NBA / Feb 26, 2009 / 1:34 pm

Michael Jordan vs. Today’s Rules

Michael JordanMichael Jordan on Sports Illustrated

Among NBA fans who followed the game as far back as 1998, there’s a pretty commonly accepted theory, which was most recently brought to the table in yesterday’s “Getting to the Basket 101″ post:

If Michael Jordan played in his prime under today’s no-hand-check rules that are friendly to scoring guards and wings, he’d average at least 40 points.

For the most part, I agree. On talent alone, MJ would would a monster if he didn’t have to deal with the physical style of the 1990s (or the extra-physical style of the 1980s). But there’s another facet you have to consider, something about the old-school rules that made Jordan the player he was.

With today’s laid-back rules, the “Bad Boys” Pistons wouldn’t have been allowed to beat the crap out of MJ during his formative NBA years, when he was making that leap from flashy superstar to cold-blooded killer. Without those early experience, would Jordan have developed the same drive and motivational fire that made him JORDAN? Or would he have been closer to another Iceman Gervin, a jaw-dropping scorer who is known more for getting buckets and not as much for being a winner?

While I’d like to see as much as anyone how 28-year-old MJ would fare in today’s game, I’m also thankful he got to make his bones in a rougher era, where his championship-caliber intangibles were hewn.

How would MJ’s career had turned out without those Detroit playoff series losses?

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  • Heckler…formerly ‘yallallreadyknow’

    ‘..as far back as 1998′…

    damn. you must be young! do you even remember anything about jordan playing against the pistons in the late 1980s? i do think you do. how could you?!!?

    you probably werent even 10yrs old!

  • kevin k

    IF MJ in his prime played now, he would avg 50 points a game while shooting 25 fts a game. NBA has lots of young talent and some games are enjoyable, BUT none of the games are as enjoyable as those 90s series.

    Bulls vs Knicks, Heat, Magic, Pacers, Hawks, Cavs
    Knicks vs Magic, Pacers, Heat
    Jazz vs Rockets, Suns, Spurs, Sonics and many others.

    All those teams were perennial playoff teams, and what made it more interesting and enjoyable was that they hated each other. Games were physical and you could see that guys really wanted to win against each other. Now days, it’s either all fun and jokes or guys trying to act tough from 1 hard foul. It’s ridiculous.

    NBA, especially in the east is a joke. OTher than the Celtics, Magics, and the Cavs, other team sucks.

  • hucklebuck

    MJ would still have had the same competitive drive because the Pistons would have still beaten them. Whether or not he would have been the same animal on the court, most would say yes. His nature from the start is an agressive one, unlike Iceman. He would probably have had a chance at 100 if played today. However, defensively he is secretly known for keeping a hand on a players hips to use as leverage, so he may have suffered more defensively than offense. Bottom line-he would still have been JORDAN without those playoff losses to Detroit.

  • hucklebuck

    the bigger question is-would LEBRON JAMES be the player he is now if he played in the late 80s and 90s?

  • Dragonyeuw

    I think Jordan always had the drive, he just didn’t have the team around him untill Pippen and Grant emerged and Phil took over as coach. It’s impossible to say whether or not the Detroit series’ made him who we know now as the GOAT.

    Speaking on if he was playing today, he’d be putting up 35-40 every year. He was shooting 50% in his prime in an era where you could hand-check the hell out of your opponent. With today’s rules geared to showcasing a great permimeter player, Jordan would be scoring 12 points a game on free throws alone, and easily putting up 40 a game.

  • http://GEE2.com Just another case of that ol PTA …GEE

    100 post on this one!

    LOL @ 4 and LeBron’s would be catching it hard. I think he would be able to stand up to the pounding though.

    Anyway with Jordan Money would have done well in today’s time. I don’t know about dropping 40 per. Still he would have done well. In today’s game though, Jordan would have got it from a couple of players as well as he gave or gives it.

    I most def. think the Detroit games made him tougher, more of a physical monster and more diverse in his givings.

    If it wasn’t the Pistons I feel eventually some team would have went that way (real physical) with Jordan in trying to stop him. So he would still be the same Money he is now and was then.

    The physical attacks on dude most def. shaped him some though. NO doubt about that.

  • AY

    george gervin isn’t in the same sentence as mj because he didn’t play defense, so he didn’t win. If MJ can’t hand-check the guy he’s defending, he would’ve had to spend more energy on the defensive end of the court because that’s the thing that wins games. So I don’t think he’d averaged 40, just because he’d have to work so much harder to be as good as he was on defense.

  • hucklebuck

    another point to throw in-Jordan definately couldn’t do it without PIPPEN. Jordan would have a hard time trying to find his Pippen. Not to mention a triangle offense or any offense for that matter for him to excel at. Today’s game, who do people think is the best-Kobe. what kind of offense is he in-the triangle.
    another point-as much as Jordan helped basketball by the kind of player he was, he also gave it a punch in the gut when he retired cuz ever since’98, the world compare’s TODAY’S players to JORDAN’S STANDARDS, not Bird or Magic’s standards, but JORDAN’S.

  • pig

    How about that,jordan never faced zone?

  • doc

    I think he’d average 1000.Seriously though,fuck Mike and the what would he do now shit.We know he’s a legend but enough with the Davey Crockett fable shit.We dont know and never will and if he stepped on the court right now Kyle Korver would bust his ass.

  • hucklebuck

    the doc need a real doc with this Kyle Korver thing.

  • doc

    No I think u need a doc if u think Mike still got it on that level.But u need one to get that surgery called getdispenisoutamymouf because thats the only excuse for thinking Kyle cant give him numbers right now.

  • bigdoggchad

    If you ever watched any of those Jordan movies he said thats why he started hitting the weights and put on 10-15 pounds one summer was because how physical the Pistons were. And would MJ have been the defender he was with todays rules?

  • karizmatic

    He would have been what Kobe is now….all the skills but not as smart, tough, or fundamentally sound.

  • bigdoggchad

    Also would Bird have been the player he was cause he couldn’t guard any one when hand checking was allowed so you know there is no way he is stopping anyone with todays rules. I know he had a high basketball IQ and could shoot the hell out of the ball but would he have been a superstar still? Because there is plenty of guys who can shoot the ball and have a decent basketball IQ but don’t play alot or are not on the court in crunch time cause they can’t play defense.(Korver, Reddick, Peja) Actually what I am trying to say is would he even have a chance to become the player he was now? Most slow white players that can shoot but can’t play D don’t get a chance when they come into the league even if they are a great college player.(Reddick)

  • doc

    I feel that karizmatic.And he would have a bullshit rape case because more shit get blown outta proportion now.The good ol 80′s.Where u could fuck people up on the court and not get ejected,and fuck around on your wifes without media distraction.Shit Magic got HIV and nobody knew until his press conference.We would’ve known a year earlier now.ESPN woulda been got some random dude to “leak” that out.

  • http://www.espn.com Sho-Nuff

    Jordan’s basketball IQ is off the charts. He would scored 40 a night easy. Remember he averaged 37.1 that one year.

    MJ said it was easy to get 32. He knows how many touches he’ll get per quarter, 8 8 8 8 = 32…not a problem…

  • karizmatic

    @ doc

    LOL.

  • karizmatic

    @ Sho Nuff

    Jordan wasn’t even on that, he knew he could score 16 in the 4th if he had to, so he would just let the chips fall where they would for 3 quarters, as long as his team stayed ahead or wasn’t too far behind. On top of that you knew he was going to drop 40 or more if he came out shooting. If he was going to have a big night (and by big we mean 40 or more, because 30 was commonplace) he usually came out and dropped 12 or so in the first quarter. If he did that you knew he was going to have at least 30 beacuase he was going to drop 16 in the 4th. lol.

  • Bruce

    MJ would not average 40 points a night in this day and day.

    I believe MJ can average 40 a night if he wanted to and can get 40 plus on any given night. With today rules, MJ would sit out the 4th quarter because the majority of the games will be blowout, so I say 25PPg is more reasonable.

    Great players are great player in any era.

  • quick wit it

    okay okay okay
    1.) the only valid argument for mj not dropping 40 a game are the changes on the defensive end and the amount of energy he’d have to exert
    2.) @hucklebuck- you’re wrong and right- wrong for being mad about them comparing to MJ’s standards- he is the GOAT- he is/was better than magic/bird- why should the standards not be where the bar was highest set? you’re right because MJ WOULD DESTROY KYLE KORVER…violate and embarrass, as well as many other players in the league now… here is evidence: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCIq7QMdV0c
    3.) i think many people underestimate the drive that was instilled in MJ from much much earlier in his life than the Pistons, i.e. getting cut from Laney high school. he got hungry. remember how hard he came back from breaking his foot? he wasn’t thinking about the pistons, he just has that permanent fire.
    4.) there is nothing better than reminiscing about MJ…that’s why this post exists.

  • shake&bake

    I think Lebron would benefit from the rules of the 80′s because he is the strongest wing in the game. He would have an advantage over anyone he goes against if more physical play was allowed. Hand-checking wouldn’t impede Lebron too much, however if he were allowed to hand-check, he’d be able to control other wings like Mike did.

  • Kermit the Washington

    Real talk, Austin. Great point. Personally, I loved watching the “cold-blooded killer” Mike, over the “Flashy Superstar” Mike.

  • Rafa23

    lebron would be strong enough for the 80s.
    BUT, he is a crybaby and soft when it comes to hard fouls.
    he gets distracted very easy and touches his body everywhere to look if he is hurt. just look at last years WAS-CLE series.
    so he would be ready physically, but not mentally.

  • dk

    yEAH IDIOTS, 50 A GAME. i GUESS THE NEW ZONE DEFENSE AND ALL THE OTHER DIFFERENCES WOULDNT MAKE A DIFFERENCES EITHER…LMAO Sorry about the caps :(

  • http://doubledribbling.blogspot.com Dman

    I agree with quick wit it

    There is nothing better than reminiscing about MJ.
    As for his effectiveness with the current rules, there’s no doubt in my mind that Jordan age 28 could avg 35-40 a game. It really just comes down to whether his team would need that on a nightly basis. Jordan would probably shoot around 14 FTs a game alone. Take a look at his NBA finals series against the Phoenix Suns. When he attacked, he attacked hard.

    Lebron would be able to hold his own in Jordan’s era too. James is physically more dominant almost every wing from jordan’s era. The only thing I wonder about is how he’d handle more physical play from the BIg guys of that era: David Robinson, Hakeem, Malone, etc.

  • Promoman

    MJ would’ve been the same. Even in his early days, he was hungry and would play defense. He was a better pro than a college player because he wasn’t stifled by a coach who felt the need to place restraints on him.

  • http://www.hotmail.com Mamba

    No Doubt MJ was helped by having to overcome the Pistons. Having said that he could be right around 35-40 a game in today’s rules if he wanted.

    In reverse Id love to see Kobe go against those old Pistons teams. He has a far worse temper than MJ, he would have been swinging on dudes!

  • kennypayne

    jordan would average 50, does anyone remember his rookie year or how he played in the all star games? dunk city people, alleyoop after alleyoop he loves fast break basketball. don’t forget the shoes they played in the 80′s are equivalent to playing in work boots for these young fellas. also give jordan some creatine and have him lift weights from 12 years up and i bet his body would look like lebron. lebron is getting there that 55 against milwalkee was ridiculous but he needs a couple of rings to even.
    jordan is the greatest of all time, hands down.

  • LakeShow84

    Kobe would eat him for breakfast.. just like he eats Lebron..

    But yes MJ would average close to 40ppg a night..

  • doc

    Oh yeah kennypayne just because he’s Mike give him some creatine and he will get big as Lebron.And a damn near 50 year old Mike will kill Kyle Korver my bad.Dicksuckers.

  • quick wit it

    i was trying to figure out why doc is hating on the GOAT so much, and then i realized he must be from new york…maybe some subconscious bitterness involving how you feel about starbury’s “career” in new york getting vented in this post?

    you know doc, i think i’ve got a prescription for you:
    go read some lebron 2010 trade rumors and you’ll be chipper in no time.

  • LakeShow84

    Everyone talking about if Lebron could play in the 80′s and he aint even CLOSE to being as tough as the Mamba.. Shit.. i aint even going to get started..

    Psh witnesses..

  • http://www.espn.com Sho-Nuff

    @19 Kazmatic.

    Read the book “Jordan Rules” and you’ll see MJ’s theory on scoring. I got this directly from the book.

    He knew he can get 8 a quarter easy…..read the book and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

  • karizmatic

    @ Sho Nuff,
    I wasn’t disputing you. I know what you’re talking about. I read that too, what I meant was that in addition to that, he would monitor his team’s progress and score accordingly. His play was definitely to do what you said, but there were games he would come out and just score, if he really wanted to prove a point, or some games that were tight he’d drop double digits in the 4th to pull it out. But that strategy was basically how he knew he was getting his 30.

  • fReSh

    u cant compare none of any player ever played the game or is still playin the game to Jordan………forget this whole conversation here……the main point is: Michael Jordan is the best basketball player EVER!

  • alamo

    the best you’ve ever seen, on TV…

  • kevin k

    @ hucklebuck
    “another point to throw in-Jordan definately couldn’t do it without PIPPEN. Jordan would have a hard time trying to find his Pippen. Not to mention a triangle offense or any offense for that matter for him to excel at”

    you kidding me? Jordan’s highest ppg was when he didn’t have pippen. Get your shit straight

  • Ian

    AY
    gervin didnt win because he didnt have a pippen.

    jordan would be kobe that is bullshit that he avg 50 what is this would wilt avg 140 ppg if he played vs todays centers?

    and another thing jordan didnt have to guard guys like kobe or tmac (orlando) or bron fuck in the above avg guys like richardson would give his airness something to think about guarding them because he couldnt hand check either.

  • Vinny

    @#14-karizmatic-are u serious?? you and lakeshow#30 need to get a clue-kobe cant carry mj’s jock. and #16 doc-the more you type the more we realize your name should be dick and not doc!

  • Ian

    kevin k
    i think ke meant winning not scoring

    mamba
    kobe wouldnt be swinging at anyone after laimbeer beats the shit out of him

    dman
    u r right it would be nice to see bron tryin to dunk on the admiral or hakeem

  • Vinny

    @ian-did u ever see jordan and pippen play? pippen had the luxury of playing with jordan so on all those nights when he didnt do shit mike would carry his soft ass!!

  • Ian

    vinny wassup

    before anyone jumps on me when i meant jordan would be kobe i meant more or less number wise with a better fg% not as a player.

    hey he can do this with almost every player would u imagine hakeem and the admiral playing in todays centerless league? i think that 35 ppg 18 rpg with around 7 blocks sound about right.

  • Vinny

    hey Ian-how’s life in the DR?

  • Ian

    vinny dont be a fan it was a luxury for both of them it always is a luxury for the stars of a team to be together not just for the best.

    pippen played the best perimeter scorer of the other team and jordan was great on D tell me if that isnt a luxury for jordan to save energy to score??

    wasnt it a luxury for magic to have kareem?? just the same as it was for kareem to have magic

  • Ian

    vinny its good tomorrow its a holiday im leaving for the beach tonight coming back sunday hellz yeah

  • Ian

    LOL post 37 u r right

  • Ace

    You are the sum of your life experiences. Its his journey that made MJ. Plus, its also the circumstances – the rules, players – that helped define his aura of greatness.
    There is no denying his talent. He still would be a great ball player. But would be the same MJ – G.O.A.T ?

  • Vinny

    Ian,i am a knick fan so i saw a lot of jordan and pippen, so i’m not a fan-but i acknowledge greatness- mike carried pippen. when detroit knocked mike down he got back up and went back at them, when they knocked pippen down he got a migraine!

  • Ian

    ace
    u right maybe he drops 40 ppg and doesnt win maybe he wouldnt be considered great on d because of the rules.

    now how good would bowen artest battier be back in the day

  • Ian

    it was rodman that dropped pippen i remember that shit like it was today

  • Vinny

    Mike would have at least 8 rings with todays rules- det. wouldnt have been able to pound him the way they did-They didnt call them the bad boys for nothing-the dirtiest team in nba history!!

  • kevin k

    @ Ian

    I first thought that as well, but if you read Huckleberry’s post, it only talks about Offense. He also compares it to Kobe and his triangle… so the dude is pretty much trying to say MJ excelled in the Triangle because he had Pippen… which is retarded

  • Vinny

    @ ian—oh rodman, lambieer, mahorn, edwards, dumars they all pounded mike-remember in the 80′s and the beginning of the 90′s they had the no layup rule in the playoffs!!

  • Ian

    vinny
    im not gonna imagine stuff because i say the competition jordan face IMO was weak in the finals they didnt face teams like the spurs or the lakers of today even the celts from last season so playin this game i say no he wouldnt win 6 its no possible.

    just look at the matchups if they play the early 00s lakers kobe could cancel out jordans production and who cancels shaq longley????

    the early spurs with the admiral and duncan vs longley???? and jordan wasting energy chasing manu around and bj tryin to stop parker???

    the celts again pip hands full with pierce jordan chasing around allen which could give him problems like reggie did same style of play that leaves garnett??

    like i said its matchups sure they would drop buckets on the competition also but no way the bulls played teams like this.

    dude the west was a piece of shit when robinson got injured , hakeem got old and barkley that left utah to get to the finals that wasnt a great team like people make them out to be IMO.

    another jordan thing i have that he didnt actually beat the bad boys or celts in their prime he won when they got old and separated.

    kevin k
    in that case u right

  • Ian

    u forget vinny that mike and pippen would also guard players by todays rules

  • top_gun

    Wade and Kobe are similar to Jordan. Jordan had a better shot than Wade and according to Phil Jackson, a better post up game then Kobe.

  • Vinny

    IAN-you over estimate the early spurs and the celtics of last year- better then the 91 lakers? the 92 t-blazers? the barkley suns in 93. hakeem wasnt old when they lost in 96. Now the lakers with shaq would have been a great seris-but jordon would have killed kobe and would phil be coaching? The lakers didnt win shit until phil came there.

  • Ian

    im not overestimating any one i said they could beat them COULD u said they win 8.
    and dude that 03 spurs team was stacked at every position the best spurs imo.

    the same thing that made the bulls tuff that defense would be gone because of the rules and we know how good On D the celts and spurs are without it.

    dont give me jackson hes overrated he is not the best coach in the league

    when utah made the finals in 97 98 hakeem was good but not the same dude from 95

    now tell me what i said about the celts and pistons jordan didnt get over them

    and btw dont fall in love with the teams jordan faced in the first three peat

    the 00 lakers the 03 spurs and the 07 celts are better than those team
    who was with magic?? who was drexlers second best player porter?? sorry but kj barkley and thunder dan arent better than manu parker jackson robinson duncan or kobe and shaq and whoever

  • Vinny

    I’m not a big jackson fan-but the lakers didnt win shit till he got there! That bulls team0played great team defense- and rules or no rules jordon would shut fools down!!!! dont u remember when the bulls beat the pistons-they walked off the court and wouldnt shake there hands- so yes they did beat the pistons!! 91 lakers-perkins, worthy, scott, campbell, thompson 92 blazers-Buck Williams, cliff robinson, porter,clyde, kersey,
    That 91 laker team would have kicked that spurs team’s ass. remember what u told me in an earlier post about being a fan!dont forget that when u think of the spurs!

  • Ian

    that 91 lakers team sucked it was a shell of what the lakers were and 91 pistons team was oldd and they pieces missing that is what i posted earlier

    of all those names u mentioned worthy and porter are the above avg players dude they sucked when that happened u r mixed up in the 80s

    i know how much u dont like the spurs and i mentioned 3 teams that have won in the 00s but u just decided to single out my team to make it sound like im being a homer.

    go read those names and compare then to duncan robinson kerr manu stephen parker claxton and a real good malik rose its not even close. like i said im tryin to keep it real u said the win 8 times how do u have a crystal ball? all when can do is compare rosters and my man is not even close

  • Ian

    spurs laker

    admiral divac
    duncan perkins
    bowen worthy
    stephen scott
    parker magic

    bench bench
    kerr campbell
    manu green
    smith teagle
    willis
    rose

    dont remember more names for the laker team but no way that team is better than the 03 spurs is not even close

  • Vinny

    Ian remember i’m a laker hater- i have a spur warmup and hat just to piss off laker fans-so i dont hate them-much respect for duncan and parker.those 2 91 teams u mentioned werent that old- the bulls just made them look it when they kicked that ass! I dont believe the 00 lakers could beat the bulls without phil-they didnt know how to win! Boston was a weak champion last year-they dont compare to those bulls teams!

  • kevin k

    @ Ian

    91 lakers sucked and were old so that’s how they beat Hakeem and the Rockets, Stocton and Malone of the Jazz, Dexler of the Blazers… and it was Magic’s 10th year, Worthy’s 9th… yea they were TOO old

    91 pistons was old since it was Isaiah’s 9th year, Dennis Rodman about to his Prime, Joe Dumar’s 6th year….

    Jordan, Pippen and Rodman all had 9-10 years of NBA exp when they won their last championship.. oh yea they were too old…

    you keep bringing in AGE and comparing players… your basis for your argument is completely retarded…

  • Vinny

    Ian- magic would carry those lakers over that spurs team. i think ac green started- and divac came off the bench.oh and worthy would kill bowen!!

  • kevin k

    Oh KG, PP, and Ray Allen were all 30+ when they won it last year… oh they were too old…

    Oops, they played Kobe and he was 29 and it was his 11th year in the league and he was too old so the team lost….

  • Ian

    kevin k
    the cast around the pistons was OLD what the hell u talkin about and i said celts and pistons tell me how young again were the celts in the 91 season??

    tell me who the role players were in the 91 pistons team compared to the years before? but good for u to single out the playes u wanted

    how old was the supporting cast of the celts last season??
    im talkin about the team as a whole and dude wants to call me retarded

    vinny
    im tryin to convice u of anything but the 03 spurs werent weak think what u want but i dont know how u can be so sure that the bulls win 8

  • Vinny

    good pts Kevin

  • Ian

    hell in fact take the piston in their prime still 3-1 over jordans ass

  • Ian

    and one thing the players u mentioned winning over 30 are three allstars together celts and bulls not 2 like the other teams had

    one more allstar makes up all that diff but no lets take the young ones and mention them not the whole team and were are the celts ages kevin?

  • Vinny

    you know Ian as i look at the 91 piston roster the only guy’s who are old are vinny johnson and james edwards but the rest of that team was in its prime-so your old argument doesnt apply to that team.

  • Vinny

    i dont understand post 70????

  • Ian

    laimbeer was like 35 also lol
    nah forget post 70 what i meant is that that teams that won with stars over 30 had 3 stars not 2 like the pistons or lakers.

  • Vinny

    the pistons had isiah, joe dumars and mark aguirre and rodman who averaged 18 rebounds in 92

  • Vinny

    if mike played by todays rules the pistons would never have beat him 3 seris to 1- there whole game plan was to pound him- u cant do that nowadays!

  • Vinny

    3 series-my bad

  • Ian

    thats a very convenient what if

    if jordan played with todays guards he would get 25-30 pts back from them also
    that is my what if

  • AY

    i have a hard time reading Ian’s posts; am i the only one? Does he post like this because he texts too much? I’m not talking smack, but i see more and more people post like this and i have a hard time trying to fill in the missing words. Sometimes I can’t even tell whether if there’s a missing word or a missing sentence, and it’s not just Ian’s posts.

  • Vinny

    Ian- have u seen jordan play defense? your what if is a hell no,lol!
    @ay- i suggest u try a little harder -i have no problem reading his posts-well except for post 70!

  • Ian

    AY
    lol sorry i think you are exaggerating a bit but yeah i post like i text and good thing this is english bro because in spanish that is full of accents and silent letters people really mess that up.

    vinny
    lol thanks for that hell no
    i cant keep talking jordan i hate it i give up you win LOL
    thanks for understanding most of my posts
    the ones you dont understand get lost in translation remember i think in spanish.

  • http://myspace.com/40sand9s loc

    oh MJ,
    right now hes on TNT selling me hanes.

    Go gamble someplace.

    Man, i hated MJ.

  • Smitty313

    I hate the would if stuff because you would never know. If Jordan averaged 40 or 50 a game in todays game. He would have zero rings. Jordan to me is the best to ever play, but I dont think he would be to far ahead of Kobe, Lebron, or D-Wade in todays game. Players of today are faster, jump higher, and way stronger than players in the 80′s and 90′s.

  • http://yahoo Antonio

    Jordan vs. Today’s rules, wow!! In his 20′s he would avg.45 to 50pts no hand-checking, u can’t touch the offensive player face up, weak flagrant fouls thats a clear path for him. you gotta remember when playing the pistons in the 80′s and those knicks in the 90′s, the fouls that they gave then are now flagrants!! and also you had true defensive players then too, now no one plays defense like then. The NBA was basketball then, its pretty much a joke now players complain over dress code, money and bringing playground ball to the hardwood!! Michael was more than basketball, he was the NBA, he was marketed very well , he was money, anything he had wore or made you wanted it, he was, is and always will be the face of the NBA!!

  • http://yahoo Antonio

    and for those who only saw MJ play in the late 90′s who thinks tha D-wade , kobe and lebron is close to MJ, find someone with the old games on tape in the 80′s and early 90′s MJ was quick, he could handle the ball, quicker first step, and that all so famous killer instinct to put you rest when the 4th quarter came to a close, now u watch those old games compared to today’s and you tell me who’s better…. every thing those guys are doing… they got it from MICHAEL JORDAN #23!!!!!!!!

  • Dragonyeuw

    “Kobe would eat him for breakfast”

    Clearly drugs at work here

  • hucklebuck

    @ doc-
    u sure know how to kill ur own argument by completely going off the topic of debate. I must’ve missed that little thing u got called alloverkorverdik syndrome.
    by the way, Kyle is known more for having a mom that can score more than him (74 points in one game-check the web for that one).
    Game, end, match.
    count it.

  • hucklebuck

    Antonio- I agree with ur comments.

    to Kevin K-
    if u would actually pay attention to what I wrote, Pippen played a large part in Jordan’s success. It is hard to say MJ would have gotten through those grueling playoff series against the Knicks, Heat, Piston, and the Finals against the Blazers, Suns, and Jazz without Pippen’s play.
    as far as Pippen being soft, apparently you missed highlights of Pippen d-ing up Magic, fighting Rodman(w/Pistons),dunking on Patrick Ewing, and blocking Charles Smith. sure doesn’t sound like a soft player now does he?
    AAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNND for my final jab-take these stats to ur dome
    MJ’s points per game before Pippen-29.3
    MJ’s points per game with Pippen-31.

    Enough said.

  • Mike C

    MJ’s game winners would be cut by at least half with today’s rule where you can just double him off the ball.
    Also, zone de fense would have fored MJ to shoot a lot of 3s, which he wasn’t particularly great at.

  • hucklebuck

    good point Mike C.

    since it can only be imagined, it would be interesting to see how he would play against a zone. but knowing the type of player he was, I think in him prime, he would have found the holes in defense and attack with his quick and explosive moves. LeBron isn’t a great shooter but he still gets to the basket. Chris Paul is able to get in the lane as well. Dwayne Wade is finding the rim with ease as well. All 3 of those players have a trait that MJ had. His mastering of the fundamentals plus his athletic ability and hangtime is still unmatched today even though the NBA players are definitely more athletic than 10-1 years ago. The handchecking rule may even that out for him to be a very productive threat as well.

  • me

    Ian seems either young, or an idiot.

    Go look at jordan’s 63 against the celts in the playoffs. This is right after being out most of the season with a foot injury. Ppl don’t realize how quick young MJ was. No one was stopping him at that time. There isn’t a player, past or present, that could have stopped him at that point. PERIOD.

    Anyone that puts lebron, wade, or kobe anywhere near MJ has no bball credibility. None Whatsoever.

    What made MJ great was his drive to be the best. There are others that had some of his other traits, like the 3 i named above, but none of them have that drive. In today’s league, chris paul is the closest to having that drive, that will to win, and no one else is close.

    I watched jordan before, during, and after his prime. I’m also a chicago native, but I HATED MJ when he was playing. Dominique Wilkins was my boy. But with that being said, I can be impartial and call it the way i see it, even if i didn’t like him. I appreciate him more now than i did when he was playing.

  • me

    post 84 is the truth.

  • hucklebuck

    I agree with 99% of ur post about MJ doing what it takes and having a drive that is unmatched. but from watching baseketball for the last 20 years and seeing films/highlights of the eras before that, I think today’s game has suffered.
    you mentioned Dominique and then it got me thinking-once MJ retired, the NBA’s overall game has suffered, mainly from young talent entering the league too young and not knowing the basic fundamentals that MJ n Dominique had. anyone can appreciate a college game, but when u add that to a player who has lots of talent, then u get the MJs, Dominiques, Drexlers, Olajuwons, etc. I think the second main reason is the LOVE OF THE GAME. Ask today’s players who plays for the LOVE OF THE GAME and I will bet its half of the percentage from those in the 80s and 90s.

  • T

    Jordan – 6 Finals appearances, 6 rings, 6 MVPs
    Kobe – 6 Finals appearances, 4 rings, two losses, 1 MVP
    Lebron – nada

    ‘nough said

  • Wake Up

    Are some of you on crack? You do realize that Michael Jordan played against zone defense when he was 40 years old averaged what 22 PPG and 1 SPG? thats pretty good for an old men with failing knees? Now you want to take a 27 Year old MJ and put him in this league whos going to stop him with these rules. I know some of you havent seen an NBA game before 2000 because you are like 12 year old KObe homers but everytime I see Lebron drive down a the lane and every defender is afraid to touch him it pisses me off. It doesnt take a genius to watch old MJ videos and see how fast he is. Trust me if an old AI can still produce 27 PPG in this watered down league a 1987 MJ would destroy it.