Michael Jordan History: From Basketball to Space Jam to Shoes
Did you know that Michael Jordan’s net worth is around $1.6 billion? You might be wondering how this athlete went from ‘Rookie of the Year’ to one of the richest personalities in sport’s history.
To find out, all you need to do is take a quick look at Michael Jordan history. If you want to learn more about Michael Jordan’s legacy — from basketball to movies to business deals — then you’re in the right place.
In this article, we’ll briefly explore the major aspects of this celebrity’s career. Let’s get started!
Early Life and College Career
Though Michael Jordan was born on February 17th, 1963 in Brooklyn, New York, he spent his childhood growing up in Wilmington, North Carolina. Jordan’s competitive nature followed him through his childhood to sports like basketball and baseball.
In 1981, Jordan attended the University of North Carolina while playing for their basketball team. Jordan helped lead the team to an NCAA Division 1 victory in 1982. By 1984, the end of his junior year, Jordan left college to join the NBA. However, he still completed his degree in geography.
Professional Basketball Career
Jordan’s professional career began to take off when he joined the Chicago Bulls in 1984. Jordan quickly proved his worth as a value plays to the team. That year he earned roughly 28.2 points per game and helped bring his team to the playoff.
In addition to this, he also helped the United States basketball team bring home the gold in 1984. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to win the NBA championship from 1986 to 1989, mainly due to a leg injury.
However, the athlete still proved himself by setting record after record, like being the first person since Wilt Chamberlain to score over 3,000 points in a season. However, it wasn’t until 1990 that Jordan truly hit his stride as both a basketball player and a leader.
From 1991 to 1993 Jordan lead the Chicago Bulls to three victories in a row. After this period Jordan had a bit of a love/hate relationship with the sport. This leads to him retiring three times.
The first time, was after the 1993 championship win. However, he returned in March 1995 and was a better player than ever. This led him to bring in another three NBA championship wins from 1995 to 1998.
After the 1998 win, Jordan retired for the second time. He went on to become a part-owner of the Washington Wizards in 2000. However, he relinquished this role to return to the court for the team. From 2001 to 2003 Jordan played for the team before announcing his third and final retirement.
Brief Baseball Career
When Jordan retired from basketball for the first time in 1993 he shocked the world by announcing that he was joining a minor league baseball team, the Birmingham Barons. The decision was partly inspired by the untimely death of Jordan’s father, who wanted him to be a baseball player.
Sadly, the sport didn’t pan out for him. During the season Jordan had a fairly dismal hitting record. However, many players that worked with him say they didn’t consider the career switch to be a whim.
He was a dedicated baseball player that practiced hard. However, by 1995 Michael Jordan was ready to give up baseball and return to basketball for another three years.
Nike Shoe Business
Jordan first signed on to Nike in 1984. Though the shoewear company was relatively unknown, Jordan played a crucial role in propelling them into one of the most successful brands of athleticwear.
Part of this success came from the popularity of Jordan’s brand of basketball sneakers. These shoes, known as Air Jordans, were launched in 1985.
The shoes proved more popular than anyone could imagine. They quickly sold out. They continue to be best sellers even today. Shoes like the Jordan 9 are still used and collected by new and old fans. These days Michael Jordan serves on the board of directors for Nike Inc.
In addition to sports, Michael Jordan is also a bit of a movie star. In 1996, after returning to basketball, Jordan took the off-season to film Space Jam.
The movie, a unique blend of live-action and cartoons, paired the athlete with classic Warner Bros’ characters like Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck. The idea originated after a commercial featuring Jordan and Bugs Bunny quickly gained popularity.
In the end, Space Jam was a huge commercial success. It remains popular with a generation of children that grew up with it and even inspired a recent sequel with Lebron James.
Nike isn’t the only commercial venture that Michael Jordan was involved in. In 1998 Michael Jordan opened a string of his steakhouse restaurants.
Sadly, these restaurants finally closed down in 2018. Over the years he’s also made several endorsements deals with popular brands. These include things like:
- Coca Cola
- Upper Deck
In addition to being a part-time owner of the Wizards, Jordan also purchased shares of the Charlotte Hornets. In addition to this, he also joined on as an executive manager.
Jordan initially joined the program to improved the less than stellar record of the team. And, while he didn’t fully succeed at that, he did increase the overall valuation of the team by millions of dollars. In addition to this, Jordan also hosted a golf charity event from 2001 to 2014. The proceeds from the event went to a variety of charity organizations.
Enjoy Learning About the Michael Jordan History? Keep Exploring
We hope this article helped you learn more about Michael Jordan history. At this point, Jordan has had such an impact on the sport and industry that his career has become the stuff of legends.
As such, it’s important that familiarize yourself with a let the broad-strokes of his legacy. Did you enjoy this article? If the answer is yes, then you’re in the right place. Keep reading to find more content that you’re sure to love.