high school; hence universities such as North Carolina, Duke, Syracuse, South Carolina and Virginia battled for his signature.

Choosing among these good institutions that had attractive programs was going to be tough on him. Finally, Jordan settled on staying in Carolina since he joined the University of North Carolina. At the institution, he studied cultural geography.

MJ’s College record

In North Carolina, Jordan played under Dean Smith. He was a perfect selection for the head coach’s philosophy who he impressed. During freshman year he averaged 13.4 points per game and led his team to the NCAA Championship victory against Georgetown in 1982. This impressive performance earned him freshman of the year award. Moreover, he continued with his fantastic form and was named both in 1984s and 1985s NCAA All-American First Team. Additionally, his efforts didn’t go unrewarded as he would again be named as the Naismith and Wooden College Basket Player of the Year title.

In NBA history some players get drafted early before they even graduate from college. Shaquille O’ Neal is among those who got picked and later came to finish their degrees. Subsequently, this too happened to Michael in 1984. He got selected by Chicago Bulls as the third overall acquisition. He missed out being on the top two drafts since the other teams required a centre. He would return to college in 1986 to complete his studies. He later graduated in the same year with a Bachelor of Arts degree in geography.

International Career

A lot of pride is attached when playing for one’s country. Though going pro is a player’s dream but also is international representation. Michael had the privilege to carry his nation’s flag in front of large spectators.

He first appeared in USA’s colours in the 1984 Summer Olympics that were hosted in Los Angeles. Under coach Bob Knight, he made 17.1ppg keeping in mind that he was still a student. He led his country in stamping its authority in the game by winning gold.

His next challenge was in the 1992 Barcelona Olympic games. This was the year that the team constituted of many talented players like Magic Johnson and Larry Bird. Therefore, it was dabbed the ‘Dream Team’. Michael played all games in that tournament but averaged 14.9 points per game. In the history of the championship, he, Mullin and Ewing emerged as the only basketball athletes to ever win gold both as amateurs and professionals in the Olympics. Furthermore, at the Pan American Games in Caracas, he also won gold.

Pro basketball career

Professionally players are further made in the many leagues they play for. The pressure is exerted on players after being drafted as both the company and fans expect much from them. Moreover, the NBA is one of the toughest franchises since the top players in the world meet here. Their goal is to be on top of the rest. Besides, they get a chance to sign lucrative contracts that are life-changing. With the money they make, some end up giving back to their community. Nonetheless, when he joined the Chicago Bulls in 1984, he was set out to be the best.

His first season began with impressive gameplay. He averaged 28.2 points in every game a fit that made the fans fall in love with him. Even the opposing audiences enjoyed watching him play. Nevertheless, this rookie was getting attention from different media outlets like The New York Times. In one of the articles, he was described as 'the phenomenal Rookie of the Bulls' This recognition was further crowned off when the spectators chose MJ as an All-Star start during that campaign.

Before the 1984-1985 All-Star game could even begin, there was controversy. Some of the league’s top athletes were displeased by Jordan’s popularity among fans. They decided to freeze him out. Players refused to pass him the ball during the game. He was unaffected by what happed on that night. Besides he was exciting to watch as he led the Bulls to 38 wins out of the 44 played. Though they bowed out early in the playoffs, he was named Rookie of the Year. His achievements in that campaign inspired him to come out stronger and better the following year. A lot of work had to be done to bring glory to Chicago, and Michael was indeed ready.

Going into the new campaign, there was a lot of excitement in the camp. However, Michael didn't get the start he had anticipated. He got injured in the third game of the season. This resulted in him missing 64 games. Though the Bulls played most matches without him, they made it to the playoffs but with a not so impressing record.

Moreover, he recovered in time to face off against the 1985-1986 Celtics team that was considered one of the dominant groups in the league's history. Despite losing the series, Jordan made 63 points in Game 2, setting a new record in a playoff match. This achievement still stands today.

He continued to make his mark in the game. This would happen in the 1986-1987 campaign. Going into the start of that season, he had fully recuperated from his foot injury. This meant that both his physical and mental strength was in perfect shape. This is so because he had among the best scoring stats in the history of the franchise. He averaged 37.1 points with a 48.2% shooting accuracy. These phenomenon ratings contributed to his incredible 3000 points that season. Such qualities saw him join Wilt Chamberlin ever to reach such heights.

Additionally, he demonstrated his defensive ability, which is a crucial element in basketball, as he made 100 blocks and 200 steals that year. With these numbers, he became the first athlete to do so. Although he did conquer, Magic Johnson beat him to the MVP award. This encouraged him even more. We all know that healthy competition gives players more motivation to play better. Also, when they are inspired, fans end up witnessing entertaining displays. Though his team did advance to the third playoff game, the Boston Celtic knocked them out once again.

Michael was still making amazing shots. He led the following season's scoreboard as he made over 35.0ppg. He went on to pick his first Most Valuable Player Award since joining the league. Moreover, he added a Defensive Player of the Year title to his name after making 3.16 steals and blocking 1.6 shots per game. He led the team as they defeated the Cavs to make it through the first round of the playoff. This was the first time he qualified for the finals after signing for Chicago. After going through, it meant that they would face Isaiah Thomas's team, Detroit Pistons. Although they exhibited performance of the series, they were no match for the opponents, as they lost all five games. Therefore, Pistons emerged victorious in the Eastern Conference Final.

The 1988-89 season would be similar to that of 1987-1988 for Jordan and Chicago. The team finished with an impressive 47-35 record under his leadership. Along the road wins against New York Knicks and the Cavs saw them reach the Eastern Conference Final. This meant that they would once again face off against the Pistons. Going into the match, they had a lot of optimism since MJ had a 53.5% shooting rate. Their opponents new this. For them to be victorious, they had to shut out their top player. In the six games, every time he held the ball, more than two opposing athletes were all over him. With this tactic Detroit defeated Chicago. He came close to heading for the NBA finals. Though bowing out in the finals for two consecutive seasons he and his team felt that a trophy was soon in their reach. They continued working hard and playing better. A new crop of exciting talent introduced, added to their flavour.

Chicago was beginning to gain recognition as a team fast on the rise. They dominated teams like Cleveland, 76ers and the Bucks to reach the 1989-1990 Conference final. Though they recorded 55-27 in the league, they were no match for the Pistons once again. The Bulls were disappointed in themselves. They couldn’t keep on playing second fiddle to the rivals all the time they met.

The defeat of the previous season was still fresh in the players' minds. Despite this, they went on to do even better the next season. Individually, Jordan completed 31.5 points in every game and with this he was selected as the MVP. This was his second ever in his career. The fans enjoyed watching their team take on opponents as they were fascinating. They ended up finishing first in their division and also recorded 61 wins. Indeed this group of athletes felt like they were complete. In the playoffs, they eased past Philadelphia 76ers and New York Knicks to progress to the Eastern Conference Finals. For the fourth time, they would meet the Pistons in a series that would define their progress to the next level. Therefore, they had to bring their A-game, and that's what they did. They were impressed that they oozed passed their opponents, thus qualifying for the NBA finals game.

Michael had finally led Chicago to its first-ever NBA final. Their opponents were Magic Johnson and James worthy two tough individuals from the Lakers side. However, in that series, the Bulls emerged victors after winning four matches against the opponent’s single win. His exciting display made him the lift both the NBA title and also NBA Finals Most Valuable Player award.

Subsequently, success doesn’t come singly. Chicago continued to prove to the rest of the world that their title victory was not a fluke but a sign of being the best team in the league. When you are defending, champions, everyone always wants to defeat you. Therefore, you have to continue winning to maintain the status quo. In the 1992-93 campaign, Jordan would ensure that the title remained home. His run was captivating as he grabbed a second consecutive MVP title. They would emerge winners from the Eastern conference and go ahead to face the Trail Blazers in the final. They lifted the trophy after winning six games. Also, as the night ended, he added his second MVP final award to his name.

The previous season’s achievements made Chicago hold on to their title as defending champions. This is something that they were not going to give up soon. The opponents too were recruiting a variety of players to match the offence of the champions. Despite these interventions, Jordan and the Bull's went all through the Eastern Conference and reached the 1993 league finals against Phoenix Suns. A win against the Suns saw them lift their third title. Besides, he became the first player ever to claim three straight NBA final MVP awards.

During the time he won his third title, he had spent seven years with the Bulls. Already he had become a success in the court and also in life. Keeping up with his celebrity status and the game made him seem overwhelmed. Therefore, he looked to retire from basketball any time soon.

Retirement

In October 1993, Michael walked out of the NBA with grace and honour; retiring at the age of 30. He stated that the death of his father and his loss of desire for the game prompted him to retire. This was his first retirement in his career. While he was still out of the game, he amazed many in early February 1994 when he went to play in Minor League Baseball as he signed for Chicago White Sox. MJ said that he did this for his late dad who had envisioned his son playing in the Major Baseball League. Soon he would retire in 1995 after the MLB strike.

The return

After his stint in Baseball, he announced his return to the NBA in March 1995 in a press release by merely stating, 'I'm back'. On his return, he couldn't adorn his famous 23 Jersey number as Chicago had retired it, so he opted for number 45.

Despite being out of the game for quite some time, he still looked good. He led his team to the playoffs where Orlando Magic defeated them. The loss motivated him further in the next season. Furthermore, the addition of Dennis Rodman in the 1995-1996 season made the team stronger. Jordan went on to be picked for both the All-Star Game and regular campaign’s MVP.

Also, they defeated all their opponents in the playoffs to qualify for the finals against Seattle SuperSonics. MJ brought Chicago's 4th championship as they defeated their opponents 4-2 in that series. This was the first title after the departure of his dad, and he felt like it was an honour to lift the trophy.

Michael continued with his impressive run in the 1996-97 campaign. Though he didn't win the season's MVP award, he made sure that the team reached the Finals. Despite feeling sickly against the Utah Jazz, he scored 38 points which saw his team once again bag the NBA title for the fifth time. Besides, he too added his fifth MVP final award.

Chicago was dominating the league once again. In the next season, they went in as defending champions and came out as champions. They qualified from Eastern Conference, went to the finals to face Utah Jazz and win their sixth title. Nevertheless, Michael set a record as he picked his sixth final MVP.

After his second impressive run in his career, he retired for the second time in 1999. He spent one year in retirement and came back partly as an owner of the Washington Wizards.

Washington Wizards

In late 2001, Jordan announced that he would come back to the NBA to play for the Wizards. He played for Washington until 2003. In his final game against the 76ers, he received a standing ovation from the 21,257 fans, his teammates, opponents and even the officials.

Family

Michael Jordan children are Marcus, Jeffrey, Jasmine, Victoria and Ysabel. His kids are from two different women. The first three of which he had with his first wife Janita and the twins with his long-time girlfriend, Yvette Prieto.

He married Juanita Vanoy in 1989. Both Michael and his wife filed for a divorce in 2002, claiming that it was due to irreconcilable difference. Later they did put their issues aside and reconciled. This didn’t last long as they once again filled for another one. The court granted them their wish in 2006. Following, their amicable separation Juanita received $168 million worth of settlement. Michael proposed to Yvette, a Cuban Model in 2013. They married in 2014 in a wedding that is estimated to cost $10 million.

Michael Jordan kids say their father inspired them to be who they are today. They also add that he didn't push them to play basketball, but he was a constant motivation in their life. His fast two sons played basketball while in high and college. Though they never went pro, they have their careers that they are proud of.

Jasmin, on the other hand, never played basketball but went on to study Sports Management at Syracuse University. At the institution is where she met her boyfriend, Rakeem Christmas. Together they have a son called Rakeem Michael Christmas, Jordan’s first grandchild. Currently, she and her brother work for Jordan’s Nike brand. Furthermore, little is known about the twins as their lives have been kept private.

Net worth

The last dance, a Michael Jordan Documentary, has tried to present the highlight of MJ’s career and his transcendence to greatness. Many people are knowledgeable of the Air Jordan brand, but very few know how much he is worth.

Michael is a smart individual, who made most of his wealth from his professional career, endorsements and other investments like procuring Charlotte Hornets. According to Forbes’ recent may 2020 rating, MJ is valued at $2.1 billion. The magazine ranks him No. 1,001 in the world. Therefore, this makes him the wealthiest retired athlete globally.

While in the NBA Michael made $94 million playing for both Chicago and wizards. This earnings and success made him invest in other lucrative business that saw his worth increase. Still, he was receiving endorsement deals from big brands like Nike, Chevrolet, Coca- Cola and others. From these companies, he made over $1.7 billion before taxes.

Furthermore, the release of Nike's Air Jordan, which has become both popular in the NBA and other fashion industries has added to this tally. Annually, he receives close to $135 million from the sales of the model. This is four times than what LeBron gets in shoe deals. If you want to add flavour to your footwear and be cool like MJ, visit Freaky shoes. On the platform, you will bring you creativity as the company lets you design them. Besides they are not only of quality but also affordable.

Additionally, in 2003, Michael invested money in the Charlotte Bobcats, where he became a minority shareholder. Later in 2010, he bought the franchise at $275 million. A sharp rise in the value of the Charlotte Hornets over time, saw it make a lot of money. Currently, the team is worth 1.5billion. Although he sold 20% shares of the company, he still is the majority shareholder.

Consequently, Jordan owns multiple houses of great value in places like Utah, Illinois and North Carolina and others. These homes' worth ranges between $2.8 million to $15 million. Moreover, he isn't going to receive any money from his recent documentary 'The Last Dance' as he wishes to donate the film's profits to charity. This move and many other actions are proof that he isn't just another wealthy individual but a person who cares for others.

The Bottom Line

The story of Michael Jordan will continue to be told in generations to come. This fantastic athlete and individual dominated one of the best basketball Leagues in the world. His six titles, six final MVPs and many more accolades he much deserved. It was his heart, passion, determination and drive that puts him up the among the greatest sports persona of all time. He faced off against top teams and players who were always looking to outdo him because they knew how good he was.

Despite being on top of his game, he demonstrated that he was human. This is so because he too had his flows in life. Nonetheless, the matches were not easy on him as he didn’t win all the time. Besides, his lows were tougher on him than even the highs. For example, the loss of his father broke his spirit, but he fought on. Historically, even the most significant people like; Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi, Isaac Newton and more were faced with challenging situations. What makes them iconic is how they rose from the pain and became victors. Therefore, how he faced that event inspires not only basketball players but also many people from all walks of life.

Moreover, many young players want to be more like Michael. This exhibits the impact he had on the game during his tenure in the NBA. It was he, who elevated the Status of Chicago Bulls as a dominant franchise and valuable team during his time. When he left, the company became a shell of its former self. These stats show that he was of great value to them and also the league. He is a loving family man and even a pillar of hope to his community as he donates millions of dollars to different charities. From his humble beginning and elevation to top, truly represents greatness.

 




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