Skip to main content

Michael Jordan believes the culture and the habits of the NBA players today need to change

michael jordan copy (1)

Every generation in the NBA is unique in its own specific way. The game rules change every few years, and players themselves have different views, habits, and ideals than the previous generation. Today's generation of NBA players probably has the most influence simply because of the immense platform through the NBA and their social media accounts, followed by millions of people worldwide. Despite all that, some NBA fans and analysts believe most of today's players are concerned more about their other activities than getting better at their craft.

If you compare today's NBA players to those from the '80s or the 90's you can see many differences predominantly in the approach they have for the game. You can also argue that the massive amounts of money players are given today incentivizes that you don't have to work as hard because you will get paid anyways, no matter what kind of output you have. That is why the term 'load management is quite popular these days in which players feel comfortable skipping games while, on the other hand, the older generation of players would miss games only if they weren't capable of playing because of a severe injury.

In his book 'Driven from within,' Michael Jordan talked about this problem and how the culture needs to set the proper examples for today's players. Playing in the NBA is not a given right, but a privilege only a few can have, and being a successful NBA player takes a lot of sacrifices and hard work not many are willing to take. Apart from being incredibly talented, Jordan worked harder than everyone to achieve the excellence associated with his name.

Our culture needs to see examples. You can hear about how somebody played or read about the best way to achieve success, but people need to see examples. Until they see, they won't do. It's easy to talk about what Jerry West did, but it's not as easy to see what he did. Tomorrow's kids will have to see someone playing hurt and see someone practicing the day after winning a championship.

Michael Jordan, via Driven From Within

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Jordan believes that setting good examples for the younger generation is essential if you expect them to have the same mindset and approach to anything they do; it doesn't have to be just basketball. He also used a great example that is evident in the game today when players who have a minor injury decide to play in the game instead of using that as an excuse to skip games.

According to Jordan, young players need to understand that because if some things don't change, that type of mindset will become a standard, and we'll be surprised if we see a sick or hurt player play the game instead of sitting out. Before, especially if the big game is on the line, numerous star players wanted to play no matter what condition they were in, which is opposite to what we see now in the NBA.

We have to provide examples so they can relate to that ideal. Otherwise, they will get bad habits. If we lose that gap, then it starts to fade away, and 20 years from now, you will never see someone play sick, or get out on the floor with a sore ankle.

Michael Jordan, via Driven From Within

Whether these things will improve or not in the near future depends on the players and the management of the NBA teams, who see their players as assets more than anything else. NBA became a multi-billion dollar business in the past decade, which is suitable for the players because it means more lucrative deals, but you can argue that the love and the passion for the game are not on the same level it once was.

It's up to the players to acknowledge the process former NBA legends had to go through to achieve the status of greatness any young player should aim for when coming to the league. The pattern and the process to obtain this is known, but not all are willing to go down that route.

Willy Hernangomez says Zion Williamson is on a mission this season

Willy Hernangomez offers a frightening take on Zion Williamson ahead of this season -“He wants to destroy everybody”

Hernangomez said Williamson "wants to destroy everybody" in his return to the court after missing the entire 2021-22 season

James Harden said that his explosiveness is getting there after it was noticeably absent during his stint with the Sixers last season

James Harden and his quest to regain his explosiveness for the Philadelphia 76ers: "It's getting there"

Harden clearly wasn't himself during his first few months with the 76ers, but the good news is that he believes his explosiveness is getting back to what it used to be

Dirk Nowitzki at the 1998 Nike Hoop Summit

"Between practices I had to get tutoring in a separate room" - Dirk Nowitzki used to bring a tutor with him while traveling with Germany's junior national team

Dirk Nowitzki revealed that he had to bring a private tutor with him during his days with Germany's junior national team as he had to play and study at the same time.

Kobe Bryant and Phil Jackson

"Are you willing to come back and be a coachable player?"-How Phil Jackson talked to Kobe Bryant before they reunited in 2006

The time Kobe Bryant and Phil Jackson spent apart from each other made them realize that they needed each other to accomplish their goals.

Denver Nuggets mascot Rocky

Denver Nuggets mascot Rocky outearns several NBA players

Denver Nuggets mascot Rocky is closer to making a million each year than some NBA players on minimum contracts.

ben-wallace-darvin-ham-min

“I know he’s a great locker room guy!”- Ben Wallace believes Darvin Ham will do great things with the Lakers

Darvin Ham and Ben Wallace won a title together and their bond will forever remain tight.

Reggie Miller doing the choke sign

Reggie Miller on talking to New York Knicks fans: 'They love to come up and do the choke sign. They think it’s so cool'

Reggie Miller said most Knicks fans still hate him and they let him know about it by doing doing his iconic choke taunt in 1995.