Michael Jordan: Life Off The Court
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Michael Jordan: Life Off The Court

When you hear 'the GOAT of basketball,' who comes to mind? No debates here— it has to be the one and only Michael Jordan – widely regarded as one of the greatest basketball players of all time.

Wealth, charm, and an unparalleled talent that flipped the script on basketball in 15 National Basketball Association (NBA) seasons. Yet, his life off the court is just as impressive.

As MJ preps for his next chapter in his 60’s, we have taken a look at his life after multiple dips in and out of retirement (seriously, he just couldn't put the ball down!) as well as his accomplishments that inspire the everyday person.

How It Began

Jordan was the shy kid in high school, described as a “good, but not great athlete” if you can believe it. He was cut from his varsity basketball team during his sophomore year and was said to be a more talented baseball player – something his father desperately wanted for him.

“I've missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I've been trusted to take the game-winning shot...and missed. I've failed over, and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

You couldn’t imagine this was his past knowing how successful his present is. He even planned to become a weatherman if his career in basketball didn’t work out.

When his name comes up, we immediately associate it with greatness thanks to his basketball career, but what others may not talk about is his accomplishments after hanging up the basketball jersey.

Michael Jordan: Life Off The Court  Air Movie
Michael Jordan: Life Off The Court  Air Jordan shoe

Making History

Retirement for Jordan was just the start. He became one of the top three athletes to reach a 10-figure fortune in 2023, despite his NBA career coming to an end over 20 years ago. However, he didn’t redefine his career to continue making a ton of cash.

Instead, he wanted to keep his legacy alive, even if he couldn’t play ball anymore. And he nailed it with his recent debut – "Air," a 2023 film uncovering the roots of the iconic 'Air Jordan' sneaker from 1985 that is still loved today by all ages. This collaboration didn't just tell a story; it saved Nike's basketball shoe division from going bust in 1984 due to slumping sales. While Jordan wasn't hands-on in making the film, the recognition was a huge nod for him.

In fact, Jordan made history as the first in the industry to strike a deal on the sale of extra merchandise, and because of this, has built a lucrative personal brand and set a precedent for other athletes. His success in business and as a brand ambassador highlights the possibilities of achieving success beyond a primary talent. It's undeniable—Jordan is a savvy businessman.

His desire to be the best is something we can all resonate with. His drive to constantly raise the bar is motivational for all those that value competition and excellence.

"If it turns out that my best wasn't good enough, at least I won’t look back and say I was afraid to try."  

Redefining 50

Steering away for just a second from his life of basketball and business, his family has grown during his later years, including getting divorced, remarried, and becoming a father – again. Michael Jordan stands as a shining example that it’s never too late to become a parent or grow your family, proving you can start anew at any age if it feels right.

Family has always been important to Jordan, as his influential mother Deloris played a key role in securing his collaboration with Nike, while his father, James R. Jordan, consistently cheered on his sports career.

Rewriting the narrative

Adding to MJ's extensive list of accomplishments, he's stepped into roles as an investor and special advisor to the sports betting company Draft Kings, taken up co-ownership of the NASCAR team 23XI Racing, embraced golfing, delved into business, and thrown support behind associations fighting against racism and for equality.

He's rewriting the narrative that your prime is only in your youth, and his wins, whether big or small, inspire those anxious about life peaking after retirement. “My father used to say that it’s never too late to do anything you wanted to do.”

Michael Jordan truly embodies the spirit of "can't stop, won't stop."

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We are big believers that you should be able to design a life you love and not stick to a linear path, especially when it comes to ageing and retirement. In fact, we'd go as far to say that the concept of retirement in its current form needs to be retired. Yes, that's right, there's no rulebook here!