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Basketball Legends of the Hardwood - Michael Jordan #1

Michael Jeffrey Jordan or the GOAT, the Greatest Of All Time was both an NCAA and NBA Champion. Born in New York City, New York on February 17, 1963, MJ is considered the greatest player to ever lace up a set of sneakers on the hardwood floor of basketball. Michael's early years of basketball was at Emsley A. Laney High School in Wilmington, North Carolina.

He was a shooting guard that liked to score. Jordan chose the University of North Carolina for his college. Playing there for three years. In 1982 Jordan and the Tar Heels won the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament. The Finals site was the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. The North Carolina Tar Heels won their 2nd title in 6 title game appearances. They beat the Georgetown Hoyas who was playing in their 2nd title game, and 2nd Final Four. The Semifinalists that year was the Houston Cougars and Louisville Cardinals. The winning coach was Dean Smith earning his 1st title. The Most Outstanding Player of the tournament was James Worthy. MJ won many awards during his college years. Those include the prestigious Consensus national college player of the year in 1984. Jordan was also on the Consensus first-team All-American in 1983 and 1984.

In 1984 Jordan was the ACC Player of the Year. This season would be his final season before entering the NBA draft. Michael was honored with two First-team All-ACC appearances in 1983 and 1984. His first year at UNC, he was the ACC Rookie of the Year in 1982. The University of North Carolina retired his number 23 college jersey. Jordan received the USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year twice in 1983 and 1984. 

Not yet nicknamed His Airness, Jordan was selected third overall in the first round of the 1984 NBA Draft. The rest is history for the Chicago Bulls and Phil Jackson, who would go on to win six National Basketball Association World Championships. The Bulls won three NBA Championships in a row, twice, it was called a Three-Peat. Dunking on opponents and shooting three-point bombs Michael Jordan won a lot of awards. Jordan a six-time NBA champion was an NBA Finals MVP in the years 1991–1993 and 1996–1998. 

Winning those championships also got him the NBA's Most Valuable Player five times. Air Jordan played for 15 seasons in the NBA. He was a 14 time NBA All-Star. In three of those games, he was voted the NBA All-Star Game MVP. He was selected for the All-NBA First Team 10 times and the All-NBA Second Team just once. In the 1988 season, he proved he could also defend, winning the NBA Defensive Player of the Year. Jordan was always a good defender. This why he on the NBA All-Defensive First Team on nine occasions. 

Of course, His Airness was the NBA Rookie of the Year in 1985 and was on the NBA All-Rookie Team that same year.MJ could put up the numbers in any category, but he thrived on scoring taking 10 NBA scoring titles. Jordan did it all on the court leading the NBA in steals three years. His Airness could fly and jump high, and it showed that taking two NBA Slam Dunk Contests in 1987 and 1988. The Chicago Bulls and Miami heat, even though he never played for Miami have retired his number 23 jersey. 

The AP Associated press recognized MJ as Athlete of the Year in 1991, and 1993. Sports Illustrated would no be left out and awarded Michael the Sportsperson of the Year in 1991. Michael Jordan was a  selection for the NBA's 50th Anniversary All-Time Team. Barrack Obama award MJ with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016. Michael was a scoring machine, scoring 32,292 points with a 30.1 ppg, point per game, average. He pulled down 6672 Rebounds averaging 6.2 rebounds per game. He was not a ball hog dishing out 5633 Assists averaging 5.3 assists per game. 

As a player, Jordan was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame and the FIBA Hall of Fame. Your Airness play basketball on the world stage representing the United States on the men's Summer Olympics team. Playing in the Summer Olympic Games, MJ won a Gold medal in 1984 at the Los Angeles games and won another Men's basketball Gold medal in 1992 at the Barcelona Olympics games. He didn't stop there winning a FIBA Americas Championship Gold medal in 1992 playing in Portland for the Men's Basketball Team. Lastly, taking the Pan American Games by storm winning a Gold medal in 1983 in Caracas Venezuela.

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