There aren’t enough platitudes for ESPN the Magazine’s new article on Michael Jordan, for which he participated. It’s also long. Here are some choice highlights:
Jordan vacations on a 154-foot yacht named Mister Terrible.
Upon forgetting the lock combination of an old safe in his former home in Chicago:
“Everything else stopped as this consumed him. After 10 failed attempts, the safe would go into a security shutdown and need to be blown open. None of the usual numbers worked. Nine different combinations failed; they had one try left. Jordan focused. He decided it had to be a combination of his birthday, Feb. 17, and old basketball numbers. He typed in six digits: 9, 2, 1, 7, 4, 5. Click.”
His three favorite Western movies are Outlaw Josey Wales, Two Mules for Sister Sara, and Unforgiven.
On his competitiveness playing app games on his iPad:
“He’s in the middle of an epic game of Bejeweled on his iPad, and he’s moved past level 100, where he won the title Bejeweled Demigod … ‘I can’t help myself,’ he says. ‘It’s an addiction. You ask for this special power to achieve these heights, and now you got it and you want to give it back, but you can’t. If I could, then I could breathe.’”
Jordan watching LeBron on League Pass:
“‘I study him,’ he says. When LeBron goes right, he usually drives; when he goes left, he usually shoots a jumper. It has to do with his mechanics and how he loads the ball for release. ‘So if I have to guard him,’ Jordan says, ‘I’m gonna push him left so nine times out of 10, he’s gonna shoot a jump shot. If he goes right, he’s going to the hole and I can’t stop him. So I ain’t letting him go right.’
“For the rest of the game, when LeBron gets the ball and starts his move, Jordan will call out some variation of ‘drive’ or ‘shoot.’ It’s not just LeBron. He sees fouls the officials miss, and the replays prove him right. When someone shoots, he knows immediately whether it’s going in. He calls out what guys are going to do before they do it, more plugged into the flow of the game than some of the players on the court. He’s answering texts, buried in his phone, when the play-by-play guy announces a LeBron jump shot. Without looking up, Jordan says, ‘Left?’”
On which of today’s players could be successful in his era:
LeBron, Kobe, Tim Duncan, Dirk Nowitzki. That’s it.
ESPN Outside The Lines: Michael Jordan Has Not Left The Building