“This is my life. I’d like to lead it the way I choose to. Everyone else is free to watch it-but I have to live it.”— Michael Jordan, Chicago Tribune (January 13, 1994)
Michael Jordan is considered one of the greatest MBA players of all time, and while the majority of his achievements happed on the hardwood, there was one season in which Jordan ditched his basketball shoes for a pair of baseball cleats.
Michael Jordan‘s basketball career was legendary, in 1996, he was named one of the 50 greatest players in NBA History by the National Basketball Association.
About Michael Jordan
Michael Jordan was born February 17, 1963, and he is a former professional basketball player who is currently the principal owner of the Charlotte Hornets of the National Basketball Association (NBA). He played 15 seasons in the NBA, winning six championships with the Chicago Bulls.
Jordan played college basketball for three seasons under coach Dean Smith with the North Carolina Tar Heels. As a freshman, he was a member of the Tar Heels’ national championship team in 1982. Jordan joined the Bulls in 1984 as the third overall draft pick, and quickly emerged as a league star, entertaining crowds with his prolific scoring while gaining a reputation as one of the game’s best defensive players. Jordan’s leaping ability, demonstrated by performing slam dunks from the free-throw line in Slam Dunk Contests, earned him the nicknames “Air Jordan” and “His Airness”. Jordan won his first NBA championship with the Bulls in 1991, and followed that achievement with titles in 1992 and 1993, securing a “three-peat”
Michael Jordan and Basketball
Jordan played a total of 15 seasons and 1,072 regular-season games for both Chicago Bulls and the Washington Wizards. Michael Jordan’s basketball career averages were 30 points, six rebounds, and five assists. He won 5 MVP Awards and was selected to play in 14 MBA All-Star games, a six-time NBA world champion.
Jordan was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009. Jordan also played for two Olympic gold medal-winning American basketball teams. He played as a college athlete in the 1984 Summer Games and again played as a professional basketball player on the 1992 “Dream Team,” which included Magic Johnson and Larry Bird.
Why Michael Jordan Wanted to Play Baseball
In 1993, Jordan retired from Basketball and jumped into playing baseball. Jordan signed a minor league baseball contract on February 7, 1994, for the Minor League baseball team, the Birmingham Barons, a double-A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox.
Jordan wanted to play baseball because his father wanted to see him succeed at playing baseball while Jordan was growing up. Playing baseball would be a tribute to his father, he said in an interview that appeared in the Chicago Tribune in 1994, “…And this is something my father always wanted me to do. He started me in baseball when I was six years old. Two years ago, he told me that I should go for it. I’m serious. My father thought I could be a major-league baseball player, and I’m sure that right now he can see me trying. He’s watching every move that I make..”
My father thought I could be a major-league baseball player, and I’m sure that right now he can see me trying. He’s watching every move that I make.Michael Jordan, Chicago Tribune (1994)