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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. TheHonestBroker - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:37 AM

    Jordan the best? Perhaps you never saw the big ‘O’ play or the DOCTOR. Jordan isn’t half the man those two guys are. Jordan is a loser.

  2. Jose Otero - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:37 AM

    Move over Jordan, Kobe is rising!!!!!!!!!

  3. Anonymous - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:38 AM

    If I had one player to start a team around, it wouldn’t be Jordan, Johnson or Bird; although all three are great players. My first choice would be Kareem Abdul Jabbar (Lew Alcindor). He was the most dominant player in history and was so even into his early 40’s. The man was a superman to play all those years virtually uninjured.
    As someone who played college ball at the same time as Jabbar, I saw first hand what he could do to opponents. My team was nationally ranked in D-1 and we wouldn’t have stood a chance against him or UCLA when he played. My school ended up playing UCLA in 1971 in the finals of the NCAA tournament and we gave them a run for the championship; however, thankfully, Alcindor was already graduated like myself.

  4. Jooks - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:38 AM

    Jordan has a point. I would say the most illegal alliances would be Labron, Kobe, and Wade. Now you Have Wade and Labron together. Look at all those people in the background staring at Jordan,LOL.

  5. LongTimeFan - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:41 AM

    Good points but lets not forget the NY Knicks
    Portlan Trailblzers,
    Detroit Pistons etc., etc., these were all great teams with great players that played while the Celts, Lakers, Bulls, were in the same era, albeit their championships were fewer, they beat the Celtics, Lakers, Bulls, other greatest teams at their peaks so they were just as dominant as the teams who won but could not endure due to curcumstances beyond their control (injuries, retirement etc.)
    A great player from one era cannot be compared to another in a different time. MJ I’d consider as one of the top 25 of all time but not the greatest – that is a toss up and subject to individual bias.

  6. Jose Otero - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:45 AM

    Six championships and you say Jordan is a loser! You are in denial!!!!!!! He didn’t do it alone, but his team could not have done it without him.

  7. loveball - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:46 AM

    What makes players like Jordan, Russell, Bird, and Magic different than players now is really simple……pure love of the game. For players now, it is all about money – and it is a business. For those of us who just love the game, it is sad and discouraging to watch. Use a team like the 90’s Bulls for just one example….put a bunch of guys who don’t make a pile of money on the court, and watch them compete for love of the game…and for competition sake. Beautiful. You can also really see the difference in a coach like Jackson, who coaches now for the money versus love of the game. Folks should read his book, written after Kobe’s arrest, to recognize the veiled contempt he has for younger players and what the game has become. It was surprising that he would choose to return to the Lakers after he said he was done. Again, the difference between old and new…money.

  8. donde - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:46 AM

    For Christ’s sake, give it up on the LeBron thing already. Nothing, repeat nothing, is going to happen until late October to see how it’s going to work in Miami.
    First, no great, Jordan, Bird, Magic, Wilt, etc. played without a significant supporting cast. Jordan was in the league for 6 years and they were finally able to assemble a team around him with the likes of Pippen before he beat an aging Lakers team. How many of people really think that Cleveland was going to be able to build a team around James? Not only was their payroll not going to allow them to do it for a few years, but who really wants to play in Cleveland? Not to be harsh, but there’s not much going on there.
    I’m not a Heat or LeBron fan in particular (don’t hate ’em by any means though), but the league is a lot different now. The way that contracts are written makes it much more difficult for a team to sign on good people because so many teams are saddled with bad, long term contracts where it seems like the players sign their second 5-6 yr deal for $100m+ and decide to cruise along and not play. James, Wade and Bosh decided that they were going to take control of their own destiny and all join the same team. Why not? They could either each be great players on mediocre teams, or buck convention and control their own destinies. They decided on the later. Good for them.
    Also, I’m sure that Knicks or Bulls fans (or Jordan himself) wouldn’t be saying anything like this if the trio had chosen their respective teams. It’s sour grapes, now let it go and wait until the season starts to see if the Heat are going to be the best team or if the whole thing blows up in their faces.

  9. Who Cares - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:46 AM

    Anyone stop to think,maybe LJ does not care about the “legacy” or becoming the next, “Jordan?” Everyone is so concerned about how this diminishes his place in basketball history….
    Charles Barkley needs to shut up- He is crying because he never won a ring. Didn’t he go chasing one with the “The Dream”, Pippen, and Clyde. He just waited too long and they were all washed up when they joined forces.

  10. deiong - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:49 AM

    care, because he is the greatest basketball player ever to play.. thats why you should care.

  11. brian - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:52 AM

    jordan didnt have to play against magic and bird when they were in their prime. he didnt even win a ring until they were pretty much out of it. I dont care what he says if he was in lebron, wade and bosh’s position he would have done the same thing. hell the heat gave boston all they could handle in the playoffs this year. no, what you hear now is jealousy from fans around the league and if i were not a heat fan i would be too. you are looking at the beginning of the next great basketball dynasty. bow down to your master :-)

  12. lean6 - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:53 AM

    Just like the 72 dolphins pathetically and unnecessarily trying to preserve a legacy. Jordan doesn’t have to throw jabs this way. Geez.

  13. Anonymous - Jul 19, 2010 at 10:58 AM

    also mj made his teammates better, its not like anyone other then pippen was an allstar and mj helped mold pippen into an allstar he wasnt an allstar when they were paired together to begin with., pippen has said so numerous times. how many people has lebraon helped other then himself and his non bball playing friends? none. how many people has he helped mold into an allstar? none. not only did mj win mvp’s but he won scoring titles, and defense player of the year awards, something lebron and kobe havent. cant understand why anyone will compare them against jordan. but then i guess its because theres noone better then those two these days.
    as for steve kerr, please, the guy could shoot but was a long long way from an all star. you actually think ron harper was an alstar? hahaha thats to funny. sure he was an ok bench player but to claim he was an allstar is the joke of the day :) thanks 😉 tony kucok, sure he was ok, but how many allstar games did he go to again???
    mj could score over anyone whenever he wanted to. bryant and lebron may be the best of today, but there not anywhere near as good as mj was.

  14. Kev - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:08 AM

    While I do agree with Brian, that Jordan pretty much battled Bird/Magic on the plus side of their prime, but that wasn’t his fault, and basically it was just a passing of the torch….He shouldn’t apologize for beating them then, and to Lean6, why do you think Jordan is throwing jabs??? All he did was answer a question he was asked and stating what he would or wouln’t have done. Like I mentioned before, if you read his WHOLE comment, there was not jealousy in it………

  15. Cali - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:15 AM

    Bill Russell is the greatest, only a child (too young to know better, didn’t see the earlier greats) or a fool (follows the media, can’t think for himself) would say otherwise. Go watch and read about Oscar Robertson as well//

  16. Wayne - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:18 AM

    MJ may be considered the best of HIS era, but to consider him the best of all time is a joke! You can only be judged against the peers you play against. What about Chamberlain? Who else has ever AVERAGED 50 points per game for a season? I think most people who answer on these posts only know the “ESPN era” of players in all sports. No one has dominated their sport like Wilt did except for maybe Babe Ruth and Wayne Gretzky. If I were to pick a starting all-time starting 5 I would most likely go with Wilt at center, Russell at power forward, Magic at the point, Bird at small forward, and MJ at shooting guard.

  17. Big Boy - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:20 AM

    Basketball is played by a team consisting of 5 players. You have to have 5 good players on the court throughout the game. 3 suprerstars alone does not cut it to win the championships. The Heat still has a long way to go. Comparsions should be made to teams and not players if you want to get it right.

  18. popi0721 - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:23 AM

    Interesting discussion. All really meaningless until end of next season and we see how it panned out. BTW, all the championship teams had all-stars and terrific surrounding role players. Agree with Kev, all MJ did was answer the question. Does it matter? The NBA has changed, the players are ALL better; this could certainly be the wave of the future with free agency as it is. And for the best ever, in no particular order…Big O, MJ, Russell, Magic, Bird, Kareem. But think about the the players those guys had with them. IMO, the Heat still need rebounding and defense. And they have won nothing…yet.

  19. Fausto - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:25 AM

    These points are beyond ridiculous.
    a – Wade and Bosh haven’t been the players to beat to win championships, those have been pierce and kobe .. it’s not like lebron left to join either of those teams. Lebron didn’t leave Cleveland to join a proven champion, he left help push a team to titles.
    b- That lebron joining a team somehow diminishes the game, cut the crap, seriously. Did kobe’s rings get diminished because he couldn’t win one until the lakers practically stole Gasol? Did KG’s ring get diminished because he had to run to boston to piggy-back on pierce’s ring ? This is the biggest pile of crap argument that’s ever been made in the history of debates.
    c – Until MJ can measure up to the sheer dominant force that bill russell was on the court, you can’t call him the best ever. I’ll call him the best marketed player ever. 11 rings in 13 years, MJ can’t compete with that, no-one can.

  20. Andy - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:26 AM

    Cavs had 66 wins this year with sub-par players, with one exception, LB. MJ can’t touch that! Only player that comes close is Scottie Pippen the year MJ decided to play baseball. Bulls came one bad call from reaching NBA finals.

  21. Wayne - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:27 AM

    My second unit would be Kareem at center, Olajawon at power forward, Oscar Robertson at point, Kobe at shooting guard and Elgin Baylor at small forward. Everybody who picks LeBron is fooling themselves. Put it this way, if he stopped playing today would he be considered the greatest? Even at his position? NO he wouldn’t. He has proven anything. He has actually proven to be easy to defend. The proof is when his teams reach the playoffs. They do not have to focus on any of the other players as he has to have the ball in his hands to create anything. that is why his teams lose to good teams in the playoffs. He may be considered the best of his era when his career is over, but not yet…and I think not likely. He doesn’t make players around him better.

  22. JoseF - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:29 AM

    I’m in complete agreement. To be the best you have to beat the best. JLB & the heat will never see a title.

  23. william-Michigan - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:33 AM

    Yes, we all thought that this James cat was a big hearted competitor. He is no better yet very richer than the cats at the local YMCA who stack the team because they too are scared of the real ballers.

  24. Melody - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:35 AM

    Jordan knows you’re only as good as your computation. If you don’t play against the best and win, you yourself will never be the best.

  25. alan - Jul 19, 2010 at 11:38 AM

    Player loyalty to the teams and the fans disappeared a long time ago when free agency destroyed basketball, football and most of all, baseball. It is extremely rare that you get a player that wants to play his whole career with one team, unless, of course they are champions.

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