In what has become a menacing debacle in the NBA, the greatest man to ever wear sneakers is now putting in his two cents.
That’s right, Bobcats owner and current GOAT Michael Jordan is almost single-handedly delaying labor negotiations.
With the players union setting a hard line at 52 percent for Basketball Related Income (BRI), His Airness is leading the charge of a group of small-market owners who want the players to accept a deal that gives them 47 percent of the BRI.
It’s not shocking that Jordan would demand that his side wins.
We’re talking about the same guy who once bet his teammates that his luggage would come out before everyone else’s at the airport. Sure enough, Jordan’s rolled out first and he collected a couple hundred off the team.
What they didn’t know is Jordan had bribed a baggage handler to get his bags out first. He was collecting a pretty penny at the time already, but it didn’t matter to MJ – it was an easy score.
If you saw his Hall of Fame speech, you know what I’m talking about. It’s that competitive fire that got him six rings. It’s what made him great.
But what is shocking to me is that he completely left the players out to dry.
He wants them to accept a deal that gives them 5 percent less BRI than they are demanding, and he couldn’t believe that the owners even offered a 50-50 split.
Even in his own Hall of Fame speech, he said players win championships, not organizations.
Maybe he should take a step back and heed his own advice.
He should really be thankful for the game that afforded him his luxurious lifestyle. He should appreciate the game that made him possibly the most recognizable athlete in the 20th century and see where the players are coming from.
Jordan has already faced harsh criticism from NBA players throughout the league when Cougar legend Klay Thomspon tweeted at Indiana Pacers guard Paul George, “You think the 1996 MJ would pull this? Straight hypocrite bro.”
The players are absolutely right.
Jordan is looking at this through the wrong lens. He should realize that without player support, his brand and his empire are essentially nothing.
If he does indeed decide to go down this route and essentially cheat the players, I’m not sure how many players will be chomping at the bit to represent the Jordan logo.
I understand he needs to run a profitable team, but maybe he should have considered holding on to Gerald Wallace or not giving up on Tyson Chandler. Those two moves did nothing for the Bobcats organization other than gift talented veterans to other teams.
The lockout is pitting owners against players and no one will be able to come out of this situation unscathed.
Jordan needs to take a step back and realize that he was once a player and even though his loyalties may have changed, there’s no reason for him to forget where he started.
Jordan said it himself: “To be successful, you have to be selfish, or else you never achieve. And once you get to your highest level, then you have to be unselfish. Stay reachable. Stay in touch. Don't isolate.”
Well Mike, you’re doing a pretty good job of isolating.