Even though basketball was always his greatest passion and a sport in which he accomplished everything, Michael Jordan had his eyes set and loved playing other sports. The first sport he actively played as a kid was baseball before he transferred to basketball, but later in his life, Jordan discovered golf, in which he fell in love immediately. When he wasn’t practicing or having games, young Jordan would spend every possible minute on the golf course getting accustomed to a sport very much different from basketball.
In one of his earlier interviews when he was still actively playing in the NBA, Jordan talked about his passion for golf and what got him into the sport. Comparing golf and basketball is almost impossible, and for Jordan, his appreciation for golf came after he realized it’s more of a head game than anything else. He also started practicing more and more, which eventually got him hooked to the game limited only to a specific group of individuals.
When I was young and watching golf, I thought golf was a lazy sport. But it’s not a lazy sport. I mean, it’s I think concentration and the head game makes it more, it drains an individual. I just love the game. I try to play or hit balls every day in the summertime. If it’s raining, then I make up for it the next day, but I’m so hooked to the game. I’m so mad at myself that I didn’t play at a young age. I wish I could have.Michael Jordan via Skratch
Jordan was a perfectionist in everything he did, and his motivation to become great in golf was one of the goals he wanted to achieve. Jordan said he wanted to push himself to the limits to see if he can ever compete in golf tournaments after he retires from the NBA.
I want to see how good I can get at this game. I feel that once basketball is over, maybe when I’m 31,32, maybe five to six years after that where I can play golf year-round, take lessons, hit balls, practice. I think I can get good enough to at least try for the Tour. That is the challenge I see ahead of myself.Michael Jordan via Skratch
After his basketball career was over, Jordan followed his passion for golf and participated in several tournaments. On top of that, he opened an exclusive golf course in south Florida and often competes against other people in cash games over golf. However, the membership is limited to around 100 people, who Jordan personally invites. Knowing Jordan’s competitive side, there is no doubt some of these matches get heated, especially when you consider the amount of money Jordan put in on those matches.
— Golf Digest (@GolfDigest) March 28, 2020
Jordan has a plan to play golf until his body allows him to do so, and it seems the interest in golf transcends to other sports and athletes. Various other NBA players can be seen on golf courses, but Jordan is the one who took it a few steps further, especially when he had his own golf course built. It seems all the things he talked about 30 years ago about golf came to a realization, and his passion for that sport is still there, and that won’t change anytime soon.