In an old clip, NBA legend Michael Jordan addresses the media on the difficulties he went through in his career, ranging from early losses to the narrative that he couldn’t make players around him better.
Though his career appeared to be glamorous and triumphant from the outside, Michael Jordan did have his share of struggles. The Bulls legend did face adversities during the initial years of his career. However, Jordan’s ability to convert his negatives into positives is what made him an all-time great.
MJ shared a special bond with his first coach Doug Collins, who helped the Bulls guard develop into an offensive powerhouse. Though MJ excelled on all levels individually, he failed to win. One of the biggest reasons was Collins’ myopic approach of having everything centered around MJ.
Collins failed to develop the Bulls superstar into a leader and team player, something for which the former was heavily criticized. Nonetheless, things would change with the arrival of Phil Jackson, who made the Bulls team into one of the greatest dynasties in NBA history.
In an old press conference, His Airness discusses dealing with the struggles during his career and the learnings they gave him.
When Michael Jordan accepted the allegation of not making players around him better.
Though it may come across as shocking to many, especially the current generation, it is true that Jordan didn’t know how to win games early on in his career. This is surprising for a player known as Black Jesus, who never lost in an NBA Finals.
His battles against the Bad Boy Pistons were the biggest example of the above statement. Despite being the best player in the NBA, the Pistons didn’t let Jordan get to the NBA Finals for three consecutive years.
Thus when asked about the challenges in his career, the Bulls superstar had the following to say.
“Losing early on, said MJ. The part of losing that you had to change your game to. The criticisms you were receiving. Michael Jordan doesn’t make players around him better and there was some truth to that cause I really didn’t know how and I had to learn to do that. So that was a challenge, but yet, it was a negative towards Michael Jordan, and I used to that negative as a positive.
— The Jordan Rules (@Rules23Jordan) March 15, 2022
Though it’s been almost two decades since MJ hung his basketball shoes, his quote of turning negatives into positives continues to be one of the most inspiring quotes. The Hall of Famer didn’t shy away from accepting his drawbacks, taking those personally and working on them.
Though many players come and go in the discussion for the NBA GOAT, a name that has always remained constant is that of Jordan.