Michael Jordan, popularly known as MJ, is heralded as one of the greatest basketball players of all time. With his numerous championship rings, multi-million endorsements, and an animated movie to boot – Jordan has solidified his stance as one of the greatest basketball icons in history.
Michael Jordan Facts
1. Michael Jordan was named “College Player of the Year” for two consecutive years.
Michael Jordan showed potential right at an early age. He played for Emsley A. Laney High School in Wilmington, North Carolina. He averaged 25 points per game and even played for the 1981 McDonalds All-American game – where he scored a whopping 30 points, an interesting fact about Michael Jordan.
Many schools tried to recruit Jordan, and after much consideration, he suited up for the University of North California – Chapel Hill. He was a mere freshman when he sank the game-winning championship point against Georgetown University.
He continued winning games for the Tar Heels for which he earned the “College Player of the Year” plum for two consecutive years. He left the team in 1984 to join the NBA. He eventually finished his degree in Cultural Geography a year after.
2. Michael Jordan was honored as “Rookie of the Year” despite having a broken foot.
The Chicago Bulls drafted Jordan for the 1984-1985 season. He started his NBA career with a broken foot, for which he missed several games. Despite this, he led the league in scoring and ended up winning the most-coveted title of “Rookie of the Year.”
3. He led the NBA scores for seven consecutive years.
With his broken foot now healed, Michael Jordan was practically unstoppable. That showed in his playing statistics as he led the scoreboards for seven consecutive years. For the 1986-1987 season, he scored 3,000 points – he was only the second person to do so after Wilt Chamberlain.
4. Jordan was heralded as NBA’s “Most Valuable Player” for five times.
The NBA’s Most Valuable Player award is reserved for individuals who are deemed the best in the league. An interesting fact about Michael Jordan is that he received this distinction not once, not twice, but five times. He was awarded his first MVP plum in the year 1988, and his last one 10 years after. He was also named MVP in 1991, 1992, and 1996.
5. Jordan led the Chicago Bulls to win six championship titles.
From 1991 to 1993, the Bulls were simply a force to be reckoned with. With Michael Jordan at the helm, the Bulls won the championship for three straight years – after which, he retired for the first time.
As Jordan returned to the NBA for the 1995 season, he helped the Bulls achieve a beautiful 72-10 win-loss record, a record that was left unbroken until 2016.
Following his comeback, Michael Jordan helped the Chicago Bulls claim three more championship titles from 1996 to 1998. For each winning season, he was named MVP of the Finals.
6. Michael Jordan retired from basketball (for the first time) to play some baseball.
After helping the Bulls win its third consecutive championship ring in 1993, Jordan announced – to the dismay of many – his first retirement. He cited his lost desire to play the game – and the untimely murder of his father – to be his reasons for retiring.
Jordan shifted his sights to baseball, mainly because it was his father’s dream to see him become a Major Baseball League player. He eventually played for the Chicago White Sox, a Minor Baseball League team, an interesting fact about Michael Jordan. As a baseball player, Jordan had good figures – he batted .202 against the Birmingham Barons and scored .252 against the top-billed players of the Scottsdale Scorpions.
By 1995, with the Major League Baseball strike, Michael Jordan decided to quit baseball. He made an astounding NBA comeback that year – even though he did not play basketball for one and a half years.
7. Jordan would retire from the game for two more times.
After leading the Bulls to its sixth championship in 1998, Jordan decided to retire yet again. However, he was still visible at the sidelines, as he owned/managed the Wizards from 2000-2001.
For the second time, Jordan decided to come out of his retirement to suit up for the Wizards. He played from 2001 until 2003, as he retired for the third (and final) time around.
8. He holds several NBA records.
Upon his retirement, Michael Jordan scored a whopping 32,292 points. At an average of 30.12 per game, he was the fifth-best scorer of the entire league. As for steals, he ranks third with 2,514 after John Stockton (3,265) and Jason Kidd (2,684.)
9. He won the slam dunk contest twice.
As a shooting guard, Jordan is known for his impressive leaping ability. It was said that his high-flying skills inspired a lot of new-generation players, including LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, an interesting Michael Jordan fact.
With his impressive jumps, Michael won the Slam Dunk Contest for two consecutive years – from 1987 to 1988. The latter year saw him earn a score of perfect 50 – enabling him to win against the equally-marvelous Dominique Wilkins.
10. Michael Jordan was part of the 1992 “Dream Team.”
Michael Jordan was recruited as one of the 12 members of the 1992 Olympic Basketball team, which was fondly called by many as the “Dream Team.” Together with powerhouse players Karl Malone, Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, and Magic Johnson, the Dream Team was undefeated at every game. Jordan, together with his teammates, brought home the gold medal after defeating Venezuela with a score of 127 to 80.
11. He appeared in the movie “Space Jam.”
Directed by Joe Pytka, Space Jam is a 1996 movie that stars Michael Jordan and several famous Looney Tunes characters. The story documents a fictionalized account of what transpired during Jordan’s first retirement from 1993 to 1995.
Apart from Jordan, the movie featured other notable NBA players as well. Making appearances in the film with Jordan are Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, Muggsy Bogues, Shawn Bradley, Larry Johnson, and Patrick Ewing.
Michael Jordan, without a doubt, is one of the greatest players of all time. As a leader in points and steals, his greatness continues to be unmatched. With his additional talents in baseball (and acting too,) Michael Jordan is praised as a very versatile person – both on and off the court.
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