I will argue that Michael Jordan is culturally significant because he assembled the Chicago Bulls from the ground up; altering them into a very unstoppable team during the championship era, his loyalty and contribution to the game of basketball, and his brand. Michael Jordan is arguably the best basketball player to ever play the game. From drawing in over millions of fans to using his success to give back to the community. His importance is beyond the game of basketball and his legacy will be remembered forever.
He is a hero because of the many bars he set and his continued generosity to charities. His achievements prove how much of a hero he truly is.
Michael Jordan was born on February 17, 1963 in Brooklyn, New York. He was one of the five children of James and Deloris Jordan. He is a former professional American basketball player for the Chicago Bulls, in which he led them to six NBA championships and he has won MVP for five times.
He is a businessperson, an Olympic athlete, and actor. Jordan in his early life, was in love with sports but he did not make the high school basketball team as a sophomore. He continued to work very hard and which led to him being able to make the team the following year. After he graduated from high school, he accepted a scholarship to play basketball at the University of North Carolina. He left UNC after his junior year and was the third pick in the 1984 NBA draft.
Even before joining the Chicago Bulls, Michael Jordan was a member of the Summer 1984 United States Olympics basketball team, which won the gold medal in Los Angeles, California. In 1985, Michael Jordan completed a bachelor’s degree in geography and he continued to play professional basketball (Biography.com) (Michael Jordan Biography).
In the late 1980s, Michael Jordan became an essential part of the Chicago Bulls success. The team made the Eastern Conference Finals in 1990 and they won their first NBA championship the next year by beating the Los Angeles Lakers. Jordan’s leadership skills were like no other and this is what shaped him into the talented player everyone knows him for. He played a total of 15 seasons in the NBA for the Chicago Bulls and the Washington Wizards. To name some of Michael Jordan’s achievements, he won the NBA MVP award in 1992, 1996, and 1998, NBA Rookie of the Year Award in 1985, Bill Russell NBA Finals Most Value Player Award in 1996-1998, NBA Defensive Player in 1988, NBA All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award in 1988, 1996, and 1998, and the best NBA Player ESPY Award in 1997-1999 (Edubilla 2018).
It was over 30 years ago when Michael Jordan’s signature shoe first arrived on the court. Three decades late, the Jordan brand is just as important worldwide as the game of basketball. Without Jordan, there would be no Nike. Jordan’s performance, spirit, and being are directly tied to the meaning of his shoes (abc news, 2016). People believe that owning something that is of Jordan brand in our lives, causes us to be more connected to the legend himself. Michael Jordan is beyond significant to the culture because of his dedication to the game of basketball and the contributions he has on our society. His accomplishments in the NBA and outside made him a one of a kind star. Jordan’s presence increased the amount of people that attended the Chicago Stadium by 87 percent from 1984-1985 (Harriman, 2018).
The younger generation looks up to Michael Jordan because of his successful basketball career and his continue success outside of the court. His life serves as an example and an inspiration for many around the world. You should never give up; no matter what life throws at you. Jordan is dedicated to organizations that help and aid children and family causes. Some of the many charities Jordan is involved in include the Special Olympics, the Boys and Girls Club of America, and the UNCF/College Fund (My Hero, 2004). After Michael Jordan retired, he initiated the James R. Jordan Boys and Girls Club and Family Life Center, which includes various activities for all the age ranges.
Michael Jordan once said “You have to do things yourself before they become reality”. When he stated this, he meant he was going to change the game in so many different ways. Jordan’s game was so remarkable and effective, that the NBA had to changed their rules in order to make the game more entertaining. New rules were implemented in order to encourage athletic players to go after and attack the basket more (thesportarchives, 2011). He changed the game forever and a numerous number of athletes are following in his footsteps such as Lebron James, Kobe Bryant, and Dwayne Wade. These players can be seen to have mimicked Jordan’s playing style. The NBA will continue to keep evolving, but Michael Jordan was the first to have changed the game for many generation to come.
Jordan in his most recent contributions has donation two million dollars to the Hurricane Florence relief efforts. He made two large donations to the International Association of Chiefs of Police’s new Institute-Police Relations after multiple police involved shootings occurred and
the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. Michael Jordan has won millions in earnings from lawsuits against companies that have used his name without permission. He used these earnings to donate to 23 different children’s charities. The amount of money he donated to them is not reported but it is roughly over 8.9 million (Business Insider, 2018). Furthermore, he has supported charities such as Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis, Cats Care, CharitaBulls, the Jackie Robinson Foundation, Kids Wish Network, LIVESTRONG, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Nevada Cancer Institute, Opportunity Village, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, The Miami Project, United Negro College Fund, and the list goes on and on (Look to the Stars, 2018). Some of the many causes Jordan supports are cancer, children, education, disadvantaged/at-risk youths, hunger, health, mental challenges, literacy, and physical challenges.
Michael Jordan donated seven million dollars to Novant Health, in order to open two Michael Jordan Clinics in Charlotte, North Carolina. Michael Jordan stated “I am proud to partner with Novant Health to bring critical health services to underserved areas of Charlotte and the thousands of North Carolinians with limited access to health care. Through my years of working with Novant Health, I have been impressed with their approach and their commitment to the community. It is my hope that these clinics will help provide a brighter and healthier future for the children and families they serve.” These two clinics are projected to open in the year 2020. This donation Jordan is making will help make life better for citizens of Charlotte by providing at-risk communities with a clinic for many generation to come.
Michael Jordan has made contributions to black issues. Jordan supports, hires, and promotes minority leaders within his business and this is something that is truly exceptional. He approach things differently such as providing power, not his voice. Michael Jordan has more black people employed within his 2.5 billion dollar so brand for numerous years.