Who is Michael Jordan? Lockout factious leader, competitive player, public persona

Posted by By at 10 November, at 22 : 08 PM Print

Who is Michael Jordan? Lockout factious leader, competitive player, public persona

He has to be the biggest surprise of the entire four month lockout. Michael Jordan, the basketball player who captured so many fans with his competitive spirit, play and character is now Michael Jordan, NBA franchise owner/faction leader. The owner fans see today is different from what fans saw from Jordan as a player. The player: balanced, calm, controlled. The owner: bitter, cheap, average. The marketing machines (Nike, Gatorade, etc) which cast him in such a pleasant light is gone and only the man’s real character can be seen. Jordan has made headlines in the media during the lockout by strongly influencing owners opinions on not giving the players anywhere near a 50/50 split of basketball related income. He along with Trailblazers owner Paul Allen led a charge early this week of ten to fifteen owners and is possibly exerting enormous influence in the lockout negotiations.

He has offended younger players specifically because as a player during the 1999 NBA lockout, he gave Abe Pollin, then Washington Wizards owner the now famous line that if he is only trying to make a profit by owning an NBA franchise he should sell the team. But this is not the only glimpse of the elder Jordan, a few years ago when elected to the basketball Hall of Fame, his acceptance speech was a release of past grudges and hurt feelings. Not at all like the Jordan everyone in the world had known through the many DVD’s, commercials, books, TV interviews and movies. Jordan has been an average owner and general manager since his last retirement. He isn’t doing well leading the Charlotte Bobcats and had many difficulties (drafting Kwame Brown) during his years as an owner of the Washington Wizards.

Jordan has been seen many times in the past few years in his luxury box appearing anxious and bored. Anyone who has seen him sitting there can play “analyst” themselves and read his body language which seems to ache to be back out on the court. He even practiced with Bobcat players last season trying to spur the team to more victories with his tutelage. Maybe Jordan should heed his own instincts and return to the court leaving the owner’s box–but as a coach. His role this week in the lockout looks more like a “call to arms” for Jordan than anything related to collective bargaining. He just can’t stop competing. But make no mistake, that the pleasant demeanor displayed by Jordan in all his endorsement commercials is no longer any reflection on the man himself.

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