Born17 February 1963
Popularly known as "His Airness", or "Air Jordan", Michael Jordan has won the hearts of millions of fans with his famous dunk shot. The basketball legend, showed a knack for the game, from the time he was in school. Having won several awards in college for his prowess, he decided to compete in the 'NBA Championships' at the age of twenty-one. Though not chosen on the best 'NBA' teams, this talented player gave it his all as a member of the 'Chicago Bulls'. This athlete proved to be a match-turner, changing the fate of his team with his talent. From a losing team, 'Chicago Bulls' began winning most of their matches, and finally emerged victorious for six consecutive championships. This remarkable player is considered a treat to watch, and though he retired on two occasions, every time he returned, it was to mesmerise the spectators. From 'Chicago Bulls', he moved on to the 'Washington Wizards', first serving as President of Operations, and then as a player. After his final retirement, he took over the 'Charlotte Bobcats' as a part-owner, with a majority hold in stakes. From then on, he has gone on to be the only billionaire athlete in history.
Childhood & Early Life
Michael Jeffrey Jordan was born to James and Deloris, on February 17, 1963, in Brooklyn, New York. James worked in the electrical and heavy equipment industry, while Deloris was a banker. The family consisting of four other children Larry, James R. Jr., Roslyn, and Deloris, settled down later in Wilmington, North Carolina.
Michael went to Wilmington's 'Emsley A. Laney High School', where he developed a love for sports like basketball, baseball and football. As a child, he was taught by his parents to be hardworking and independent. In school, he wanted to join the sophomore basketball team, but was rejected because he was too short.
Instead of being depressed, he joined the school's junior basketball team. He played exceptionally well, and worked hard to increase his height. Having impressed everyone, he was chosen for the 'McDonald's All-American Team', the best of all high school basketball teams.
As a senior in high school, the young boy played for college teams like 'North Carolina', 'Virginia', 'Duke', and 'Syracuse'. Finally, in 1981 he was offered a scholarship by the 'University of North Carolina', based on his performance in basketball. In college, he graduated in cultural geography.
At the university, he was trained by the famous basketball coach Dean Smith, and Jordan was titled 'Freshman of the Year' by the 'Atlantic Coast Conference'. In 1982, his jump shot was a major factor in the team winning the 'NCAA Championship' against 'Georgetown University'.
In 1984, he dropped out of university with the aim of joining the 'NBA Draft'. However, the young athlete was selected by team ‘Chicago Bulls’ after players Hakeem Olajuwon and Sam Bowie were chosen by 'Houston Rockets' and 'Portland Trail Blazers', respectively.
In the 'Summer Olympics' held in 1984, he was part of a gold medal-winning team that included players like Sam Perkins, Steve Alford, and Patrick Ewing.
Michael came back to college, and graduated from the 'University of North Carolina' two years later.
During 1984-87, as a part of 'Chicago Bulls', a team that didn't have much luck with victory, Jordan proved his mettle with an above-average ppg of 28.2.
He gained immense popularity, which was resented by players of his own and rival teams alike. As a result, teammates did not pass the ball to him on several occasions, and the 'Bulls' lost the playoffs to 'Milwaukee Bucks'.The enthusiastic basketball player took his team through the playoffs of every season he participated in. The young athlete scored 100 blocks and 200 steals in a single season, becoming the first to do so in the history of 'NBA'.
Even though the 'Bulls' lost the playoffs to the 'Boston Celtics', the former fared relatively better than before.
From 1987-90, the new star of 'Chicago Bulls' led his team through the first round of 'NBA Playoffs' in the first season, and till the finals in the next two. They defeated teams like 'Cleveland Cavaliers', 'New York Knicks', 'Milwaukee Bucks', and 'Philadelphia 76ers', but in each season, ‘Detroit Pistons’ led by Isiah Thomas, beat the 'Bulls' out of the game.
In the next season of 1990-91, Jordan helped the 'Bulls' sail through the playoffs and reach the 'Eastern Conference' finals. His team faced 'Detroit Pistons' once again, but this time, it was the 'Chicago Bulls' that emerged victorious. The winners played the 'NBA’ finals against the ‘Los Angeles Lakers’, bagging their first victory in the history of the game.
The next two seasons the 'Chicago Bulls' defeated 'Blazers', and 'Phoenix Suns', winning three consecutive championships.
In the 'Summer Olympics' of 1992, he was once again a member of what is known as the "dream team", a gold medal-winning group of talented players like Magic Johnson, David Robinson, and Larry Bird.
In 1993, the popular athlete was observed gambling, an allegation that he owned up to, in an interview on the '60 Minutes' show. The same year, on October 6, he publicly declared his decision to retire, stating his father's murder as one of the reasons.
The following year, the basketball player signed up with 'Chicago White Sox' for a baseball contract. This was Michael's way of realizing his father's dream to see his son playing baseball. The same year, he also played for other minor baseball teams including ‘Birmingham Barons' and 'Scottsdale Scorpions'.
Without their star player in the team, the 'Chicago Bulls' failed to perform at the 'NBA' championships. In 1995, the famous player decided to give up baseball, and return to the basketball, playing once again for the 'Bulls'.
His return match was played against the 'Indiana Pacers' team, which the 'Bulls' won. His team went on to win games against 'Atlanta Hawks', and 'New York Knicks'.
However, in the 'Eastern Conference Semifinal', against the 'Orlando Magic' team, the 'Bulls' failed to capture a victory. Despite Michael's average of 31 points in each game, 'Orlando Magic' won the season.
During 1995-98, the famous athlete played three seasons of 'NBA' championship, beating 'Seattle SuperSonics', and 'Utah Jazz' in the following two championships. This win along with 5 victories earlier, was an important milestone in his career as it made him the six time recipient of the ‘Most Valuable Player’ (‘MVP’) title at the ‘NBA’ finals.
On January 13, 1999, Jordan retired once again from the game, but the following year, he came back as the President of Basketball Operations for team 'Washington Wizards'.
In 2001, the athlete decided to begin playing again, and trained rigorously to get in form. He also appointed his old coach from the 'Chicago Bulls', Doug Collins, to train his team 'Washington Wizards'.
The same year, on September 25, announced that he would play basketball for the 'Washington Wizards', declaring that he would contribute his whole salary for the victims of the 9/11 attack. In the 2001-02 season though, he could not play too many games owing to a serious knee injury.
In 2003, he played his final 'NBA All-Star' match against 'Philadelphia 76ers', and beat Kareem Abdul-Jabbar's record of scoring the most number of points. However, after several intentional fouls against Michael, the 'Washington Wizards' lost. The celebrated player, however, was given a standing ovation that lasted for three minutes.
Post-retirement, the athlete was removed from his post of President with the 'Washington Wizards'. In 2004, he founded his own motorcycle racing team, 'Michael Jordan Motorsports'. Two years later, he became part-owner of the NBA team, 'Charlotte Bobcats', holding a majority stake in its operations.
Awards & Achievements
During 1984-88, this talented athlete has received several NBA awards, including 'Rookie of the Year', 'Defensive Player of the Year', 'Slam Dunk Contest Champion'. He has also been titled the 'NBA Champion' on several occasions.
In 1984, as a member of the winning team in the 'Summer Olympics', he won the gold medal.
'Sports Illustrated' magazine named him the 'Sportsman of the Year' in 1991. The following year, he won another gold medal for his team's victory at the 'Summer Olympics'.
He has been ranked as one of the greatest sports personalities by several magazines, including 'SLAM', and 'ESPN Sports'. He has also been included in the 'Hall of Fame' by 'Naismith Memorial', and 'North Carolina Museum of History'.
Personal Life & Legacy
In 1989, Jordan got married to Jaunita Vanoy, but they separated after seventeen years of marriage. As settlement, Jaunita received 168 million dollars from her former husband. The couple have two sons, Jeffrey and Marcus, both of who are basketball players.
On April 27, 2013, the basketball player got married to model Yvette Prieto, who he had been dating for quite some time, at the 'Bethesda-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church'. The following year the couple had twin daughters, Victoria and Ysabel.
This sportsperson is so popular that he has been signed on by several big brands as their ambassador. He has endorsed top brands like 'McDonald's', 'Wheaties', 'Chevrolet', 'Nike', 'Hanes', 'Coca-Cola', and 'Gatorade'.
The celebrated sportsman has donated money for charitable organizations like ‘Hales Franciscan High School’, in Chicago, and ‘Habitat for Humanity’, Georgia.
Businessman and Actor
Outside of his career in basketball, Michael Jordan has been involved in a number of profitable business and commercial ventures.
Over the years, Michael Jordan has signed a number of endorsement deals with brands including Nike, Hanes, Upper Deck, Gatorade, Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Chevrolet and Wheaties.
Jordan made a big splash in film as the star of the 1996 movie Space Jam. The film mixed live action and animation and paired Jordan with cartoon legends Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck on screen.
Part-Owner of the Charlotte Bobcats
In 2006, Jordan bought a share of the Charlotte Bobcats and joined the team's executive ranks as its managing member of basketball operations. In 2010, he became the majority owner of the Charlotte Bobcats and serves as the team's chairman.
Improving the team's less-than-stellar record seems to be Jordan's priority. He told ESPN in November 2012 that "I don't anticipate getting out of this business. My competitive nature is I want to succeed. It's always been said that when I can't find a way to do anything, I will find a way to do it."
Michael Jordan Steakhouse
In 1998, Michael Jordan launched into the restaurant business as the owner of Michael Jordan’s The Steak House N.Y.C. Designed to reflect Jordan’s tastes and style, this typical steakhouse seats 150 and 60 at the bar, occupying 7,000 square feet in Grand Central Terminal. Other locations include Uncasville, CT, Chicago and Ridgefield, WA.
In 2015, Michael Jordan has been estimated to have a net worth of 1 billion dollars, setting the record of being the first billionaire athlete ever.
Karla Knafel, a former lover of this famous basketball player, alleged that the sportsperson had paid her a big sum of money to remain silent about their relationship and her pregnancy. A DNA test however proved that the accused was not the father, and the allegations were false.
1. “I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
2. “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.”
3. “I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can't accept not trying.”
4. “Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, and others make it happen.”
5. “My attitude is that if you push me towards something that you think is a weakness, then I will turn that perceived weakness into a strength.”
6. “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.”
7. “Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.”
8. “If you quit ONCE it becomes a habit.Never quit!!!”
9. “Everybody has talent, but ability takes hard work.”
10. “Never say never, because limits, like fears, are often just an illusion.”
11. “Don't let them drag you down by rumors just go with what you believe in.”
12. “If you do the work you get rewarded. There are no shortcuts in life.”
13. “I've failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed.”
14. “The minute you get away from fundamentals – whether its proper technique, work ethic or mental preparation – the bottom can fall out of your game, your schoolwork, your job, whatever you’re doing.”
15. “Once I made a decision, I never thought about it again.”