Michael Jordan



michael-jordanMichael Jordan is one of the most recognized sports figures in the world. To understand the breadth of his fame, it is probably best to think of Jordan in two senses: as a person and an athlete with incredible athletic prowess and skill, and as a cultural and media icon. The second way of thinking about Jordan is probably equal to the first. After all, it was his endorsement of dozens of commercial products, spots in movies, and in general his commercially- and market-produced image that made Jordan so famous worldwide.  

Jordan was born in 1963, one of three sons of a corporate executive. He attended North Carolina University from 1981-84, and was then drafted to the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Chicago Bulls. During the same year, he co-captained the U.S.A. basketball team to gold in the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles.  

Jordan’s fame was quickly accelerated with the help of his agent and a marketing firm. After winning the NBA’s Rookie of the Year distinction, Jordan quickly began signing a series of marketing contracts that would eventually create the iconic image known throughout the world. The most notable marketing endorsement contract came with Nike Corporation. Nike built much of its marketing and commercial strategy around Jordan in the 1980s and early 1990s. With his own line of Nike-produced basketball shoes and clothing, Jordan established himself as a marketable commodity. The relationship between Nike and Jordan would be a mutually beneficial one. It elevated Jordan to international prominence, while helping push Nike to number one status as world sports merchandiser.  

Jordan’s athletic status was also aided by the fact that his was a career with relatively little controversy, unlike many other superstar athletes. Social and political controversies surrounding Jordan were rare, and when they did occur these were minor. In 1992, he got himself into a bit of trouble when he did not allow his image to be used by the NBA for the licensing of leisure wear and memorabilia in the run-up to the Summer Olympic Games. In addition, once at the Games, Jordan, being contractually committed to Nike, refused to wear the official sponsor Reebok’s warm-up suits. The issue was resolved when Jordan and his teammates wore the U.S. flag and extra long lapels to cover the Reebok logo.  

In 1993, Jordan made a surprise announcement of his retirement from the NBA at the age of thirty. He signed as a free agent to play Major League Baseball with the Chicago White Sox, and played-unsuccessfully as it turned out-with the White Sox minor league affiliate. Jordan then made a brief comeback in the NBA, only to retire soon after. History will recognize Jordan not only for his athletic prowess-arguably the best the sport of basketball has ever seen-and for his iconic status in the later-twentieth century world of sport’s marketing and image production.

1 thought on “Michael Jordan

  • breadth

    breadth
    the fact or quality of including many things or people; wide range; SCOPE:

    His book shows the great breadth of his learning.
    It is important to remember the breadth of their support in the country.
    The job wasn’t giving him the breadth of experience he wanted.
    His breadth of knowledge was amazing.
    a politician known for his breadth of vision


    spot

    spot
    ▶TV/RADIO◀
    a short period of time when someone can speak or perform on radio or television

    He was given a 30-second spot just after the news.
    a guest spot on the Tonight Show.


    executive

    executive
    a manager in an organization or company who helps make important decisions

    a marketing executive
    senior/top executive
    top executives on high salaries


    draft

    draft
    ▶SPORTS◀
    American English
    to choose a college player to join a professional team

    Craigwell was drafted by the Chicago Blackhawks.

    co-captain

    co-captain
    Co-captains share the tasks of being the leader of a team equally; they are both captains at the same time. This is somewhat different to an assistant captain who helps the main captain do their job, or a vice-captain who stands in when they are absent or busy.


    accelerate
    to cause to happen faster or earlier than expected:

    accelerated promotion.
    economic policies that have accelerated the decline of the manufacturing industry.
    measures to accelerate the rate of economic growth.

    the rate of inflation is accelerating fast.

    commodity

    mutually

    mutually

    mutually acceptable/beneficial/convenient etc
    something that is mutually acceptable etc is acceptable etc to both or all the people involved

    We eventually arrived at a figure that was mutually acceptable.

    elevate
    to move someone or something to a more important level or rank, or make them better than before
    Language has elevated humans above the other animals.

    elevate somebody/something to something
    Their purpose is to elevate AIDS to the top of government priorities.


    prominence

    prominence
    the fact of being important and well-known, importance

    The newspapers gave the story undue prominence.
    This young fashion designer is rising to/coming into prominence. (=attracting more and more attention)
    prominence of
    the prominence of pressure groups as political forces
    come to/rise to/achieve prominence (as something)

    She first came to prominence as an artist in 1989.
    search this word on salamzaban for more examples.

    memorabilia

    memorabilia
    things that you keep or collect because they are connected with a famous person, event, or time

    a collection of war memorabilia

    run-up
    the run-up to something
    the period of time just before an important event

    in the run-up to the election

    contractual

    contractual
    agreed in a contract

    a contractual duty to give three months’ notice of your intention to leave
    contractual obligations
    Tutors have a contractual obligation to research and publish.

    ᅳcontractually adverb
    contractually binding


    teammate

    teammate
    someone who plays in the same team as oneself

    He finished just ahead of his Ferrari team-mate.

    lapel
    the part of the front of a coat or JACKET that is joined to the collar and folded back on each side towards the shoulders:

    lapel
    narrow lapels —compare REVERS


    announcement

    announcement
    a statement making publicly known something that has happened or will happen:

    flight arrival announcements at the airport
    a news/wedding announcement
    I’ve got an important announcement to make.


    affiliate

    affiliate
    a company, organization etc that is connected with or controlled by a larger one

    Volvo’s Japanese affiliate, Mitsubishi

    arguably

    arguably
    used when giving your opinion to say that there are good reasons why something might be true

    Senna was arguably the greatest racing driver of all time.
    deforestation is arguably one of today’s most important problems  
    Arguably, the criminal is a necessary member of society.

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