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Jordan wouldn't have called up Bird, Magic to be teammates, he wanted to beat them

Jul 18, 2010, 11:12 PM EDT


Michael Jordan is still a competitor. Don’t get him wrong, he’d like the money the big free agents are getting now. But he says he wouldn’t have called up Larry Bird or Magic Johnson and wanted to team up. “I wanted to beat those guys.”

Times are different now. For better or for worse, they are different.

Now, it’s back to running the Bobcats. May want to work on the point guard thing a little, MJ.

174 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Paulm46 - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:31 AM

    When asked by an ESPN reporter who would take the final shot of the game with 5 seconds left MJ or Kobe, Phil Jackson responded “Michael was better at creating his own shot. Kobe has better range”. So, you decide.

  2. GW2-22 - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:34 AM

    What, None of you ever saw Dr.J ? when the doctor was operating,no one stopped him. What a sight to see.
    Of course that was back when there were two leagues.

  3. MDC - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:39 AM

    Yes, Bill Russell does have the most titles ever, but how much of that had to do with how absolutely STACKED the Celtics were? There were fewer teams in the league then, but the Celtics had an intense concentration of Hall of Fame talent.
    Now, I don’t mean to take anything away from Russell, but Jordan’s achievement, with great teams but nothing with the caliber of talent of those Celtics teams in the Sixties, is almost as mind-boggling as Russell’s. Jordan was a guard, first of all, and none of those championship teams had an all-star caliber center. Also, think about what Jordan’s Bulls could have done had he not retired the first time. They could have won eight in a row! In the modern NBA, where teams may have less relative talent to their counterparts in the 1960s, but whose players were largely more superior athletes.
    Let’s just say Jordan and Russell are the two greatest players in NBA history … and two of the top competitors, too. I can’t imagine Russell would have called Chamberlain and West to team up, either. He didn’t need them, just like Jordan didn’t need Bird or Magic.
    But LBJ apparently needs Wade and Bosh. He may get his titles, but he lost his balls in the process.

  4. Jake - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:39 AM

    Jim Gray actually asked Pete Rose on the field if he would admit that he bet on baseball. Other players actually boycotted his interviews for a short time. So, Jim Gray has asked tough questions.

  5. ray ray - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:42 AM

    Give me the man who is better at creating his own shot. I still remember when the talk was that Drexler had better 3 point range than Jordan and then they played in the finals. Jordan set a record that stood until recently when broken by Ray Allen.
    Kobe definitely has been clutch throughout his career. Jordan, however, could be clutch for quarters at a time. Great concentration and his numbers (percentages) say the same. We’re talking about a 10-time scoring champion here. Nuff said….

  6. MDC - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:45 AM

    How are the Superfriends doing anything but helping the bigger markets tighten their grasp on the NBA? Miami is not a basketball town, sure, but it is still a big market in a really fun locale. New York will be the next city to benefit from this new standard the trio have established. It’s a shame.

  7. ray ray - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:45 AM

    Give me the man who is better at creating his own shot. I still remember when the talk was that Drexler had better 3 point range than Jordan and then they played in the finals. Jordan set a record that stood until recently when broken by Ray Allen.
    Kobe definitely has been clutch throughout his career. Jordan, however, could be clutch for quarters at a time. Great concentration and his numbers (percentages) say the same. We’re talking about a 10-time scoring champion here. Nuff said….

  8. CF98 - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:47 AM

    I’m sure he did but he can say that now after winning 6 titles. Many seem to forget his ultimatum(build me a team or I’m out) and they did and he won as the main man and now stuck with every other player after him being compared to MJ. Now had he been ringless he’d be singing a different tune.
    While I don’t like LeBron he has the right to go wherever he wants regardless of whether people say his legacy is ruined because of it. His dog and pony show making this decision is what would dent his legacy more than joining Miami.
    If he wins rings he made the right decision.
    If he doesn’t then I would question it.

  9. Happster - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:48 AM

    Note to self: never use the word “consumate” in the same sentence twice, or you’ll look like an idiot.

  10. April - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:49 AM

    Jordan was not gifted ONLY because of his skills, but also because he actually made the people on his team better. Lebron would do well to learn that lesson of teamwork.

  11. Lee - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:50 AM

    News Flash – LJ is not MJ or Magic or Bird and the LJ Cavs were not MJ Bulls or the Magic Lakers or the Bird Celtics. Also, basketball is really a team sport.

  12. bneals - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:52 AM

    Chili22 doesn’t care because he is likely 22 years old. Dude, you might think that LJ is all that, and he is a great player, but he has a long way to go before being compared to MJ, Bird, or Magic. Hell, I don’t even see how you compare him to Kobe until he has at least 5 rings. Chili, there was a time when the best played the best so that they could bring up their game. Bird v. Magic made both players, and their teams, better. LJ’s move will make Magic fans happy, but will hurt the NBA as a whole and most basketball fans will never see LJ the way that they view other greats.

  13. Happster - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:52 AM

    Yeah, Magic and Bird don’t compare to any of those players….you jagoff. Do the world a favor and don’t reproduce.

  14. ray ray - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:56 AM

    Sorry for the double post above.
    What the big three did exposed the problem and brought it more to light. Now it has to be addressed. Will the best players sacrifice salary to play with other great players? Will teams who expect loyalty from a player actually sacrifice more to bring in other great talent? What does the fact that better markets have the best teams say to the idea of so-called Great organizations or championship teams? These things I like to think about.
    More importantly, I’m for players being able to make more conscientious decisions about such questions, not whether it benefits the NBA or so-called team loyalty. That’s whats important IMO.

  15. Happster - Jul 19, 2010 at 8:59 AM

    English, man, English…

  16. Tyme2Jam - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:00 AM

    Listen U guys have no idea who is the best Player of all time without seeing players from previous era’s. The last time I checked Bill Russell had 9 NBA titles. Oscar Robertson averaged a triple double for the season. Nobody in my book were better than Kareem Jabbar in his prime,just check the stats and Championships. Jordan had the killer instinct and put his team on his shoulder time after time. It was like poetry in motion. To compare players from different periods is almost fruitless. We can only imagine.

  17. stem - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:01 AM

    best factual discussion concerning kobe vs jordan.
    numbers don’t lie….and this list includes about every number imaginable
    there really is no comparison between MJ and todays players.

  18. Anonymous - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:04 AM


  19. Zekemob - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:04 AM

    I’m from NY (One of the teams this guy abused) and I care what he says. It’s just this generation doesn’t value hard work. It’s all about the easy way. Jordan was the man and I definitely respect his decision to win on his own. Pippen became a superstar because he watched MJ show up to practice 4 hours early and had no choice but to work as hard. People who played for the Bulls feared MJ’s wrath, so they basically practiced harder to please him. There’s a lot to be said about one guy who can do that. No one is going to play harder to make LJ happy. Why would you? He quits in the playoffs and he took the easy road. Imagine Karl Malone or Ewing leaving their teams to join MJ in Chicago just so they could ride his coat tails to a championship? Never would have happened. Those guys wouldn’t have taken the ring if that’s how they did it. It’s different when you are 38 and just want to get a ring, than when you are 27 and still have plenty of time to build and win on your own.

  20. David - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:13 AM

    And the Lakers would never had won a championship without the Coach they have now. In other words the Lakers suck without Coach Phil Jackson. Kobe is not that great of a player either, he will never be a Michael Jordan!

  21. Kevin - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:14 AM

    What Wade, Bosh, and James did is a reflection of the culture in which we live. Nowadays, a corporation hires the best and brightest. If it can’t, it partners with or absorbs a corporation that already has the best and brightest. Therefore, achieving its original goal. IMO, in both cases, the environment becomes less competitive and is worse overall for the customer. Prior to these moves, people in Cleveland and Toronto had players they could justify spending hard-earned money to see. Now, what’s the point? Money in these markets will be better spent watching college or high-school ball. Look at the NBA after Jordan, and at the height of free agency. Just before Lebron joined the Cavs, who would’ve thought they would ever be competitive in the finals? Who would’ve thought we’d ever see Orlando in the finals again after Shaq and Hardaway left the team? With Wade and Bosh on separate teams, you had people interested in those 3 teams. Now, unless the Raptors and Cavs play the Heat, I doubt those teams will be on ESPN, TNT, or ABC. I still remain critical of Gilbert’s attitude about Lebron’s move, but Stern needs to investigate Wade’s, Bosh’s, and James’ player tampering activities and institute a policy that prevents it in the future.

  22. your real daddy - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:16 AM

    well, this coment shows how young you are, kiddy.

  23. Slick - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:18 AM

    So… I tried watching this video twice.
    Was able to see ad’s both times! Once for Lexus and once for some basement filled with water company.
    But not the actual video? Is this how desperate NBC has become? Annoyed.

  24. Cire - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:26 AM

    Frankly, MJ, that’s a bunch of crap. Before you got Scottie on your team, you were in the same position as LJ – lots of talent but no rings. So now you can lob bs comments after the fact to be sure that no one threatens your legacy. Loved you as a player, but we saw your real pettiness in your Hall induction speech (actually more of a whine). In the end, no one does it alone. MJ knows that, Kobe knows it, and so do LJ and DWade.

  25. Amilami - Jul 19, 2010 at 9:34 AM

    I don’t think LeBron is driven in the way that MJ, Bird or even Kobe are. I don’t think he revels in beating HoF players like they did. I’m not going to dump on the guy, he took less money and less limelight to increase his chances of winning a championship (last I checked 2 common complaints about athletes). The bloated show was indefensible, but imagine if you were famous, rich, and 25. If you could team up with 3 friends and rule South Beach as well as grab some NBA titles wouldn’t it be at least enticing?
    Besides the show, what galls me the most though is that Miami is going to become a NBA powerhouse solely by virtue of having a nice beach. The Heat are made up almost entirely of bandwagon fans and it’s a shame that they are going to get the spoils while suffering, die hard fans (see: Cleveland, Tornto, New York Knicks) are left out.

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