Michael Jordan turns 60: Sixty fascinating facts about His Airness on his milestone birthday

Michael Jordan is 60 years old. Yes, you read it right. Michael Jordan, once an outstanding athlete who defied gravity on his way to becoming one of the most recognizable figures in the world, has now completed 60 trips around the world.

Time slows down for no one, but it hasn’t extinguished Jordan’s brilliance or star power. Jordan received the biggest standing ovation of any legend during the NBA team’s 75th anniversary celebration during the 2022 All-Star Game. Walk into any gym, playground, or school across the country and you’ll find one of Jordan’s signature shoes on more feet than any other player past or present.

Jordan’s impact on basketball and society is intertwined. Along with starring in Hardwood, Jordan has starred on screen for decades. His commercials are among the most iconic on television. He has been the subject of several documentaries, including the Emmy-winning documentary series The Last Dance, which provided much-needed entertainment during the early days of the pandemic. And lest you forget, there is also popular crying jordan meme.

LeBron James, who recently took over the top scorer title from Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, has seen a new round of GOAT talk emerge. But there is no doubt that Jordan’s presence on and off the court has turned the NBA game into a global business and revolutionized how athletes will continue to build their own brands and fans. So, in honor of his birthday, here are 60 unique facts about MJ.

1. What did the Miami Heat do? Despite never playing for them, Jordan’s jersey was retired by the Miami Heat. Now This respect.

2. Jordan actually had a discontinued T-shirt. Following Jordan’s departure from the NBA in 1993, the Bulls retired Jordan’s 23 jersey and gave him a statue upon his first retirement. But the jersey was not retired when Jordan returned to the NBA in 1995. However, the statue remained outside the United Center throughout his second run with the Bulls. At the bottom of the statue is written: “The best that ever was. The best that will ever be.”

3 Jordan was fined (several times) for coming to work as a freshman. It may be hard to believe now, but Jordan’s first signature sneakers, which he wore as a rookie, violated NBA uniform policy, resulting in a $5,000 fine every time he wore them during a game. Nike used this wisely to promote the shoe, which made the upstarts even more popular.

4. Captain Marvel? Before becoming known worldwide as the Air Jordan, Jordan was briefly referred to as Captain Marvel early in his career with the Bulls. The nickname obviously didn’t stick.

5. Not ready for prime time. The story of Jordan being expelled from the high school basketball team is only part of the story. Yes, Jordan didn’t make the varsity team in his sophomore year at Laney High, but he did play on the team in his junior and senior years after spending his sophomore year at varsity. His performance as an adult and during training camp in North Carolina convinced legendary coach Dean Smith to offer him a scholarship.

6. The day Mike became Michael. Jordan’s rise to fame began with the 1982 NCAA championship game. Loosing to a powerful Georgetown late in the game, Jordan, then a freshman, landed the game-tying jump shot. This shot gave Smith and the Tar Heels their first national championship. In a 2016 interview with the late Craig Sager, MJ said, “It was the birth of Michael Jordan. Before that, I was Mike Jordan. All of a sudden I took this picture and I became Michael Jordan.”

7. “From the floor, from the scoreboard …” Jordan has starred in several iconic commercials—Nike, Gatorade, and Hanes, to name but a few—but one of his best may have been his McDonald’s commercial that aired during the Super Bowl in 1993. Jordan is going to eat in it. Big Mac when Larry Bird challenged and the craziest HORSE game ever played ensued.

8. Rare air. Jordan retired as the NBA’s third all-time leading scorer behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Karl Malone. He has since been passed on the list by Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. Jordan’s 1,072 career games is the second-most games played among the top 10 career scoring NBA leaders, while Wilt Chamberlain’s 1,045 is the fewest.

9. Thirty points a night, every night. MJ is averaging 30.12 career points per game, the highest in league history. Just behind him are Wilt Chamberlain (30.07), Elgin Baylor (27.36), Kevin Durant (27.28) and LeBron James (27.23).

10. Man of the decade. Jordan was named MVP five times (1988, 1991, 1992, 1996, 1998) in 12 full seasons with the Bulls.

11. A star among the stars. He won three All-Star Game MVP Trophies (1988, 1996, 1998), but his performance at the 1998 All-Star Game was arguably his most memorable. Despite bad weather, Jordan led the East team to a 135–114 win with 23 points, 6 rebounds, 8 assists, 3 steals, while often facing Kobe Bryant, who scored 18 points in his All-. Star debut.

12. Remembering Kobe. Jordan ended his career as the All-Star Game scoring leader with 262 points. He has since been overtaken by Kobe Bryant (290) and LeBron James (413). In 2020, the NBA renamed the All-Star MVP Trophy after Bryant, who has won the award a record four times.

13. Takeoff cleared. Air Jordan lived up to his nickname when he won back-to-back Slam Dunk titles in 1987 and 1988. Jordan’s second win, against 1985 winner Dominic Wilkins, was marked by a 50-point Jordan dunk (the highest a dunk can produce). get) with a jump from the free throw line in front of Chicago fans.

14. The same one. But only. The NBA first recognized its first Defensive Player of the Year in 1982-83, and in the 40 years since only one player has won the award while leading the league in scoring… That player, of course, will be Jordan. who averaged 35 points per game and also won the DPOY award in the 1987-88 season.

15. Two packs of six … When it comes to the NBA Finals, Jordan simply dominates. His Bulls have won all six NBA Finals series they have competed in (1991-93 and 1996-98), and MJ has been series MVP each time.

16. … and never a lucky seven. Jordan never played in Game 7 of the NBA Finals. Of his six Finals wins, only his first appearance against the Lakers lasted five games. The remaining five series were decided in six games.

17. If you don’t succeed at first. As one of the sport’s greatest winners, Jordan’s postseason career didn’t start out that way. He lost his first three postseason games, including two against the Celtics against Larry Bird. Jordan’s first playoff series victory came against the Cavaliers in 1988, his fourth season in the NBA.

18. Breaking Bad. The Detroit Pistons were a major hurdle in the first half of Jordan’s career. The Detroit Bad Boys beat Jordan & Co. in three straight postseasons from 1988 to 1990 on their way to their own back-to-back NBA titles. But then came 1991, when Chicago swept over Detroit. In response, the Pistons walked off the court by passing the Bulls’ bench without shaking hands before time expired in the series decider.

19. Spectacular show. Michael Jackson’s first NBA Finals was “the easiest” for the Bulls, as it only took them five games to beat Magic Johnson’s Lakers. Jordan became the MVP, averaging 31.2 points, 6.6 rebounds and 11.4 assists per series. In the second game, a right hand dunk that turned into a simple left hand in flight became one of the signature throws of his career.

20. Failure is fueling. In 1991, Jordan’s first career game in the NBA Finals ended with him missing a potential game-winning shot at the siren. An undaunted Jordan scored 33 three days later as the Bulls tied the game. (Jordan has talked about failures in his career quite often..)

21. The biggest success on the biggest stage. Jordan was 24-11 in the NBA Finals and 6-4 in the Series Finals, but perhaps most impressively all five times his opponent fell behind in the series 3-2 with his back against the wall, he closed the series in a game. . 6.

22. Shrug. Jordan’s “shrugs” game against Portland in the 1992 Finals included an NBA Finals-record 35 points in the first half. Jordan, who also broke the Finals’ first-half record of six 3-pointers, scored just four points in the second half as the Bulls defeated the Trail Blazers 115–104.

23. High-octane walks. Jordan’s first 40-point final game came in Game 2 of the 1993 Finals. Jordan, who scored 42 points in that game, will score 44, 55 and 41 points in the next three games, and then drop 33 points in Chicago’s decisive win streak in Phoenix….


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