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Michael Jordan declines comment on Donald Sterling

Apr 26, 2014, 10:00 PM EDT

Miami Heat v Charlotte Bobcats - Game Three Getty Images

The legacy of “Republicans buy sneakers, too” – even if Michael Jordan never actually said it – lives on.

Jordan, now the Charlotte Bobcats owner, is again avoiding controversy. This time, it’s Donald Sterling’s alleged racism.

Times have changed since Jordan’s heyday. The NBA’s biggest stars, LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, both spoke out against Sterling today.

Jordan is not required to give his opinion on the issue, though if NBA owners have at all been told not to comment, that didn’t stop the Heat’s Micky Arison or the Spurs’ Peter Holt. Jordan could have done the same.

He chose not to.

That doesn’t mean he condones what Sterling allegedly said, and he could always offer his opinion later.

But it says something that Jordan initially declined comment when LeBron and Kobe did not. How NBA superstars handle controversy has changed, and it will be interesting to see how the league responds to that shift.

  1. beach305 - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:05 PM

    I guess racist buy sneakers to

  2. eugenesaxe1 - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:06 PM

    MJs part of THE CLUB, he doesn’t want to rock the boat. Sadly, he should be the first one to stand up and say something.

    • 24thesho - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:09 PM

      Well, it has to be proven definitively that it’s actually the voice of Donald Sterling, then, we can move forward.

      • eugenesaxe1 - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:13 PM

        You’re quite right. However, if it wasn’t him, he probably would’ve said something by now. The silence is pretty damning.

      • kinggw - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:21 PM

        It has been proven by the fact he issued an apology through the team president. You don’t apologize for statements you didn’t make.

      • tccoats - Apr 27, 2014 at 10:37 AM

        funny how no one is disputing the female’s voice…..oh that’s right, she didn’t make any racist remarks….funny how that works.

  3. nightrain42 - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:09 PM

    Why does anyone expect anything different? This is the same guy that saw first hand the pitiful slave like conditions his Air Jordan’s are made in and didn’t do anything to change it.

    • jimeejohnson - Apr 27, 2014 at 11:57 AM

      Nailed it.

  4. supre7 - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:09 PM

    Multi million dollar slave?

  5. davidly - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:13 PM

    Consider the costs he’s paid for crossing the line and you might understand. Ignore what should have been obvious and you never will.

  6. dinofrank60 - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:18 PM

    You think Russell or Chamberlain or Abdul-Jabbar wouldn’t have said anything? Elvin Hayes? Oscar Robertson? Dave Bing? Or is that going back too far?

    • antistratfordian - Apr 27, 2014 at 1:59 AM

      Oscar and Kareem definitely would’ve said something.

  7. davidly - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:27 PM

    There are a couple hundred guys hawking shoes that are made by little more than slaves — and MJ not speaking out about this is a problem? I cannot believe the bizarre threshold our society has for allowable private vs public behavior. How many more times did Sterling have to be sued for racial discrimination before the league would’ve noticed?

  8. jamesk2465 - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:36 PM

    not very surprising, were talking bout the same guy who won’t even address the fact that hundreds of african americans die over his shoes. Michael Jordan on the court best player of all time, but off of it he’s a first class coon

  9. watermelon1 - Apr 26, 2014 at 10:37 PM


    Do you honestly need a celebrity to speak on a topic such a racism to help you know how to feel about it?

    THIS is what’s wrong with the world. If we go to WW3, people will be more concerned about finding out what Ja Rule or Miley Cyrus thinks about it instead of… You know, finding a solution or protecting their loved ones.

    Yes, Jordan is downright criminal for not wanting to talk to you about racism.

    It’s you people who get up in arms about an assumed-to-be private conversation between an old guy and his obvious sugar-baby “girlfriend.”

    • adamsjohn714 - Apr 26, 2014 at 11:46 PM

      They weren’t looking for his opinion because he’s famous. They were asking because he’s one of 30 people on the entire planet who is an NBA owner.

  10. whitwarren - Apr 27, 2014 at 2:12 AM

    “this doesn’t mean mj condones what he said” uhhh… DUH

  11. campcouch - Apr 27, 2014 at 6:10 AM

    or MJ probably says the same thing on the phone,but that’d probably would be considered funny. i’d laugh.

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