One of the main generational clashes between the LeBron era and the Jordan era is in the mentality of the players. LeBron started the superteam revival with his move to Miami and was immediately branded as “weak,” with the explanation that players in the past didn’t want to join their main competitors but beat them. This was talked about even further when KD joined the Warriors.
From that moment on, there is a perception that players are not supposed to be friendly, team up, etc. You are supposed to keep your competition at a distance and burn from desire to crush them on the court. But, more and more it just seems like the Jordan era was branded that way because MJ is clinically competitive, and a few other players in that era needed that edge to play their best game. Basically, we’re talking about emotional immaturity.
But it wasn’t universal for “the good old days.” Two of the greatest players ever and players in the same position were much friendlier than people think. Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain were friends off the court, and what a miracle, still very competitive on the court. How friendly?
So the division is not between the tough men that played and competed back in the day vs. the sensitive Millenials who team up with other superstars. Players were friends and hanged out all the time, with an era of machismo and stereotypical toughness in the middle.
Turns out if you are confident enough in yourself on the court, you can be cool with your competitors off the court. Go figure.