Breaking Down Some of the Shortsighted Statements of the Last Two Years
This post and others to follow are meant to look more closely at some of the negative and disparaging statements made by the media and current and retired players.
The first topic up, is Jordan's statements about the formation of Miami's Big Three. This is one of the most talked about statements from the beginning of the Big Three. It has been discussed by the analysts of ESPN on multiple occasions and used as a slight on the Heat, and just as often, LeBron James. More... after the jump.
Jordan said, "I would have never called up Larry, called up Magic and said hey let's get together and play on one team." He is being very shortsighted in this statement. He didn't have to call up Larry or Magic. He was teamed up with Pippen, one of the 50 Greatest Players, according to the NBA. Pippen was elected into the Hall of Fame the first year he was eligible. His offensive and defensive talent cannot be understated. When Jordan retired the first time, Pippen led the Bulls to the Eastern Conference Semifinals. He also played for two other teams before returning to the Bulls and never missed the Playoffs in any season during his career, excluding the year of his retirement.
To completely dismiss teaming up with Pippen is a massive oversight. It is almost an insulting oversight. Without Pippen, Jordan may have been able to break the barrier and become a champion... but it is highly unlikely he would have more than a couple titles, and he wouldn't be quite the legend he is today.
He also teamed up with Rodman. Jordan teamed up with one of his competitors, and not just any competitor, but one who played for the Bad Boy Pistons. Teaming up with Rodman is undeniably similar to LeBron teaming up with his competitors.
For those who don't know of Rodman, here's a brief overview. Rodman has been inducted into the Hall of Fame and made his name off of his defense and rebounding. He is roughly the equivalent of Bosh, except they are mirror opposites. Rodman had his defense but limited offense, and currently Bosh has great offense but is not a great defender. Of course, Rodman's offense was considerable worse than Bosh's defense. Rodman and Bosh also share a similarity in how they are valued by the NBA and where they stand in the pecking order of their respective teams. And based on where Bosh stands as a player today, it is likely that he won't get into the Hall of Fame the first year he is eligible, much like Rodman.
I see nothing wrong with the reality that Jordan played with two Hall of Famers in Pippen and Rodman. It takes nothing away from what the Bulls accomplished and what MJ achieved, IMO. But I do believe Jordan was being very shortsighted in trying to claim he wouldn't team up with other great players. He did team up with other great players. LeBron went to Miami to do the same, because it wasn't likely to happen in Cleveland. Jordan was fortunate to be with a franchise that drafted well and could attract top free agents. LeBron was not so fortunate. And while Jordan is unlikely to ever correct his statement, the reality is much different than the shortsighted statement he made.
If anyone has a suggestion for a future Theater of the Absurd topic, feel free to add into the comments.