Michael Jordan is possibly the most-transcending figure the game of basketball has ever seen. After winning six NBA championships in his career, garnering a multitude of individual accolades and records, and building a billion dollar business with Jordan brand shoes and apparel, his royal “airness” carries more weight in basketball circles than anyone throughout the history of the sport.
Jordan’s recent comments regarding All-Star guard Steph Curry have drawn the attention of media outlets everywhere. Appearing on Today and speaking with Craig Melvin recently, Jordan revisited a lineup of chosen players for a pickup game that he initially selected in 2013. The team included Hakeem Olajuwon, Magic Johnson, Scottie Pippen and James Worthy.
When asked if he’d considered changing the lineup, Jordan said no. That’s when Melvin proceeded to ask, “So, Steph Curry shouldn’t be offended when he watches this?”
According to Sports Illustrated, Jordan says, “I hope not. He’s still a great player. Not a Hall of Famer yet though. He’s not.”
Curry, a three-time NBA champ and two-time MVP, has also managed to transcend the NBA’s current generation of players by influencing the way the game is played. As one of the most-efficient shooters of all-time, he has managed to average 23.5 points per game, while holding shooting percentages of 47.7% from the field, 43.6% from three-point range, and 90.5% on free throws.
Jordan’s take is interesting because what Curry has done for the three-point shot, is essentially what the Chicago Bulls legend did for the dunk. Both players managed to change the way the game is played, as well as the way it was viewed from a fan perspective.
Along with Golden State “Splash Brother” Klay Thompson, Curry has essentially taken the three-point shot mainstream as a primary means of scoring. He holds most of the records for single game, single season, and career three-point shooting categories. After only ten seasons in the NBA, analysts and critics are suggesting that Curry is a sure-fire lock for Hall of Fame Induction.
One of the reasons Jordan ascended to the ranks of the NBA’s “All-Time” greats is because of his competitive nature. Battling in the trenches against players from his own generation, the guard is noted as giving credit where credit is due. However, when offering on younger players who considered him as their idol growing up, Jordan has been consistent that the likes of Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, and now Steph Curry aren’t deserving of being spoken in the same breath as his guys. Maybe this is just a result of his competitive nature?
Or, maybe Jordan really lacks respect for this current generation and the way they play the game? Having cited in the past he played in a more physical era where today’s players wouldn’t be able to hang, it’s possible that Mike just can’t let go of the 90’s where he was considered the G.O.A.T.
In my opinion, he is ABSOLUTELY the greatest to ever lace up a pair of sneakers. But LET’S BE HONEST. There is no doubt that Steph Curry is already worthy of first-ballot Hall of Fame induction.
Header Photo Credit: El Espanol