Michael Jordan : biography
Jordan led the NBA in scoring in 10 seasons (NBA record) and tied Wilt Chamberlain’s record of seven consecutive scoring titles. He was also a fixture on the NBA All-Defensive First Team, making the roster nine times (NBA record shared with Gary Payton). Jordan also holds the top career regular season and playoff scoring averages of 30.1 and 33.4 points per game, respectively. By 1998, the season of his Finals-winning shot against the Jazz, he was well known throughout the league as a clutch performer. In the regular season, Jordan was the Bulls’ primary threat in the final seconds of a close game and in the playoffs, Jordan would always demand the ball at crunch time.Sachare, Alex. , Hoop Magazine, June 1996. Retrieved February 12, 2009. Jordan’s total of 5,987 points in the playoffs is the highest in NBA history., National Basketball Association. Retrieved March 5, 2007. He retired with 32,292 points in regular season play,, databasebasketball.com. Retrieved January 16, 2007. placing him third on the NBA’s all-time scoring list behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Karl Malone.
With five regular-season MVPs (tied for second place with Bill Russell; only Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has won more, six), six Finals MVPs (NBA record), and three All-Star MVPs, Jordan is the most decorated player ever to play in the NBA. Jordan finished among the top three in regular-season MVP voting a record 10 times, and was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History in 1996.
Many of Jordan’s contemporaries label Jordan as the greatest basketball player of all time. An ESPN survey of journalists, athletes and other sports figures ranked Jordan the greatest North American athlete of the 20th century, above icons such as Babe Ruth and Muhammad Ali., ESPN. Retrieved May 3, 2007. Jordan placed second to Babe Ruth in the Associated Press’s list of 20th century athletes.Associated Press. , USA Today, December 21, 1999. Retrieved March 15, 2007. In addition, the Associated Press voted him as the basketball player of the 20th century., lubbockonline.com, December 11, 1999. Retrieved January 18, 2008. Jordan has also appeared on the front cover of Sports Illustrated a record 50 times., Sports Illustrated. Retrieved February 22, 2013. In the September 1996 issue of Sport, which was the publication’s 50th anniversary issue, Jordan was named the greatest athlete of the past 50 years."Final Out: 1996", Sport, volume 90, issue 7, July 1999, pg. 96.
Jordan’s athletic leaping ability, highlighted in his back-to-back slam dunk contest championships in 1987 and 1988, is credited by many with having influenced a generation of young players.Hubbard, Jan. , Hoop Magazine, April 1997, via nba.com. Retrieved March 6, 2007.Fitzpatrick, Curry. , Sports Illustrated, November 9, 1987. Retrieved March 6, 2007. Several current NBA All-Stars have stated that they considered Jordan their role model while growing up, including LeBron JamesAssociated Press. , Sports Illustrated, April 16, 2003. Retrieved April 22, 2007. and Dwyane Wade.Ginsbrug, Steve. , Reuters, June 21, 2006. Retrieved March 3, 2011. In addition, commentators have dubbed a number of next-generation players "the next Michael Jordan" upon their entry to the NBA, including Anfernee "Penny" Hardaway, Grant Hill, Allen Iverson, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Vince Carter, and Dwyane Wade.Stein, Mark. , ESPN, October 29, 2001. Retrieved March 6, 2007.Isidore, Chris. , money.cnn.com, June 23, 2006. Retrieved March 6, 2007.Araton, Harvey. , The New York Times, December 28, 2005. Retrieved April 8, 2008. Although Jordan was a well-rounded player, his "Air Jordan" image is also often credited with inadvertently decreasing the jump shooting skills, defense, and fundamentals of young players, a fact Jordan himself has lamented.
Although Jordan has done much to increase the status of the game, some of his impact on the game’s popularity in America appears to be fleeting.Rovell, Darren. , ESPN, September 23, 2001. Retrieved March 10, 2007.Helfand, Lewis. , askmen.com. Retrieved March 10, 2007. Television ratings in particular increased only during his time in the league and have subsequently lowered each time he left the game.