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Michael Jordan reveals the moment he realized the NBA is a business-"I was so pissed off, tears came from my eyes!"

Tanking has been around forever in the NBA.
Rookie Michael Jordan

Rookie Michael Jordan

Every athlete that plays on a professional level has to have a certain passion and competitive spirit that brings out the best in him. But no one can particularly compare to the great Michael Jordan, one of the fiercest competitors in the history of sports. Still, once MJ came into the NBA and saw the other side of the sport, he was brought to tears.

The business side

Tanking or throwing games in order to manipulate the playoff picture in the NBA has been an actual problem over the past years. However, this is nothing new, as teams have been strategizing and plotting for the future for quite some time now. Nobody wants to lose games, but when you come to a particular part of the season in which you realize there is no hope of achieving something worthy, or there is a team you would favor facing in the postseason, a lot of teams take a downward turn.

It's ethically wrong, but it's impossible to prove and fine teams for tanking or throwing games, as teams have been and will continue to do it in hopes of getting that new, allusive young star that will turn your franchise around or a better chance to win in the playoffs. The players on those teams don't particularly care too much, but if you have some competitive players, it can be extremely frustrating for them.

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The moment MJ realized it's a business

Jordan and his Bulls were the most dominant team of the 90s', but before they took over the NBA, in the early days of Michael's career, Chicago was struggling. Even though MJ was a beast since his rookie season, averaging 28.2 ppg, 6.5 rpg, and 5.9 apg, his Bulls only went 38-44.

They weren't considered a particular threat in the playoffs, so they at least wanted to swing at a specific matchup with the Milwaukee Bucks, which they felt gave them a better chance of advancing. But in order to do so, they had to lose a few games.

So when Jordan got off to a hot start in one of the last games of the season, scoring 19 points in the first quarter, he would have to learn a hard lesson. His coach sat him down quite longer than usual, and Jordan couldn't help but wonder what was happening. The Bulls were throwing the game, and Michael couldn't help but get emotional, as he revealed in an old GQ interview from 1989:

"Here I am, trying to win, and he [then coach Kevin Loughery) is giving the game away. The fans started booing. They knew what was going on. And we lose. I got so pissed off. That's when I first found out that basketball was a business. I just knew it. Man, I was so pissed off, tears come from my eyes I was so pissed off!"

Michael Jordan, GQ

A young MJ would earn a valuable lesson that day, seeing it's not all about winning every game but strategizing and making the best business decision for the franchise. This was a nightmare for someone as driven and motivated about winning as Michael. But it was a lesson he needed to learn in order to become the greatest ever.

The worst part of the whole situation was that even throwing games wouldn't help the Bulls, as they lost to the Bucks (3-1) in the first round, making those lost games even more hurtful for MJ and his competitive spirit.

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