Black Celebrities

Michael Jordan’s Impact On The Game And NBA Legacy


By Moses Kamuiru.

Winning with Grace and Style

Michael Jordan was big of a star and meant more to basketball than six rings. If a superstar like Shaquille O’Neil won those titles, it would never have made the same impact. Michael Jordan title winning with grace and style made him a global Phenomenon. Basketball had long been a bagman’s game, and this was not anything different in Jordan’s era. During the 1994-95 season that MJ missed, the top five players in PER were all frontcourt players (David Robinson, Shaquille O’Neal, Hakeem Olajuwon, Charles Barkley, Karl Malone). Scottie Pippen and Michael Jordan were in direct stylistic contrast to a league that was predicated on pounding down low, and their fans loved them for it.

The Man who could fly

Jordan accomplished this with superior technique and also with unmatched athleticism. He would often toy with his opponents from a standstill, feinting with his pivot foot like a confident swordsman. His planted foot firmly gripped the floor which made it easier for him to explode away from his defender at just the right moment. Michael Jordan will be remembered as the man who could fly although dunking was never his signature move. He was a layup artist of the highest order, someone who could turn hang time into dazzling 360-degree floaters through traffic.

$60 million from shoe sales

Jordan’s style went beyond the basketball court as he became an international superstar. He was so influential that his imprint remained as strong today as it ever did. Michael Jordan is still earning sixty million dollars annually off his shoe sales according to Forbes. Back in the late ’80s and early ’90s, Nike’s “Air Jordan” shoe line vaulted into an unprecedented level for a sports brand. Spike Lee directed Jordan’s Nike commercials using the “It’s gotta be the shoes” slogan, and the spots defined an era.

Dominating the Game

Jordan played basketball and became too big of a star before the internet and was not subjected to over analysis. However, retiring in 1993 to play baseball captivated the whole of America. The move was not only bold, but it showed how much Jordan had dominated the game before retirement.  After three consecutive MVPs and titles (and an Olympic gold medal), Jordan could plausibly have been bored with the sport he’d conquered. There was simply nobody better, and there was no realistic challenge to Chicago’s throne. At age 50, Michael Jordan has a legacy as the greatest player in the NBA. He’s the man who represented a cultural shift from the ’80s to the ’90s, from the Cold War to globalization.

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Photo credits:

Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images



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