Would Michael Jordan Have Joined a "Superteam"?

Published on July 14th, 2022 2:45 pm EST
Written By: Dave Manuel

The Greatest of All Time - Michael Jordan. When LeBron James went to Miami to form a "superteam" with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh, people pointed out that Michael Jordan never would have done such a thing.

People said that Jordan's pride and his ego would have never allowed it.

Michael Jordan, who is, without question, the GOAT, never left the Bulls to join a better team. Sure, he played for the Washington Wizards at the end of his career, but that was another story altogether.


The fact of the matter is that the "Michael Jordan never would have joined a superteam" narrative doesn't take into account a number of different factors.

Let's start with this one:

1) Money.

Did you know that Michael Jordan made over $30 million for each of his last two seasons with the Bulls?

Did you know that the salary cap was in the mid $20 million range for both years?

The Collective Bargaining Agreement between the NBA and its players allowed teams to resign ONE player with an expiring contract for as much as they wanted without it counting against the cap.

This is why, in the 1997-98 season, the Chicago Bulls had total salary of over $60 million, even though the salary cap was around $26 million.

Unless MJ was willing to leave tens of millions of dollars per year on the table to go to a "superteam", or unless other superstar players were willing to take significant paycuts themselves to come to the Bulls, a "superteam" wouldn't have happened.

The reality is that the CBA back then didn't really allow for superteams - especially superteams involving superstar players in their primes.

We aren't talking about taking small cuts in salaries in order to leave and play for a "superteam" - MJ would have likely had to have taken a salary in the $3-$4 million range in order to make the numbers work, and that was likely never going to happen.

2) The Bulls Already Had a Superteam.

Let's not forget that the Bulls had a really, really good team - especially the teams in the second run after Michael Jordan returned from "retirement".

The 1997-98 Chicago Bulls, for instance, had FOUR future Hall of Famers on their team:

Michael Jordan
Scottie Pippen
Dennis Rodman
Toni Kukoc

That is already an unbelievable squad that was coached by Phil Jackson - why would Michael Jordan want to leave a team with three future Hall of Famers (not including himself)? The superteam was in Chicago.

3) Jordan Pushed For Good Players To Be Added To The Bulls.

There is this idea that MJ never pushed for good players to be added to the Bulls - that he was fine winning with whatever the Bulls provided.

The documentary "The Last Dance" debunked this theory, as Jordan was, in fact, pushing for good players to be added to the Bulls.


If Michael Jordan was playing against the Warriors team that included Durant/Curry/Thompson/Green, would he have been content to sit back, or would he have pushed the Bulls to create a "superteam" as well?

I don't think that the answer is as straightforward as some people would like to think.

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