Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The "Decision" Jordan NEVER had to make!

We don’t talk about sports much here at The Urban Politico, but this has been bothering me for a couple of days and I haven’t heard many thoughts in line with my own. So I’m going to take advantage of the blog and rant for a second (Again).

*steps up on soap box*

Some background....

Michael Jordan, along with ‘Nique Wilkin’s, introduced me to the NBA - not basketball as I was attempting to play already - but the NBA itself. At that time, I had NEVER seen anything like the 1985 Slam Dunk Contest. Since then, I’ve been hooked.

In my eyes - with the exception of Kwame Brown…what was that about - his Airness could do NO wrong. He could yell at his teammates, gamble, kids LITERALLY killing for overpriced sneakers, leave to play minor league baseball and even join the Washington Wizards, and I would still defend him. You know that guy that would argue with you over who was better, Kobe or MJ? That was me… (Back in the day I also argued that Def Jam was better than No Limit- no point in saying that…just a random thought) don’t even think about making the comparison. Although I will give Kobe his respect…he has game and is doing his thing in the league. But me, I’ve had this fight conversation for YEARS. From Ron Harper and Anfernee Hardaway to Harold Miner and Grant Hill; anyone that was preordained “Baby Jordan” got discredited REAL quick, and I had the stats to back it up. I followed the Bulls through the rest of the 80’s and 90’s, and, though not as much, still keep a tab on the “Baby Bulls.”

I say all that to say, I RARELY…if EVER speak out against MJ…but in light of recent events, I can’t hold my tongue.

Unless you were sleep the last couple of weeks, you heard about the LeBron James’ over-the-top announcement that he was “taking [his] talents to South Beach” and joining Dewayne Wade and Chris Bosh with the Miami Heat. Understandably, this sparked much controversy…from LeBron leaving and breaking Cleveland’s Heart, being selfish and join JUST to win, to being UNselfish by taking less money to play with two other superstars. To be honest, none of this bothered me, I didn’t care. With the things owners do and don’t do, I was glad to see players taking matters into their own hands to forge their own futures. And yes, James’ one hour special was a tad bit over the top…but hey, if in our society, if you have a product that people will buy, …sell it (he did give the money to the Boy’s and Girl’s Club…some cut him some slack) and the people bought it – to the tune of 10 million views, the third most watched cable program so far this year. So again, I wasn’t bothered one way or the other by it.

But then, Michael ‘Air’ Jordan spoke up:

"There’s no way, with hindsight, I would’ve ever called up Larry (Bird), called up Magic (Johnson) and said, ‘Hey, look, let’s get together and play on one team,’" "But that’s … things are different. I can’t say that’s a bad thing. It’s an opportunity these kids have today. … In all honesty, I was trying to beat those guys."

Cuse me, Mike…can I call you Mike...yeah, look here....you didn’t call up Bird and Johnson because YOU DIDN’T HAVE TO!!!! They were already on your team!!! Aside from the difference in the generation and money, Jordan, Bird and Magic didn’t have to call up other Hall of Famers (HOFers) because THEY WERE ALREADY ON THEIR TEAM!!!!!

Pop Quiz: Aside from a WAAAAAAAAY past his prime Shaq, name one other HOFer playing with Cleveland…I’ll wait….
Nothing…really…what about an all-star? I’ll wait…oh yeah…Mo Williams did make it that ONE time as a REPLACEMENT when the actual pick couldn’t play!!!

What about Jordan? Let’s see…
Well…There was the OTHER one of the NBA’s 50 greatest player, Hall of Fame, Olympic gold medal winning, 7 time All-star (’94 MVP), 7 time All NBA (3 – 1st team), 10 time All Defense NBA (8 – 1st team) guy Scottie Pippen. Not a bad co-pilot for the first “Three-peat.”
Later they added the European Championship/FIBA World Championship MVP, European Player of the Year, and NBA Sixth Man of the Year Toni Kukoč… AND
2 time All Star, 2 Time Defensive Player of the Year, 2 Time All NBA 3rd team Selection, 7 time All Defensive First Team and 7 time Rebounding Champion Dennis Rodman.

I don’t know…that sounds like he had his “Wade” and “Bosh” right there. He didn’t need to go out and ‘join’ them. We won’t even GET into the teams that Bird and Magic played on….let’s just say, that between the two of them, they played with 7 Hall of Famers and a number of All Stars. This is like Paris Hilton saying she never needed to take food stamps! No Shit!!!

My point is should ANYONE really be complaining that LeBron made the decision to play with other great players to win a championship? Besides the 2004 Pistons, can anyone name a team that won the championship without multiple Super-star caliber players?

Is this something that reserved for OLD players (Barkley/Drexler to Houston and Gary Payton/Karl Malone to LA)?

With the way owners run certain teams, I can’t really say I blame him. I would like to see it done by more players…at least until teams and managers start to really compete, and at least ATTEMPT to make their teams better. I’m not against Old School players speaking their minds…but come on, let’s be honest with ourselves. If they want to say “LeBron needed other stars to win…” Then MJ, You were a great player, but needed other Hall of Famers to do it.

Thank you for listening...

*Steps off of soap box*
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