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Michael Jordan on why he stays away from Charlotte Hornets players

Michael Jordan once gave a 19-year-old a massive beatdown. He learned not to do it again.
Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan isn’t just your ordinary NBA team owner. He’s the Greatest Of All Time. Players look up to him, are intimidated by him, and respect him. Jordan himself is aware of his stature. He knows that his presence will, in one way or another, distract the Charlotte Hornets players.

Jordan vs Hornets players

In 2015, a 52-year-old Jordan addressed a concern of a French reporter: could you beat your players in a 1-on-1? Do you sometimes pull up to the practice facility and teach them a lesson? Jordan fans know, as if by instinct, what the GOAT’s answer was:

I’m pretty sure I can, so I don’t want to do that and demolish their confidence. So I stay away from them, I let them think they’re good...but I’m too old to do that anyway,” Jordan said, per L’Equipe, via Bleacher Report.

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Hornets fans probably see Jordan sitting nearby the team bench during home games. Perhaps he’s just there to share tips during the various stages of the game. But for the most part, he stays out of the way. He lets his players think for themselves.

Every time Jordan watches his team play live, he must be craving to tell them what to do, just like his championship days with the Chicago Bulls. But the GOAT knows those days are over. Like any doting father, Jordan knows he needs his kids to discover the world of basketball by themselves.

Beatdown

However, there was one time when Jordan wasn’t able to control himself. In 2013 he played 1-on-1 with 19-year-old Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. There is no footage of the said game, nor was there a score. But Kidd-Gilchrist did admit he had a difficult time against the GOAT.

He did play me 1-on-1 one time,” Kidd-Gilchrist said on Friday morning before playing on Team Shaq in the Rising Stars Challenge Friday night. “And it was hard for me … I lost. I lost to a 50-year-old guy. That’s my boss, though. He’s the best player to play the game,” per NBC Sports.

It was perhaps at this moment that Jordan thought it’s best not to challenge his players to a one-on-one. While Kidd-Gilchrist made the All-Rookie Second Team, he didn’t meet the expectations bestowed on a second overall pick. His seven-and-a-half-season stint with the Hornets was mediocre at best. NBA fans last saw him donning the Dallas Mavericks jersey in the 2019-20 season. While injuries played a part, that beatdown he received from an aging man was tattooed in his mind.

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