YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections


Michael Jordan leaves it up in the air

His off-hand comment in Hall induction speech about playing basketball at age 50 has one blogger wondering whether he will attempt a comeback or perhaps start his own league for older players.

September 14, 2009|Mike Penner

Headline that bounced around the Internet over the weekend: "Is Michael Jordan planning to start a 50-and-over league?"

The quick answer is no, because it takes time to examine how an offhand comment Jordan made during his Hall of Fame induction speech can be twisted into such a headline.

What Jordan said: "Although I am recognized with this tremendous honor of being in the Basketball Hall of Fame, I don't look at this moment as the defining end of my relationship with the game of basketball. It is simply a continuation of something I started a long time ago.

"One day you might look up and see me playing the game at 50. [Crowd laughs.] Oh, don't laugh. Never say never, because limits like fears [are] often just an illusion. Thank you very much.'

This created more conjecture than it deserved on, where a blogger wrote: "We are left to ask ourselves whether he was kidding or teasing us. Is he preparing to pull a George Foreman and pop back into his sport at 50 to challenge an older Kobe or join LeBron in his prime, perhaps in New York, to win a seventh championship? . . . Maybe he will settle into his dream to be an owner and instead of joining the NBA, he will come back only to promote his new 50 years old and over league of former NBA and college stars who still have enough game to entertain an audience."

Or maybe Jordan was just colorfully closing out his speech with a reminder to never set limits, because without limits, hall of fame careers are possible.

Trivia time

Which television sportscaster called Jordan's 63-point performance against the Boston Celtics in 1986?

Knows how to win

No one would rank Derek Jeter among the five greatest players to have ever played for the New York Yankees.

But last week, Jeter eclipsed Lou Gehrig to rank as the club's all-time base-hits leader.

"It's like a pickup basketball game," ESPN's Tim Kurkjian told the Middletown (N.Y.) Times Herald-Record. "Jeter might not be the first pick, the best player, but you know he's going to win."

This week in Pacman

From Greg Cote of the Miami Herald: "Adam 'Pacman' Jones agreed to join the CFL's Winnipeg team, which then rescinded the offer after he appeared shirtless on Ustream ranting about wanting NFL money and accidentally referring to the CFL as the 'UFL.' It qualified as a good week overall for Pacman, relative to being arrested again."

Trivia answer

Dick Stockton.

And finally

From Joe Drape of the New York Times, on record-breaking filly Rachel Alexandra: "The world's best athlete is a girl with four legs."


Los Angeles Times Articles