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Michael Jordan’s Comeback to Washington and the Events of 9/11 Are Intertwined in a Tale of Catastrophe 

Jeet Pukhrambam

Michael Jordan's Comeback to Washington and the Events of 9/11 Are Intertwined in a Tale of Catastrophe 

8:46 Am 9th September 2001, Michael Jordan’s comeback announcement was overshadowed by something much darker for America. An event that is forever burned into our memory. A day when we sadly lost the lives of more than 3000 people due to a heinous act of terror.

It is not every day that such an event takes place. The sheer horror of the events that unfolded in front of us has left a deep mark. Every one of us can remember where we were and what we were doing that day. It is etched into our minds.

So did Michael Jordan. Except for him, this day was supposed to be far more monumental than before. It was the day when he would announce his return. A third return to the NBA.

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Michael Jordan’s announcement of a return to the NBA was set to be on 9/11, however, things took a different turn for all of America

So the morning news for September 9th of 2001 was set. There was one name whose return would dominate it. But at 8:46 am, an act of terror and a ghastly sight of harm would emerge.

A plane would crash into the north tower of the World Trade Center. What would follow can only be described as the most horrifying moment for the United States of America.

Jordan’s return was earmarked. And the loss of life and devastation meant that he would not go ahead with a big announcement of his return.

Instead, he sent in this statement through his management, “I am returning as a player to the game I love.”. Michael Jordan signed on for the veteran minimum and had a chance at a final dance with the Washington Wizards.

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MJ donated his entire veteran exception to the families affected by 9/11

In a series of statements reflecting his return and the attack on the World Trade Center, he had this to say,

“Although I am energized by my impending return to the court, I am deeply saddened by the recent tragic events and my heart goes out to the victims and their families,”

MJ added, “Out of deep respect for them, I will not participate in media interviews before the start of training camp.”.

He made a return to Madison Square Garden just a month and a half later. His first game back with the Wizards. The Nation was still in tatters. He made no comment and instead chose to thank the “Real Heroes”.

However, this wasn’t the Jordan of old. He would not go on to drop 55 like his last return to the Garden. Instead, he finished with an abysmal 19 points. It was indeed a last dance, but more on the lines of a slow waltz.

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About the author

Jeet Pukhrambam

Jeet Pukhrambam


Jeet Pukhrambam is The SportsRush's Lead Editor for Basketball. After freelancing for five years as an independent writer, Jeet created thousands of blog posts and articles. He now covers intriguing news reports and throwback stories on all things NBA. His interest in NBA started with the ascendancy of Giannis Antetokounmpo in the 2016-17 season. Since then, Jeet has managed to coalesce his knowledge of the game and his writing to create pieces that are reflective of the current state of the league. Now, he ensures that The SportsRush produces the highest quality of writing. In his free time, he enjoys playing football, cooking, traveling, and dancing to techno. Jeet takes pride in his critical thinking, music playlists, and his love for spaghetti.

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