Micheal Jordan – An outstanding athlete — a winning combination of finesse, speed, adroitness, focus, resilience and an ambitious attitude.
Jordan’s basketball beginnings were not promising. He was actually cut from his high school basketball team in Wilmington, North Carolina. At 5’11” (1.80 m), he was deemed too short to play at that level.
Motivated to prove his worth, Jordan became the star of Laney’s junior varsity squad, and tallied several 40 point games. The following summer, he grew four inches (10 cm) and trained rigorously.
Today, his biography on the National Basketball Association (NBA) website states, “By acclamation, Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player of all time.”
Jordan won numerous awards and set many records during his career. The following are some of his achievements:
** Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Class of 2009
** 2 Olympic Gold Medals – 1984, 1992
** 6-time NBA Champion
** 6-time NBA Finals MVP
** 5-time NBA MVP
** 7-time The Sporting News MVP
** 10 NBA Scoring Titles
** 3-time steals leader
** 14 NBA All-Star Selections
** 3-time NBA All-Star Game MVP
** 11 All-NBA Selections
** 9 All-Defensive First Team Selections
** 2-time NBA Slam Dunk Contest Champion – 1987, 1988
** NBA Rookie of the Year – 1984
** NBA Defensive Player of the Year – 1988
** ACC Freshman of the Year – 1982
** 2-time Consensus NCAA All-American First Team – 1983, 1984
** ACC Men’s Basketball Player of the Year – 1984
** USBWA College Player of the Year – 1984
** Naismith College Player of the Year – 1984
** John R. Wooden Award – 1984
** Adolph Rupp Trophy – 1984
** Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year – 1991
** Named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History in 1996
** Ranked #1 by SLAM Magazine’s Top 50 Players of All-Time
** Ranked #1 by ESPN Sportscentury’s Top 100 Athletes of the 20th century
One of the most marketed sports figures in history, his interviews were splashed all over the tabloids. In one such interview, just after the Bulls won their sixth Championship in eight years where the winning shot, once again, was scored by Michael Jordan, he said:
“The moment starts to become the moment, you know, for me. Once you get in the moment you know when you’re there, you just-things start to move slowly; you start to see the court very well. You start reading what the defense is trying to do, and I saw that. I saw that moment, and, you know, when I saw the moment, the opportunity to take advantage of it, when Russell reached, and I took advantage of that moment, and I never doubted myself, I never doubted the whole game.”
His life has inspired many people; the old, youth and children alike (Remember the “Like Mike” commercials in which a song was sung by children wishing to be like Jordan)
At this point, I would like to bring to your focus the following questions:
# What would have happened if, Jordon had accepted the cut off from the school team as his destiny and gone ahead to pursue another career? Maybe become an accountant, or a bank clerk like his mom or joined the army like his brother?
# What would he have missed?
# What would the world, his fans and the sport of basketball have missed?
Micheal believed in himself and used this setback to drive himself to greater achievements, practicing hour after hour on the court.
“Whenever I was working out and got tired and figured I ought to stop, I’d close my eyes and see that list in the locker room without my name on it,” Jordan said, “and that usually got me going again.”
He eventually made the team and led it to the state championship.
There are many times when we hold ourselves back just because the “friendly neighbour” – Doubt – pops up in our minds. At times this could play up internally in the form of limiting beliefs and on other occasions EXTERNAL forces are strong enough to sway a person to stay within the realm of his/her comfort zone. “You can’t possibly do this!” – a phrase often heard and usually powerful enough to turn lives around if one accepts it.
As a Coach, I’d like you to ponder upon…..
# When was the last time to made a LEAP by crossing your doubts and limiting beliefs? / not listening to other people who tried to stop you?
# What happened NEXT?
# What would you have lost out on, had you believed them — not made the leap?
# What does that tell you about yourself ?
# How can you apply this learning to future life situations?