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Sports

Michael Jordan Wants To Win As An Owner Even More Than He Did As A Player

by Marc James
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Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

marcsm Marc James
Since 2008, Marc was the Afternoon Drive host (3-7 P.M.) on ESPN 1040...
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Despite growing up a lifelong, Die Hard New York Knicks fan in the heart of New England back in the mid-80’s to Mid-90’s, I have always loved Michael Jordan. Even though he is the quintessential reason I’ve never had the pleasure of enjoying an NBA Title in my lifetime for my beloved Knicks, I always have and always will revere his “Airness” both on and off the court. Kids in school always resented me because my parents always made sure I had the Newest “Air Jordan” Basketball Shoes.

Michael Jordan is “The Greatest Player in Basketball History“ and in my opinion “The Single Greatest Athlete of All Time”. He is the “Embodiment of Elegance” and the “Personification of Professionalism”. He is the Epitome of Class & Royalty in America and throughout the World. A few days ago, I was lucky enough to get sit with other selected members of the media for an unforgettable question & answer session which the Charlotte Bobcats and soon-to-be Hornets Owner.

First and foremost, No athlete (Current or Former), entertainer, politician, musician, etc., has the inherent effect on people that “M.J.” has. He has an inexplicable, yet undeniable Aura when he walks into a room.

I was utterly blown away how candid, honest, and forthcoming he is when it comes to everything including the mistakes and failures he has admittedly made as a team owner in his first three and a half years. When I asked him about the biggest disparity being a player to an owner, he replied: “It’s harder to win a championship as an owner. I have to live through the talent that I bring in here and hope they have what it takes to win a championship. As a player I could influence a lot of things, as an owner you sometimes have to just hope people see things the way you do. It’s a driving force for me, I definitely want to win. There’s a lot of people that say it can’t happen, I know it can happen. You have to learn, and make the right moves to get better. I’m not going to give up until we get there.”

Seeing that look of intensity and determination on Jordan’s face showed me how bad he wants to win a Larry O’Brien Trophy in Charlotte. There is nothing superficial or manufactured. Not a disingenuous bone in his body. He has the look of a Six-Time NBA World Champion and Finals MVP. On the court, he was an “Assassin” who would systematically tear the opposing teams’ hearts out to win another Title.

In terms of returning the Hornets to their rightful name of Charlotte, Jordan said: “It’s a new beginning. It’s not the old Hornets, as you guys know, but we’re going to do everything we can to make sure the fans are pleased with what we do.”

Then I asked him about his parents having Hornets season tickets at “The HIVE” on Tyvola Road back in the late 1980’s/Early 1990’s. Jordan perked up: “That’s the whole beauty about how my life has ended up. I started in North Carolina, went to North Carolina, went to play in Chicago and here I am back in North Carolina. Being able to connect with the fans that cheered for me when I was 18 years old is special. It’s ironic how things happen, my parents were season ticket holders and now we’re going back to the Hornets name. That just adds to the whole story and it makes sense. I’m very happy with the circle of life that’s evolved with me.”

In the three and a half years as the official owner of the Bobcats, Jordan has admittedly made his share of mistakes (See Mike Dunlap, DeSagana Diop, Kwame Brown) He has grown and learned from those by improving the franchise with the drafting of Kemba Walker; off-season acquisition of Al Jefferson; hiring of head coach Steve Clifford & staff with Patrick Ewing, Mark Price, & Bob Weiss.

The fire that burns inside of Michael Jordan to be a successful Owner as he was a player is overtly transparent. Will he have the same success he experienced as a Championship player with the Bulls in the 90’s? Only time will tell; but one thing is for sure: He will do whatever it takes to bring a winner home to the “Queen City”.

-MARC JAMES

Host of The Drive (2-7pm M-F)
http://www.twitter.com/marcjames

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