How lucky I was to live in the 90s!

The world of sports and, more particularly, the NBA, has MJ to thank for the profits they enjoy today.  Michael ushered in a marketability that had never been seen before his arrival in professional sports.  You may or may not agree with some of the things he says today, but you simply can not overlook what he has done for the sports culture.

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Hailing from North Carolina, Michael Jordan showcased glimpses of star qualities from the start.  He would go on to win the NCAA Championship, as well as college player of the year award during his tenure at UNC.  Even with MJ’s wide open style of play he’d later display in the NBA, he was able to flourish in Dean Smith’s structured offense.  After spending three years at UNC Jordan chose to enter into the draft.

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As Jordan began his journey in the NBA, it became ever apparent that he was going after greatness.  Motivated by his intense competitive nature, he often chose to take on the league’s top players.  This will and drive to win, almost at all cost, made him a premier target for advertisers.  He chose to sign a contract with Nike; which wasn’t as popular as some of your other footwear staples at the time.  This proved to be a perfect partnership and his popularity only grew.  From Gatorade to Wheaties, MJ was everywhere.  The NBA now had fans worldwide, fascinated by the things Jordan could do.  MJ is still one of the only few professional athletes to star in his own feature film.

Today Michael Jordan is as popular as ever.  He remains involved with the NBA as a majority owner of the Charlotte Hornets and the namesake to the Jordan Brand sneakers.  For anyone who had the pleasure of watching Jordan do his magic; you know who the greatest is.  Happy birthday MJ.