When Michael Jordan retired from the NBA(the 3rd time), he spoke of finding a challenge in his post basketball life that would fill that competitive void the nightly battles on the NBA hardwood provided. It’s why he couldn’t stay away after his walk-off shot that buried the Utah Jazz(AGAIN) in the ’98 finals. What, was Michael going to carpool, drive the kids to school, be a dad, and do all of the other nonsense that athletes & coaches spew when they walk away from the game? We’re talking about one of the most competitive people walking this earth. Sorry, but just being a dad wasn’t going to fill MJ’s competitive fire. Being a part owner of the Wizards only led Jordan to lace up his J’s one last time and taint his on court image. He didn’t want to be a full time owner/executive at the time, and felt he could still play at a high level. He felt the only way to improve the Wizards on- court product was if he effectively signed himself to play with that rag tag squad. Then again, if I had just drafted Kwame Brown, I’d want to give up the personnel gig and do what I did best too.
We know how the Wizards job ended for Jordan– he was fired and went about his life looking to find a team that he could be the majority owner of. When the cheap and incompetent Robert Johnson wanted to sell the Charlotte Bobcats, MJ had his opportunity. This was his chance to rectify the damage he inflicted on the Wizards(Rip Hamilton for Jerry Stackhouse?! Really, Mike?!), and create a legacy as an owner that would prove he had some clue of what he was doing.
Jordan had the right idea on draft night of ’08. No, that was two years after he took that over- hyped stiff Adam Morrison. Again, really, Mike?! This was the year that Jordan had the right idea. He was all set to take Stanford center Brook Lopez with the 9th overall pick. Why Lopez slipped that low is reason # 2,682 why NBA GM’s suck balls at their jobs. Teaming Lopez with Raymond Felton(whom the Bobcats took 5th overall in ’05) would have given Charlotte a solid point guard with one of the few quality centers in the league. There was one problem. Jordan’s hand picked coach Larry Brown wanted D.J. Agustin instead. Of course the wrecking ball Brown wanted another point guard. Brown changes NBA rosters like underwear, so it came as no surprise he wanted the diminutive Augustin over a guy who would become one of the best centers in the league.
In the end, that’s on Jordan. You know what you get with Brown, but Jordan has always been tied to his North Carolina brethren. 3 years later, the Bobcats could have Felton and Lopez on an up and coming team in the East. Instead, he was busy Wednesday firing Brown, and hiring Paul Silas as his replacement. Brown again quit on a team when he saw them going nowhere. The 9-19 Bobcats are better off without a coach who never led them to a playoff victory.
Jordan has put in the time with the Bobcats. David Stern told him he had to be more visible & more hands on if he wanted to succeed as an owner. You can’t run an NBA franchise from the 14th fairway. You need to immerse yourself in the responsibilities of the job. Jordan has been doing that. He also can’t handle the losing anymore. It’s why Brown(even though he long ago wanted out) was fired.
This will be the time Jordan makes a quick trigger move because that’s his nature. The Los Angeles Clippers have been dying to trade away Baron Davis. According to Yahoo.com, a proposed trade that would send Augustin, DeSagana Diop, & Matt Carroll(another MJ classic) to the Clips for Davis. That would leave the Bobcats without Felton or Augustin, and give them a fat, lazy, front running Baron Davis. Awesome. Don’t make that move MJ. There will be other deals as we approach the February trade deadline. Jordan fears the community is losing interest in his team. I get that, but you don’t bring in Davis when he has 2 years after this one at an average of $13 million per season. There is also discussion of a deal that would send Gerald Wallace, Diop, & Augustin to Portland for Andre Miller, & Marcus Camby. I’m not feeling that either, Mike.
The best bet would be to ride this season out, hope to get lucky in the lottery, and make the right draft pick that can turn this franchise around. There is no other way for Jordan to make it happen. He had the right idea in Brook Lopez, but that annoyance talked him out of it. Brown is gone now, and it remains all on Jordan. He thrived in these situations as a player, but has yet to as an owner. He always wanted the competitive void filled after his playing days. Well Mike, you have a challenge on your hands that is as great as the Detroit Pistons, and New York Knicks ever were. The ball is in your hands.
Follow me on Twitter @Louie_Ruffolo8
I hate seeing MJ struggle as an owner. That’s why I enjoy sitting back & watching clips like these…..