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SweetGBFan
10-01-2001, 09:14 PM
Doesnt this sound like how the press treats Garth?Explains NBA Comeback
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Michael Jordan Returns To The NBA (Reuters)

Jordan Explains NBA Comeback (AP)



By CHRIS SHERIDAN, AP Basketball Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - If he fails, Michael Jordan won't regret it. If he embarrasses himself, he'll shrug it off. If he loses his final game, he'll live with it.

Jordan made it clear Monday his latest comeback isn't about succeeding in other people's eyes. It's about making peace with himself and giving basketball another chance before it's too late.

``It's an itch that still needs to be scratched here, and I don't want that itch to bother me for the rest of my life,'' he said.

Jordan, 38, took the stage at the Washington Wizards' home arena to explain in detail why he was returning to the NBA again, after an absence of more than three years.

Sporting a goatee, he answered every question in calm, measured tones, sounding a little defensive only once or twice.

``Everybody was so negative about what I was trying to do,'' Jordan said. ``If I read every newspaper about negative things that I was trying to do, I swear I wouldn't live in America. America's supposed to be the free will to do whatever you choose, do whatever you want to do.

``That's all I'm doing. I'm not committing a crime here. I'm just trying to play a game of basketball.

``What if I'm tired of playing YMCAs or the Boys and Girls Clubs? I want to step into the elite competition. If I can do it, great. If I can't, that's great, too. But you can't take my six championships away. You can't take all the things that I've done.''

If anyone has a problem with that, too bad.

``I'm not walking into this scenario thinking I'm failing. I'm walking in thinking I'm confident and I'm pretty sure that I can make it work. If I sit here and listened to everyone else tell me that I can't do it, then obviously I wouldn't be here,'' he said.

He characterized his motivation this way: ``I'm all about challenges and seeing if I can go out and see if I can achieve something,'' Jordan said. ``If, at the end of the day, I do it, great. If I don't, I can live with myself.''

Jordan wore a black baseball cap and a black sweatsuit with red trim from his personal line of athletic clothing - a color scheme closer to the Chicago Bulls' than the Wizards.

He faced about 200 reporters for nearly an hour, fielding questions about his legacy, critics, the young rivals who have circled certain dates on their calendars. He was asked about his health, his stamina, his patience, his effect on the game.

Though he answered them all, it was clear none of those things really mattered. Playing is the only thing.

He said he will try to start slowly, try not to do too much too soon. He said the Wizards should improve on last season's record of 19-63, but he'd be ``surprised'' if Washington can win 50 games.

The Wizards open training camp Tuesday in Wilmington, N.C. Their first regular season game is Oct. 30 in New York against the Knicks.

Jordan won 10 scoring titles and six championships while playing with the Bulls. He left the NBA prior to the lockout-shortened 1999 season, when it became clear the Bulls were ready to break up their dynasty and rebuild with younger players.

Jordan was only 35 then but insisted he was at peace with the decision. That was before he discovered how much he missed the game.

``When I left the game, I left something on the floor. You guys may not be able to understand that,'' he said.

Jordan began working out early this summer with an eye toward making a comeback. He shed 30 pounds, held daily workouts against NBA-caliber competition and started to get the feeling that he was not too old or too brittle to resume playing the game.

He made it clear Sept. 10 that he was committed to making a comeback, and the official word finally came last week.

``I'm not walking into the dark. I know what I'm capable of doing. I know what's going to be expected of me. I know everybody is putting my head on the chopping block,'' Jordan said.

Jordan said he considers himself 100 percent fit and plans to play in all 82 of Washington's games. He twice mentioned Kobe Bryant and Tracy McGrady, but didn't talk about other young players who are undoubtedly looking forward to their chance of going head-to-head with greatest player of all time.

Latrell Sprewell will be his matchup in the season opener; Allen Iverson will be going after him in Washington's first home game. Vince Carter and Jerry Stackhouse will get a shot at him in exhibition games.

``I'm pretty sure they're sitting back welcoming the challenge. Guess what? I'm sitting back welcoming the challenge, too. Everybody was motivated to play against me when I left, so things haven't changed,'' Jordan said.

LVGB4EVER
10-01-2001, 09:38 PM
:( Yup I agree...the Press can be pretty awful people :(

It's too bad :(

Take Care
Sue ;)

littlebit
10-01-2001, 11:07 PM
does sound like we've heard that said before huh? :(

i'm glad MJordan is gonna go for it anyway. i hope he does good and shuts them all up. ;)

ProducerJ
10-01-2001, 11:40 PM
and an Illinois native... I'm a little sad about Jordan's comeback...

I remember shoving the books aside during summer classes to watch the Bulls win the championship when I should have been cramming for a test. And I remember his retirement leading our newscasts and the soundbites of him saying he wanted to take his kids to school, and be a dad, and how he'd never play for another coach besides Phil Jackson, and how he'd never wear another uniform besides the Bulls'.:(

So I won't be rushing out to buy my Jordan Wizards' jersey. But maybe he'll be an inspiration to Garth about this whole retirement issue not being a permanent thing.

Remember when Garth wanted to endorse Nike?
J.

Garth_FANtasizer
10-02-2001, 10:24 AM
I think its great that MJ wants to give it another shot! I'm not a basketball fan by any stretch of the imagination, but I do appreciate someone who can follow his own heart, wherever it leads him, and not worry about the backlash from nay-sayers!

Wouldn't it be nice if everyone one from the press to the fans, just said "Welcome Back, Good luck!"?

~Ann~

Pilgrim
10-02-2001, 10:54 AM
Jordan should get a life!!

If this is really about the basketball I hope he show it by playing for free.

otherwise I think we all know it is about the $$$

Brian:)

ProducerJ
10-02-2001, 11:08 AM
Originally posted by Pilgrim
If this is really about the basketball I hope he show it by playing for free.

otherwise I think we all know it is about the $$$

Brian:)

Well, his salary this year is a measley $1million -- pennies compared to what he used to get, but he is donating it all to one of the September 11th funds......

The man makes $35 to $40 million a year in endorsements, so I don't think it's about the money.

J.

Pilgrim
10-02-2001, 11:14 AM
Okay:)

That's what I wanted to know:)

So he is doing something good with it:)

Brian

honky
10-02-2001, 01:59 PM
Yeah.. I think Jordan is too rich for that little salary...lol but I do think that part of his come-back is to attract more people watching NBA. For some reason, NBA viewers have gone down :eek:


by the way, I didn't know Garth was asked to endorse for Nike!!! ;)


Tommy

jonscountry
10-02-2001, 02:45 PM
I remember this pretty well.

Actually Nike didn't offer Garth to endorse them, Garth offered to endorse for them. Nike politely turned him down stating that they only wanted athletes to be in Nike's advertisements.

By the way what do you guys think of Garth doing a commercial for Dr. Pepper now?

SweetGBFan
10-02-2001, 04:40 PM
This was the first time I ever tried to cut and paste so I didnt get to say what I wanted. This article if you substitute Garth for Michael and country music for basketball the references to the careers are very similar.
Garth tries different things, Garth has gone back and forth about retirement, Garth gets the same type of criticism Michael does for everything he does, Garth also tried baseball even though for a different reason, Garth stands at all time champ for record sales like Mike does for NBA championships and they are both the same age. This could be an article about Garth and it would say almost the same thing. That was what I was trying to get to.

Pilgrim
10-02-2001, 05:43 PM
Oh I do think we knew what you were saying:)

Don't worry:)

I just think this "cry wolf" by Jordan and Garth kinda tire out the press:o

Brian